Total quality management is a management philosophy based on human happiness. One of the most important concepts that forms the basis of the Excellence Model developed to measure the efficiency of use within an organization of this philosophy is that employees with high motivation and participation also improve their business results.
Another important concept introduced by the Excellence Model is the principle that "unmeasured performance cannot be improved". Measuring employee motivation and engagement is done at two levels: Perception measures and employee-related internal performance indicators.
As the number of institutions implementing total quality management in our country increases, the use of employee satisfaction surveys also increases. The accuracy of the data obtained from these surveys depends on the good design and implementation of the surveys. There are some points to consider in order to use satisfaction surveys well.
Employee satisfaction surveys serve four main purposes: to be a regular communication tool between employees and management, to be a management tool where improvement opportunities will be caught by identifying the effects of managerial behaviors on employees, and a personal development where employees can learn lessons for themselves by evaluating important issues for the organization with a holistic view. to be an intermediary, to be an early detection tool for problems with the institution.
In order for the satisfaction surveys to be useful, there are issues that need to be considered, from the design to the implementation stage, from the evaluation of the results to the determination of the necessary institutional change projects.
First of all, in order to increase the comparability of the answers given to a survey, it is necessary to compose the questions in a way that is based on results-oriented, observable behaviors. For example, to measure leadership effectiveness in an organization, “Are you satisfied with the leadership of the organization?” Instead of asking the question “Leaders' personal participation in the development of the organization's management systems”, the question gives clearer results.
In order to test the consistency of the questionnaires, it should be ensured that questions that can be tested with the data obtained outside the questionnaire are also included. It has been found that limiting the questionnaire so that it can be completed by employees in less than half an hour increases the consistency of the answers. Therefore, particular emphasis should be placed on issues that are thought to have a direct impact on the company's business results.
In the design of the questions, special attention should be paid not to include more than one concept in a question and not to use words that have a distinctive evocative feature in the society.
One of the trends observed in survey studies is that the answers are given in the direction of agreeing with the questions, especially towards the end of the survey. In order to reduce this tendency, it is useful to ask questions in such a way that the expected answer is negative in about one-third of the questions. For example, “Did you pack your suitcase?” The answer to the question "Did you leave your suitcase somewhere after you got it ready?" like asking the question.
In the survey studies, it has been determined that giving the answers on a numerical scale between 1-5 or 1-7 and expressing the scale with words determined at only two ends of the scale gives healthier results. In addition, the choice of "I don't know" among the answers increases the consistency of the answers. Evaluation of all questions with a similar scale also increases the consistency of the answers.
The tendency to choose the first and last options in questions such as "Sort in order of importance" makes it difficult to evaluate correctly.
It is of particular importance to provide assurance that confidentiality will be protected in survey studies. In addition, the limited number of questions about demographic characteristics and the fact that they are included at the end of the survey also increase the reliability of the answers.
One of the most important issues to be considered in employee satisfaction surveys is to analyze the survey results well, to share them with the employees and to initiate improvement works as soon as possible. Otherwise, the survey study may become a dissatisfaction-increasing study. While evaluating the results of the survey studies, it is necessary to look at the means, the variation between the answers and the number of answers together. It is more important to evaluate the answers given to all the questions focused on certain topics together, than the answers to the individual questions. Considering the answers not as accusations but as valuable direction indicators that point to opportunities for improvement increases the usefulness of survey studies.
Conducting employee satisfaction surveys on a regular basis, not just once, and evaluating their results over time helps to develop an internal trust environment. It accelerates continuous improvement studies with early diagnosis.