How to run an internal communication survey

November 29th, 2018

Surveys are a great way to gain feedback from your employees, especially when they form part of a bigger internal communication audit. It’s not possible to speak to all employees in interviews and focus groups, so surveys are a good way of ensuring people feel that they have a voice that’s being listened to.

There are a few things to consider when running a survey, and here I’ve shared my top tips along with some example questions.

  • Consider if there are particular audiences you want to analyse, and include demographics that will allow you to cut the data in the ways that you need. Common demographic questions include: role, location, homeworker/office worker, people manager, etc.
  • Ask one question at a time – it sounds obvious but it’s a frequent and easy mistake to make. For example, if you asked “How satisfied are you with the design and navigation of the intranet’, you won’t know whether people are saying yes or no to the design, the navigation, or both.
  • Utilise the Likert scale – the Likert scale is a quick and easy way of measuring opinions and perceptions.  For example, asking people to rate how much they agree or disagree with a statement on a scale of 1-5 or 1-7.
  • Use logic to target different audiences – you don’t necessarily need to do multiple surveys for different audiences, use the logic that many survey tools offer. For example, if you wanted to ask people managers a particular question, respondents that select ‘people manager’ in the demographics question, would see an additional question to everyone else.
  • Avoid ambiguity – ‘manager’ or ‘leader’ can mean different things to different people.  For example, leader could mean CEO or it could mean the leader of their department. Check what people understand certain terms to mean or explain within the question who you’re referring to.
  • Include comment options – allowing people to elaborate further provides you with deeper insight but only have one or two, as analysing written responses can be very time consuming.
  • Anything else you want to share? – this is a really important question to give people the opportunity to share anything else they think is pertinent that you haven’t thought to ask.

Example questions

The questions you choose will depend on what you’re trying to find out, the format you’re using (ie Likert, comment, etc) but I’ve included a sample of common questions below as a guideline.

  • On a scale of 1-5 how confident are you that you understand the business strategy?
  • How do you currently find out information? (comment box or multiple choice drop down)
  • Do you have the information you need to do your job? (yes, no, not sure)
  • How relevant to you is the information you receive from internal communications? (Very relevant, Quite relevant, Not sure, Quite irrelevant, Very irrelevant)
  • What is your most trusted source of information? (comment box or multiple choice drop down)
  • How do you feel about the frequency of internal communications? (Too much, too little, about right, not sure)
  • What challenges are there to accessing/receiving internal communications? (comment box)
  • Do you feel you have an opportunity to share your ideas and opinions? (yes, no, not sure)/How do you share your ideas and opinions (comment box).

Enjoyed this blog? Why not read How to audit your internal communications for future success?

And if you want to chat about how I can help you survey your people or carry out an internal communication audit, get in touch


Categories: AuditInternal communicationSurvey

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2 responses to “How to run an internal communication survey”

  1. […] can also read my blog on how to run surveys with confidence. If you’re considering running an internal communication […]

  2. […] How to Run an Internal Communication Survey […]

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“Helen’s passion for her profession shines through very clearly and she manages to combine her deep knowledge of internal communications with a mix of pragmatism and fresh thinking. She is a delight to work with and has a high level of integrity.”

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