25 Employee Engagement Questions You Should Ask

Are you struggling to generate the engagement levels you need? Or maybe you’re finding that no matter how many employee surveys you run, the employee feedback you’re seeing is just not revealing anything valuable. When you’re in the early stages of setting up your employee engagement plan you may have a number of questions.

Well, it’s most likely that you’re not asking the right questions or asking them frequently enough to obtain an ongoing stream of helpful feedback. As we run multiple employee engagement surveys a year, and help provide powerful analytics to numerous companies, we speak with experience and authority about what makes the right question.

Start by understanding how to set up an employee engagement survey, the survey frequency, whether you’re running pulse surveys and what the different question styles are. Once you’ve understood these basic points, you’re ready to get going, and the following guide will break down the top 25 employee engagement satisfaction survey questions.

These are designed to help you measure employee engagement in a manageable way.

In this piece you will learn:

  • Employee Satisfaction questions
  • How to write employee survey questions about management
  • Employee retention questions
  • Questions about company culture
  • Personal growth and development questions

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25 great staff engagement survey questions for you to use

We cannot overstate how important it is to include the right survey questions when you’re trying to measure employee engagement. Not only will they ensure you can obtain constructive employee feedback but will also keep you on track for achieving your goals.

So, to help you we’ve outlined some questions for you below and split these up into five essential categories. These range from obtaining feedback about employee satisfaction and management performance, to questions which measure opinion about staff retention, company growth and opportunities for personal growth.

There are a number of different question types you can use when you’re setting up your engagement survey. They’re a mixture of text questions, open ended questions and questions based on the likert scale, designed for collecting employee feedback.

Employee satisfaction questions for engagement surveys

Asking employees about their job satisfaction can provide a great deal of insight into their overall levels of engagement. While employee satisfaction and employee experience are both slightly different things to engagement, both can play an important part in helping you measure how engaged they are. It can also help to reveal any underlying problems that could be disengaging them from other team members.

These will be your employee engagement index questions, forming the basis of your survey that you’ll then use to benchmark your strategy and measure employee engagement levels over time.

Here are some questions to help get you started:

1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you at work?

Employee happiness plays an incredibly important part in how engaged they are. Alone, it doesn’t necessarily mean that much, but this is a good direct question to start with. It will provide a top-level overview of employee satisfaction. By asking it regularly, it can enable you to track and measure staff morale over time.

2. Would you recommend someone to work here?

Another useful question, which can reveal just how satisfied a person is with their job and the overall employee experience within your business. If they would recommend the company to others, it’s generally a good sign.

Even if their answers are not what you hoped for, it can give you the opportunity to dig deeper and find out why they feel this way, so you’re in a better position to make the changes you need to improve their contentment with their job. Finding out whether your employees are proud to work for you can make a real difference, or else provide a bit of a reality check. If someone does enjoy working for you, they’re much more likely to be engaged with your organisation.

3. Have you got a clear understanding of your career or promotion path?

A Gallup poll found that employees who get the opportunity to continuously develop are twice as likely to spend their career with their present company than those that don’t.

See how your own workforce answers this question. And if their responses are indecisive, you may want to start offering more opportunities for development, to prevent larger numbers of people from leaving your company. Clear career opportunities are important, and this visibility should be considered as amongst other ideas for engagement strategies.

4. On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your work-life balance?

To remain productive and engaged, employees need to have a good balance between their work and personal life, which is an area that has become increasingly important to staff in recent years. This question can help reveal if your company has got this balance right.

Using a scaled response lets you track it over a period of time to see how responses change.

5. Hypothetically, if you were to quit tomorrow, what would be the reasons behind your decision?

From reasons such as feeling under-valued or dissatisfaction with company communications or a lack of transparency. The responses from this question can reveal a lot about what your employees are thinking and whether they are looking to stay long term, or if there are more underlying issues that are driving them to look elsewhere for work.

These text questions which should be open ended give you a good insight into any particular grievances they may have.

6. Are you satisfied with the benefits you’re receiving?

Employee perks also have an important role to play in determining overall job satisfaction levels. They also help in attracting new hires towards the company. Asking employees this question can help to ensure that your pay and benefits are keeping up with your competitors.

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How to write employee survey questions about management

When putting together an employee engagement survey it’s also essential to ask questions that will gauge employee sentiment of your leadership.

No one knows a manager better than those they manage. And since leadership plays a crucial role in engaging the workforce, you need to make sure they are seeking feedback from your employees on just how well you’re doing at that.

Here are some questions to help you with this:

7. Do you feel valued at work?

According to a white paper report from Servicenow for most employees the need to be valued and heard is even more important than their actual role. So, this can be a useful question to gauge how valued workers in your organisation are feeling.

8. How often do you receive recognition from your manager?

Given that as many as 58% of employees said more recognition would help improve their engagement levels, this is a great question to ask.

While morale can quickly drop among teams that go several weeks without receiving any recognition for a job well done, those that feel the most appreciated tend to feel motivated and be hardworking.

9. Did you receive any praise the last time you completed a big project?

Feeling valued at work is another huge motivator. This question will help to reveal how well your company’s leadership is monitoring and recognising the major achievements in your business.

If it’s not already happening, this question will flag the problem and give you a chance to do something about it.

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Employee retention questions to measure engagement

While it’s possible to measure staff retention rates through a number of different variables, it’s better if you can get an earlier and more detailed picture of what your employees are thinking through employee engagement survey questions.

Asking the right questions means you can catch any problems early and potentially make changes that stop people from leaving.

Here are some questions to get you started.

10. Do you think you’ll be able to reach your full potential here?

Most employees want to work for a company that will help nurture their growth. Generally, the more opportunities for personal growth an organisation can offer, the better its staff retention rates are likely to be.

This will help you get insights around personal growth too, but we have more questions on that later.

11. If you were given the chance, would you reapply for your current job?

At first glance, this question can seem a little strange. However, it can help reveal who is the most satisfied with their job, as generally the happier the employee, the more likely they would be to reapply for their same position, in contrast to an unhappy individual. Someone with a genuine interest in both their role and the company, is more likely to be engaged.

12. Do you see yourself working here one year from now?

This is another useful question, as it can be a good indicator of the overall morale in your company and your ability to retain people. It can also give you valuable time to make some positive changes, if many of your employees have stated their intention to leave within the next year.

A small investment now, based on the survey results, in improving circumstances could save you a lot on the cost of hiring new people if everyone does leave.

13. Do you believe your feedback is taken seriously by your leadership team?

No one wants to work at a place where they are ignored.

When leaders don’t take suggestions or feedback from employees seriously, it can appear that they are more hierarchical than horizontal in their approach. At worst this makes them look like they aren’t committed to making improvements.

This question can reveal if you’re truly listening to your employees, and if not, can give you a chance to improve these communication channels, which could be anything from implementing an ideas box on your intranet to introducing focus groups to discuss different topics.

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Questions about company culture

Studies from organisations such as Denison Consulting (pdf download) reveal that there is a significant correlation between strong company cultures and engagement levels.

So, it’s a good area to explore what your team members think about your company’s culture through your employee engagement survey questions. We’ve highlighted a few below that you could consider adding to your surveys.

14. Do you feel your management team is transparent?

According to a study by Forbes, management transparency is the top factor in determining employee happiness. Use this question to assess how well your leaders are doing when it comes to communicating information to your employees.

15. Can you recite our organisation’s values off by heart?

This is a valuable question, as it can reveal how well your employees know your organisation’s vision, mission, and cultural values. If a high percentage get this right, then that’s great. Alternatively, if only a lower number can recite your company’s values, you need to do more work to connect and engage your employees with your overall mission.

It can highlight a number of things, including your own ability to communicate or a lack of engagement from employees. You’ll likely be able to work out which of these it is based on the other questions in your surveys.

16. What three words would you use to describe our workplace culture?

Fun, antagonistic, supportive? Ideally, you would be hoping for these words to closely align with the core values of your business. Once you have gathered your feedback, you could use the results to identify ways to strengthen and improve your workplace culture.

17. On a point scale of 1 to 10, how comfortable are you about providing upwards feedback to your supervisor?

The workplace environment should never be hostile or suppressive. Employees should feel comfortable providing feedback to their supervisors, so that they can continue to offer valuable suggestions for improvements.

18. Do you feel like co-workers respect one another here?

You want to build a culture where people respect and support one another. This question allows you to dig under the surface to find out how your employees truly feel about each other and to look closer at your team dynamics. If they’re not supporting one another, it can enable you to start planning some effective team motivation sessions and team building activities to improve this.

19. Do you believe that we genuinely live and breathe our organisational values?

Do your employees feel like your organisation’s values are just meaningless words on the walls? Or that your leaders and the rest of their colleagues are living out those values. Either way, this is a great question to find that out and make any improvements you need to make.

20. Does our executive team contribute to a positive work culture?

Are the leaders in your organisation fostering a positive or negative work environment? This survey question can enable you to dig deeper to find out how well your leaders are upholding your organisation’s culture.

21. Is your organisation a fun place to work?

Given the many hours employees spend at work, it’s important that they can have a bit of fun along the way to help to relieve stress and help them feel motivated and engaged. So, use this question to see if you’re getting the balance right, or if you need to introduce any more tactics to keep your staff happy.

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Improve your staff retention with a new engagement survey

Personal growth and development questions

Finally, it’s also important to ask your employees about their personal growth in the organisation. A company’s success depends on your employees growing as people too and to keep high engagement rates you’ll want to make sure they feel they can grow within your organisation.

Employee engagement surveys let you quickly discover where people feel they need to develop, and whether they feel like they’re currently on track.

The following questions can help you with this.

22. Which new responsibilities, if any, would you like to take on?

According to research only about 29% of employees are happy with the career advancement opportunities available to them. So, it’s obviously an area that’s important for them and most would like greater support with. With this question, you can ensure your employees are getting ample growth opportunities, and if they want it, which responsibilities they would like to take on to stretch them further.

23. Are there any types of new projects you would like to be involved in?

In another study a third of all respondents cited “boredom” as the main reason for quitting a job. So, in addition to asking them about any extra responsibilities, it wouldn’t hurt to ask your employees if there were any projects, they’d like to be involved in.

24. Are there any new skills you would like to develop?

This is a good question for uncovering if your employees are gaining sufficient opportunities to develop the skills they need to excel in their careers. You can ask them about any new skills they’d like to develop, which if they align with your broader business objectives, you could provide them with the resources to do so.

25. Are you receiving ample enough learning opportunities in your current job?

You also need to ensure your employees are getting enough opportunities to grow professionally and achieve their personal career goals. So, this is a great question to finish your survey with.

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