Executing a CEM Strategy
by Susan Hash
Most companies agree that ensuring a consistent, high-quality customer experience
is essential for building loyalty and growing revenue. In fact, last year,
two out of three organizations worldwide said that customer experience management
(CEM) was important to their business, according to research by global
enterprise feedback management firm Vovici and CGA, a UK-based customer
experience consultancy, in their Customer Experience IQ Report.
Yet the findings also revealed a significant disconnect between strategy formulation
and implementation. While almost 75% of respondents said that they have a CEM/VOC
(voice of the customer) strategy, less than half have formal programs
and compensation systems in place to implement the strategy. What are some of the
key factors for successfully executing a CEM strategy?
Measure the Customer Experience
Many organizations are not measuring the customer experience against any metrics,
according to the Vovici study. Of those that do, some rely on a standard CEM
measure, such as Net Promoter Score, the Apostle Model, Customer Heartbeat,
ACSI or other standard metrics, while a quarter said that they were using homegrown
measures rather than existing measurements.
Jeffrey Henning, Vovici's founder and VP of strategy, points to two
measures that have generated increased interest among contact center organizations:
1) Forrester's CxPi, which is derived from consumer evaluations across
three areas: usefulness, ease of use and enjoyability; and 2) a Customer
Effort Score (CES), developed by the Corporate Executive Board's
Customer Contact Council, which is based on a single question to determine the
amount of personal effort that a customer must put into the service experience.
Leverage Data in the Contact Center
Even the most effective measures will not impact the company's ability to deliver
an exceptional experience if the feedback cannot be translated into improvements
at the point of contact. Leading-edge organizations regularly analyze behavioral
data for frontline performance issues that impact the customer experience. For instance,
if a manager identifies reps who have a higher call transfer rate than their peers,
it may be an indication that they are having difficulty taking control of their
calls. Another KPI to look at is first-call resolution, which is considered
to be critical to high-quality interactions. For FCR issues, managers may
look at three indicators:
1. Training. Does the rep have the proper training to service the call?
2. Technology. Does the rep have access to perform the transaction functionally
for the caller?
3. Call routing. Does the contact center have the appropriate skills-based
routing in place to get the calls to the right rep who is best prepared to handle
Enterprisewide Execution Requires a Dedicated Leader
One challenge in implementing a CEM strategy is that the customer experience touches
and crosses so many different parts of an organization. Since each department has
its own performance objectives, aligning a common focus across the various groups
requires an executive-level leader to drive the vision.
Three-quarters of the respondents in the Vovici study said that they did not
have a leader who was responsible for customer experience or a chief customer officer,
which may be one reason why so many organizations are finding it difficult to execute
a CEM strategy, Henning says.
“There are a lot of challenges associated with silos in organizations,”
he adds. “Every department tends to do what's best for the department
rather than what's best for the customer overall. That's where you need
a leader who can stand above it all.”
Inside View — Access Development
by Susan Hash
How do you handle remarkable business growth while maintaining a culture that emphasizes
work/life balance for your staff? For affinity marketing firm Access Development,
“doing more with less” was not an option, nor was outsourcing customer
calls. The company's rapid growth was felt strongly in the contact center where
call volume doubled in the course of a couple of months. Ramping up the center to
handle the increase required additional staff—the problem was, there was
no place to put them. The company found that an at-home agent program offered
the opportunity to attract higher-quality applicants, draw from a larger
labor pool and expand scheduling flexibility while lowering the center's overhead
costs. The overall results have been so positive that other parts of the company
are now following the contact center's lead.
Read the full story here.