Most of us have a basic understanding of customer experience (CX) which is influenced by a customer’s perception of each and every individual interaction across every single touchpoint over the duration of their relationship with your brand.
According to experience expert, Diane Magers, CCXP, Threadfin’s Experience Practice Lead (and Founder and Chief Experience Officer at Experience Catalysts), the discipline of customer experience has naturally extended its reach into advancements in employee experience (EX).
Think about your work experience…
You’ve probably seen the tenure and productivity gained when new recruits are welcomed, presented with well-planned onboarding programs, and system access right out of the gate. And you’ve probably also seen new recruits sit spinning their wheels for a couple of weeks while they wait system access to be granted. What about when it takes employees 20-30 minutes to search for the information they need to do their job? Or when they can’t book a conference room?
Those all-too-common examples reinforce the need for digital transformation to improve employee and customer experience. The effort, time, and resulting frustration influences how employees act, how long they stay, and what they say about their employer. Not only that, this will ultimately impact how they treat customers and it impacts your business in financial ways such as lost productivity, costly service escalations, and turnover.
Employee Experience Defined
Employee experience equals everything a worker learns, does, sees and feels at each stage of the employee lifecycle.
Improving employee experiences and engaging employees reduces hiring costs, increases tenure, increases productivity, decreases churn and strengthens brands.
Improved Employee Experience Related to Improved Customer Experience
While most organizations understand the importance their people play in their success, the most effective organizations are expanding their focus from customer experience to employee experience. Whether employees are customer-facing or not, their actions and decisions, and how they engage with external customers and each other, ultimately impact business results.
The employee is directly responsible for building, delivering, and continually improving the customer experience, and it’s important that companies understand the impact employee experience has on customer experience, and the dependencies between the two. Great brands focus on improving employee experience to create an atmosphere of positive change, using digital transformation to enable their employees to deliver superior experiences to their customers, and ultimately drive business value across the entire organization.
Beyond the Bagels
By launching an employee engagement strategy, companies have a great opportunity to show their employees that they care enough to pay attention to their needs, identify issues, and reap the benefits that an excellent employee experience can bring.
Diane calls this ‘Beyond the Bagels.’ While benefits and perks are significant, employees want to be involved, contribute to the organization’s success, feel valued and respected, have the opportunity to grow and develop, and have access to leadership.
Diane goes on to say that designing and improving the employee experience isn’t just about developing an employee engagement survey each year. Many companies survey employees on morale, management, and leadership, but unfortunately do little or nothing with the learnings. If they do fix a few things, they typically don’t introduce systematic changes that can make a sustainable impact.
It’s important that businesses identify areas that need to be fixed and introduce practical ways to solve challenges. For example, Diane talks about one brand that discovered after talking directly with their contact center employees, mapping their employee journey, and analyzing customer and employee information, that many of their employees were complaining about neck and shoulder injuries, and were having a hard time hearing customers on the calls. As a result, many of their employees were frustrated, and experiencing low morale, contributing to weaker levels of customer experience. The company decided to do something about it, so they conducted a pilot with a subset of employees. They brought in new headsets and fitted employee workstations with modular sound-proof barriers. A few months after these changes were implemented, the pilot group saw reduced call times, improved customer experience scores, fewer employee complaints, and reduced worker’s compensation claims since their employees no longer had to hunch over to hear customers. It’s a great example of how listening to employees and making a few simple changes can truly make a difference!
Digital transformation isn’t always human-centered, making it harder for employees to get work done and best serve their customers. Positive results require a commitment to identifying and improving the employee experience with the same rigor applied to customer experience, and then identifying and creating a series of programmatic changes and investments that deliver meaningful impact.
By understanding what employees need and want, engaging them in the design of the digital solutions, you can increase adoption, raise productivity, improve collaboration and innovation and build engagement and longer tenure, advocacy and referrals and reduces costs.
Threadfin’s Experience Threading is designed to do just that. Experience Threading results in human-centered digital transformation solutions that are tailored to the way your employees get work done, even as that changes over time.