July 13, 2020
Company Culture 19 June 2019
A Simple Guide to Using Employee Pulse Surveys
Guest Poster

The last five years have seen the employee pulse survey phenomenon gaining healthy traction. More and more organizations are looking at employee pulse survey as one of the effective online survey software to get a quick insight into the health of the company. So, what is making organizations drawn towards employee pulse surveys?

Organizations have realized that checking in on their employees once or twice a year with an employee engagement survey simply isn’t enough. Too much time is wasted, and opportunities are lost to address critical issues or employee concerns that need to be dealt with in real-time. 

An employee pulse survey is short, quick, frequent, and they address critical issues in time. 


So, What Are Employee Pulse Surveys?

An employee pulse survey is a short, quick survey that is rolled out to employees on a regular basis (weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc.). This survey check-ins on topics such as job role, employee satisfaction, relationships, communications, and work environment. 

An employee pulse survey takes valuable information into smaller, and more actionable chunks. Employee pulse surveys are beneficial for managers to step up their HR game. 


What Are the Uses of Employee Pulse Surveys?

Here are two common ways employee pulse survey can be used: 

1. This survey is used to watch for signs that can become problems later. It could be an issue with the supervisor, potential attrition, or a concern with a particular aspect of the employee’s job profile. A pulse survey brings out the issues that need to be addressed urgently. 

2. Employee pulse surveys are used to collect targeted information about employee’s experiences across the life cycle – from employee’s onboarding to career progression to exit.  

Used properly, pulse surveys allow the company to make improvements that will improve the organizational climate and increase engagement across the board.


What Are the Benefits of Using Employee Pulse Surveys?

1. Measure employee engagement and satisfaction in real-time

Quick and frequent feedback helps in getting an insight into the employee’s satisfaction and morale levels in real-time. 

2. Receive higher response rates than annual employee engagement surveys

Because employee pulse surveys are simple, short, and quick (can be done within a few minutes), they encourage more employee participation.  

3. Encourage open communication channel

An employee pulse survey creates an environment that encourages open communication. Employees get motivated to share their suggestions and make improvement recommendations. This creates a very healthy environment of feedback and innovation because new ideas are brought to light. 

4. Improve employee relations 

A simple act of asking for feedback can improve the relationship between the employee and the management. Their sense of belonging reaches a new height when they realize they have the right to speak and voice their opinions. 

5. Figure out employee’s reaction on certain changes

Employee pulse surveys gather the information that highlights the impact on employees when a change is implemented (e.g. a change in the HR policy) or during major or minor events (e.g. new manager onboarding). This gives a powerful insight into employee motivation and morale.


7 Steps To A Successful Staff Pulse Survey

If you want to gain valuable insights through your employee pulse survey, here’s what you should do:

1. Choose your topics wisely: Your questions can cover multiple topics: motivation, happiness, feelings about management, recognition, workload, job role, etc.

2. Create your questions: Select 5-12 questions that you would like your employees to answer that will add value and insight to your business.

3. Announce the survey: Your employees should know about the survey before you roll it out. Give a little information about the survey like -what’ll happen to their feedback or whether the survey is anonymous. Don’t forget to let them know that their feedback is important. 

4. Roll it out: Choose a convenient time to send the survey to the employees. 

5. Analyze the responses: Once you receive the feedback, review the responses. Analyze the data to look for areas of improvements as well as positive areas, and be sure to see the trend or pattern in the responses. 

6. Share the results: This is important because you need to let them know that they were heard, and their feedback mattered. 

7. Act on the feedback: If your employees took time out to respond, then it is important to take necessary action. Develop a plan to address the pain points, if required delegate it along with the deadlines. 

8. Conduct pulse surveys regularly: Continue sending out pulse surveys frequently. Review the responses and check on the progress on the changes you implemented.

Implement your employee pulse survey strategically. Remember, you need to keep the balance. If the pulse surveys are sent too frequently, they can lose effectiveness as employees will begin to put in fewer efforts. Also, the employees may feel dejected if there was no action taken on the previous pulse feedback. This can discourage them, and they may hesitate to provide feedback in the future.  


Bhavika Sharma is a survey designer at SurveySparrow, where she designs surveys that work by making them more conversational and engaging, fetching 40% more responses. When she isn’t designing killer surveys, she loves to travel in search of adventure and to meet new people. Her travel experiences have taught her the importance of conversation and that is what she brings to the table while creating surveys or content for her readers.