Connecting Employee Experience and Customer Experience

Research shows employee experience and customer experience are deeply intertwined. Here are 4 employee engagement surveys that can help you get ahead.


Jana Barrett

September 7, 2018

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Every company wants to improve its customer experience. But if you only examine your relationships with customers and fail to look under the hood, you might get nowhere. More and more, research suggests that employee experience (EX) and customer experience (CX) are intertwined, and in order to improve on one, you have to improve on the other.

In this post, we’ll examine the relationship between EX and CX and cover the basics of employee experience surveys.

The relationship between employees and customers

We know loyal customers drive business success, act as brand advocates, and positively affect your bottom line. But when customers have a bad experience, they can cancel services, leave a negative review, and prevent others from buying. As businesses wake up to the importance of customer experience, billions of dollars are being invested into technology to improve it.

What we don’t often know, or pay as close attention to, is the relationship between employee happiness and customer satisfaction. But the data speaks for itself. Companies that have a great customer experience have 1.5 times more engaged employees than companies with poor customer experience.

When employees are happy, customers are happy. And when customers are happy, employees are happy. It’s difficult to truly create a positive company culture and brand if you’re not looking out for the best interests of both.

How employee engagement and satisfaction impact end customers

Consider data from of the top industry leaders in employee experience: Starbucks. 87% of customers’ affinity toward Starbucks is because of the way the company treats its employees. Can you imagine how Starbucks would operate without that 87% of cusrtomers loving their brand?

Another example of a brand that loves their employees is Marriott International. According to Forbes, J.W. Marriott said, “Take care of associates and they’ll take care of your customers.” This philosophy is widely reflected in their business practices. Employees at Marriott are valued, well trained, publicly rewarded for doing a great job, and provided excellent benefits and cool perks.

How does this positive link between employee experience and customer experience shine through at Marriott? It’s consistently rated one of the top places to work as well as a top company for customer experience.

Employee happiness matters to customers. If companies aren’t closely monitoring employee engagement and satisfaction, they may be setting their customers up for negative experiences.

How to Measure Employee Experience

In the robust world of IoT and big data, taking a guess at employee or customer satisfaction levels is simply not an option. This is especially true if you run a large organization. You need to rely on real data from employees and customers.

Measuring employee experience starts with collecting employee feedback and measuring key EX metrics. Here are some examples of employee surveys.

Employee Engagement SurveysEmployee engagement tells you the extent to which employees feel involved and valued at work. You can ask about how valued or unappreciated they feel, how much meaning and purpose they find in their role, and how stressed out they are. Together, these factors will demonstrate how engaged or disengaged they are, and what’s causing it.

Employee Net Promoter Score® (ENPS) SurveysENPS is similar in idea to a customer NPS®. In a regular NPS survey, you would ask a customer how likely they are to recommend your product or services to a friend or family member. Designed for employees, ENPS asks how likely an employee is to recommend your company as a place to work. This can reveal whether or not an employee is committed and happy.

Employee Performance Review SurveysPerformance review surveys geared toward employees give you a chance to gather qualitative feedback about specific parts of your company. These surveys are typically longer and can include a self-assessment, an employee and team skills assessment, and more. You can use these surveys to refine your management training programs, identify specific team skills development, and plan for promotions.

Management Performance Review SurveysSometimes employee happiness hinges on a manager, but they’re unwilling or unable to report issues. By collecting feedback on your management team, you can circumvent that and give employees a chance to speak up. On the flip side, management surveys are a great way to spot all-star managers who are really empowering their teams.


Employees matter as much to your customers as they do to your company. Prioritizing their happiness is key if you want to create lasting, meaningful changes in your customer experience. When you engage, empower, and respect your employees, treating them as individuals and humans, not tools for profit, you’ll reap the benefits.

If you’re ready to put these strategies to work in your business, the first place to start is with a simple employee engagement survey. Try GetFeedback for free today.

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