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Take the test: How mature is your company when it comes to creating positive customer experiences?

Author - Anders Hansen Warming. Executive Officer

The customer insight area has enormous potential and, when tapped in a professional manner, can provide critical insights to put you ahead of the competition. Take the test and discover how mature your company is when it comes to having the tools needed to deliver positive customer experiences. Are you a Rookie with room for improvement, a Talent well on your way, or can you keep up the good work as a Customer Insight Champion?

To act professionally towards your customers, you need to have a broad and deep understanding of who your customers are. That means, through carefully thought-out customer insights, being in a position to understand the customer's daily activities and situation and how they interact with the company.

With a professional approach to your customer insights and, not least, to your work with them, you will have the best possible basis for becoming a high-level customer-oriented company. Where is the work with customer insight on your agenda? Are you complete beginners, are you well on your way, or are you Customer Insight Champions?

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Not until you know your CX maturity will you know where and how big your potential for improvement is. Once you know that, you can get the most out of your customer strategy, meaning you're one step ahead when it comes to meeting market needs and demands. In the end, that ensures long-term earning power.

There are many different ways to assess a company's CX maturity and – granted – it's a bit simplistic merely to take a test and make a diagnosis on that basis. But the reason it makes sense is that it forces you to think about some relevant areas that are critical to professionalizing the work of delivering at a high level for your customers.

Our approach is to examine four key areas that are of critical importance to your degree of customer orientation.


1st Dimension: Customer strategy and customer-centric leadership
Have you formulated a customer strategy? And have you translated it into operational instructions for employees’ actions, conduct etc.? Is the top management on board? And do you have a customer-centric management where you actively use the customer and the customer's voice to make improvements on all levels of the organization?

With this dimension, we address two fundamental factors for success with the customer experience that involve strategy and leadership: Have you formulated a strategy for the customers, so you not only know what you are delivering to whom and how, but so you have also broken down the strategy into relevant customer promises and service priorities? By doing this, your customer strategy becomes relevant and operational for your staff. It's also important that you think about the extent to which you have the backing of the top management and the right management (customer) focus on all levels in the organization.

Our analyses and review of more than 200 companies reveal that having a clear customer strategy that has been translated into actual behavior and actions is a challenge that many companies struggle with. Likewise, we also see that the company's organization often ends up hampering the good customer experience. In other words, the silo challenge is still something many have not yet come to terms with. This leadership dimension is about the top management's ability to provide backing and serve as role models, but of course it's not something that only affects this layer of management. Perhaps even more importantly, it's about the different layers of management in the company taking clear ownership of the customer experience and understanding their own share of responsibility for the positive customer experience.


2nd Dimension: KPI and governance

Have you established one or more KPIs for customer experience, and do you have a good organizational structure for taking ownership for customers – both horizontally and vertically?

This dimension is about identifying the concept and thereby the survey key figures to serve as the entire basis for your customer-oriented organization – and perhaps the company transformation you are embarking on.

From our experience, it is hugely beneficial to choose two customer-related survey KPIs that cover both the top line and the bottom line in the form of ‘cost to serve.’
Another important and ambitious element within this dimension is building systems of measurement that can regularly provide you with information on status, breakdown and causal effect of the identified key figures. It is vital that you have a measurement system and customer feedback setup that is company-wide, operational and high-frequency.

It is critical that you establish and execute a plan for communicating and anchoring your customer insight in the business. What good is it having the best measurement system and the sharpest analyses if you are not able to communicate them in clear language that incites action?
Our study shows that many of the largest Nordic companies are challenged when it comes to applying their customer insights in every corner of the organization and as a part of decision-making processes and strategies. Within this dimension, we see that the study's Customer Insight Champion companies are particularly successful in producing frequent reporting on their operational KPIs, which helps to anchor the insights in the company.


3rd Dimension: Understanding of the customer journey
Do you have a clear picture of the customer journey in the company, and do you know how you perform on critical touchpoints? How good are you at cooperating on the customer experience across organizational boundaries/silos?

It is important that you know the customer journey(s) and how you perform on key interactions with the customer (touchpoints). Our numbers and past experience tell us that this dimension is a challenge for many companies. Not only are many challenged in terms of forming a full picture of the customer's path through the company. We also see that the classic challenge of getting organizational silos to work together also impedes positive and coherent customer experiences in many companies.

One of the key challenges for creating positive customer experiences is getting different parts of the organization to appear well-coordinated in the customer's eyes and to lift each other up.


4th Dimension: Employees and culture
Is the organization motived to ensure positive customer experiences? Does the staff have the framework and, more importantly, the skills to deliver positive customer experiences? And is there the right degree of support in the form of processes, tools, training, etc.?

Last, but certainly not least, do you have the human aspect and the glue that holds it all together – the culture. Do you have a culture where you put the customer experience first and where the staff has the right tools and resources to deliver positive experiences? Can employees see how they contribute to the customer experience? Are they motivated to provide good service? And are there framework and conditions in place in the form of clear processes, good tools, the right training, etc.? In a world where more and more takes place online and digitally, and where many services often look alike, the right personal/human touch is a critical element for standing out.


Test your company's CX-score
With a brief introduction to the four dimensions of the customer insight area, you are now ready to test your own organization in the area of CX. By assigning a score between 0 and 100 for each statement to express how much you agree/disagree, you will end up with an overall CX score. That score tells you how CS mature your company is. The CX score is our version of an overall score for the organization’s maturity in working with their customer experience.

With your score in hand, you can then compare it with the benchmark for Ennova’s study and get insight into how your company compares.

ABOUT Ennova's Customer Experience Maturity Assessment

In the 2021 study, we studied how approximately 250 of the largest private companies in the Nordics work with customer insight and how the companies can bring their customer insight up to a level where they can claim the title of Customer Insight Champion in the area.

The study shows that 21% of the companies fall under the category of Customer Insight Champion. These companies see better effects year after year in customer experience development, and they achieve better financial results compared to companies in the Talent or Rookie categories in the work with customer insight.


 

 

Anders Hansen Warming. Executive Officer
Author

Anders Hansen Warming. Executive Officer

Anders advises some of Ennova’s largest customers on customer feedback measurements. With his holistic approach, Anders has a sharp focus on holistic solutions that contribute to achieving the desired effect at the operational, tactical and strategic level.