I'm sure we will all agree that customer service can be the linchpin to success or failure for any business. So, just a quick thought, is your customer service department performing to their true potential to retain key clients and maintain income, the lifeblood of your organisation? This article will help you understand what employee engagement looks like within your customer service department and how it can be improved to help increase team performance and company profit!

Employee engagement

Engagement looks at how absorbed employees are in their work, how much attention they pay to their work, how much energy they put into their work and how confident they are in their ability to do their work.

Higher levels of engagement have been linked to higher performance, higher levels of extra role performance as well as increased productivity, efficiency and motivation. So, why wouldn’t organisations want to measure and improve engagement?

The four elements of engagement

1. Absorption - High levels of absorption means that employees feel wrapped up in their work. They tend to forget about those around them, are not easily distracted, and often lose track of time.

2. Attention - Those who have high levels of attention spend a lot of time thinking, concentrating and focusing on their work.

3. Energy - Those with high levels of energy will puts lots of effort into the work that they do.

4. Confidence - Those who are highly confident will feel certain in their ability to carry out their job.

All of these elements would be desirable for any organisation. In addition to these, there are a whole host of benefits associated with highly engaged employees.

The business benefits of high engagement

· Higher productivity: The most engaged organisations can outperform the least engaged by 21% in terms of productivity ( Harter, Schmidt, Kilham & Agrawal ,2009)

· Lower turnover: Organisations with highly engaged employees can reduce turnover by 87% and disengaged employees are four times more likely to leave (The Corporate Leadership Council, 2008).

· Lower absence: Highly engaged employees have around 43% fewer days off work due to illness (Watson Wyatt study, 2009).

· Better understanding of customer needs: 70% of engaged employees have a good understanding customer needs compared to only 17% in disengaged employees (CIPD, 2006).

· Improved financial performance: financial performance can be up to four times higher in organisations with highly engaged employees (Watson Wyatt study, 2009).

· Improved employee performance: employees who are highly engaged are more than twice as likely to exceed performance expectations (Watson Wyatt study, 2009).

Article by Daniel Keenan of Prismatic Thinking.

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