Should staff survey questions be anonymous?

Piers Bishop · May 11, 2015

So here’s a good question from the Linkedin group on employee engagement surveys – should staff be surveyed anonymously? People taking part in the discussion generally agreed that anonymity is absolutely essential, or the dark secrets will never be revealed and the point of the whole survey is lost.

We can’t entirely agree here, though of course WeThrive is much more than an engagement survey – in fact it starts where an ordinary engagement survey leaves off, and gives managers a comprehensive picture of what employees need to be happy and productive, right down to individual level.

However you put staff survey questions there is a problem: if the survey is attributable you know exactly who has said what, but employees won’t put in the things that need to be said but would make them unpopular with the management.  On the other hand, if it is anonymous you get all the hard stuff but you don’t know who from, or how much weight to give it.

So here’s our idea.  It’s a comprehensive, automated survey system, easy and quick to fill out on any device.  It asks about all the areas of working life that have the potential to be problem areas, and picks up the things that your employees need help with so they can be happy and productive at work. The questions are not just attributable to the individual, they are automatically analysed and turned into an action plan that helps line managers collaborate with the members of their team to make work, and working life, work better.

But it has another trick up its sleeve – it also has an anonymous input box for each question, so employees who have a useful suggestion – or something they want to get off their chest – can just say it and know it will be read by the management.

So, best of both worlds, and more.  It costs the same as other systems and does more, not least because it goes into areas that aren’t usually discussed but have real potential to disrupt working life.

Try it today, free of charge, and then would you report the results back to Linkedin?