In this article we will review the differences between confidential and anonymous surveys along with the pros and cons of each.
Confidential v. Anonymous Surveys: How It Works
We recognize the importance of implementing a survey in which employees feel comfortable providing open and honest feedback. This is why Eden provides your team with options for configuring how your survey results can be analyzed.
With either option – Confidential or Anonymous – personally identifiable information, such as name and email, will not be accessible in the survey settings or results. Further, with both options, survey results are aggregated in your survey results.
With Confidential surveys, the survey’s results can be attributed to potentially identifiable information, including Department, Manager, and Tenure. The primary benefit to confidential surveys is your team will have more robust data to analyze once your survey results are available. This will allow your team to create more tailored action plans based on your survey results. The drawback is that it could be possible to identify someone’s response, especially without adequate minimum response thresholds. See below for more details on how to set minimum response thresholds.
With Anonymous surveys, the survey’s results cannot be attributed to any identifiable information, including Department, Manager, and Tenure. The benefit to anonymous surveys is that your team is completely protected when it comes to submitting unidentifiable responses. The drawback, however, is that the survey results analysis will be very limited, preventing your team from identifying trends or insights that could be unique to a department, manager, or type of employee (i.e., employees who are very tenured or employees who are very new to the organization).
While both configurations will work for your Engagement Survey, Eden recommends implementing Confidential surveys in order to have access to the most robust dataset to analyze your survey results.
Confidential Surveys: Minimum Response Thresholds
When setting up a confidential survey, Admins have the option to set a minimum response threshold for both Agreement Scale questions and Free Text questions. When analyzing your results, if there are not enough responses to meet the minimum threshold, the results will not be displayed.
Example: a minimum response threshold for Agreement Scale responses is set to 3. My Marketing team has 4 people on it, but only 2 of them submit the survey. If I filter my results by Department and select Marketing, the results will not be visible for analysis. However, if 3 marketing team members respond to the survey, I will see the results for that department.
The same logic as above applies to Free Text responses, but will only apply to responses to Free Text questions. Note: the Free Text threshold does NOT apply to optional comments associated with Agreement Scale responses.
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