In one of our recent blogs we considered whether digitalisation is really delivering value to customers.
As consumers we are becoming ever more demanding. Our time is more and more precious. Gone are the days where we will take a day’s leave to wait in for an appointment and if we do so, the expectation is that we will know when to expect the appointment to start so that we can organise the day’s activity productively.
In order to truly understand the cost of your customer experience it is essential that you identify the core expectations of your customers. Every operational process improvement should be scored against that customer experience. A simple way to do this is to quantify any operational resistance based on a probability / impact score.
Using technology to improve customer experience
The answer to the above question is that there are multiple new ways in which we must use digital technology to improve our experience. It is important that we now live our lives in a ‘should have’ scenario, not ‘must have’. Most technological improvements in our homes are designed to make life easier.
However, it is imperative to think carefully of the service your organisation currently provides and roadmap an experience strategy, both operationally and digitally.
There is no point investing now, expecting high technological advancement, if your organisation is not achieving the basics in service.
We would encourage you to start small and have a long-term vision with constant improvement to sell to your customers.
Re-writing service delivery
In my previous blog I set out a scenario of a service visit that I needed. I booked an early call for a low priority job because it gave me the smallest time window to have to wait in. I forgot the engineer was coming so my young daughter answered the door. I had not informed the engineer that space was tight (meaning the appointment was longer). I left the engineer alone whilst I took my daughter to school. All in all not an ideal service experience, but not an uncommon one!
Let's now consider some simple steps (both digital and operational) that could have helped my service scenario:
Appointment triggered reminders of the appointment
This would have ensured that I remembered when my service visit was taking place and if automatically triggered would also have avoided any additional contact centre effort in keeping me updated.
Time slots at a time which I found suitable
If the service appointment time slots had fitted my needs I could have made sure that I was available for the duration of the service visit. Time slots should consider common constraints where operationally feasible including school time, rush hour, office hours and so on.
An automated message to ask if my property had any access restrictions
The service desk could have triggered an automated message to understand any access restrictions for my property. For example due to gaining entry to the property, parking, any potential hazards on site such as dogs. They could have asked for information regarding my service location and sent links to online imagery of what is acceptable and relevant to my service visit.
Ability to track engineer locations
Using an app such as On My Way I would have been able to see if my engineer was close to my property. The app could have provided me with identification details so I know who I would be opening the door to. I could have seen on the day of the appointment, the order of my visit in relation to the engineer's other calls. This would have provided me with a more accurate understanding of when to expect the service visit and if necessary I could have re-arranged the visit quickly and easily.
A choice of engineer
Of course I wouldn't have been able to choose my field engineer but I could have requested an engineer that was happy to be left in the house by themselves, or perhaps have digitally signed a disclaimer or liability waiver before the appointment took place.
What to do next
Digital technologies can help significantly but only if the end-to-end service you provide is suitable for the modern lifestyle. Digitalisation of service is essential today, but does not need to cost a fortune. Small improvements can lead to big mutual gains for a service organisation and its customers.
Our Health Checks help service organisations identify and realise customer-focused improvements. All our consultants have real operational experience and our solutions such as On My Way, uBook and Leadent Analytics are developed in close collaboration with our key service industry customers.
To find out more, visit www.leadent.digital