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2018 Employee Engagement Survey

In October 2018, an employee engagement survey was sent to all ISU faculty, staff, and student employees. The goal of the survey was to collect feedback about what barriers may exist to employee engagement.

In a letter to the campus community, President Kevin Satterlee wrote, “I would like everyone at ISU to be engaged, but I know that, in order to get there, we have to create an environment that allows for employees to thrive and engage. If you experience barriers to engagement, I sincerely want to know what those are so that we can improve ISU together.”


An initial review of the results from the 2018 Employee Engagement Survey revealed many positive indicators of an engaged workforce at Idaho State. There were also significant areas of improvement identified. The following is a summary of major findings. Please note, that for the purposes of this summary, strongly agree, and agree, were aggregated into a single percentage.

Major Positives

While there is still significant progress that can be made to improve the overall campus climate. We are pleased to report that of those surveyed

  • 85% of employees agree that they know what is expected of them at work.
  • 82% feel that offensive behavior is not tolerated, and 85.05% of employees feel that they are treated fairly at ISU.  
  • 74% of employees feel satisfied with Idaho State University as their employer.

Areas of Improvement

Of those surveyed

  • Communication was revealed as a major area of improvement for ISU. Only 38% of employees feel that they receive clear information about changes made at the University, and 42% of employees feel that they receive clear information about changes made within their college or area. With these trends, only 51% have confidence in senior administration.
  • Camaraderie and fostering an environment of trusting relationships is key to employee morale and engagement. Unfortunately, at ISU only 49.92% of employees feel that they have a best friend at work. This question often elicits strong reactions. Read more about this question by visiting the Gallup website.
  • ISU has some work to do related to employee feedback and development that are critical to providing support and fostering growth. Only 51% regularly receive recognition or praise, and only 50% have talked with someone about their progress in the last 6 months.
  • Regarding equity and inclusion, the data reveals while some efforts have been made, there is still significant work to be done. Only 47% of employees can identify people similar to them in ISU leadership positions, and only 52% believe we have an inclusive environment.
Employee CategoryNumber of RespondentsTotal Employed at ISUResponse
Faculty 417 679 61%
Staff - Classified 307 583 53%
Staff - Non-Classified 388 528 73%
Adjunct and Temporary Employee 59 579 10%
Student Employees and Interns 502 1,577 32%
Grand Total 1,673 3,946 42%

Next Steps

An Employee Engagement Task Force, comprised of faculty, staff, students and leadership is being assembled to review the data in detail, identify barriers to engagement, and begin to actively address these barriers through employee engagement initiatives. Representatives from the task force are meeting with Faculty Senate, Staff Council, ASISU Senate, and the Leadership Council to provide an in-depth analysis of the survey results and garner feedback to inform future plans. When concrete initiatives and plans have been developed, they will be detailed here and shared with the campus community.

In addition, the Office of Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action and Diversity has been commissioned to develop a robust and prominent diversity program that actively addresses issues and creates a diverse and inclusive University. To demonstrate this new focus, the department has changed its name (as of January 2019) to the Office of Equity and Inclusion. Early projects for the department include improvements to the search committee process, a plan for expanding inclusive bathroom facilities, and programming and educational events scheduled for the spring semester. This office will convene a newly chartered Equity and Inclusion Council to develop a strategy to meet program objectives. The data collected in this engagement survey will help to guide the work of the Equity and Inclusion Council.

Survey Results by Employee Category:

Employee Engagement Survey - All Categories Summary (2018)

Employee Engagement Survey - Faculty (2018)

Employee Engagement Survey - Non-Classified Staff (2018)

Employee Engagement Survey - Classified Staff (2018)

Employee Engagement Survey - Student Employees and Interns (2018)

Employee Engagement Survey - Adjunct and Temporary Employees (2018)