Manage the entire customer experience
In our experience and working with many customers on developing their customer journeys, we’ve found that there are big rewards in being able to skillfully manage the entire customer experience.
Customer satisfaction is improved, customer (and employee) churn is reduced and customer loyalty is increased leading to increased revenue and greater employee satisfaction for those who support and enable the customer experience.
As we wrote in a previous blog it isn't enough to just focus on customer touchpoints. Just looking at individual transactions can be useful but make it hard for you to identify where to direct your overall improvement efforts. Focusing too much on your customer data and customer satisfaction KPIs can give part of the story but also mask the bigger strategic picture.
Consider the multi-channel experience
It is often not an individual experience that can frustrate or delight a customer. Most customers realise that companies can have good or bad days and individuals deliver good or bad or indifferent service. Rather than focusing on any one phone call, field visit, or other service interaction a customer is often judging your business on cumulative experiences across multiple touchpoints over a period of time. When you factor in the range of channels they will also be using, it demonstrates just how seamless your multi-channel experience needs to be.
What makes this hard to resolve is that service delivery tends to be siloed. Internally focused cultures flourish inside the different teams, groups and structures in your business. Processes reflect the needs of particular teams and systems and tools mirror the needs of those who design and deliver service.
All of these groups shape the way in which your company interacts with customers.
How to improve
To improve, you need to embed customer journeys into your operating models in an enduring and sustained manner. You need to identify the journeys in which you need to excel. You need customer evidence and a deep customer understanding to critically evaluate how you are performing in each. Once you have identified improvement areas and initiatives you need to work hard to build cross-functional processes thatredesign and support those journeys. You will also need cultural change and continuous improvement to sustain the initiatives.
A customer experience programme is a living thing. It is either developing and growing, productive or in decline. Momentum is fundamental to the programme and realising the desired change.
We've seen all too many examples of customer experience programmes being touted by an executive team as the 'next big thing' only for them to flounder when that support is withdrawn or when the business leadership team focuses on something else.
Sustain the focus
You might need to use a transformation programme to gain momentum but work to embed customer experience in your organisational DNA so that it is an integral and enduring part of how you do business. Customer needs will constantly evolve and your response to them will need to also.
If you are looking to transform your overall customer experience you will need to create a detailed road map for each journey and work to deliver the programmes, projects or initiatives that will make the difference.
Your ability to deliver a road map of enduring customer experience improvements will depend on many factors ? the way you have structured your programme, the benefits case, the sponsorship and engagement you have in place and the alignment of the programme with the priorities of your business.
Don't be a victim of short term priorities to get quick wins at the expense of more enduring change and transformation. Construct a road map that delivers short term rapid improvements but in the medium term is self-funding (and should be sustained) and in the longer term delivers against value drivers that are important to both your customers and your business.
How we can help
Leadent Digital helps organisations to achieve transformational change. We love developing apps that transform customer experience and help you deliver a more frictionless service experience across all of your contact points and channels. Why not get in touch to tell us more about your current CX priorities?