An organization that’s aware of the importance of workplace culture and makes improvements each year will perform better than an organization that ignores or takes very little interest in it. Conducting a work culture survey helps diagnose a bridge, if it exists, between current culture and the culture an organization’s management hopes to achieve.
By analyzing employee feedback and perceptions about the culture at present and aspects of the culture they find appealing, an organization can mend its strategies to try and eliminate the gap between the two.
What is a work culture survey?
A work culture survey is a tool to collect insights from employees associated with the organization to assess and improve the business and make enhancements in leadership strategies, future investments, and overall changes in the organization. It is a survey that evaluates how well-aligned is an organization’s culture with its propagated values and ethics.
“Customers will never love a company until the employees love it first.” – Simon Sinek, Author, Start with Why.
An organization should understand what its employees think about their culture and what can be improved to make it a better place to work. Every cultural aspect of a workplace directly or indirectly impacts business.
Organizations that intend to create a workplace primarily driven by specific behaviors and focus on developing a conducive culture, often rely on culture surveys. Gaining insights into current workplace culture and analyzing the degree of alignment it has with the ideal set workplace culture will benefit the organization in terms of better planning, increase performance standards, employee engagement, etc. Forbes magazine emphasizes how crucial it is to ensure the organization maintains healthy culture and improves its status quo.
Internal hierarchy, technologies, skills, and qualities that influence actions and assumptions, the entire system is measured with a workplace culture survey. With the inputs provided by each employee, an organization can work towards improving their vision for culture, job roles, and structure, manage the performance of company-wide teams, and enhance managerial techniques.
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Top 20 work culture survey questions you can’t afford to miss!
If you are running a workplace culture survey in your organization, make sure to include these questions in your questionnaire.
1. On a scale of 0-10, how likely are you to recommend our organization to your friends and colleagues due to the culture?
Satisfied employees will often boast about their workplace culture amongst their friends and colleagues, and so will dissatisfied employees. But satisfied employees will recommend their network to apply for jobs with your organization which will is profitable for your organization. In contrast, dissatisfied employees will spread a negative word about your culture.
Ask this Net Promoter Score question to make improvements in your company’s market reputation by making changes in workplace culture.
2. Are you comfortable with your workplace culture? If yes, Why?
This workplace culture survey question provides information about whether or not your organizational culture aligns with employee opinions and feedback about culture in general. If more than 50% of the organization opines that your culture is not comfortable and is hindering their professional growth, you may have to put in conscious efforts to make them comfortable. You can do it by either mending a few culture-related rules or by knowing details about the reason for their discomfort.
3. Do you feel respected by your team and the organization?
An individual grows tremendous in situations where he/she feels respected. This work culture survey question is instrumental in understanding whether the employee’s team respects him/her and how is the factor of respect contributing to their productivity.
4. Does your manager provide you with timely feedback about your work?
Feedback is key for an employee’s progress in an organization. Does an employee’s manager provide frequent improvement tips and feedback? Ask this question to understand and analyze how to make feedback for the employees a constant process.
5. Which aspects of the organization can be improved to make it a better place to work?
Every employee has an opinion about how their culture can improve, and most of them also know details about competitor workplace cultures. Include this question to enhance your current culture to keep improving employee satisfaction levels.
6. How would you define leadership exhibited in this organization?
Employees in an organization look up to the leadership of the organization. A leader with integrity, discipline, hard-working, intelligent, and similar traits are respected within the organization, and employees want to replicate these traits. So, it is important to ask this question to understand how employees perceive the leadership in the organization.
7. How would you characterize this organization’s management style?
The management style of an organization speaks volumes of the ways things are conducted within the organization. Good management means good values, which in turn results in lower employee attrition rates.
8. According to you, how does this organization define “success”?
Success is defined differently in every organization. Organizations should clearly emphasize the measures of success to their employees.
9. Is your organization dedicated to diversity and inclusiveness?
An organization that doesn’t discriminate based on gender, sex, religion questions, color, sexual orientation is a safe place for employees to be in. This is an important question you need in your work culture survey to know if your employees think this organization is where they want to be.
10. Do you understand how your work impacts the organization’s business goals?
An organization that helps employees perform better will always experience better levels of employee satisfaction and employee engagement. And a workforce that knows how they impact the organization will always be willing to go above and beyond to do good for the organization.
11. Do you think the organization operates in a socially responsible manner?
An organization that is ethical by all means is the first choice for employees. It is important to know if your employees think the same or otherwise about the organization they work in. In case they have a different opinion, it’s time to evaluate yourself as an organization.
12. Are you satisfied that the organization’s work is positively impacting the employees in the organization?
If employees are not happy working and doing things the way an organization wants them to, then there is certainly a conflict of interest and an organization must take the initiative to resolve this. So if your employees think that their organization is negatively impacting the employee, evaluate yourself immediately!
13. Are you satisfied with the overall job security in the organization?
Job security is important for employees within the organization. If employees are scared of losing their jobs because of petty issues, then this issue must be addressed. This attribute surely leads to negative work culture.
14. Does your organization have a safe working environment for all the employees?
Employee safety should be on top of the agenda for organizations. If there are female employees working until late at night, proper arrangements should be made for their safety and protection. At all times, employees should feel safe in the workplace.
15. Do you think the organization adheres to a zero-tolerance policy against any kind of discrimination?
Another important question that should be a part of a work culture survey; employees need to know there is a zero-tolerance policy against any kind of discrimination.
16. Does your manager/supervisor share decision making power with you?
It is important employees feel valued at their workplace. If the good manager or supervisor guides an employee in decision making or gives them the responsibility, it shows the greater character of the leadership within the organization.
17. Do you have a say in the organization’s policy changes?
Employees want to feel heard. Organizations need to implement steps to ensure their employees feel involved and respected, especially while making changes to policies that directly affect them.
18. Is there a culture of teamwork and cooperation within the organization?
Teamwork and cooperation are the two attributes that determine, to a larger extent, an organization’s culture. Positive work culture will exhibit both these attributes strongly. Ask your employees what their say is.
19. Are you satisfied with the way performance reviews are conducted in the organization?
Satisfied employees excel in the workplace because they are challenged and given helpful feedback. The performance review is an important process that every organization follows. But it is also important to know if your employees think it is fair or not.
20. Are there any additional questions you would like to add to this survey?
Always include this question towards the end. Employees have some good insights that can be a part of your work culture survey. As you progress, you will be able to make amendments to the existing questions- add/delete and collect meaningful feedback.
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Tips to improve survey response rates
1. Plan well-in-advance
It is essential to understand that to improve response rates for a culture survey, an organization needs to create a plan before actually sending the survey. The management, the partners, and everyone involved should contribute to creating excitement around culture surveys. Share a social media post or an email to the employees, which communicates that a survey to measure culture will be launched soon – activities of this sort should ideally be carried out to make sure the response rates increase.
2. Send short and accurate surveys
lengthy surveys bore employees. For an organization to boost response rates, they need to consider survey fatigue and keep the survey questions as precise as possible.
3. Maintain anonymity
Anonymity assures employees that their opinion will not damage their work or reputation with peers and managers. Employees feedback will be kept anonymous which will give organization helpful feedback on improving the culture.
4. Send reminders
A friendly poke at specific time intervals can do wonders to the response rates.
5. Learn about impediments
There can be ample impediments for an employee to provide feedback for a culture survey. Understand which aspects are keeping them from replying to the survey – it can be a lack of time, discomfort with the survey language, or survey load time on their computer.
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Work culture survey vs. employee engagement survey
Many organizations and HR managers wonder if they should run culture surveys in their organization or engagement surveys. Or should we run both? What is the difference? Let us quickly look at key aspects that differentiate culture questionnaires and engagement questionnaires.
The scope of the study is what differentiates workplace culture surveys and employee engagement surveys.
A staff engagement survey will focus on their perception of the organization and what they feel about their job. Questions in an engagement survey will be regarding employee benefits, the effectiveness of supervisors, promotion opportunities, etc.
A work culture survey will focus on how the staff perceives an organization’s ethics, beliefs, values, rules, ability to judge right and wrong, and act accordingly.
Engagement questionnaires focus on employees’ day-to-day experiences, assignments, motivation, commitment to work, etc.
Work culture studies delve into values and shared beliefs that guide the behavior and thinking of the entire organization.
Employee engagement surveys gauge the factors impacting employee performance. It looks at how they feel about their work, job responsibilities, peer relations, team relations, well-being, work-life balance, collaboration, cooperation, and others.
Workplace culture surveys look at practices, internal structures, technologies, etc. that impact behavior and employee expectations. Questions cover vision, mission, innovation, leadership style, management effectiveness, teamwork, and conflict management.
Benefits of conducting workplace culture surveys
Now that we know what kind of questions you need to cover in your online workplace culture surveys, let us look at why we should conduct them. Here are some key advantages and benefits of conducting work culture surveys.
Identify your company culture
A company’s work culture is not good or bad, and it can never be that simple or direct. All organizations are unique, and so is their culture. What you need to know or confirm is if the culture is conducive to an employee’s growth, do employees feel comfortable voicing their opinions, do employees love to work there, etc. Conducting a survey can give you insights into these aspects and let you know if the employees like the workplace culture and find it positive.
Highlight issues in practices
An organization’s business operations and people processes are based on a set of practices. Practices are modified and changed over many years. An online culture survey will pinpoint practices that need to improve or change.
Gauge transparency and communication
Employees need to feel that they can voice their opinion openly, that the company will hear them, and that management will take necessary actions. The management needs to be transparent about business decisions and plans. Surveying your employees will let you know if the organization is meeting all the necessary standards for positive work experience.
Analyze and act
With specific questions in your work culture surveys, you can identify the most or least prominent behaviors in your organization’s culture. Using these, you can set priorities for making your culture more effective, positive, and employee-friendly.
Ready to create a workplace culture where everyone can reach their full potential? Learn more about how to get ongoing feedback from your employees and start taking action to make a positive impact in your organization with QuestionPro Workforce.