Beyond customer service

In today’s always-on business environment, everyone knows the importance of good customer service. Companies understand the need for their customers to be given excellent help and advice when they contact them.

But customer service isn’t the whole story because what’s more important is customer experience (CX), and an effective customer experience strategy.

Customer experience reflects every interaction a customer has with a company, digital or analogue, good or bad, and which therefore influence how they feel about that company.

Customer service is about solving a customer’s problem and can be easily measured objectively.

Did we solve that customer’s problem? End of story.

CX service design – Future CX service journeys will be personalised, planned & productive; that’s why you need to evolve your customer experience strategy

Understanding customer experience

Customer experience is something much more subjective and is about what that customer feels about their interactions with the company.

CX may be about perceptions, but perceptions are a person’s reality, so important to brand loyalty, and therefore to future profitability. Nor does CX simply involve email, chat, social media or voice contact. CX starts before that customer makes personal contact with the company.

It starts with looking at the website to see if it has helpful advice. FAQs, for example. Or video tutorials.

CX isn’t, therefore, about solving a customer’s problem. It’s about how easily that problem was solved across all touch-points and interactions. Understanding CX is important because customers are constantly expecting more. They may want their problem solved, but they want to be impressed by the service provided.

However, many companies still focus only on providing customer service. That’s simply being reactive to their customers.

An effective customer experience strategy

Customer experience on the other hand is proactive, taking a holistic approach to the customer journey and making it instinctive, easy and quick. At its best, excellent CX service design combined with an effective customer experience strategy turns customers into advocates. Companies that get CX service design right see upturns both in customer satisfaction and revenue.

That’s where professional support can be so valuable, because great outsourcers understand the relationship between service and experience and can help their clients develop bespoke CX service design solutions. That starts with a comprehensive CX assessment and a blueprint of how customers contact that company.

Then comes the clever part: setting out a detailed customer experience strategy that, over time, is designed to make further improvements.

The good thing is that, while customer service is objective and customer experience subjective, both can be accurately measured.

It’s part of the service that today’s leading outsourcers provide. Not only to develop the solution, but on a daily, weekly and monthly basis provide comprehensive data that the solution is working.

The SYKES Team will explore the Evolution of CX Service Design at EBM Focus Group, next Thursday, September 26th, please join us!

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