The Employee Experience Should Come Before Everything

By Jana Barrett

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Happy employees = happy customers. It seems obvious, so why do so many companies overlook the employee experience when they set out to improve the customer experience? For one, companies often struggle to justify internal initiatives when those resources could be put toward revenue-driving activities. On top of that, employee satisfaction and engagement are still seen as soft goals with no direct impact on the bottom line. Basically, companies don’t want to invest more in their employees if they don’t see a business case for it.

However, the tides are starting to turn as younger generations enter the workforce and tech redefines corporate culture. A 2016 Temkin Group study found a direct correlation between employee engagement and customer experience—the companies with the best customer experiences also tend to have the most engaged employees. Why? Employees impact customers daily, both directly and indirectly; whether they feel valued or invisible, motivated or discouraged, their attitudes will trickle down into their work, impacting customer satisfaction and loyalty.

In this post, we’ll discuss why the employee experience is increasingly important, and share some fresh ideas for business leaders who want to improve theirs without breaking the bank.

Why the Employee Experience Is So Important

Engaged employees work harder, contribute more to company culture, and generally bring more enthusiasm to their roles. They also indirectly drive revenue. According to Gallup, highly engaged teams achieve, on average, a 10% increase in customer ratings and a 20% increase in sales. On top of their direct contributions, happy employees also cut costs by sticking around longer. That’s huge, since it costs around 33% of an employee’s annual salary to replace them. That figure doesn’t even account for other “productivity costs,” like the loss of institutional knowledge, the time it takes to rehire, and the amount of ramp time their replacement will need.

Beyond all that, people often stay in jobs because they’re loyal to the people they work with every day. The loss of one good employee can create a ripple effect. We see it happen all the time—one highly-respected employee leaves and their coworkers follow suit. If anything, that should inspire companies to invest more in employee retention, but outside more progressive industries, we have yet to see major shifts in employee experience efforts. That lack of effort shows. Gallup reports that over half of the U.S. workforce is “not engaged.” What’s more, EBN found that employees who leave their jobs do so for preventable reasons, like lack of career development, work-life balance, and effective management.

The Millennial Movement

You can’t talk about employee experience without mentioning Millennials. The generation makes up more than 40% of the workforce today, and in 10 years that stat will double. Millennials aren’t just changing the way modern companies operate—they’re reshaping the concept of the workplace entirely. For one, Millennials value company culture much more than previous generations. They’re even willing to make less money—<a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160407005736/en/Quality-Work-Life-Worth-7600-Pay-Cut" target="_blank" Go to the full article.

Source:: Business 2 Community

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