Wouldn’t it be nice to know what engages employees at your organization? If you could say with some confidence, “the employees of this company need to feel part of team working toward a shared goal in order to engage,” then you could move on to create a strategy that supports teamwork. Our customers have this kind of clarity when they review their Key Driver Analysis.

Simply put, a Key Driver Analysis helps an employer evaluate which employee satisfaction attributes most affect overall employee engagement (dependent variable). At Best Companies Group, we use a stepwise linear regression to generate your list of key drivers. The regression identifies the attributes that have the greatest influence on overall engagement within your workplace, based on comparisons to all measures of satisfaction in our Employee Engagement & Satisfaction Survey.


The top influencers of employee engagement are identified using this method:

  1. A mean score is generated, using all survey items measuring employee engagement. This is what we call the “dependent variable.”
  2. This dependent variable and all satisfaction survey questions (which we call “independent variables”) are run through stepwise regression models. Each new model adds independent variables incrementally until there is no more correlation (or relationship) to the dependent variable. This can result in the generation of many regression models.
  3. Top drivers isolated in this process are identified in each of the models. Those chosen are from the strongest models exhibiting a positive relationship with the dependent variable: employee engagement.

Interpreting the Data

All of the key drivers identified are important but to varying degrees. The top two or three key drivers are usually the most important to consider, because they exhibit the strongest relationship with employee engagement.

Interpretting data can be tricky. It’s tempting to allocate resources to only the top three drivers, seeing these attributes in isolation. Our most successful customers, however, consider not just their key drivers, but also the employee feedback data included in their Employee Demographic Report. When we take into consideration both levels of employee satisfaction (i.e. our strengths and weaknesses) as well as the drivers of engagement, it becomes easy to see what we should focus our efforts on improving. When we consider all of these aspects of our employee feedback reports, we have confidence that improvement in these identified areas will improve our employee engagement.


In the sample Key Driver Analysis below, “I understand the long-term strategy of this organization” is ranked as the #1 key driver of the set. It’s tempting to deduce that this is where you ought to invest your resources. You may change your mind, however, if you also note that 98% of respondents agree they understand the strategy but only half (54% and 47% respectively) agree that they “feel part of a team working toward a shared goal” and “believe there is a spirit of cooperation within the organization.”
Sample Key Driver Analysis (not actual data)
1. I understand the long-term strategy of this organization
2. I feel part of a team working toward a shared goal
3. I believe there is a spirit of cooperation within this organization
4. I like the type of work that I do
5. I’m satisfied with the disability benefits
6. This organization treats me like a person, not a number
7. Safety is a top priority with this organization
8. My supervisor handles my work-related issues satisfactorily
9. There is room for me to advance at this organization
10. At this organization, employees have fun at work

Learn More

You need to know what your employees think. Are they happy? Are they engaged? Do they plan to leave? Would they go the extra mile to see you succeed? That’s where we come in.

When you’re ready to learn more about employee survey timelines, process and pricing, schedule a time to meet with one of our employer coaches. We’ll get all your questions answered.

Article by Best Employee Surveys

With nearly 15 years of experience and collected data, Best Employee Surveys administers recognized survey tools and delivers 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 5,000+ companies and their 700,000+ 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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