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Key considerations for people central to customer experience transformation

By 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. The increased focus on customer experience is naturally bringing marketing-specific technologies to the fore. Businesses can’t deliver a good customer experience, let alone an outstanding one, without the right technologies in place.

Key considerations for people central to customer experience transformation #cxreimagine

At the same time, it would be naïve to think that organisations can simply throw technology at the challenge and expect a result. Successful transformation of the customer experience depends on having the right people at the centre of the project.

Blurred lines

The lines of responsibility in organisations are getting blurrier all the time. Marketing executives are increasingly taking responsibility for choosing and implementing technology while IT leaders are tasked with experience design, for example. This blurring of the lines means that people need to learn to work in new ways and make sure they don’t lose sight of what’s most important: the customer.

Unfortunately, in many organisations, there is a disconnect between the CMO and the CIO when in fact these are two of the people central to making a customer experience transformation happen. Each of these leaders must be able to talk with equal emphasis on technology and marketing, understanding how the two influence each other.

Creating the right team

Doing this effectively requires businesses to delegate a specific transformation team and build a structure around that. This should include a team of specialists including experience designers, strategists, data analysts and marketing technologists who understand how it all works together. They should speak the same language and work from a shared vision. The key is finding the right blend of strategy, design and technology skillsets within your team.

The customer must have a clear voice at this level. Usually, the voice of the customer is treated almost as an afterthought at which point it’s very difficult for the customer to truly affect any of the transformation activities. However, some organisations have come to understand the crucial importance of hearing the voice of the customer upfront.

Using the customer experience to put the customer first

The key to a successful transformation is to understand how the business can use the customer experience to put the customer first. This should be the ultimate guide for where the organisation is going in terms of its value proposition.

Using technology to transform a process might look good from the company’s perspective; it might save money or streamline backend processes, for example. However, if the customer doesn’t like the new process, can’t understand it, or doesn’t respond well to it, then that part of the transformation is likely to fail. People involved in a transformation need to make sure they’re not blinded by their own knowledge and experience but, instead, get honest input from the people who will be most affected by the change.

When customers feel like they’ve been heard and that the business is genuinely putting them first, they can often turn into active influencers. This is where customers become most valuable, almost doing the marketing team’s work for them.

Engaging employees is essential

It’s also important not to forget the essential role of the employee experience in a successful customer experience transformation. Empowered, engaged employees will deliver a better level of service than those who feel disenfranchised or ignored. Therefore, people managing a customer experience transformation should carefully consider how employees are affected and how they can contribute to a better set of systems and processes. Bringing employees on board early will improve the chances of transformation success.

The bottom line is to remember that, although technology may be essential to the transformation strategy, no transformation can be achieved without the full engagement of all the people involved.

 

This blog is part of the #cxreimagine series. For more experts' insights, clients' experiences and to download the whitepaper, click the banner.

For more experts' insights, clients' experience and to download the whitepaper, click the banner #cxreimagine

Posted by: Kevin Miller, Head of Digital & Experience Design | 04 March 2019

Tags: Digital Transformation, customer experience, #CXreimagine


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