How employee freedom leads to a better customer

Most organisations are built around the traditional top-down, command and control structure. However, giving employees the ability to be involved in decisions regarding customer support can lead to greater levels of customer satisfaction. One way to do this effectively is to implement both customer and employee feedback channels with clear visibility of the results/feedback.

Bill McMurray, Managing Director, Asia Pacific and Japan, Qualtrics, said, “Enabling employees to create great customer experiences is a key tool in building and sustaining a customer-focused business. Such an approach can lead to greater brand loyalty and customer retention.”

Qualtrics highlights four key steps businesses can take to help build a great customer experience through engaged employees:

1. Empower employees

Organisations can empower employees by removing unnecessary barriers that may prevent them from putting the customer first. Organisations can immediately improve the customer experience by implementing systems and processes that let employees see highly-relevant customer feedback in real-time, use the information at their discretion to be a part of improving customer interactions, without having to consult managers further up the chain.

2. Secure leadership buy-in

Offering employees a certain level of autonomy is important, but it is also crucial to make sure that employees have the confidence to make a decision and know that they will be backed up by managers and company leaders. To do this, companies need leadership buy-in. This can be achieved by designating an executive to advocate for customer initiatives, delivering leadership training and linking executive bonuses to customer satisfaction metrics.

3. Provide incentives

Incentivising employees to care for customers involves far more than simply providing them with a weekly pay packet. Incentivising employees is all about offering special rewards for employees who go out of their way to deliver great customer experiences. These could be as simple as offering an ‘employee of the week’ award, or as elaborate as providing a sizeable yearly bonus. Either way, incentivising employees will lead to better customer care.

4. Listen to employees

Disengaged employees are less likely to provide a great customer experience, making it harder to win over unhappy customers. Organisations should establish employee listening channels to make sure that dissatisfied employees can voice their concerns or problems easily and without fear of negative repercussions. An employee engagement program is a good way to make sure employees’ voices are heard. The employee engagement program must consist of real-time employee feedback and provide highly-relevant information for managers, so they are able to take action on employee feedback when it is needed.

Bill McMurray said, “It is crucial for companies to integrate their customer experience and employee engagement programs to ensure they deliver an exceptional customer experience. If you don’t have happy employees, then you are unlikely to have happy customers.”

About Qualtrics

Qualtrics is a rapidly growing software-as-a-service company and the provider of the world's leading enterprise survey platform. More than 7,500 enterprises worldwide, including half of the Fortune 100 and 99 of the top 100 business schools rely on Qualtrics technology. Our solutions make it fast and easy to capture customer, employee, and market insights in one place.

These insights help our clients make informed, data-driven business decisions. Global enterprises, academic institutions, and government agencies use Qualtrics to collect, analyze, and act on voice of the customer, customer satisfaction, employee engagement, 360-degree reviews, brand, market, product concept, and employee feedback.

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