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Frequently Asked Questions...

Get answers to our most frequent asked questions.

Who are Best Companies?
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Best Companies are the workplace engagement specialists. We help organisations become better places to work by measuring, improving and recognising engagement.

Our accreditation programme is the standard of workplace engagement in the UK, recognising organisations and managers who genuinely value and respect their employees.

Our b-Heard survey powers the Best Companies to Work For lists published each year.

We’ve built a massive engagement data-set featuring some of the UK’s best-known and most successful employers, allowing our clients to see how they compare against their peers and competitors.

What do we do?
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Our survey helps organisations understand how their employees think and feel about their work. Our tools reveal engagement challenges and highlight opportunities for improvement. Our accreditation programme and lists spotlight the best organisations to work for, helping them retain and attract top talent.

How do we do that?
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It starts with our confidential b-Heard engagement survey. Employees are invited to say how they feel about various aspects of their working lives by scoring a series of 24 – 70 statements (sometimes referred to as questions) on a scale of ‘Strongly Disagree’ to ‘Strongly Agree’.

We present the results of your survey using our Workplace Insight and MC3 platforms to help you explore and understand engagement in your organisation.

If your survey results score high enough, you’ll earn a Best Companies accreditation and a place on the Best Companies to Work For list.

What is does a typical engagement journey look like?
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At Best Companies, we will work with you to build an effective engagement plan that will take you, step by step, through everything you need to do to achieve your goal.  This could be a full day planning session with an engagement specialist, or a simple pre-survey call with a member of our support team, depending on how much guidance you feel you need.  

A typical engagement survey might look like the below:  

Engagement Planning Defining the key objectives and milestones of your engagement journey – what do you want to achieve? Our specialists can advise you on the best products to suit your needs and ensure you are supported along the way.

Survey A survey is the crucial first step to finding out how your employees are thinking and feeling. After their feedback, we gather the data and establish your organisation’s BCI score – our unique measurement of workplace engagement.  

Analysis Once you’ve got your data, look more deeply into your findings for actionable insights using our Workplace Insight, MC3 or Data Insight tools. Find out where you’re doing well, or where the need for improvement might lie across your organisation.  

Action planning Once you’ve used your data to identify areas for action, initiate positive change through interventions and engagement improvement programmes, such as our workshops.  

Accreditation If your BCI score is high enough you receive a Best Companies Accreditation. Ranging from a ‘Ones to Watch’ status to a 3-star Accreditation ration, this nationally recognised scheme will instantly identify you as an organisation that takes engagement seriously and cares about its people.  

Get listed You can choose to enter your organisation in the running for a place on our national, regional or sectoral lists of the Best Companies to Work For by surveying at certain times of the year. This is an unrivalled opportunity to gain an accolade like no other, and to achieve something truly special.  

What is invitation via email?
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It’s our recommended survey distribution method. You give us a unique email address for each of your employees and we send out unique links and login details to our online b-Heard survey.

What is login by post?
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You give us the names and addresses of each employee you want to survey. We then send out a sealed payslip-style envelope containing a unique login code for our online b-Heard survey.

What is a paper survey?
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It’s a printed version of our b-Heard survey, dispatched with a cover letter and pre-paid return envelope for your employees to fill out and send back. Paper surveys include a login code for your employees who prefer to take the survey online.

Why Best Companies?
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  • Our measurement and analysis methodologies are academically rigorous.
  • Our exclusive tools, developed over time, are proven to work.
  • Our name is widely recognised as the standard of engagement.
  • We enable real behavioural change through end-to-end engagement journeys.
What’s asked in the survey?
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The b-Heard survey contains 24 – 70 questions about things like leadership, wellbeing, pay and more. The questions focus on our 8 factors of workplace engagement.

Are survey responses confidential?
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Yes, we take great care to make sure employees aren’t matched to their survey responses.

Responses are grouped and subjected to strict rules to ensure strict confidentiality. The demographic data we collect is only used to identify patterns of engagement in your organisation.

Individual responses are only revealed for the survey’s two free-text questions. These questions ask employees to describe why they think yours is a good organisation to work for and what would make it better. The free-text questions are only accompanied by information about the respondent’s employment group e.g. sales, marketing, accounts etc.

How long does each survey take to complete?
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Roughly 15-20 minutes.

Does the survey have to be completed in one sitting?
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No, employees can save their online survey progress and complete it later.

If someone hasn’t received their survey invitation, can a colleague share theirs?
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Survey invitations should never be shared. The survey code in each invitation is unique and has been carefully assigned according to your organisation’s structure. Survey codes can only be used once. Please contact us if you have not received your survey invitation.

What if someone deletes their survey invitation or can’t find it?
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Please contact us and we will resend the invitation.

What does the survey consist of?
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The front page asks for demographic information such as: the department the employee works in, their age range, sex, and length of service. This may not be necessary if you choose to pre-populate your demographic data.

Pages two and three contain 24 – 70 statements about your organisation. Your employees are asked to say how much they agree with each statement using a seven-point scale from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree.

Finally, employees are asked ‘What makes this a great workplace?’ and ‘What would make this a better workplace?’ They are free to write whatever comments they like.

Can a survey be traced back to an individual?
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The survey is only useful when employees feel confident to speak honestly and without fear of reprisal.

Though there may be ways we technically could match individual surveys to an employee, it would be completely counterproductive for us to do so.

It’s critical to us that employee confidentiality is maintained and we take great care to ensure it is.

What are barcodes and survey numbers used for? Can they be used to identify an individual?
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Survey barcodes and numbers help us identify where a survey has been returned from. It also contains demographic information about the respondent.

We maintain a link between a survey number and an individual. We will never share this link with an organisation.

What can we do if an employee needs help completing the survey?
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Please ask them to contact us on 01978 856100, or email survey@b.co.uk

What is the role of survey champions?
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Survey champions promote the survey in your organisation, answer questions and help their colleagues feel comfortable with the process.

Are surveys available in braille?
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No. If an employee is visually impaired, please advise them to call us on 01978 856100 and we will be happy to complete the survey with them over the phone.

When does the survey close?
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Surveys typically close two weeks after launching. Please speak to us if you want to extend your survey.

Where can I access further information?
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We have a wide range of support articles and additional information in our help centre. To access, please click here: https://support.b.co.uk/