Careers at SurveyMonkey


SurveyMonkey’s mission is to help its users make better decisions. Specifically, it is to make it as easy as possible for them to get the knowledge they need to make smart, informed choices.


In 1999 Ryan Finley was a college junior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He had a part-time job and was asked by his bosses to distribute a survey to customers. He was tasked with using the program they had on hand, but it was tedious and difficult to work with. He then came up with an idea – create an online tool that would simplify the process. He worked hard in his apartment to build it and came up with a name he thought people would easily remember: “SurveyMonkey”.

The tool worked well for his employers, but he decided to branch out and build his own company around it. He moved to Portland, hiring his brother Chris to help him. Being the main person responsible for product design and strategy, he gave himself the title Vice President of Product and Design. They established a free service, but eventually added paid options. SurveyMonkey became a huge success, and was used by a wide variety of parties from individuals to companies.

The two expanded the company’s offerings over time, and within a few years its success led to sales of $30 million – all without the raising of any outside funding. In 2009 its worth was valued at over a billion dollars. The same year the Finleys sold the firm to Spectrum Equity and Bain Capital. Ryan remained an employee, but installed Dave Goldberg, a former Yahoo executive, as its CEO.

SurveyMonkey is now the most popular online survey platform, with customers that include individuals, small businesses, non-profits, academics, medical professionals, researchers, event planners, and Fortune 500 companies. It operates in 16 languages and is used in over 190 countries. It deploys almost 500,000 surveys a month and has 692 million unique site visitors. Not bad for a service started out of someone’s apartment.

Benefits at SurveyMonkey

Business model of SurveyMonkey

Customer Segments

SurveyMonkey has a segmented business model, which recognizes customer segments with slightly different needs and problems. It serves the following two groups:

  • Non-Enterprise:  For individual customers, the company offers single-user accounts. A single account holder can log in, create surveys, and obtain results for analysis. These persons most commonly utilize SurveyMonkey’s free option, but can also opt to pay for a higher-level option with advanced features.
  • Enterprise:  For organizations, the company has created SurveyMonkey Enterprise, which offers a multi-user account. The account holder has a single login ID that he/she shares with fellow users in the organization; this set-up enables the streamlining of billing and easier control of data. Users can then create surveys and share the results amongst each other. Enterprise users receive 24/7 email and phone support, and also have access to a “customer success team.“ SurveyMonkey Enterprise customers include 100% of the Fortune 100.

Value Proposition

SurveyMonkey offers three primary value propositions: accessibility, customization, and brand/status.

The company’s service makes it easy for everyone, including individuals, small businesses, to design a survey that can reach thousands of people and provide useful insights. The service is simple to use and presents results in real-time, meaning users do not have to wait.

The service offers 200 survey templates customized for various areas of focus; these templates include Academic Surveys, Event Planning Surveys, Market Research Surveys, Customer Satisfaction Surveys, Employee Surveys, Political Surveys, Education Surveys, and Healthcare Surveys.

The service is well-established and is considered to be the world’s leading online survey platform, with over 25 million users, over 3 million survey responses per day, and over 57 million completed surveys.


SurveyMonkey’s’ main channel is its website, which serves to market as well as offer the actual service. The company also offers a mobile app through which customers can design and conduct surveys. Lastly, it provides customer service through email and phone support for paying users.

Customer Relationships

SurveyMonkey’s customer relationship is primarily of a self-service, automated nature. Customers utilize the service through the main platform while having limited interaction with employees. There is also a personal assistance component in that customers can receive e-mail support; paying customers can receive 24/7 e-mail assistance and phone support.

Key Activities

SurveyMonkey’s key activities focus on platform management. The company primarily devotes time to maintaining its software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform, which enables the creation of surveys. It recently launched a new platform called SurveyMonkey Benchmarks that enables users to compare their results against those of competitors.

Key Partners

SurveyMonkey partners with various popular third-party providers of apps and widgets by integrating the programs into its main tool. The providers can send and share surveys or analyze their results. The company’s partners include Eventbrite, MailChimp, HubSpot, Zendesk, and Microsoft Word.

Key Resources

SurveyMonkey’s main resource is its proprietary software platform, which customers use to create surveys. It also depends on human resources to provide customer service.

Cost Structure

SurveyMonkey has a cost-driven structure, aiming to minimize expenses through significant automation and low-price value propositions. The company’s biggest cost drivers are fixed costs, namely in the areas of product development and customer support.

Revenue Streams

SurveyMonkey has one main revenue stream. The company utilizes a freemium model, in which it offers its basic service for free and then charges a premium for advanced features. It offers the following four pricing tiers (with discounts for students/educators)

  • Basic: Free; customers are limited to 10 questions and 100 respondents per survey they design, and receive standard e-mail support.
  • Select: Costs $26 per month ($18 per month for students/educators), billed on a month-to-month basis; customers are limited to 1,000 respondents per survey and also have added perks such as unlimited questions, priority 24/7 e-mail support, and the ability export data and reports.
  • Gold: Costs $300 per year ($204 per year for students/educators), billed annually; customers receive the benefits of the Select plan as well as access to statistical significance and text analyses, question and answer piping, and randomization.
  • Platinum: Costs $1,020 per year ($528 per year for students/educators), billed annually; customers receive the benefits of the Gold plan as well as access to white label surveys, advanced survey logic, the ability add multiple users, HIPAA-compliant features, and  onboarding and phone support.

Our team

Ryan Finley,
Founder and Director

info: Ryan holds a B.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He currently serves on SurveyMonkey’s Board of Directors. In his current role, he is responsible for overseeing product design and strategy.

Zander Lurie,

info: Zander holds a J.D. and an M.B.A. from Emory University and a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Washington. His past positions include SVP of Entertainment at GoPro, SVP of Strategic Development at CBS Corporation, and Chief Financial Officer at CNET Networks.

Selina Tobaccowala,
President and Chief Technology Officer

info: Selina holds a B.S. degree in Computer Science from Stanford University. She is the founder of and formerly worked as SVP of Product/Technology at Ticketmaster Europe. She oversees SurveyMonkey’s technology strategy.

Tim Maly,
Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer

info: Tim earned a BSE in Civil Engineering from Princeton University. His past positions include senior management roles in Online Sales & Operations at Google. He built the international business operations for AdSense Online.