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Frequently Asked Questions

Why did the University decide to conduct a Staff Survey?

The University commenced work on the Positive Working Environment initiative in 2007. In order to ensure that staff have good working experiences at the University, it was thought to be essential to understand what staff really thought about working for Cardiff University. It was believed that the most appropriate method to seek the views of staff would be through a comprehensive survey which all staff would be invited to complete. 

The first Staff Survey was therefore undertaken in 2008. The resulting data proved extremely useful, and it was decided that further surveys would be conducted approximately every two years to monitor staff satisfaction, and to enable the identification of areas for improvement accordingly.

The most recent Staff Survey was conducted in October/November 2011, and results from this are currently being used to formulate action plans.

Who could complete the Survey?

All Cardiff University members of staff, from all career pathways and all contract types, were able to complete the Staff Survey. The survey was made available in different formats to allow for different needs and preferences in terms of survey completion.

Staff surveys are a means of making your views about working life at the University known, and thereby making it possible to address any concerns affecting staff.  The more people that fill in the surveys, the more meaningful the data.  57% of staff chose to participate in the 2011 survey.

The survey contained a demographic information section.  Why was this necessary?

It was necessary to ask for demographic information in order to be able to analyse the data according to different categories. This would ensure that any problems facing particular groups of staff could be identified and ultimately addressed. 

However, it was acknowledged that some respondents would not wish to provide demographic information relating to equality and diversity, and therefore respondents could declare that they would prefer not to provide the information.

Is it possible for anyone to know that I completed the survey?

No. The survey was anonymous in order to ensure that staff felt able to answer questions truthfully. It would not be possible to identify who did, or did not, complete the questionnaire.

How has confidentiality and anonymity been ensured?

Only statistical summaries of the data are reported, not individual responses. The survey did not ask for the respondent’s name or any other identifiers.  Any data based on less than ten respondents from a particular School/Directorate/Division/demographic group has not been reported on, both for reasons of statistical reliability and anonymity.

Who sees the results of the survey?

The results of the survey will be taken to many of the University’s committees, to each of the Schools and Directorates, and are available on the website for staff to download.

If I completed the survey will anything change?

The results of the Staff Survey 2008 have been taken very seriously, and it has been acknowledged that the process provided the University with an important and comprehensive set of data which was used to make improvements and build on progress in a large number of areas.

The data from the 2011 survey will be equally important to the University, and will once again be used to inform and drive improvements for staff.  Findings will highlight both what we do well and where we need to improve, and will thus inform plans for improvement at a University-wide level and at School/Division level.  Action plans and progress reports will be publicised on the Staff Survey web pages.


Do you have a question regarding the survey or the survey process that isn’t answered here? If so, please contact 

Mrs Helen Harries

Position:PWE Project Officer
Extension: 79230