Should superb service quality be the driver of customer satisfaction, internally, internal marketing contributes significantly to the quality of that greatness by means of employee satisfaction. Undoubtedly, in a kind of ripple effect, internal marketing may motivate the success of any organization to the extent of achieving a large pond of satisfied customers.
The core perspective of internal marketing is toward the necessity of employees in getting along well with customers. The focus of internal marketing is to motivate employees and achieve their satisfaction. By its nature, internal marketing has the interrelations of satisfied employees’ performance and engagement, organizational competencies, and customer satisfaction that address business results.
What is internal marketing? Although it was first mentioned almost five decades ago as a crucial construct for high and consistent service quality, there is confusion regarding the proper design, implementation, and upholding of its benefits.
In the nutshell of understanding, internal marketing correlates with the performing of available internal products (jobs/ tasks/ projects, daily activities, etc.) in the way that satisfies the needs of a vital internal market (employees) by which organizational objectives will be performed (Berry, et al., 1976, 8). Employees are customers who are inside the companies. Such, we can think of internal marketing like employees as internal customers – jobs/ tasks/ projects … as internal products. And, the big assignment for organizations is to satisfy their needs and expectations through intensive and suitable practices. For example, rational HRM interventions, practices, and policies that match individual goals and organizational ones. Instead of thinking of employees as the labor, the internal marketing concept revises the approach: those who buy products/services in the role of customers and those buying jobs in the role of employees are the same people. Therefore, the exchange relationship between employers and employees is no less real than that kind of relationship between customers and companies.
There is the intersection of two concepts: marketing and human resource management in allying theories, techniques, and principles to motivate, cooperate and manage employees at all levels. This results in continuous improvements in how they produce tasks and serve external stakeholders and each other (Joseph, 1996, 55). As the enthronement of internal employees’ roles in business success and aggressive changes of the business environment, internal marketing is much more to satisfy cognitive demands of employees; but creating emotional connections for long-term engagement. Modern thoughts define internal marketing as the promotion of visions and missions, goals, and cultures, and so on by organizations to 𝗲𝗮𝗿𝗻 𝗲𝗺𝗽𝗹𝗼𝘆𝗲𝗲𝘀’ 𝗲𝗻𝘁𝗵𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗮𝘀𝗺 and engagement with brand names of companies.
Internal Marketing – the enabler of employee engagement & driver of business success
Internal marketing promotes internal products to satisfy internal customers and contributes to ‘ strong growth and prosperity. Internal marketing is one of the enablers of employee engagement. In that concept, internal customers are putting in the central of being listened, or employees’ voice; integrity, or reflecting values and day-to-day behaviors of employees on performing tasks or working behaviors; enabling employees’ autonomy, or employee empowerment; and being communicated intensively with accurate updates and shared visions. This enabler framework is different from organization culture and management/ leadership style at companies. Participative leaders tend to share updated information, and offer narratives responding to the curiosity of employees, such as ‘where is the firm be?’, ‘where our organization will be going?’, and so on.
With the suitable promotion of internal products to satisfy internal customers, organizations enhance the power of their internal force. A satisfied workforce with emotional connections tends to stay longer with higher engagement levels toward the jobs and organizational outcomes. They contribute to the growth and prosperity of organizations by their guarantee of high-quality service provision to customers.
Berry, L. L. (1981). The employee as a customer. Journal of Retail Banking, 3(1), 33-40
Berry, L. L., Hensel, J. S. and Burke, M. C. (1976). Improving retailer capability for effective consumerism response. Journal of Retailing, 52(3), 3-14
Joseph, W. B. (1996). Internal marketing builds service quality. Journal of Health Care Marketing, 16(1), 54-59.