I am sure that you find a big challenge in the subject of Customers Experience is getting all parts of an organization to work together. A lack of coordination between departments is normally a one of the many causes of a poor experience and causes gaps / overlaps appear.
As I reflect back to my 25 years working in blue chip companies the reality is people are naturally very focused on their own department, overcoming their challenges, and working to achieve their targets. But who looks at the overall experience of the Customer?
It is vital for any organization trying to improve their overall experience look across the whole Customer journey either by appointing a person, a team or establish a mechanism where this review can take place. Without this the experience will be uncoordinated and will incur additional costs. For example one of our Utility clients was trying to improve their Customer Experience. We discovered their call centre was very focused on speed in which they dealt with the Customer, getting them on and off the phone as fast as possible to meet their targets.
Upon researching the Customer Experience the fact that this was the root cause of an overall poor experience was noticed but was not their concern.
The Customer was contacting the call centre and reporting a fault. The agent took the information and past this to the engineers to visit the Customer. On too many occasions the Engineers arrived with little information and did not have the right tools, as the fault was not investigated thoroughly by the Call centre. This meant the Engineer needed to revisit. The Customer was upset as they needed to take more time off work to be at home for their visit.
The economic are simple. A call into the call centre is £ 3 ($ 5) an engineer’s visit £ 150 ($ 225). Thus by increasing the diagnosis by the Call centre saved a repeat visit by the Engineer. The Customer was happy as it is was completed the first time and the company saved money.
This is the type of cross department challenging issues that needs to be identified and solved.
In our experience a Customer Experience program is best achieved when an organizations establishes a regular Customer Experience Council. The purpose of this meeting is to bring together key people within the entire Customer journey to help improve the Customer Experience.
The objective of a Customer Experience Council is to:
+ Bring together all departments who impact the Customer Experience
+ Work as a team to improve the end to end Customer Experience
+ Ensure everyone understand the inter-dependencies between departments and the effect on the customers experience
+ Identify gaps and overlaps
+ Ensure everyone is creating the desired experience.
+ Review Customer data and measures making decisions to improve the experience
+ Prioritize activity
Who should attend?
Any part of the organization that affects the Customer, including outsourced suppliers.
In terms of personnel, this should be attended by people senior enough to make decisions and stick by them. They need to be able to understand the issues and understand the implications of any decisions being made.
What type of issues should be discussed?
+ Understand and record the end to end journey of a Customer not the organizations process
+ How the organization are performing against their Customer measures.
+ What can be done to improve the Customer Experience
+ How the individual departments are performing against their Customer measures
+ Deciding on initiatives to improve the Customer Experience
+ Prioritizing activity
What is best practice?
1. Actions from last meeting
2. Results of overall Customer satisfaction measures
3. Reports from the various departments on their Customer Satisfaction measures and what they are doing to improve the Customer Experience
4. Ensuring best practices are being cross fertilized
5. Review of current initiatives/programs
6. Review Customer measures
7. Prioritization and planning of future initiatives
8. Review of any Customer research taken place
By stabilizing this process people start to see the whole Customer journey and realize the impact they are having on the overall experience of the Customer. Through the right measurement, overlaps and gaps can be identified and opportunities to improve the experience can be worked on. Finally it is a signal to the rest of the organization that the Customer Experience is important.
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