Guide: How to get started with pulse surveys

How to get started with pulse surveys.

Have you decided to take the plunge and start conducting pulse surveys in your organization? 

Below, we guide you through the most important steps to start your journey with pulse surveys, so you can create a working environment where your employees thrive. 

First, you must clearly define why you want to perform pulse surveys. Is it to identify stress factors? Improve the working environment? Increase employee engagement? Having a clear purpose will guide you throughout the process. The specific purpose may also become apparent from the results of your latest WPA or wellbeing survey. 

Chose a platform

When choosing a platform for your pulse surveys, check out PeopleXact, which is tailor-made for pulse surveys. 

You get an easy-to-use interface, action-oriented reports, and the option of internal as well as external benchmarks that effectively illustrate employee wellbeing. 

The platform is fully GDPR compliant and enables you to carry out your pulse survey with just a few clicks.  

Who will participate

This can, for example, be for all departments in the organization and initiated at predetermined times of the year. They can also be deployed as needed if individual departments or the entire organization need follow-up surveys. 

Some departments or areas may also carry out more pulse surveys during periods than the rest of the organization. For example, if parts of the organization have a special focus area, or parts of the organization are more used to working with frequent surveys. 


At Rambøll, we distinguish between Team Pulse and Organization Pulse: 

Organizational Pulse is a frequent survey of employee wellbeing, engagement and other strategic areas across the entire organization. The insights are therefore relevant to HR, senior management and the individual department manager. Organization Pulse is typically used as part of a larger survey strategy, where survey frequency is determined in advance for the entire organization. 

Team Pulse is a survey in a specific unit, department or area of the organization. Focus on topics that the unit itself has the opportunity to influence or follow up on previous results and action plans. Team Pulse typically requires less planning, as the survey concerns fewer employees and does not involve initiatives for the entire organization. Therefore, the survey can also be used more spontaneously and as needed. 


Schedule frequency

Decide how often you want to conduct the pulse surveys. The frequency depends on the organization's needs and ability to respond to the results.   

Do not conduct surveys more often than can be justified by actionable results. It is not the frequency of surveys that creates survey fatigue among employees. It is a lack of follow-up to surveys. 

We recommend starting with a lower frequency and increasing over time as the organization learns to work with more frequent surveys. A good starting point is, for example, to conduct surveys 2-4 times a year, where one of the four studies is a full engagement survey, which here is called the baseline survey. 

The baseline survey can be supplemented by 1-3 pulse surveys during the year, e.g. quarterly or half-yearly surveys. In such a design, pulse surveys can be used to follow up on focus areas identified by baseline survey and intervene where challenges continue to exist. 

Designing the questionnaire

Create questionnaires that focus on the areas you want to investigate. 

Remember to ask questions about what you want to achieve (engagement, wellbeing) and the topics that are important to promote engagement and wellbeing. 

If you only measure performance targets, you do not acquire knowledge of why employees are engaged or disengaged, and it is difficult to act on. 

Do you want to carry out pulse surveys?

With PeopleXact, you get an HR tool for pulse surveys and specific and action-oriented reporting that makes it easy to translate insights into actions that create employee wellbeing, facilitate development and achieve better results.  

Ensure anonymity

It is important that employees feel comfortable sharing honest answers. Be careful to ensure anonymity for more authentic responses and data. By using PeopleXact, all employees are assured of survey confidentiality. 



Implement action

Collecting data is only part of the process. It is important to translate this data into action. 

Analyze the results, identify trends and areas that require improvement, and adjust their strategies and action plans to promote wellbeing. Or, if necessary, draw up new action plans. 


Communicate the results

Share the results of pulse surveys with employees. 

Give them insight into what has been identified and how the company plans to work toward improvement. 



After the implementation of changes, follow up with additional pulse surveys. 

This allows you to evaluate whether the improvements have had the desired effect. 


Adapt and develop


Use the results of pulse surveys to continuously adapt and develop strategies for employee wellbeing. 

Learn from previous surveys and adjust continuously for better results. 

Ongoing dialog

Pulse surveys are a way to open a dialog with employees about their wellbeing. Continue the conversation through regular meetings and open communication to ensure that the voice of employees is always heard. 
Getting started with pulse surveys requires engagement and the willingness to listen to employees’ perspectives. If you follow the above steps, you are well on your way to building a more wellbeing-focused workplace and creating positive change for both employees and the company. 


Do you need help with pulse surveys?

We offer both standardized and tailored solutions with question frameworks developed by leading HR experts and simple reporting that can be implemented quickly and easily. The solutions are adapted to the individual organization and can be combined with, for example, larger annual employee surveys. 

Prior to the surveys, we define the purpose of the surveys to choose the most suitable solution for your organization. 

The experienced experts at Xact by Rambøll ensure smooth implementation and offer continuous support as well as additional analyzes, training and tools. 

Andreas Barfoed-Høj

Business Psychologist (cand.psych)


Xact By Rambøll

M +45 51 61 20 41