How to run an employee wellbeing survey + free template
Mental health isn’t just all in your head - so to speak. Mental health is real, and it makes a real, tangible difference in productivity and workplace culture.
Your team members' mental wellbeing shapes your business’ success. Employee wellbeing surveys help you understand how well your employees are functioning mentally, and how leadership can help.
When you value your employees' wellbeing, you’re not just growing a healthier and more engaged team, but you also lay down a foundation for better productivity, improved retention, and ultimately more sustainable business success. Employee wellbeing surveys are indispensable in learning how your team members’ mental health is being affected, and how you can improve it.
In this post, we’ll delve into what employee wellbeing surveys are, how they work, and how you can use them in your own company.
Want to jump straight to our employee wellbeing survey template? Download it here below for free:
What is an employee wellbeing survey?
Mental health is often intangible, invisible: it’s hard to see and observe its causes and effects directly. Staff wellbeing surveys are a type of employee engagement survey that helps you to understand employees' mental and emotional wellbeing, job satisfaction, and work-life balance.
An important note here is that these surveys are not prying into physical health, which is private and confidential. Mental health survey questions for employees put more emphasis on how their work impacts their general wellbeing, in a way that respects their boundaries and privacy.
Ideally, employee wellbeing survey questions should build in a mix of closed and open-ended questions, to enable employees to express their opinions about your workplace’s culture, workload and dynamics between team members and leadership.
These employee wellbeing surveys give you a holistic picture of your company’s general mood, potential stressors, and how your team members balance their work and personal lives.
Wellbeing surveys such as these can help guide the creation and execution of initiatives to improve employee morale, reduce workplace stress, and grow job satisfaction. They also lead to a workplace environment that values its employees' wellbeing, reduces turnover, and builds a more loyal workforce.
Why it’s important to measure employee wellbeing regularly
For one thing, creating a positive and inclusive work environment through regular assessment and responding to mental health-related issues proactively leads to improved productivity. Employees who feel supported and understood are more likely to be engaged and feel motivated to do their best work every day. They’ll also feel safe to contribute valuable insights that lead to better, more efficient ways of doing things.
Regular wellbeing check-ins also reduce absenteeism. High levels of stress or job dissatisfaction lead to burnout, more sick days and ultimately people leaving out the door. Having regular employee wellness check-ins lets you resolve these issues before they spiral out of control.
These employee wellbeing surveys also serve as an important communication channel. They offer a space for your team members to share their experiences and feelings, ensure that the members of your team share your company’s vision, and promote a culture of openness. These surveys can help detect the early onset signs of burnout or stress, so HR can intervene in a timely manner and improve employee retention.
Finally, for companies that transitioned from in-office to remote work, wellbeing surveys can help flag issues that may otherwise go unnoticed. With many businesses now operating on a hybrid or remote model, it can be difficult to check in on how your team members are feeling in a systematic way. In this sense, wellbeing surveys can help survace any problems and engage remote employees.
How to format and run an employee wellbeing survey
Planning, designing and executing an employee wellbeing survey is a multi-faceted task that involves careful consideration of the format, timely (and anonymous) communication, and consistent action based on the insights you gain.
Consider these best practices to follow when planning the wellbeing survey and finding the right employee engagement questions:
- Define the purpose: Have a clear idea of why you’re running the survey and what you hope to achieve. It could be to measure overall employee wellbeing, identify areas for improvement, or measure the impact of specific employee wellbeing initiatives. Defining the purpose of the survey will help you ask the right questions.
- Choose the right questions: The survey should be a mix of different types of questions to understand employee wellbeing, such as:
- Closed-ended questions with yes/no or scale-based responses. These are questions that can be quantified and analysed easily
- Open-ended questions that collect qualitative insights and more subjective personal experiences
- Ensure anonymity: Mental health issues are considered highly personal and there’s still a lot of social stigma surrounding them. Employees are much more likely to respond if you assure them their responses can’t be traced back to them
- Decide on frequency: Decide how often you want to run this survey. More frequent employee pulse surveys will help you measure wellness regularly, while annual surveys will be more comprehensive
- Communicate clearly: Communicate the purpose of the survey to your team. Explain what you’re trying to accomplish with your survey, and why their feedback is important
- Use a reliable survey tool: Using an automated HR tool like CharlieHR can make this process substantially easier. Charlie helps you automate recurring wellness surveys, and also analyse the data you collect and take action accordingly. Using an automation tool saves you massive amounts of time, helps you collect data consistently, and enables you to take a proactive approach to employee wellbeing
Employee wellbeing survey sample questions
Including comprehensive and meaningful questions in your survey encourages honest feedback and open communication. This, in turn, leads to more reliable responses, more valid data, more valuable insights, and a clearer view of employee wellbeing.
We’ve shared some expert-backed questions from the CharlieHR platform below. Each question is paired on a 5-point scale ranging from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree”.
- I feel supported at [your company] when I am dealing with personal or family issues.
- I can maintain a healthy balance between my work and personal life.
- My work does not negatively impact my personal life.
- My workload is manageable.
- I enjoy the work I do.
- Generally, I feel happy at work.
- [your company] provides the necessary support for dealing with work-related stress.
- [your company] takes sufficient steps to promote employee well-being (resources, benefits, advice, etc.).
- [your company] genuinely cares about the mental health of our team members.
- We are genuinely supported if we choose to make use of flexible working arrangements.
- I can arrange time off from work when I need to.
- I feel my voice matters and my opinions are valued at [company name].
- I believe [your company] effectively handles workplace conflicts and disagreements.
- The level of communication within [your company] is satisfactory.
- I feel appreciated for the work I do at [your company].
- I see clear opportunities for personal growth and career development at [your company].
- [your company] fosters a culture that promotes mental health and well-being.
- The company takes timely and appropriate action based on our survey feedback.
Keep your employees happy, healthy, and thriving
Prioritising your organisation’s employee wellness is more than just responsible, it’s a strategic approach to building a better work environment and ensuring the success of your business.
Employee well-being surveys allow you to monitor your team’s mental health, pinpoint potential stressors and problem areas, and implement changes that make your organisation a better place to work for everyone.
As with many business processes, executing and following through is the most challenging part. CharlieHR gives you an automated and easy-to-use platform to create, administer, and analyse your employee wellness surveys, and gives you the valuable insights you need while saving you valuable time and effort.
Start a free trial with CharlieHR, and take the first steps towards a happier, healthier workplace.
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