As a public relations professional, you understand that it’s vital to put your best foot forward each day. Because networking, acting as a liaison between your clients and the public, and keeping ahead of the news cycle are all part of your daily responsibilities, you have to stay on top of your game—and so does your business.
Gathering employee feedback is an excellent way to keep your finger on the pulse of the company. While you may think you have a good idea of your employees’ needs and wants, the feedback you receive may surprise you. When staff members are asked to give their thoughts and opinions, they can reveal issues you weren’t aware of. You may discover untapped strengths or overlooked areas of improvement.
Here is a look at three ways you can survey employees in your PR agency.
1. Examine the employee
A survey that provides 360 degree feedback gives an employee the view from the perspective of multiple people, including:
A 360 survey gives management a chance to view others’ perceptions of their strengths and weaknesses. As managers move up in rank, subordinate employees and other interested parties are less likely to offer constructive criticism and helpful feedback. A 360 survey is conducted anonymously, allowing stakeholders to share opinions more freely. A manager may learn, for example, that he or she often downplays important legal issues in a client’s reputation management. If the manager was doing so unconsciously, it becomes an area for improvement.
The performance review is another type of survey that examines the employee. It is commonly used once or twice a year to evaluate an employee’s job performance. Supervisors meet with staff to discuss whether specific goals and expectations were met. New goals and steps for improvement, if needed, can be set. Supervisors can also take the opportunity to recognize achievements.
2. Examine the company
An employer improvement survey offers employees the chance to share constructive criticism. Employers can use the suggestions and ideas to rethink organizational strategies, find areas of weakness and celebrate strengths. If, for example, an employer improvement survey reveals that many of their PR professionals are eager to take on more accounts, managers can consider scaling upward to add clients.
An employee exit survey can serve the same purpose as an employer improvement survey. Workers preparing to leave may feel free to offer perspectives they weren’t willing to share while actively employed. Say, for example, a certain position has a high turnover rate. Exit interviews reveal employees consistently complained they were not trained to write press releases. The manager can consider adding training to that position’s onboarding process.
If a company wants to measure the level of engagement their employees perceive, an employee engagement survey is a useful tool. It can measure the employees’ attitudes about company culture, work environment and overall goals. If staff members align themselves with business goals and feel that the company represents its mission, workers feel invested and engaged.
3. Examine the amenities
Is your company offering a competitive benefits package? Do employees receive adequate training when they begin a new position? Do they have access to continuing education? These are a few questions your company can answer with employee feedback.
An employee benefits survey measures the satisfaction of workers in relation to their benefits package. These may include health and medical coverage and retirement benefits. You can find out if your employees feel they are getting coverage equal to what similar companies offer.
Consider conducting a professional development survey if you’re interested in finding out how the staff feels about training and education opportunities. Newly promoted managers, for example, may ask for leadership training as they settle into the position of overseeing employees.
It’s not always easy to ask employees for feedback. The insights you can gain from doing so, however, are worth it. There’s no better way to increase success than to keep the lines of communication open between you and your PR staff.