Want to improve your company’s customer experience strategy? Start with improving your employees’ engagement.Highly engaged employees help their companies improve customer relationships, which leads to organic growth. Gallup's 2017 State of the American Workplace report says, “highly engaged business units achieve a 10 percent increase in customer metrics and a 20 percent increase in sales.”
One example of that is when Sutherland helped Petco get its employees more engaged to raise customer satisfaction. Petco had an IT Help Desk department that could not keep up with in-store technology issues, an inability to respond timely to customers on social media and an “F” rating from the Better Business Bureau. Sutherland solved Petco’s problems by getting Petco employees more engaged through training, better organization and better systems. As a result, Petco employee satisfaction rose to 100 percent, customer satisfaction jumped to 88 percent and its BBB “F” rating became a “B.”
Better CX Starts with Better EX
The Petco case is but one instance where Improving employee experience (EX), engagement and communications can pay off with better customer service and CX.
Communications among employees is one area where ultimately CX benefits. According to Forrester, the movement in contact centers is to analyze not only data from external conversations but also internal transcripts (agent-supervisor or agent-agent) to flag opportunities to curate “tribal knowledge” that was previously accessed via informal shoulder taps or side conversations.
Here’s an example of tribal knowledge in action. Knowledge gained from internal conversations can help resolve complex support tickets via platforms to connect agents to the right skills and availability resources while tracking results and generating solutions for process improvements.
Tech Owns Efficiency. Agents Own CX
Another area of employee engagement is, simply put, making contact agents’ quality of work life better. This need is never more acute than today, given that contact centers are seeing turnover rates of 58 percent, or higher.
One solution for this is to move away from agent-owned efficiency like holding each agent accountable to drive down average handle time. Instead, Forrester reports a growing movement to prioritize customer satisfaction and resolution above efficiency. Improvements in process and/or technology can shoulder more of the efficiency burden. In this way, agents are not forced to choose between speed and customer experience.
Happy Employees = Happier Customers
According to the Management Study Guide, an engaged workforce forms an emotional connection with the organization to inspire employees to…
Go the extra mile to achieve their own and their company’s success
Be more creative and innovative
Attract new customers and employees (including improved CX and customer satisfaction)
Become evangelists for your company
Infuse energy and positivity at the workplace
Imagine what’s possible when an engaged and happy employee interacts with a customer. In fact, it’s at all hard to conclude that a positive vibe from a contact center agent during a customer conversation will accelerate the interaction toward a satisfying solution.
A Strong Workforce Forges Customer Bonds
“Regardless of an organization's size, type or industry, customer problems are a serious threat,” Gallup said. “Remedying organization-specific weaknesses and strengths is one pivotal step toward mitigating problems. To develop and sustain a customer-centric culture, all leaders must make employee engagement a central organizational initiative.”
That said, Gallup also cautioned that companies’ solutions for customer experience issues often make problems worse. You can avoid that complication by tapping Sutherland’s success in CX solutions and contact centers to better equip employees with processes and technologies that make their work lives better. The result can keep your customers thrilled – and coming back for more.