Grace Smith
February 16, 2024

Nearly 80% of employees consider it important that the company they work for prioritizes DEI (diversity, equity, inclusion).

We live in a world where workplaces get more and more diverse as the day passes. That's why it's necessary to incorporate DEI initiatives, because it impacts organizational well-being in more than one way.

This blog delves into the transformative power of DEI surveys, helping you discover "why" and the "how" of conducting effective DEI surveys, for a more inclusive, equitable, and dynamic work environment.

Diversity and Inclusion in the Modern Workplace

No one likes to be left out, especially when it comes to a place where they spend the majority of their day. A healthy workplace is the foundation of a great organization, and in order for employees to thrive and develop, emphasis must be placed on DEI initiatives.

In an organization where there are no DEI policies in place, and workplace bias happens quite often, it may lead to discontent and impact employee engagement levels significantly as well.

When employees do not feel valued and included, they slowly creep into disengagement. And disengagement will lead to employees quitting.

Companies have seen steep increases and followed decreases in employee turnover rates  because of poor DEI initiatives.

So every thriving workplace consists of employees who feel included and are happy. And in order to achieve such a workplace, it is recommended to start with DEI surveys to gauge the pulse of your workforce and identify areas of improvement in the work culture.

Questions to Ask in a Diversity and Inclusion Survey

As important as creating surveys is asking the right questions under the right context. DEI is more nuanced and complicated than it comes across to be.

Let us divide the questions based on the context so that it becomes easy to identify the areas where the company needs to focus more:

Questions on Diversity

Diversity is all the ways that people are different, such as the different traits that make one group of people or person different from another. Diversity usually means including groups of people that aren't well represented in society or some businesses.

  1. How would you rate how well our group represents people from different identities and backgrounds?
  2. Has workplace diversity caused you any issues?
  3. Have you encountered diversity-related racism or prejudice in our company?
  4. How transparent is our organization regarding diversity and inclusion?
  5. What classes or training might benefit our employees with diversity and inclusion?
  6. Do you believe our firm actively assists disabled people?
  7. Are this group's beliefs similar to yours?
  8. Do you think your values match those of your coworkers?
  9. Does your work reflect you?
  10. Do you believe decision-makers actively seek and appreciate alternative perspectives?
  11. How successfully does our organization employ and recruit diversely?
  12. Can you suggest ways your group could diversify?
  13. How successfully does our organization promote belonging and inclusion?

Take a moment to see how these surveys work on ThriveSparrow.

Inclusion Questions

Being open to everyone makes a setting where everyone feels welcome. It openly asks everyone and every group to contribute and take part.

A setting that is accepting and includes everyone supports and celebrates differences. People show respect for each other by what they say and do. An inclusive workplace is one that is helpful, polite, and collaborative, and it encourages everyone to take part and contribute.

  1. Do you think you're an important part of the company's goals?
  2. Can you count on your coworkers?
  3. If you work for a company, do you think they care about your health?
  4. Do you think your work has an effect on the company?
  5. Do you think that people appreciate and value the things that make you unique?
  6. How sure are you that you can be your true self at work, on a scale from one to five?
  7. How open do you think your coworkers are to different points of view? Rate them from one to five.
  8. When you work with other people, do you think they help you?
  9. Are your main values the same as those of your manager?
  10. Since you started your job, do you think your ideals and those of your manager have become the same?
  11. When you talk about your manager, do you use "we" or "they"?
  12. Do you think of yourself as your manager's employee?
  13. Can you call the people you work with friends?
  14. Do you have faith in the world's future right now?
  15. How much do you think your coworkers care about you, on a scale from one to five?
  16. Do you believe you are very important to the company?

Belonging Questions

Creating a sense of belonging within an organization goes beyond mere inclusion. Every employee should feel as part of a unified team. This sense of belonging is pivotal for employee satisfaction and retention.

  1. Do you believe our organization aggressively promotes employee resource groups and social networks to foster belonging?
  2. How effectively does our organization allow everyone to be heard and valued, regardless of background?
  3. What diversity and inclusiveness events would you want to see at work?
  4. Do you believe our company helps employees understand and operate with diverse cultures?
  5. Do you feel like part of our team?
  6. How comfortable are you expressing your opinions in team meetings?
  7. Have you witnessed or participated in exclusionary situations?
  8. What new inclusive measures has your group taken?
  9. Are there any programs or behaviors that might help our group with inclusiveness issues?
  10. How does the company recognize and exploit your particular abilities and strengths?

Equity Questions

The goal of equity is to make sure that things are done in a fair and just way and that resources are shared fairly and equally within institutions, systems, and social structures.

  1. Is there anything you think can lead to more ownership in the business?
  2. Does the firm offer equal opportunities?
  3. Would you recommend this firm for work?
  4. Does leadership seek fairness?
  5. Is there adequate business fairness regulation?
  6. What ownership changes do you seek in this company?
  7. Your thoughts on the company's equity?
  8. You think coworkers mistreat others, right?
  9. Do any of you recall seeing coworkers mistreated?
  10. Does the company's shared work make sense?
  11. Which firm stock plan do you prefer?
  12. Are business advancement opportunities fair for all?
  13. Does the management team handle issues of fairness in the right way?
  14. Do you know if all employees are given the same chances to get promoted?
  15. Do you think that laws that promote equity make workers' lives better?
  16. Does the company go out of its way to hire people from a variety of backgrounds?
  17. Does management show that fairness is important in all choices made by the company?
  18. Does the company create a place of work that someone from outside the company would call fair?
  19. Does the staff feel like they can report instances of unfair treatment?
  20. On a range from 1 to 10, how would you rate the ways that businesses handle reports of unfair behavior?

DEI Questions

  1. Are managers and other leaders of organizations taught about DEI standards and best practices?
  2. As far as you know, does the company put time and effort into building teams with a variety of people?
  3. Do you think your company values you?
  4. Does your group make you feel like you belong?
  5. Do you think your coworkers value you and see you?
  6. Does your company care about diversity, fairness, and including everyone?
  7. Do the people in charge of your company know how important variety is for the success of their employees?
  8. Are all chances for job growth the same for all employees?
  9. Do you think that everyone in the company gets the same amount of work?
  10. Are issues and problems in the company dealt with fairly?
  11. Are you sure you want to say what you think?
  12. If you talk about DEI at work, do you feel comfortable?
  13. How well does our company's HR department make sure that everyone is welcome?
  14. How well do you think the company follows the ideals of fairness, diversity, and inclusion?
  15. Do you feel like you have a say in the decisions that touch you?

How to Effectively Implement the Findings from DEI Surveys

After conducting a DEI survey, you need to gather the insights you've collected and translate them into actionable improvements within your organization. You must carefully plan, commit, and follow-through to ensure the effectiveness of your DEI efforts.

1. Communicate the Findings

Transparency is key in the DEI journey. Share the survey results with the entire organization, emphasizing both positive findings and areas needing improvement. This openness not only builds trust but also ensures that everyone understands the importance of DEI initiatives and their role in fostering change.

2. Set Specific, Measurable Goals

Based on the survey insights, identify clear objectives for what you want to achieve in your DEI efforts. Whether it's increasing representation in leadership positions, improving the inclusivity of your workplace culture, or addressing specific instances of bias, setting specific, measurable goals helps to focus your efforts and track progress over time.

3. Create Action Plans

For each goal, develop a detailed action plan that outlines the steps needed to achieve it, who is responsible, and the timeline for implementation.

Action plans might include initiatives such as targeted recruitment efforts, DEI training programs, the establishment of employee resource groups (ERGs), or policy revisions.

4. Engage Leadership and Stakeholders

Successful DEI initiatives require the active support and involvement of leadership and key stakeholders.

Ensure that leaders across the organization are committed to the DEI goals and understand their role in promoting and implementing the action plans.

5. Monitor Progress and Adapt

Implementing DEI survey findings is not a one-time task but an ongoing process.

Regularly monitor the progress of your initiatives against the set goals and be prepared to adapt your strategies as needed.

Continuous monitoring allows you to celebrate successes, identify areas where more effort is needed, and ensure that your DEI efforts remain dynamic and responsive to the needs of your employees.

6. Solicit Ongoing Feedback

Keep the lines of communication open with your employees about DEI efforts. Regular check-ins, follow-up surveys, and forums for open discussion can provide valuable feedback on how initiatives are being received and their impact on the workplace. This ongoing feedback loop is essential for making adjustments and ensuring that your DEI initiatives remain relevant and effective.

5 Best Practices for Conducting DEI Surveys

Conducting DEI surveys requires a thoughtful approach to ensure meaningful participation and honest feedback. Here are some best practices to consider:

1. Guarantee Anonymity and Confidentiality

Guaranteeing anonymity is crucial for encouraging candid responses. Make sure participants understand that their responses will be confidential and used solely for the purpose of improving the workplace.

ThriveSparrow's anonymous response.
ThriveSparrow collects the responses and makes it anonymous, encouraging transparent and honest feedback.

2. Inclusive Question Design

Craft your survey questions to be inclusive and respectful of all participants. Avoid making assumptions about participants' identities or experiences. Instead, use language that allows everyone to see themselves in the questions.

3. Pilot Testing

Before rolling out your survey to the entire organization, conduct a pilot test with a diverse group of employees. This can help identify any confusing or biased questions and ensure the survey is accessible to everyone.

4. Clear Communication

Communicate the purpose of the survey, how the data will be used, and the steps the organization will take based on the findings. Setting clear expectations can increase participation rates and trust in the process.

5. Actionable Insights

Design your survey with the end in mind. Focus on gathering insights that are directly actionable, allowing your organization to make specific improvements based on the feedback received.

ThriveSparrow's Actionable Insights
For example, ThriveSparrow's Insights on an engagement survey gives leaders an overview of what can be improved and where to apply their engagement efforts.

By adhering to these best practices, organizations can ensure that their DEI surveys are not only effective in gathering insights but also instrumental in driving meaningful change.

DEI Surveys Help You See the Bigger Picture

Now that you know how big of a role DEI plays in creating a better work environment and how surveys help you build a diverse and inclusive workplace, what's stopping you? If you are worried about where to start and how to create the survey, let ThriveSparrow handle that for you.

We will take care of everything, starting from structuring the survey according to your company culture to analyzing the results received. Let us worry about the boring stuff while you get time to focus on more important things like structuring the right DEI policies for your workplace.