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What do your employees think? Fostering great employee-relations using online-surveys

What do your employees think? Fostering great employee-relations using online-surveys

Author: Ian Hurst — Managing Director, Paymaster People Solutions

Consider this scenario…

…The phone rings in your office and one of your employees answers the incoming call. The client on the other end of the line is an important client.  You need that client to build your business. Have you considered this though: do you know how your employee feels about you and your organisation? Is your employee thinking: “I like working here and my boss is doing his/her best to keep me happy.” Or, might your employee perhaps be thinking: “My boss doesn’t care about me, so why should I care!”

Employees do make a difference

Your employees do make a difference! They arrive at work with their ideas, their fears and their hopes …ready to work for you, giving their best (or worst) for the day ahead. How your employees think and feel will certainly influence the manner in which they perform their tasks when on duty. In turn, this will certainly influence the manner in which they deal with your customers too.

Before we  made any changes , we felt it would be great to know what our employees were thinking. So, we at Paymaster People Solutions seized the initiative to determine what the true sentiments of our employees were. We did this by conducting a short online-survey. With no more than 24 well-considered questions presented to your employees, you can quickly and clearly assess where your employee-relations strengths and weaknesses lie. Accordingly, you can also rapidly determine where improvement in your employee-relations is needed.

What do your employees think? Fostering great employee-relations using online-surveysConducting a short employee-relations online-survey —

The process

Each employee receives a website-link that redirects them to the online-survey. Employees receive clear (unambiguous) instructions on how to complete the online-survey. Employees are assured that the online-survey is 100% confidential and anonymous. Once the online-survey has been completed (suggested deadline: within 48 hours of employees receiving notification to participate in the online-survey), the results will be tabulated and presented to you in the form of a Microsoft Powerpoint presentation. The data in the presentation clearly outlines a summary of your employees’ responses to the online-survey.

An example

Background: this online-survey was designed to consider three primary dimensions to employee-relations in the organisation:

  • First: an assessment of leadership in general, and specifically performance management, positivity-levels and overall communication efficiency.
  • Second: an assessment of employees’ reward-scheme, career advancement and promotion, and fringe benefits scheme.
  • Third: an assessment of organisational culture in general, and specifically teamwork, values and professionalism in the workplace.

Example — Article: What do your employees think?

Discussion of example

As seen in the insert (above), one of the questions that was asked, sought to determine the employees’ sentiments surrounding fringe benefits. Fourteen (14) employees participated in the online-survey, and the results are clearly indicated. As can be seen from the visualisation in the bar-chart, about 35% of the employees rated their fringe benefits scheme as “room temperature” (derived from some employees responding to this question by assigning it a “4” rating).

In short: from the employee responses, one is able to easily determine that there is some degree of  employee dissatisfaction surrounding fringe benefits — not everybody is happy.

Behind the scenes additional information: most employees in fact indicated that they desire a medical aid and retirement plan to be part of their fringe benefits.

Stumbling blocks: small to medium organisations might not always be able to afford such fringe benefits being granted.

Possible resolution: the organisation might have to seriously reconsider its own employee-costs budget, with a view to gradually phasing in the kind of fringe benefits that its employees have an expectation of receiving (which could be conditionally agreed upon, dependent upon the organisation meeting its turnover and profit targets).

What do your employees think? Fostering great employee-relations using online-surveysFollow-up required from the management team

After the online-survey has been completed and the results duly analysed, the organisation’s management team needs to arrange a follow-up meeting with all of its employees. This will allow participatory discussion of the results to take place in an informal, non-threatening context. Such a follow-up session can either be done by the managing director/owner of the organisation, or by an outside consultant (should the management team determine that this approach to be more appropriate). The purpose of such a feedback session would be to foster a shared, mutual understanding of where everybody considers the organisation to be at present. This also facilitates the establishment of a shared-vision of where all employees need to be (in terms of current operational goals and expectations), and where employees would possibly like to be (in terms of their own expressed opinions). Finally, such a follow-up session allows the full organisational team to reach agreement on where they plan to be (in terms of a possible revised set of operational goals).

Conducting a short employee-relations online-survey — A powerful (yet easy) solution

Conducting a short online-survey is a powerful way of encouraging your organisations’ employees to work together towards growing the business within a happy employee-relations climate. This process also gives rise to the creation of healthy, willing adoption of employee-accountabilities which will be accepted by all who work for you. Lastly, the power of this solution lies in its ability to foster truly excellent client service.

Are you keen to implement this solution for your organisation? It will cost your organisations as little as R3500 once-off. Contact me, Ian Hurst ( for more information. I will be happy to field your enquiries.

Ian Hurst

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