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Employee morale reaches all-time high amid inflation and recession concerns: CNBC|Momentive Workforce Survey

CNBC and Momentive’s Workforce Happiness Index increases to a score of 72 out of 100, one point higher than the previous survey’s index from May 2022  

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., and SAN MATEO, CA, December 21, 2022 — CNBC, First in Business Worldwide, and Momentive, the maker of SurveyMonkey, today announced the results of their latest Workforce Survey.  

The CNBC|Momentive survey found the majority of workers (72%) say morale among coworkers is either “excellent” or “good”, up three points from May 2022 (69%) and up from 64% year over year, and that morale has increased among nearly all workers, regardless of gender, race or job level. The number of workers who say they’ve seriously considered quitting their job in the last three months is also down slightly (36%) compared to the all-time high of 39% from May 2022, but still higher than any other previous iteration of the survey. More workers now (48%) than before say their company is adequately staffed, a 6-point increase from October 2021 (42%), and slightly fewer say their company is understaffed (45%, down from 50%). 

The survey, which polled over 10,000 workers in the U.S. from November 28 – December 5, 2022, found that inflation and recession concerns are top of mind for workers heading into the new year. Seventy-four percent of workers say their company is prepared to handle a recession if one were to occur. On the other hand, two-thirds of workers (67%) say the biggest threat to their job is an economic downturn, up 7 points from June 2019 (60%), and fears of an economic downtown have increased among nearly all workers, regardless of race, income or industry. 

Despite some recent layoffs at high-profile companies, most workers (59%) aren’t concerned that they or someone in their household will be laid off or lose their job in the next few months, including more than a quarter (26%) who aren’t concerned at all. Eighty percent of workers say they’d be able to find a new job in 6 months or less if they lost their current job.  

However, the survey found that remote workers are less confident in their ability to find a new job quickly. According to the data, the less a person works in-office, the longer they expect it to take them to find a new job in the event of being laid off. Twenty-four percent of those working fully remotely say they could find a new job in less than 1 month if they lost their current job, compared with forty-one percent of fully in-office workers who say the same, while twenty-three percent of those working remotely say it could take more than 6 months to find a new job, versus sixteen percent of in-office workers.  

Overall, the Workforce Happiness Index, which measures worker satisfaction across five key metrics, increased by one point to a score of 72 out of a possible 100, with a couple of the five index components experiencing a slightly positive shift since May of this year. The index continues to remain incredibly consistent, never moving higher than 73 from the May 2020 survey, or lower than 71.  

Additional key findings from the December 2022 CNBC|Momentive Workforce Survey include:  

All five components of the Workforce Happiness Index  either held steady or saw improvement:

  • 63% of workers say they have excellent or good opportunities to advance their careers at their places of work, up three points from May to a new high across all previous Workforce surveys. 
  • 84% of workers think their contributions are valued a lot or some by their colleagues, up two points from May. 
  • 73% of workers consider themselves to be very or somewhat well paid for the work they do, up one point from May 
  • 91% of workers in the U.S. consider their job to be very or somewhat meaningful to them, unchanged from May 
  • 85% of workers have a lot or some autonomy over how they do their job, unchanged from May.  

Even though layoff concerns are low, some workers are still worried about it: 

  • 57% of Asians, 53% of Hispanics and 47% of Blacks are concerned that layoffs may impact their household compared with just 33% of white workers.  
  • 47% of workers earning less than $50,000 are concerned that they or someone in their household will be laid off or lose their job – the highest across all income groups. 
  • Women workers are slightly more likely than men to be concerned about layoffs affecting their household (41% vs. 38%). 

Over and understaffing issues continue to pose attrition threats: 

  • 57% of those who say their company is overstaffed have seriously considered quitting in the last three months, up nine points from October 2021 (48%).  
  • 46% of workers in understaffed companies say they’ve seriously considered quitting in the last three months, also up slightly from October 2021 (43%). 
  • Some industries are still facing staffing shortages: 62% of government workers say their company is understaffed, followed by workers in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industry (55%), the airline industry (52%) and the nonprofit industry (51%). 

“We end the year on several high notes: workers are expressing their highest-ever ratings of morale, only modest fears of a recession, and widespread confidence that their business can survive any turbulence,” said Laura Wronski, director of research at Momentive. “There’s good news for bosses, too: most workers are not worried about losing their job, and fewer now than six months ago say they’re considering quitting, which indicates relief for the stomach-churning labor market of the last few years.”   

To download the CNBC|Momentive Workforce Survey template to help measure employee job satisfaction at your organization, go to:     

   CNBC Senior Personal Finance Correspondent Sharon Epperson will reveal the results of the CNBC|Momentive Workforce Survey on Wednesday, December 21st throughout CNBC’s Business Day programming. For more information on the survey including the full results and methodology and in-depth articles, go to:  


This Momentive online poll was conducted November 28 - December 5, 2022 among a national sample of 10,022 workers in the United States. Respondents for this survey were selected from the more than 2 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. The modeled error estimate for this survey is plus or minus 1.5 percentage points. Data have been weighted initially for age, race, sex, education, and geography using the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to reflect the demographic composition of the United States age 18 and over, then weighted for age, race, sex, education, employment status, and geography using Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey to reflect the demographic composition of United States employed population. 

About CNBC:

CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news, providing real-time financial market coverage, business content and general news consumed by more than 544 million people per month across all platforms. The network's 14 live hours a day of news programming in North America (weekdays from 5:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET) is produced at CNBC's global headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and includes reports from CNBC News bureaus worldwide. CNBC at night features a mix of new reality programming, CNBC's highly successful series produced exclusively for CNBC and a number of distinctive in-house documentaries.

CNBC also offers content through its vast portfolio of digital products such as:, which provides financial market news and information to CNBC’s investor audience; CNBC Make It, a digital destination focused on making you smarter about how you earn, save and spend your money; CNBC PRO, a premium service that provides in-depth access to Wall Street; a suite of CNBC mobile apps for iOS and Android devices; Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri voice interfaces; and streaming services including Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV and Samsung Smart TVs. To learn more, visit

Members of the media can receive more information about CNBC and its programming on the NBCUniversal Media Village Web site at  For more information about NBCUniversal, please visit

About Momentive

Momentive (NASDAQ: MNTV), maker of SurveyMonkey, collects and analyzes human sentiment at scale. Momentive products, including SurveyMonkey, GetFeedback, and Momentive brand and market insights solutions, equip ​decision-makers at 345,000 organizations worldwide with the insights they need to make decisions with speed and confidence. Millions of users rely on Momentive to fuel market insights, brand insights, employee experience, customer experience, and product experience. Ultimately, the company’s vision is to broaden the world’s perspective to shape the future of business. Learn more at

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