Survey Design



Prior to the 2016 BSA Engagement Survey there was a connection made between engagement and job satisfaction. That is to say, engagement is used to predict levels of job satisfaction. Therefore, higher levels of engagement are assumed to create higher levels of job satisfaction. Although there is every reason to believe that these two concepts are related, there is less reason to believe that the meaningful impact of engagement is job satisfaction alone.

In the new survey design, first launched in 2016, engagement takes on a more complex role. It is suggested that job satisfaction and engagement may be causally related to:

  • A stronger culture of trust and accountability
  • Strategic and effective engagement of staff, time, and resources to achieve the mission and goals of the BSA
  • Increased savings through efficient and intentional use of resources
  • Increased membership growth
  • Increased levels of happiness
  • Increase work productivity
  • Increased recruitment and retention

This new survey design asserts that the sub-scales of satisfaction are:

  • Climate: Perception of the atmosphere in the workplace
  • Compensation: Perception of salary and benefits
  • Supervisor: Perception of relationship with immediate supervisor 

Engagement is also separated into three subscales:

  • Emotional Engagement: Positive and negative reactions to supervisors, co-workers, tasks, and the institution.
  • Cognitive Engagement: Investment, thoughtfulness, and willingness to exert the effort necessary to comprehend complex ideas and master difficult skills.
  • Behavioral Engagement: Participation and involvement in activities.

Breaking down employee feedback in this way allows the BSA to take thoughtful and focused steps to address needs in each of these categories. For example, if we find that behavioral engagement is lacking among staff, then it may be appropriate to work on making tasks and roles more clearly defined as well as more direct methods of assigning accountability. If emotional engagement is needed, then taking steps to strengthen the communication among and between employees, especially around the common goals of the Scouting movement may prove fruitful. Maybe if cognitive engagement is low, then it would make sense for efforts to be made that enhance the skill sets and competence of employees so that they find better fit and “flow’ in their work. Furthermore, having this breakdown allows us the chance to see if one of the components of engagement may play a more significant role than the others. 


BSA’s Research and Strategy Department design the employee engagement survey to be administered through an online survey tool. All part time and full time employees receive a link via email through which they access the survey. Employees are given two weeks to participate in the survey. They can take the survey from any computer through which they can access their BSA email account.