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Welcome to the COVID-19 Employee Wellbeing survey template


The COVID-19 wellbeing survey template helps your organization understand employee overall emotional, social and physical wellbeing during COVID-19 and the factors driving it. 

Many organizations are aware that the physical and emotional wellbeing of their employees is highly impacted during this exceptional time. In fact, according to a recent CIPD & People Management survey, of the 390 employers they surveyed, 63% listed general anxiety as their organization’s current main challenge. With this in mind, our People Science team has designed an Employee Wellbeing template for use during COVID-19.

NOTE: Account Admins and Survey Creators can launch the survey under Surveys > Create survey > COVID-19 pandemic response surveys > COVID-19 wellbeing survey 

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Why measure employee wellbeing during this time? 

Organizations gathering feedback on employee wellbeing during a time of uncertainty is a fantastic symbol of kindness and demonstrates a commitment to wellbeing. There is a high likelihood that, regardless of the actions the organization has taken, your employees have elevated levels of stress and concern. As many researchers and practitioners have shared, there is a combination of emotions surrounding COVID-19;  firstly, worry for the health of themselves and their loved ones, and secondly, concern for global impacts on the economy, their own finances, and job security. To compound these emotions, employees are also experiencing ambiguity and uncertainty for the long- and short-term impacts of COVID-19.

Overview 

The COVID-19 Wellbeing template can be used to understand the wellbeing of your employees as they experience/work through COVID-19. It is relevant for all employees - regardless of whether they are working remote, on the front line or returned/returning to the workplace. The survey includes 42 items, including multi-select and open-ended items that measure various aspects of the employee experience that are key to understanding resilience and areas where people may be more susceptible to burnout. Below we make suggestions for adjusting questions for remote work.

It was developed using research from our original Wellbeing survey which drew upon well-known wellbeing models and concepts such as PERMA, subjective wellbeing, purpose, and the more recent work looking at resilience and mental health, as well what we’ve seen to be critical at this time through working with our customers and community. 

Survey Questions 

The 42 questions are grouped into 12 factors including an outcome factor being Overall Wellbeing. The outcome factor is made up of 5 questions that measure productivity, positivity, stress, fatigue, and resilience. The People Science team has identified this measure to assist in identifying areas where employees may be struggling to maintain their wellbeing in a work context. The questions in the outcome variable are indicators to identify groups that are potentially on the road to burnout. This does not mean that employees are currently burnt out, but without proper action and adjustments, it is possible in the future.

The remaining factors in the survey will be the questions that are potential - drivers of Overall Wellbeing, or in other words, the actionable ways to improve overall wellbeing at your organization, including:

  • Company and Leadership commitment
  • Manager support 
  • Flexibility
  • Work scope 
  • Work environment
  • Work/life blend
  • Managing energy
  • Growth and alignment
  • Purpose 
  • Support resources (including support for grief/loss) 

There are also comments and a section dedicated to understanding which specific wellbeing initiatives at your company are and would be of most benefit. 

Incorporating Wellbeing into your Survey Strategy

Wellbeing questions can go out at any time during COVID-19. There are two ways to dive deeper and understand wellbeing for your employees during this time. 

  • You can run the survey stand alone. This allows you to understand more specific aspects of wellbeing and communicates to your organization that you value wellbeing just as highly as Engagement (or other standalone surveys you conduct). 
  • You can also choose to create a factor or embed key questions from this template in a broader Engagement or COVID-19 Response survey. With this approach, we recommend including the following questions.

Top 10 Wellbeing Questions to Ask

Productivity

I am feeling productive during this time

Positivity

I generally feel positive towards work at my company

Stress 

Recently, my levels of stress feel manageable

Resilience 

During these challenging times, I feel able to bounce back as quickly as I normally would

Managing Energy 

I am able to effectively switch off from work to make time for rest

Social Connections

We have found meaningful ways to stay connected as colleagues in the current environment

Manager Support 

My manager is checking in regularly enough with how I am doing (not just work-related)

Purpose 

I can see how the work I am doing is making a positive difference at my company. 

Company Support

I know where to raise concerns I have in relation to my own or a colleague's wellbeing during this time

Free Text Comment

What is one thing the company can do to better support your wellbeing during this time?

Special Considerations / Amending Questions

Like all of our survey templates, you are able to tailor questions to suit your current context. We anticipate the ability to provide benchmark information once this template has met our data thresholds. Remember that, if you choose to amend questions and the intent of the question is changed, you will not be provided with external benchmark information.

Remote Work Questions 

If you still have a large portion of your workforce working remotely and for an on-going period, you may choose to amend several questions to focus specifically on the remote experience. 

Consider making the following amendments: 

  • I am confident I can make progress in my career/goal aspirations while remote
  • I have been able to maintain my physical health since working remotely
  • We have found meaningful ways to stay connected as colleagues while working remotely
  • I can work productively in my remote environment
  • I have what I need (i.e. space, set-up, internet) to effectively work remote on a longer-term basis
  • What is one thing our company can do to better support you while working remotely?

Safety Questions

For some industries (i.e. health care, retail, manufacturing), employee safety concerns while at work are of significant importance right now. We suggest adding in safety questions to your wellbeing or employee feedback survey, such as:

  • I feel safe carrying out my role during the COVID-19 Pandemic
  • My company has made effective decisions to keep us safe whilst we carry out our roles

What about questions on employee mood?  

Excluding the outcome measure, all of our questions are directly actionable; however, some organizations have been seeking advice on surveying employees' moods or feelings. We don’t advocate for this as a process because this type of data is not inherently actionable by the organization, these types of measures often require intensive testing and validation for true insights, and asking employees to disclose information on mental wellbeing or emotional states requires a culture of extremely high trust. If you are seeking to measure employee mood or sentiment, here is a guide to consider.

Note: When we say “actionable”, we are referring to questions that one can take action on directly (e.g., if people are unable to access the systems they need working remotely, we can swiftly move toward providing access).

Taking Action

We believe that it is more important than ever to take action on survey results, especially when measuring employee wellbeing during times of change and uncertainty. By conducting a survey that measures aspects of personal wellbeing, as an organization you are sending a signal to your employees that you value their insight and plan to take action to help improve their experiences during this time.

Working during this period of high uncertainty, especially if remote, can have significant impacts on stress, loneliness, and resilience. Often, we are seeing this impac specific groups within an organization. When analyzing and taking action, make sure to review demographic spread of scores (e.g., caretakers, specific departments with increased workloads). This will help you understand the experience across the organization and where action should be taken at the organizational level versus some other interventions that might be for a specific group or department. 

We also know that, because specific groups may be having differing levels of wellbeing, action might be best taken at the manager or team level. In order to set everyone up for success, ensure that these groups have the support and resources necessary to take swift and meaningful action. 

How can managers support employee wellbeing?

The role of the manager is also integral to taking action on supporting our employees during this time. If there was ever a moment for managers to make an impact, it’s now.

Managers are being asked for more than ever before – they are directly looking after people’s wellbeing and resilience under uncertainty, while reacting and then operationalizing any changes (such as downsizing, working remotely) and running a productive team. 

It’s important to continue to regularly check-in on how people are adjusting and feeling during this time. Managers can support their people by asking them ‘are you ok?”and genuinely listening. Additional questions Managers can ask of their team to support them, but also to uncover any issues which require further support or helpful signposting to organizational resources are: 

  • How are you finding your current work environment?
  • How are you finding balancing personal and work demands i.e. looking after kids
  • How is your routine? How are you connecting to others?
  • Is there anything you would like to share or discuss, or anything I can help you with at the moment? 

We have a ‘Manager Learning Hub,’ in the platform that includes a section on Resilience. Managers and teams can draw on for inspiration on actions they wish to take on the questions that are impacting their wellbeing. This is also an opportunity to share any resources and/or programs your organization may already have in place for employee wellbeing that teams and managers can utilize. 

Other Resources 

Check out our Culture First resources page that includes Resilience amongst other topics. This is a crowd-sourced collection of ideas and information to help you navigate challenging times as an organization.  The People Science team has been working on sourcing and updating our Action Framework with ideas for action to meet the needs and challenges that you are facing today. We also have this guide for more information about taking action quickly during this time. 



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