How many times do we experience a product or a service - where the user experience, falls short of promise?
Often - sometimes - rarely?
And how many times does the customer experience go far beyond our expectations? Rarely, sometimes -varies ?
While the answer varies from sector & organisations, what is clear is that organisations in the forefront lead on delivering customer experience consistently in line with the sales & brand promise, and thereby enjoy many important benefits. They become preferred suppliers and boost customer loyalty/retention. They drive one-call/contact resolution in their contact centres and streamlining their prospect-supply- service chains. They are seeing early warning signs of issues, so they can improve products & change operational strategies and quicker redressals, often on the fly. But most of all, they are seeing how customers may have received an inconsistent experience in the past and understanding how changes in operations, process, empowerment, metrics, culture, and technology can rapidly turn red flags into revenue and profitability gains.
Delivering a superior customer experience consistently, requires tremendous operating rigor entailing integrating org structure, operations, people, processes and technology with product fulfilment & service channels, into a well-oiled smooth operation orchestrated around the customer - with a no siloes approach/metrics, which not just delivers a good customer experience consistently, but simultaneously welcomes, solicits customer feedback/complaints, and leverages the same to continuously drive product, process improvements & innovation.
Organisations including our newly minted digital avatars need to not just measure customer satisfaction but actively solicit feedback as a strategic & operational imperative - to enable continuous improvement cycle of customer experience (CX). Recognition of this feedback led improvement cycle, to be as important as sales or bottom line performance - is critical today- but so much ignored. While sales/profits indicate, what has already been done in the last year/quarter (i.e. is a lag indicator), customer satisfaction measures & scores can be an important lead indicator of future (i.e. if customers are satisfied – there is high probability that sales will be good in future. Below par satisfaction measures if measured objectively (critical to ensure by inter alia, running independent mystery shopping programs) and tapped on a real time basis, can also be an opportunity for management to intervene, before things get worse and sales deteriorate).
We’re often amazed to see how few organisations actually do customer journey mapping and/or objectively measure & map customer satisfaction? The number of organisations whose websites carry wrong phone numbers /email addresses for customers to call - also seems be ubiquitous. And while they do bench mark themselves (with peers), on traditional metrics like revenues, sales & market share, profitability, shouldn’t they first map the customer journeys’ & measure, benchmark customer / user experience(CX) delivered - and on an end to end basis, as seen from the customer’s eyes?
Your thoughts? do share/let us know…