Employee Engagement Surveys to Boost Customer
If you need to increase your company's competitiveness and profit, where should you start?
Should you focus on your employees first, or should you start by focusing on your customers
first? In reality, you need to do both.
It is almost always best to start by focusing on your employees first. Highly satisfied and
engaged employees are essential for achieving high levels of customer satisfaction, retention and
long-term loyalty. Start by listening to your employees and taking action based on their ongoing
Conduct an employee survey / employee engagement survey to gather information,
suggestions and insight from your employees. Ask them about what it is like to work for your
company and what can be done to help them do their jobs more effectively and to do a better job
of taking care of customers. Include questions about the effectiveness of internal
communications, business processes, teamwork and how employees feel about your company's
Make sure your employee surveys / employee engagement surveys also include questions
about effectiveness of supervisors and managers, empowerment, ability of employees to make
suggestions, effectiveness of rewards and recognition, fairness of compensation, adequacy of
employee benefits, treatment of diverse groups and fear in the workplace. Include questions
about quality, customer service and ways to increase productivity. Ask questions about anything
that may be positively or negatively impacting employees' and customers.
Don't be surprised if you end up identifying a very large number of challenges and
opportunities. If challenges and problems exist, you need to know about them, prioritize them and
take action. There is no single silver bullet. Identifying and addressing the top three problems is
not enough, especially when there are many more problems that are impacting your employees
It is important to do a thorough and objective job of analyzing the survey findings. It is then
equally important to create a comprehensive action plan and to do a good job of getting everyone
involved and executing the plan effectively. This requires communicating the results of surveys
so that employees know that you listened to them and that you are committed to making needed
changes based on their feedback.
Your goal should be to use the employee survey results to achieve large-scale increases in
employee engagement and satisfaction, with a much greater focus on your customers and
meeting or exceeding their expectations.
To ensure that you are achieving success, conduct employee attitude surveys annually to
measure progress and to identify any new challenges and opportunities that surfaced since the
previous employee survey. Your focus on and commitment to continuous improvement will
ensure continued customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Once you start to achieve positive results, you should also conduct customer surveys to
assess customer satisfaction levels and to see how your customers feel about your company,
your employees, your products and services and other key issues that drive customer satisfaction
and retention. Don't be afraid to ask customers about things you know you are not doing well. You
need to learn about how customers feel. Guessing isn't good enough. Your customers are
probably also buying from your competitors. It is important that you learn first-hand how they
compare your company, products and services with those of your competitors.
In summary, take good care of your employees, set the right direction, provide good
leadership, identify problems and opportunities, take action and measure ongoing progress. This
will enable your company to attract and retain customers and to be competitive and profitable.
by: Howard Deutsch