You may be working on customer experience, and gathering valuable customer insight as part of your daily operations and from multiple sources. But the real question is how do you continue with these insights? How effectively are you acting on it? Working customer-centric leads to great ideas for optimising your customer experience, but it takes a company with a high level of CX maturity across all departments to manage them from idea to implementation, and measure their success.
At Essense we see this challenge a lot. Our experience shows that what separates the good organisations from the truly great is the implementation of customer-centric service improvements in an organised and strategic way of working.
what do we mean when we say way of working?
Working customer-centric at an organisational level means having three ingredients: a customer experience mindset, the tools to work customer-centric and a clear framework for decision-making based on a customer journey perspective and strategy. These three things, managed and implemented with care and rigour, helps to ensure a consistent approach to customer experience across departments and throughout your business. Here’s what we mean when we talk about three ingredients:
Is everybody across the business aligned and on-board with the need to think and act customer-centric and aware of how this benefits the business? By making sure that everyone is up to speed on this and understands both the reasons and the role they can play in working customer-centric, then you’re off to a good start.
There is not one right way to do this, as it requires a shift in culture and mindset. It’s important to reflect on how you are working as a business, understand what you can change or improve to work more customer-centric, and then be bold enough to try it. It’s important to understand how to reinvent yourself and then have the attitude, adaptability, and mandate to be able to do this. By doing this, you create an organisation that is flexible and adaptable for the future.
CX tools & procedures
Next up is all about the doing. Do your teams have the tools and procedures in place to practice continuous improvement of your product and services from a journey perspective? Things that can help get this in place are having the tools required to measure CX in a structured way and understanding what is working well and what can be improved. Also important are the procedures in place to prioritise and roadmap positive changes to CX. And finally, equally, if not most important, is the mandate and space to experiment with testing and measuring small improvements to the customer experience to see what works in a safe and low-risk way.
Last, but definitely not least, it is vital to have a comprehensive understanding of your business from a Journey Perspective, instead of (only) an operation perspective. This involves the creation and embedding of a journey framework and hierarchy that is clear, understood and embedded across the business and its departments. This might involve the shifting of ownership from product ownership to journey ownership and the introduction of journey management tooling to support this overview (we are very fond of TheyDo for this type of work). By seeing your business as a set of linked customer journeys rather than discrete verticals, you are well-placed to begin taking decisions from a customer-centric perspective and your decisions are more likely to track back to your strategy.
how can I begin to organise a more customer-centric way of working?
The decision to work in this way needs to be made at the highest levels, but managing, coaching, and embedding the change needs to come at all levels. The challenge with working customer-centric is it tends to involve structured collaboration and an optimistic mindset, something that is notoriously tricky to balance during managed change. However, with a clear process, coaching, and guidance many things are possible. With the conscious decision to implement a customer-centric mindset and associated ways of working, you are taking steps to outpace the competition.
what benefits will I get?
Some of the most successful companies in the world are those that bake CX into every decision they make. And as a guiding method, it is proved to lead to more satisfied customers. From here it’s over to you and remember CX Design is a strategy, not just a capability.
Kickstarting and adopting this way of working might seem like a challenging task. To support you in this as much as possible, we regularly organise webinars and events in which we help both beginners and experts to take the next step in customer-oriented working. Sign up directly below for our events update. We will then keep you informed on upcoming webinars and events. Would you rather contact one of our experts directly? Click here to get in touch with us.