How to leverage employee experience to boost customer experience

There is more to increasing employee engagement than providing artisanal coffee and popcorn. And, cracking the EX code can lead to better customer experience or CX.
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In today’s world both employees and customers are the centrifugal force for the growth of an organisation. This is primarily because of the rising self-awareness among the people across all sectors.

Gone are the times when employees or customers had limited opportunities and resources to explore. In this fast paced economy, one man’s loss is another man’s gain, and hence developing an organisational environment wherein both the employees and customers are treated well is a must.

As per IDC’s Market Analysis Perspective: Worldwide Employee Experience Management Strategies, 2021, a disordered workforce incurred changes at an exponential rate. Organisations had to quickly reform the way employees work, by creating the right technology experience for them.

Additionally, the report outlines how having a well-organised corporate structure was essential to make employees feel cared for during difficult times.

Engaged employees lead to happy customers. It’s an undeniable fact. But how does this materialise and what does it eventually mean for the organisation?

Need for a balanced Employee Experience (EX) and Customer Experience (CX)

Needless to say, a customer-first business model is a straight path to revenue generation. However, companies need to scrutinise the whole experience, with customers and employees, to thrive today. Organisations should look to create a customer-obsessed culture by following an employee-first approach.

There needs to be a balanced working methodology that can be developed through the 3 R’s- Resolve, Resilience, and Reform in the organisational system.

Let us understand the 3 Rs-

Resolve- As an organisation, be diligent and proactive in resolving both the employee and customer queries. It is the queries left unanswered or unaddressed that lead to a disappointed team/customer.

Resilience- Stay flexible while resolving an issue. As an organization you will have set policies and protocols, however, flexibility and empathy must form the grounds of these policies. Only then can an organisation excel in resolving all the issues within and outside the organisation satisfactorily.

Reform- With rapid digitisation and technological advancements the world is constantly evolving and so should your organisation. To help serve your employees and customers better, it is important that as an organisation you bring in reforms that aid in the upskilling of your employees and the satisfaction of your customers.

The above 3 R’s will help you in developing a highly engaged workforce along with a satisfied team and customer pool.

Apart from this, the widely known strategies of prioritising employees’ needs, listening to the workforce, and recognising and rewarding top performers, employers need to instill the values of the company in employees to help them work towards the same objectives that the organisation is built for.

The connection between employee experience (EX) and customer experience (CX)

There is a direct catalyst reaction that takes place with EX functioning as the catalyst and CX becoming the result. This implies that if your employees trust in your brand purpose they work as catalysts for the growth of your company owing to their deep-rooted connection and belief in the organization that they work for.

Hence, it is essential for companies to ensure that employees believe in their brand purpose to help them understand the influence their actions have on the CX. If you have a positive workforce that is driven to provide an awesome customer experience, you do not need a customer satisfaction program at all to train them. The dedication becomes the program.

On the other hand, for satisfied customers to become loyal customers or even promoters of your brand, organisations should leverage the potential that employee experience holds.

For instance, inspiring, healthy, and fruitful conversations between your employees and customers can often work wonders for the company's growth.

Social media today is filled with experiences shared by both employees and customers of the disastrous (or rarely good) instances they had with each other. This directly affects the business house more than anyone else. Due to the ease of a smartphone and the internet’s accessibility, everyone these days is an undercover agent on the mission to find such incidents, leading to:

i) Viral negative brand imaging

ii) Revenue loss

iii) Reduced clientele (in certain cases)

Providing an awesome employee experience isn’t always about increased pay, artisanal popcorn, or unlimited free coffee. Expensive coffee is great, but it is not going to boost your employees’ motivation.

It eventually comes down to the set of options you give your workers to help them realise their full potential, align their goals with the company objectives, and feel included. No one wants to work at a place where they are given second-hand citizenship.

Concluding the above, here is how EX affects CX:

Disengaged/Stressed employee ---> Decreased interest in solving customer problems ---> Reduced customer satisfaction ---> Increased customer attrition/ Audience Alienation ---> Steep decrease in business revenue

Remember that both are interlinked with tangible benefits. The key idea is to have an environment of growth and inclusivity for both your internal and external audience while maintaining a no-barrier communication between the different entities.

Edited by Affirunisa Kankudti

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)

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