10 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Free Suggestion Box

Man using free suggestion box software

To truly empower employee feedback, a free choice may not be the best choice

If you’re looking to open up an online suggestion box for your company, there are many options available. But before you sign up for fully free suggestion box software, consider what you’re actually getting. Here are 10 questions to ask about the service you’re thinking about signing up for.

1. Is my free suggestion box truly anonymous?

Many free suggestion boxes use software that tracks its users and can even be used to identify them by their browsing habits. If you use fully free software, you may be allowing these companies to track your employees. You may even scare some more technically-oriented employees away from using the suggestion box. Overall, it’s much safer to go with suggestion box software that guarantees anonymity.

2. How well can I customize my suggestion box?

Customization means more than simply adding your own questions to a form. Never underestimate the power of making your online suggestion box look exactly how you want it. From logos to colors, you can make your forms match your brand and generally look more professional than a fully free option.

3. Who has access to comments?

Many suggestion boxes will dump all the comments into a single email address or portal. While this might work when people are only commenting about one topic, you may need people from multiple departments to see specific comments—and not others. You want a system where you can add multiple administrators to an account, which is much more secure than simply sharing the account password and hoping nobody looks at things they shouldn’t.

4. Is my company’s data secure?

It isn’t just the security of reports that you should be worried about, but the security of your company’s data. Do you really trust that ad-supported service to treat your company’s information as private? What safeguards are there on the back end?

5. What kind of support do I get?

You never know when a problem will come up; that’s why Suggestion Ox has free, fast customer support no matter what time of day it is. With free services, you may wait days for a reply. With Suggestion Ox, it’s a few hours, and usually less than that.

6. What return will I see on my investment?

The saying “you get what you pay for” definitely applies to free suggestion box software. If you use a fully free service for your suggestion boxes, you’ll definitely see some return on your investment. But if you want to truly maximize the return on your investment, a paid service allows you to make a truly safe place for your employees to report issues before they become catastrophic for your company.

7. How do I introduce this software to my team?

Introducing a suggestion box can be a bit more complicated than announcing when there are donuts in the break room. For one, it isn’t just a single announcement. We recommend including your suggestion box in onboarding procedures and then sending periodic reminders to the company. You want a system that has a team dedicated to making the rollout of your suggestion box software as seamless as it can be and helping you and your employees feel comfortable submitting feedback.

8. What kind of track record does this suggestion box company have?

Suggestion Ox has been around since 2011 almost and is trusted by more than 60,000 companies, government agencies, and associations. We’re well established in our field and we’re not going away anytime soon, so you can trust us to stick with you for as long as your company needs.

9. How do I respond to anonymous feedback?

With free suggestion box software, you may not have the ability to respond to feedback. You want the ability to publish the best or most frequent questions to a password-protected internal website and publish your responses for the company to see. For more delicate issues, you can activate the Direct Replies feature to let you get back to respondents without worrying about revealing their identities.

10. How many boxes do I need?

If your company is tiny, you may not need more than one box, but you should always be thinking about what happens when you scale up. You may want multiple boxes on your account so you can separate departments, for instance, or be able to filter by types of report. You may even want to launch one-off anonymous polls or surveys.

Free suggestion box software sounds good, but it’s important to consider what you’re getting if nobody is being charged. As the old adage goes, if you’re not paying for the product, you’re not the customer; you’re the product being sold.

Suggestion Ox has turbocharged the suggestion box. Over 60,000 companies, associations and government agencies use their anonymous online suggestion box to gather actionable employee feedback, gain customer insights or empower whistleblowing and reporting.

Get My Box—Free!