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Restaurants with the most engaged employees experience exponentially righer customer satisfaction ratings, according to research from management consulting firm DecisionWise.
While working with U.S. restaurant chains to measure and improve levels of company-wide employee engagement, DecisionWise quantified the impact on guest perceptions. Over a one-year period, restaurants ranking in the top 10 percent for levels of employee engagement experienced nearly a 300-percent increase in guest satisfaction ratings. Conversely, locations with employee engagement scores in the bottom 10 percent or lower experienced stagnant customer satisfaction ratings.
Further findings show that the locations that experienced the greatest gains in employee engagement had nearly a 400-percent growth in customer satisfaction scores.
A strongly correlated relationship between customer satisfaction and employee engagement directly relates to the profitability and long-term viability of a customer-centric company, according to Dr. Paul Warner, DecisionWise director of Consulting Services, who led the research on this project.
"The current restaurant environment is a competitive playing field where winning the hearts and minds of customers is the key indicator of success. Because so many employees in these types of companies have direct contact with customers, an engaged workforce is critical to creating a strong customer base and increasing market share. It is not surprising that those restaurants with the most engaged staff members also have created a better experience for their guests," Warner said.
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