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In today’s digital world, customers and employees alike have heightened expectations regarding their experiences with brands.
As a result, organizations must find ways to stand out from the competition while streamlining processes and increasing efficiency.
With that in mind, many businesses choose to integrate customer experience and employee experience within their technology solutions.
Read on to learn more about how these two areas can work together for the better in your organization.
What is Customer Experience?
The customer experience (CX) is the total encounter that a customer has with your brand, including all touchpoints.
It is subjective and can vary greatly from person to person, depending on their past experiences, expectations, and needs.
It is not just about how your customers are treated but also how they can navigate your brand and its services.
CX is concerned with more than just the products your company provides; it is also about the experience of engaging with your employees and the overall customer journey.
A great customer experience can make a customer feel enthusiastic about your brand, whereas a poor experience can cause them to feel frustrated and even resentful towards your company.
CX has two major components: customer satisfaction and customer loyalty.
- Customer satisfaction refers to the customers’ perception of quality and the extent to which customers feel they have been treated well.
- Customer loyalty refers to the customers’ dedication to your brand.
What is Employee experience ?
Employee experience (EX) is the term used to describe the experience employees have while on the job.
Like customer experience, employee experience is a holistic term that encompasses many different areas.
It includes everything from the state of your office space to the technology your employees use and everything in between.
EX is not just about how employees are treated but also the effectiveness of your onboarding and training process and is concerned with more than just the salary and benefits your company provides.
EX has two major components: employee engagement and employee retention.
- Employee engagement refers to how engaged an employee is with the business. It can be determined by how happy, enthusiastic, and committed they are to the company.
- Employee retention refers to the rate at which employees stay with your company.
A few decades ago, the employee experience was viewed as a static process.
Technology was not nearly as prevalent, and most business processes were performed manually.
These days, with customers expecting ever-higher service levels, the expectations placed on employees have also increased.
Employee Experience and Customer Experience are Connected
According to Gartner Inc., a technology research firm, employees are often thought to be key drivers of customer experience, and there is a strong correlation between the two.
Gartner surveyed 2,200 consumers about their perceptions of how well their organizations deliver customer care.
They found that 72% of respondents agreed that employees are important in delivering a good customer experience.
In addition, 79% of those surveyed believed that employees are responsible for providing excellent customer service.
The survey also revealed that 74% of customers believe that employees are the most important factor influencing their overall satisfaction with a company.
This finding indicates that customer-facing employees play a critical part in driving sales.
Gartner found that 84% of customers say they are less likely to purchase products or services from a company whose employees do not provide excellent customer service.
And while it might seem obvious that customer experience drives revenue, Gartner discovered that only 41% of companies track the relationship between employee experience and customer perception.
Which Technologies Bring Together Customer Experience And Employee Experience?
Digital transformation is an ongoing process for companies to stay relevant and remain competitive in today’s marketplace.
How you leverage digital experiences to meet the needs of your customers and employees will determine whether you lead or lag behind your competition.
To get your company on track, you can focus on five key technologies: Mixed Reality, Artificial Intelligence, Natural Language Processing, Computer Vision, and Virtual Agents.
These technologies continue to advance at a rapid pace, which makes them the perfect tools to help you make your customer and employee experience even better.
Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality
Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality (MR and VR) are live, computer-generated artificial realities.
They can transform customer and employee experiences by enabling users to interact with virtual objects in their physical surroundings.
These technologies can transform the workplace by enabling communication, training, collaboration, and design review in ways that aren’t possible with the traditional desktop-based tools.
They enable employees to reach new levels of productivity by freeing them from the confines of their physical location while providing them with a seamless and easy-to-use experience.
They can also enhance customer experiences with products and services.
For example, an eCommerce company could use MR to allow customers to view 3D models of products to get a better sense of size, color, and fit. VR can also create an immersive experience for customers by transporting them to a virtual world such as a sports stadium or concert venue.
Artificial Intelligence is a subset of computer science.
It allows machines to process information, identify patterns, and make decisions using logic, rules, and sound judgment.
It’s been around for decades, but its popularity has skyrocketed recently due to breakthroughs in machine learning and the creation of neural networks.
AI is one of the fastest-growing segments within the technology sector and is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years.
It’s available in various applications like customer service, sales, marketing, and HR.
It allows organizations to save time, money, and effort by leveraging AI to identify customer pain points, predict purchasing behavior, select the right content, and even write marketing content.
You probably should be if you’re not already using AI in one or more of your business operations.
This technology can drive big benefits like increased revenue, reduced costs, and increased customer satisfaction.
Natural Language Processing
Natural Language Processing (NLP) is the process of enabling computers to understand human language.
It helps computers process information like humans, making them more useful daily.
For example, NLP can categorize and understand the information in text-based customer service tickets, allowing for more accurate diagnoses and resolutions.
It can help reduce the number of tickets engineers need to handle, freeing them up to solve more complex problems.
NLP can also help organizations better understand customer sentiment.
Sentiment analysis can help organizations better understand customer sentiment by determining whether customer comments are positive, negative, or neutral and responding accordingly.
You can also use NLP to generate content automatically based on a specific topic.
It is a great way to save time and effort when creating content simultaneously.
Computer Vision is the ability of a computer to analyze digital images and identify patterns, objects, and other visual content.
Image recognition often identifies people, places, products, or other objects of interest.
Computer vision can also segment an image into different parts, such as identifying the sky, buildings, and trees or establishing whether a car is parked in a parking space.
Using computer vision, retailers can identify product inventory, monitor store location, and identify customer behavior, such as where customers are in a store, how often they visit, and what products they favor the most.
It can also identify items, such as food, raw materials, and finished goods, and ensure their quality and authenticity.
Virtual Agents are computer programs designed to simulate human conversation with customers and employees.
They’re a common digital tool used in customer service as an alternative to phone-based support.
They’re also used to automate tedious and repetitive tasks, such as reordering office supplies or handling simple customer service requests, thus freeing employees to focus on more complex tasks.
Virtual Agents can also be programmed to interact with customers in various ways.
They can use natural language processing to understand customer questions and respond accordingly. They can also use computer vision to identify items in photos and provide information or assistance based on their observations.
The more you can automate routine tasks and provide personalized service, the more time and energy you can dedicate to innovating new ways to create a better experience that keeps your company relevant and competitive.
By keeping these technologies top of mind, you can make sure you’re spending time and money wisely on the technologies that will have the biggest impact on your company.
How To Improve The Employee Experience With Technology?
Employee Journeys are essential to success in today’s competitive marketplace.
In fact, according to Gallup, companies with engaged employees outperform those without by nearly 40%. But what does it take to engage your workforce? How do you measure employee satisfaction? What are some ways to improve employee morale? And most importantly, how can you use technology to make sure your employees feel appreciated and heard?
In his book, Engaged: How To Make Work Worthwhile, Meaningful and Fun, author David Allen shares stories about people he met while working on projects worldwide.
He discovered three key components to creating a positive employee experience. These include:
- Make sure your employees understand why they exist.
- Giving them opportunities to contribute meaningfully.
- Providing them with tools to succeed.
Technology can play a big role in helping you achieve each of these goals, especially when you have a remote or hybrid workforce.
In summary, technology can help you create an engaging workplace that will have a lasting impact on your business.
The following ideas will help you to create and maintain the entire employee experience positive while improving the way they interact with each other and customers:
- Make it easy for anyone in the company (not just the IT department) to use and learn how to use it quickly.
The system should be intuitive so that anyone can figure out how to use it without having a lot of training or help from IT specialists.
- Make security a priority.
Protecting sensitive data is critical in any company, especially when dealing with sensitive information about your customers or employees (such as medical records).
- Keep up with trends.
The technology world is constantly changing. Any time you implement a new system, you should keep an eye on the latest trends in technology and make sure your new solution will be able to adapt to those trends as they change.
- Don’t assume that because it’s “free,” it’s good enough.
Many companies offer free services that are good enough for smaller companies but not good enough for larger ones (such as Microsoft Exchange). When planning your systems, you should always get quotes from at least two vendors before comparing apples to apples rather than apples to oranges.
- Ensure it works with your company’s other systems/apps/devices.
It is particularly important if your company uses multiple apps and devices like smartphones, tablets, and computers running different operating systems like Windows and Mac OS X (or even Linux). The last thing you want is for employees to learn how to use multiple interfaces within the same app just because some run on one operating system. In contrast, others run on another operating system–you want everyone using all of them to use the same interface.
- Give everyone access to the same data.
If your company uses multiple apps and devices, ensure they all access the same central data store so that everyone can access the same information regardless of what device they use (or even where they are located). – It makes it easier, and it saves time for people to work together on projects because they can all see the same information simultaneously and discuss it.
Challenges In implementing Employee Experience Technology
We should design technology to support, not replace, human interaction. Employees want to interact with each another, not just with machines. They want to talk about what’s happening around them, work together, and solve problems. And they don’t like it when they are forced into isolation.
Employees want to connect with colleagues, not just use technology. They want to see how others are doing, ask questions, learn from one another, and find solutions. But they don’t always know where to go to do this. Instead, they often resort to emailing, texting, or calling. This leads to silos of information and communication that make collaboration difficult.
Use technology to create an environment that allows employees to communicate and collaborate without being isolated freely. Provide opportunities for people to engage with each other, whether it’s via video conferencing, social media, or even face-to-face meetings.
This way, you’ll encourage people to share ideas and opinions and help them realize that there are no stupid questions. You’ll also give them the confidence to speak up and contribute to projects.
As technology continues to evolve and become more ubiquitous, businesses need to understand how they can leverage it to bring together customer experience and employee experience.
Today’s CX and EX must go above and beyond the standard day-to-day.
To keep up with the rapid pace of innovation, they need to find new ways to optimize performance in their organization while simultaneously delighting customers and employees.
And while many people view these two roles as at odds, they create a dynamic and holistic approach to optimizing your organization that can deliver a tremendous ROI by reducing operational costs, increasing efficiency, and engaging your most valuable assets: customers and employees.
Customer experience and employee experience professionals must now overlap to build stronger company cultures, increase employee retention rates, improve operational efficiencies, and drive measurable results for your business.