We’re vocal advocates for the 90-day survey cycle, because when we began Engagement Multiplier, we studied the efficacy of different survey frequencies. We found, on no uncertain terms, that annual surveys do not work to improve or maintain engagement.
And, we found that 90-day surveys hit the sweet-spot of frequency for maximum accuracy and minimal survey fatigue.
But, we’ve learned a lot more since embarking on this journey. And, we’ve realized that not every business is the same, and 90-day surveys don’t work equally well for every organization. Our philosophy is evolving, right alongside our clients’ businesses, in response to their changing needs.
Which is why, this Spring, we’re introducing On-Demand Surveys that allow flexibility and customization for survey frequency, survey audience, and survey content.
How can you tell if the 90-day survey isn’t right for you?
Our ‘Golden Rule’ is: When you don’t know, ask. Specifically, you can add a custom essay-style question to the end of your regular Engagement Multiplier survey asking your employees what they think is an appropriate, effective, survey frequency. And, be sure to ask them to explain their answers, because that elaboration can be revealing.
“How often do you think we should survey? Please explain why.”
You may uncover across-the-board survey fatigue, or, you may notice that some teams appreciate more frequent opportunities to give feedback, while others don’t require as much attention.
Our on-demand survey feature will allow you to send custom surveys specifically to those groups, with questions that pertain only to them.
Common signs of survey fatigue
- You’ve reached Engaged status, but see a drop-off in survey participation rates. Employees may not have much to say because they’re happy and engaged already. But, that doesn’t mean that you can’t still benefit from sending more targeted surveys for specific types of feedback.
- The amount of written feedback in the essay-style questions has diminished.
- Employees wait until the last minute to complete the survey.
One other reason a 90-day survey may not be right for you is if you can’t keep up with the feedback and haven’t addressed the issues you’ve committed to from the previous survey cycle.
We encourage our clients to carefully follow through with every commitment they make in response to survey feedback, because this process is about gaining trust and raising employee confidence. You don’t want to send the next survey if it looks like you’ve ignored the results from the previous survey! Instead, send employees regular updates on what progress you’re making on your commitments, and encourage them to use the Suggestion Box feature to provide feedback in between surveys to keep communication lines open.
The final reason you may want to extend the survey cycle is if your company has a major event or project that lands at the same time as your regular survey. If you send the survey during a high-stress week (or month), it can color the results. We recommend sending the survey after the dust has settled, but not so long after that your employees forget the issues that arose and the lessons learned!
In short: Businesses evolve, and when they do, you don’t have to lock yourself into a rigid schedule.
You don’t have to wait for the on-demand survey feature just to modify the launch date of your next survey – you can do that now, right from your Engagement Multiplier Dashboard Home!