The digital transformation is upon us: a movement that is drastically reshaping the way organisations operate and how they deliver value to their customers. So what does this mean for organisations that still operate in a traditional manner? What kinds of hurdles will these organisations face and how can they adapt? Let’s take a look.
Coping with the shift
I think it’s fair to say that Digital is huge. Many organisations are focused on trying to digitise their offerings, whether that is on their platforms, within processes or just products themselves. Because digital is such a broad topic, it is important for organisations to clarify what exactly must be digitised, as this has a lot of influence on which steps they’ll need to take to move forward.
And until companies are able to break down their silos, they’re going to continue to struggle when trying to reap the full benefits of their digital insights. These insights still remain an exclusive possession of digital marketing and while these marketers are looking at content and other cross-related concerns, they continue to struggle to understand the full customer journey. For example, there are many marketers who simply don’t know what the targets and KPIs are in their contact centres.
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This is why the customer journey as a whole needs to be well understood in order for companies to really be able to build an effective model, which allows insights to be seen across the different departments.
The benefits of digital
Nearly 30 to 50% of contact delivered through traditional channels initially started its journey digitally, so essentially what we’re seeing is that this is a failed journey. If organisations can understand this process a little better, this may be a massive opportunity for them.
The digital transformation also gives customers a choice. Customers are increasingly starting their journey digitally, making it key for organisations to understand how important this is for their online services and offerings. If they fail to switch to more a digital way of working and keep up with their customers’ needs, they will continue to fail in terms of customer retention and loyalty.
Fostering customer loyalty
Many organisations focus on customer loyalty and use metrics such as Customer Satisfaction (CSAT), Customer Effort Score (CES) and Net Promoter Score (NPS). But what’s surprising is that many businesses simply do not know what the drop or rise in these figures represents or what it means for their organisation. In short, how will the change affect them. This is where I believe organisations will need to start.
When you start up a Customer Experience programme, the first step is to set goals. It’s critical to identify the behaviours that your organisation delivers and the processes and information you provide as well as realise how detrimental these factors can be to a customer’s ultimate behavior when it comes to spending or recommending your products/services to others.
The effect on customer feedback management
Traditional customer feedback management can be a very involved process. Ranging anywhere from emailing to surveys (not to mention, set up across different platforms), these methods often lack the actionable intelligence that is needed to enhance customer experience. However, once digital is added to the equation, opportunities like “in the moment” questions will present themselves, giving marketers real-time insights into the customer journey.
There are many organisations out there with traditional VoC programmes that have a primary concern of solving issues, but not necessarily understanding the root cause. This is pivotal to what comes next – designing processes that will change and hopefully lessen these issues.
If organisations are not familiar enough with their traditional customer journey, switching to a digital one is going to be a difficult process. Alternatively, organisations who have managed to attain this “holistic view” of the customer journey will reap the most benefits from the digital transformation.
Advice to companies entering the transition
Be bold and be brave. Organisations will need to embrace “going digital” with open arms. Odds are you’ll need to reteach yourself everything while also being prepared to fail. New insights will tell you a lot about aspects of your business that you’ve never considered before.
Rebuild. Organisations will need to start by completely getting rid of silos. The best way to do this is to have a stakeholder engagement team in place that can bring all departments together, enabling them to better benefit from these new digital insights.
Start small. Companies have the tendency to overcomplicate things, but in truth the best way to learn is to start ‘lean and mean’. What’s great about digital is that you can start small. For instance, you can measure how many visitors cannot find the information they are looking for on your website and identify the reasons behind this. When you’ve identified why this is happening, you can make improvements to your content and website, which can in turn reduce the amount of questions your agents receive about these same topics.
Voice of Customer trends for 2017
We see digital insights being shared more and more within organisations. Customer experience professionals have this ability to traverse between their digital, product design and logistics teams as well as their contact centres. In other words, by working in a more holistic hierarchy, these organisations are able to achieve a more holistic value from working with digital insights.
I expect we’ll also see more integrated feedback solutions that can deliver different types of insight at different levels within an organisation, as opposed to there being a myriad of programmes and people trying to spend all of their time trying to marry this data together.
Lastly, self-service seems to be a very up-and-coming feature among businesses. The last couple of years the focus was more geared towards data collection but we’re seeing that the need for customer analytics is increasing steadily. We anticipate that businesses will look for online VoC platforms that offer easy ways of analysing and reporting the data themselves.
About the author
Ashley Williamson, Bright UK Ltd.
Bright was founded in 2000. Since then over 1,000 contact centre reviews have been carried out and millions of clients’ customers have been surveyed. The Bright Suite analyses and benchmarks key performance indicators of contact centres in all sectors. Main areas covered are: Performance, Customer satisfaction and Employee engagement.
Client Manager at Bright UK Ltd, Ashley Williamson is specialised in the fields of Digital Experience, Customer Experience Management (CEM), Customer Loyalty, Customer Journey Mapping and Voice-of-the-Customer programs.