Employee wellness surveys: Questions, templates, and more

Written by: Officevibe | Edited by: Jessica Romera
Updated on: Published on: July 15, 2022 |  Reading time: 10m

Do your employees feel comfortable at work? Are they enjoying a positive company culture and an optimal work-life balance? Or do they feel emotionally drained, burned out, or anxious?

An employee wellness survey can provide valuable insight into how you can improve engagement, boost productivity, and most importantly, connect with your team on a genuine person-to-person level.

Let’s take a closer look at the importance of employee wellness surveys and how you can start implementing them to better support your team.

The importance of employee health and wellness

A happier employee performs better — that’s a fact. A recent study shows that happiness boosts productivity by about 12%. Corporate giants like PwC invest billions in employee well-being not just because it’s good PR, but because they know it pays off.

Poor physical health, mental health issues like anxiety and depression, burnout, and toxic workplace culture can cause serious harm to the overall health of an organization. An employee struggling with negative thoughts or high levels of stress is more likely to become disengaged, make mistakes, miss work days, or even quit their job.

With this in mind, managers and team leaders need to keep a finger on the pulse of their team’s well-being, mental health, and internal relationships. The problem? Employee wellness can be hard to measure, especially if you work in a large organization and can’t communicate with each team member directly.

Anonymous employee wellness surveys can encourage your team to open up about their health, wellness, and workplace dynamics in a safe, judgment-free space.

How to measure employee wellness

An employee health and wellness survey can provide data on factors that influence employee well-being, like workloads, business management, stress, or relationships within the team. Such a wellness survey aims to assess team well-being, discover what drags employees down (too much work? not enough communication? external stress?), and give leaders valuable ideas to improve employee wellness.

Statistics like workplace turnover and absence rates are helpful, but wellness survey results provide more precise data directly from employees. A high turnover rate lets you know you have a problem; an employee engagement survey can help discover what the issue is and what can help solve it.

happyteam_officevibe
Employee happiness and well-being is the key to any successful organization!

What an employee well-being survey should look like

Employee wellness surveys need to be simple, clear, and detailed to provide useful feedback. Surveys should focus on specific data that can help you get to the root of problems like high turnover or conflicts within your company.

Here are some tips to achieve better wellness survey results and higher survey participation rates:

  • Include both open-ended and close-ended questions in your survey. Close-ended questions give measurable data (“74% of the employees who took the survey rated communication with their managers 8 out of 10 or higher”), while open-ended survey questions provide personal insights (“several employees who completed the survey point out that they feel significantly more tired and less productive after 5 p.m.”).
  • Keep the employee surveys short and the questions concise. If a survey takes more than a few minutes to complete, your employees may abandon the survey, leave questions unanswered, or provide meaningless answers where you need feedback. Focus on what you want to know now, and leave the rest for subsequent employee wellness surveys.
  • Offer incentives to team members who complete the wellness survey. The reward can be simple, like a coffee coupon or a gift card raffle. Make sure to let your team know beforehand that a prize awaits them at the end of the survey.

Above all, show employees that their survey feedback matters. After the survey, you could send a message like, “Thank you for taking the time to answer employee wellness survey questions last week. We’ve noticed that many of you have concerns about fluctuating workloads. We’ll see what we can do to improve consistency.”

Questions an employee wellness survey can answer

With the proper question structure, an employee wellness survey can give you answers to important questions like:

  • How do your team members evaluate their own health and wellness in the workplace?
  • How much stress do your employees experience on a daily basis?
  • Do your workers have access to stress management tools, mental health support, and other resources?
  • Do your employees have access to proper healthcare, and how do they manage chronic health conditions?
  • How does your team rate any ongoing wellness initiatives in your company?

The insights you gather from answers to survey questions can help you devise solutions for improved employee wellness, like a broader benefits package, exercise and wellness programs, or ergonomic office furniture.

30 employee wellness survey questions

The specific questions you choose for your employee wellness survey may depend on your industry and your company’s structure. Here is a basic list of wellness survey questions to get you started:

General health and wellness

1. Do you have any known medical conditions?

2. If yes, do you have access to adequate treatment and care for your conditions?

3. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much importance do you place on employee wellness?

4. How often do you exercise? (0-7 days a week)

5. What fitness activities do you prefer?

6. Are you able to eat a nutritionally balanced lunch during office hours?

7. Do you have access to healthy snacks at work?

8. Do you postpone or go without medical procedures because of insufficient insurance coverage?

9. How many hours of sleep, on average, do you get a night?

10. What wellness-promoting initiatives would you like to see in the workplace?

Workload, corporate culture, and stress management

11. Do you agree with the following statement: “I have a reasonable workload”? (Strongly agree, partially agree, disagree, strongly disagree, not sure)

12. Do you feel you can communicate openly with your manager about workloads and performance expectations? (Always, sometimes, rarely, never)

13. On a scale of 1 to 10, please rate your degree of work-related burnout.

14. On a scale of 1 to 10, how strongly do you agree with the following: “My co-workers are friendly and supportive.”

15. In the past 6 months, have you considered quitting your job?

16. Is there a person within the organization you feel you can speak to about stress and other factors that influence your work performance?

17. Do you have access to resources that address stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues?

18. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you at work?

19. Would you recommend our company as a positive place to work?

20. In your opinion, what program or initiative might reduce your work-related stress?

Work-life balance

21. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you agree with the following: “I enjoy an optimal work-life balance at my current job”?

22. Is your lunch break long enough?

23. How often do you handle work-related tasks outside of work hours? (Daily, often, sometimes, never)

24. On a scale of 1 to 10, how difficult is it for you to balance your workload with childcare and other personal responsibilities?

25. Do you agree with the following: “My supervisors do their best to accommodate me when I need to take time off for personal reasons”? (Strongly agree, partially agree, disagree, strongly disagree, not sure)

26. Does your workload leave you enough time to pursue hobbies, personal activities, or career development?

27. On a scale of 1 to 10, how well would you say our organization supports employees in achieving a better balance between work and other responsibilities?

28. On a scale of 1 to 10, how high do you rate the importance of flexible hours and time off?

29. Do you agree with the following statement: “The pressure related to my personal workload is harming my productivity at work”? (Strongly agree, partially agree, disagree, strongly disagree, not sure)

30. In your opinion, what workplace initiative, wellness program, or policy can help you improve work-life balance?

Employee wellness programs

Once you have your employee survey results and a better sense of the employee health and wellness dynamics in your organization, it’s time to put your money where your mouth is and take actionable next steps. Relevant wellness initiatives could address the pain points you uncovered through the wellness survey.

Some might claim that employee wellness programs “don’t work.” These opinions, however, usually refer to initiatives that focus purely on the physical side of wellness, like workplace gyms or exercise programs. A holistic wellness program targets all aspects of employee wellbeing: physical, mental, social, professional, and financial.

Here are some examples of wellness initiatives your company might consider:

  1. Fitness programs. While this may not work for every organization, an on-site gym or a yoga class can help employees reduce stress, boost energy, and improve concentration. Companies with limited space can overcome this challenge by providing discounted gym memberships or sponsoring a fitness package that employees can use to fund their preferred activities, like pilates, swimming, or biking.
  2. Expanded health benefits. If your employees cut corners with their healthcare because of insufficient coverage, both their health and their work performance will be greatly affected. A more generous benefit package can encourage employees to take better care of their health needs.
  3. Healthy lunch and snack plans. How many of your team members skip lunch, cram in a burger before they rush back to the office, or try to stay alert with too much caffeine? Healthy catered lunches and balanced snacks will keep employees more energetic and productive throughout the day. Accommodating (if possible) the needs of people who follow vegan, gluten-free, or dairy-free diets will create a more inclusive workspace.
  4. Mental health programs. An effective mental wellness program starts with a corporate culture that recognizes the importance of mental health. When business leaders acknowledge issues like anxiety, depression, and burnout, employees are more likely to take advantage of a subsidized coaching program, therapy, or meditation classes.
  5. A financial wellness program. Employees dealing with debt or other financial constraints will be more stressed and less productive. Organization leaders can help their employees achieve financial well-being with initiatives like money management workshops, personalized financial coaching, and reimbursement for professional development courses and programs.
  6. Naps. A brief 15-30 minute nap can help employees fight the infamous afternoon slump and get back to work more alert and energized. Offices with insufficient space for a nap room could benefit from compact sleeping pods that allow workers to take quick naps.

Improve work-life balance

Today, most organization leaders understand that 80-hour workweeks are unsustainable and unhealthy. The WHO confirms that working 55 hours a week or more leads to more deaths than stroke and heart disease in the workforce, while research shows that shorter work hours increase productivity.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought the importance of work-life balance to the forefront. Many employees discovered that they like the flexibility of working remotely, while others voiced concerns about overwork and blurred boundaries between work and home hours. An organization that prioritizes work-life balance will have happier, more productive, and more loyal employees.

Here is how companies can help their employees find a better balance between work and family or personal life:

  • Flexible leave policies. Many organizations now offer general paid time off instead of splitting it into sick days and vacation days.
  • Flexible work hours. Employees appreciate being able to pick up their children from school or work four-day weeks during the summer.
  • A limit on job-related communication. With all the benefits of telecommuting, remote employees can feel like they’re working around the clock. Let your people know that their managers don’t expect them to answer messages after a specific time.
  • Family-friendly initiatives. Companies can support working parents by offering childcare subsidies, after-school programs, on-site daycare, flexible schedules, accommodations for pregnant and breastfeeding employees, and more.

Use a wellness template

If you’re looking to gather comprehensive insight into how your employees are doing, check in on their well-being with one of Officevibe’s many wellness templates.

Learn how you can support your team members’ mental health with the psychological safety survey template. You’ll be able to measure your employees’ levels of psychological safety and understand what areas you need to improve.

If you’re sensing an employee is on the brink of burning out, use this template on work stress to gauge your team’s stress level and get to the bottom of what is triggering their anxieties.

Officevibe sample survey questions
Sample questions from the Officevibe psychological safety survey template.

Track employee well-being with Officevibe

Employee engagement surveys can help you understand how your team members feel and what you can do to improve employee well-being. With Officevibe’s user-friendly platform and clear reports, you can easily track your team’s vibe through an employee well-being survey.

Keep your team engaged and improve your workplace culture with Officevibe’s employee experience platform.

Want to learn how our surveys work? Request a demo and start putting the employee experience at the top of your priority list!