While the very same survey tool is used both in the assessment process for Best Places to Work programs and our engagement projects, there are some important differences between the two options. Our employee engagement projects were designed to put employers in the position to increase employee engagement and satisfaction. Our Best Places to Work programs were designed to recognize workplace excellent.

Read on to learn more about the chief differences between the two and to help you decide which is best for your organization.

Reports and Analysis

Standard reporting when participating in Best Places to Work programs will reveal your strengths and opportunities in the areas of employee engagement and satisfaction in a quantitative report called the Employee Demographic Report (EDR). Add-ons include the ability to add or customize your workplace demographics to better reflect your organization. Additionally, the Employee Comments Report (ECR) lists verbatim responses to open-ended questions from the engagement survey. You may elect to purchase the ability to report those comments by department or location, if you’d like.

Our employee engagement projects, on the other hand, come standard with both the EDR and ECR. They are only part of what’s included in the Team Insights Report (TIR). During each of our engagement projects, we review the TIR in your reports analysis call. Together, the analysis and reporting we provide are all that is needed to not just identify what’s driving employee engagement, but to pinpoint which areas in your organization require action to increase engagement. Our customers walk out of their projects with clear recommendations for next steps. Included with each engagement project is a Pulse Survey, to measure progress against improvement goals.


When you participate in an awards program, you’re bound to its timeline. These timelines can be found on the registration websites of each individual program. We’ll survey your employees and then deliver reports on that timeline (usually 2-3 months after the survey).

If you’d prefer to survey your employees at a time that’s convenient for you and meets your goals, an engagement project may be a better fit. Engagement project reports are usually delivered within 2 weeks of survey administration and you may schedule your analysis call(s) for any time you choose.


Best Places to Work Program

Employee Engagement Project

When will we survey our employees? On the program timeline. See program website for details. At your convenience.
How long does it take from survey administration to reports delivery? 2 – 3 Months 2 Weeks after survey closes


Something that’s fantastic about Best Places to Work programs is their affordability. With an average participation and report fee of just $1,000, our program partners bring to market the opportunity to measure employee engagement and satisfaction on a grand scale. This is possible because of volume. So many employers go through the process at the same time, thus driving the cost down for everyone.

Of the Best Places to Work program participants that have goals around collecting actionable employee feedback data, most will customize their employee surveys to reflect the job roles and departments at their organization, add questions, or include additional demographic categories such as “location.” They almost always survey all of their employees, rather than using the required sample size. While engaging these options will increase the total participation fee in Best Places to Work programs, the options are available and the the total invoice may still be lower than an employee engagement project.

Our employee engagement project customers invest a larger budget into their employee survey for the sake of control over timeline and messaging, as well as the use of an established process that’s designed to put an employer into position to increase engagement. While employee survey projects start at $5,000 they are usually between $8,000 – $10,000.


Best Places to Work Program

Employee Engagement Project

What is the starting cost of the employee survey? Varies by program; See individual program sites. $4,995
Can we customize our survey to get the most actionable data for our organization? Yes Yes
Is the full suite of reporting available? Yes Yes


When an organization uses one of our Best Places to Work programs to administer their Employee Engagement and Satisfaction Survey, they can expect to see the logo of that awards program on their employee survey as well as the reports they receive at the end of the program.

While in many cases, this can be a good thing (i.e. demonstrates that your organization values such a pursuit), it can feel not quite right in certain situations. Some examples include: when you have employees working outside the program area (who might wonder why they are receiving a survey for one state when they live and work in another) or when an organization has been through big changes like a change in leadership or a recent acquisition. In cases like this, we might recommend using an employee engagement project to collect your employee feedback data and then import that relevant data set into the program/s of your choice.


Best Places to Work Program

Employee Engagement Project

Will the survey indicate to employees that an award is on the line? Yes No
Will the survey feel appropriate for all employees, no matter their location or business unit? Varies by organization Yes

What if You Want it All?

Some employers want to participate in Best Places to Work programs and enjoy the benefits of a faster, more flexible timeline for survey administration and reports delivery. Or perhaps, they want to survey employees across the U.S., applying data to multiple Best Places to Work programs, but don’t want the survey branded with any particular region or industry.

While there are important considerations that may affect your eligibility to do this (such as collecting data within 60 days of the program timeline), this is a great option for some employers. Set up a call with one of our employer coaches to find out if this option works well for your goals.

Get Started Today

It’s powerful to know what your employees think. You can identify problems like poor supervision, communication breakdown, and mounting plans to leave your company before expensive turnover affects your business. Getting your hands on your Employee Feedback Reports has never been so easy and affordable. Decide which method is right for your team and let us know how we can help.

With more than 15 years of experience and collected data, we administer recognized survey tools and deliver comprehensive reporting you can trust. Our customizable options ensure that your organization is capturing data in the most effective way for your reporting needs.

Because we survey more than 6,000 employers and their 1,000,000+ employees each year, you can feel good about using our extensive database as a comparative benchmark for your results; it is of the highest quality and is also used to support trending analyses and ongoing research performed by a number of scholars, authors, and presenters worldwide.


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