Companies like Google and Facebook are known for their excessive pampering of their employees. People working at Google’s Mountain View office enjoy lunch from professional chefs, biweekly chair massages, yoga classes and haircuts. Employees at Twitter, Facebook and a host of other Silicon Valley companies too enjoy similar benefits. But according to one study, you don’t need to splurge on employees to make them happy. Benefits like health insurance, flexible hours, paid vacation time and work-from-home are sufficient to keep employees happy. But how exactly does this impact customer happiness?
The insane perks offered to employees at Google allow these workers to spend longer hours at their workplace. This, in turn, makes them more productive at an aggregate level. Productive employees cater to customer requirements a lot faster and this has a direct bearing on their satisfaction. For regular businesses that cannot offer Google-like perks, even simple benefits such as daycare for kids is likely to make more focused at work and this improves customer happiness.
When employees are well taken care of, they tend to be more empathetic to customer needs and wants. Studies have shown that employees understand the difference between ‘benefits’ and ‘salary’. While salary is often viewed as something that employees deserve, benefits are seen as something that employees must not take for granted. In essence, this makes them feel more fortunate and thus more attentive to the needs of customers. For instance, an employee who enjoys health insurance benefits from his employer is likely to be more empathetic to a customer who bargains.
Workplace benefits can also push employees towards taking more ownership at their job. Companies that offer benefits like free food and dorms tend to make employees feel literally at home. This helps increase their comfort levels at their workplace which, in turn, gets these employees to take more ownership. Taking ownership has a direct impact on customer happiness. Such employees tend not to deflect assignments and focus on problem resolution. This not only increases customer satisfaction, but is also helpful in building a loyal clientele.
Customers follow your salesperson
It is often said that customers do not buy from your business. Rather, they buy from the salesperson they trust. In other words, when a salesperson moves from your company to a rival firm, they are also likely to take their clients with them. Holding your sales workforce together is thus a critical component of keeping your customers happy. One of the tried and tested ways to keeping your sales team together is through benefits and perks. Employees who are habituated to all the comforts and perks at a workplace are very unlikely to switch jobs which is essential to keeping your customers with you in case of the sales staff. Not surprisingly then, one study found that over 57% of private employers offered benefits that were over and above the legally mandated ones. The objective here is to please your sales team who, in turn, keep your customers happy and loyal.