Put the customer at the heart of your corporate culture
Idean’s CEO Risto Lähdesmäki talks in the latest issue of OpusCapita Journal about the importance of user experience as a competitive advantage in today’s highly digital business landscape. He’s absolutely right about the transition of competition from features to experiences. Features are plentiful and in most cases easily fulfil the superficial needs of the users. On the other hand, well-thought experiences and services are much rarer. Therefore it’s no wonder more and more organisations are moving resources from traditional product development to more design-oriented approaches. The trend is further strengthened by the overall shift from products to services which in itself will call for different ways of developing and running a business.
In the shift the complexity of the challenge also increases. A great product can be designed by a small team of dedicated professionals, even an external agency, whereas consistently delivering great experiences requires your whole organisation to perform in sync day in day out. This way managing customer experience (CX) turns into leading people. And that is something leaders just can’t delegate down the hierarchy but they need to take the helm themselves. With an already busy agenda that might be one of the reasons why this topic sometimes is pushed aside as Lähdesmäki also points out.
When the responsibility is accepted the next step is to make the topic a central part of everything you do in the company. I’ve already earlier outlined some steps to be taken in this transformation. In light of the management challenge I’d like to highlight the importance of making the topic an elemental part of your management and reporting system.
To tackle this we at OpusCapita have introduced a KPI called Superior Customer Experience Index (SCXi). That is an operative level metric that is feeding the leadership with timely updates on how the customers perceive different phases of their lifecycle with us. The index covers everything from sales through implementations and service delivery to support and service management. It complements the external picture with an employee satisfaction indicator. The various surveys and data creating the index offer our leadership both the necessary numerical trend information as well as the open feedback and ideas on where to take the next steps. Being a new and complex indicator it takes some time to find the right ways for the data collection and the interpretation of the results but already now it has been warmly welcomed by everyone. In its own, analytical way it’s putting the customer at the heart of our management and reporting system.
As a final thought I’d like to highlight the fact that CX is not a survey or a KPI. To succeed it needs to ultimately manifest itself in the corporate culture. Sustainable transformation will require holistic and systematic actions in all levels and every corner of your organisation management system being one of the most crucial ones. It’s a good place to start but far from being enough to complete. You could say it’s a necessary but not sufficient premise for a success in CX.