Plugging the Hole in the Bucket with Employee Engagement and Customer Satisfaction

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customer satisfaction and employee engagement from c-suiteI used to work for a Chief Marketing Officer who would talk about the “hole in the bucket.” He was of the opinion that, no matter how wonderful our marketing was, it would always be defeated by poor service quality. “Marketing pours customers into the bucket, and poor service quality makes the hole that lets them drain right back out,” he would say.

He may have been right.

Infosurv Research has published a case study that illustrates the positive relationship between employee engagement and customer satisfaction. We conducted both Employee Engagement and Customer Satisfaction surveys for one of our clients, and we found the key: an increase in employee engagement is correlated with an increase in customer satisfaction.

And not a small increase, either. For our client, where customer recommendations are its main source of new business, we uncovered the critical relationship between engaged employees and customer recommendations: a 2% increase in employee engagement leads to a 1% increase in customer recommendations. The opposite is even more dramatically true: as employee engagement decreased, customers’ willingness to recommend the company decreased by 56%. Using their sales data, our client can easily take these results straight to the bottom line.

But he was also wrong.

Employees can definitely be the hole in your bucket. But that doesn’t let Marketing off the hook. Marketing must take the leadership role in bringing together service delivery and customer service to create satisfied customers, who come back, and tell other potential customers about your great service experience.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Shut down the silos. Just as politicians must reach across the aisle to make government work, Marketers need to reach out to their HR and Customer Service colleagues to make business work. Marketing cannot stand alone, so build those bridges to bring engaged employees to bear on improving customer satisfaction.
  2. Measure the impact of Employee Engagement on Customer Satisfaction so you can calculate the return on any investment in improving employee engagement in terms of impact on the customer and the bottom line.
  3. Co-manage your Employee Engagement and Customer Satisfaction Measurement Programs to find synergies and opportunities for improvement. Bring your value proposition and brand delivery into absolute alignment with your customer’s experience.

Plug the Hole in the Bucket

Employee Engagement cannot be the sole domain of Human Resources. Customer satisfaction cannot be the sole domain of Customer Service. Sales cannot be the sole domain of Marketing. You have to work together to get the best outcome for Employees and Customers. Don’t let your business be a leaky bucket!

Use our infographic to tell the story of the relationship between employee engagement and customer satisfaction.

Read all the details on our case study illustrating the positive relationship between employee engagement and customer satisfaction.



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Lenni Moore

Lenni Moore is the Director of Operations at Infosurv. She’s always been passionate about fostering strong professional relationships. It’s precisely these relationships that allow her to exceed her clients’ expectations because she knows exactly what they want and then leverages her experience to get it for them.