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Step 2: Define goals and objectives

Gathering and analysing feedback is a powerful way to gain insights about your organisation through the eyes of your employees or customers. Even better, it can help you to improve your relationships with both. Used effectively, surveys are a valuable source of information and a major factor in advancing progress across your organisation.

To get the most out of your feedback, we recommend that you develop well-defined plans for each of your projects, beginning with the following questions:

  • What is the ultimate goal of your project?
  • What do you need to do in order to achieve this goal?

What are goals and objectives?

Goals are desired results or outcomes that you want to achieve. When setting goals for your survey projects, they should be compatible with those of your organisation as a whole. After all, the feedback you receive only gains value when it can be used towards improvement.

Objectives are the components of your overarching goal. They are the defined steps that break down exactly what needs to be done to help you effectively achieve your desired outcomes.

Why do I need goals and objectives?

In order to get the most out of your survey results, it’s important to slow down and think about what you actually want to achieve. Having a defined plan and goals for your project will make sure that it has a clear focus, which is key to getting results that are actually useful to you.

This sense of clarity should extend to the survey itself. When preparing the questions you will ask, for example, every single one of them should work towards bringing you closer to your end goals. Avoid including questions that aren’t necessary; if a question won’t solicit answers that are relevant to your objectives, then you shouldn’t need to include it at all.

Having well-defined and transparent goals will also help to keep your survey respondents focused. If it’s obvious to them what you are trying to achieve, they are better able and more likely to provide feedback that is useful to you.

What do I need to think about?

In order to reach your goals, there are a number of questions you will need to consider before beginning your survey. Here are a few to get you started:

    • What do I need to know?
    • How do I plan to use the feedback that I receive?
    • What questions are going to help tease out the most useful data?
    • Who are the best people to answer the survey and why?