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Is the voice of the employee being listened to?

26th Jul 2016
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There is an increasing trend in retail to ask for feedback at point of sale, in many cases we will be asked for our email address as part of the sales transaction. There could also be a web link on the receipt, circled by the checkout staff, with a request for us to visit and respond. We are also invited to press buttons at airports and other transport hubs inviting us to tell them how we feel. However I’m sure the customer facing teams have a pretty good idea about how we feel, but is anyone asking them?

In preparation for this article I did a few searches to see what else was out there discussing this topic. So far I've found nothing, it’s probably me not searching in the right places so maybe there is a lot but it seems quite hidden, please let me know and I'm sure and I hope that any readers of this post will assist in guiding me in the right direction on this topic.

All businesses want to capture the experiences and emotional response to the interaction we as customers have had with them. There is however a source of knowledge that appears largely ignored by many businesses today especially by the marketing teams who probably need this more than most. The people that touch the customer every day, who interact and feel the pain and pleasure of the customers are the front line staff, sales assistants, call centre agents, sales reps, airport cleaners, check-in and airline staff, railway staff, bus drivers and so on. They all feel the mood of the people, hear the comments and get the complaints or compliments from the people using the products and or services. In getting this feedback they have an understanding of what can be done to improve, modify or even stop specific features, services, etc.

However in everyday business how many of these people are even asked or listened too or allowed to comment. There is a wealth of knowledge hidden within these resources, which when harvested will augment and triangulate the information from social sources and surveys. It’s true you probably won’t get personal details and it will contain opinion as well as fact but you get that from surveys and social anyway. What you will get are first hand anecdotal feedback, trends, general sentiment and the customer’s mood and you will be able to gauge how the staff are feeling.
If the management and marketing teams were to mine this rich seam of data they would find a wealth of knowledge, insights and experience. This would in turn motivate the staff to build a dialogue with the management and marketing teams on how to improve and innovate.


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