Customer experience is more important in 2019 than it ever has been considering the plethora of choices available to buyers. If that statement alone is not enough to convince you, then understanding new customer acquisition costs can being between 4 and 10 times more than customer retention will. Customer experience programs assess where you’re doing well and where you need some work are, and provide solutions to help your organization improve and most importantly, keep retain your customers.

Here are 5 best practices to start your CX journey or continue and perfect them as well:

1. Understanding internal organizational priorities is key.

This is critical in terms of making sure customer experience programs are successful. Questions to consider asking include:

  • What is the organization’s maturity level about customer experience?
  • What’s the current cultural temperament of the organization?
  • What are the overarching goals for the organization in terms of beginning and continuing with a CX program?

What you can do:

Developing a customer-focused culture is a long and difficult task, involving changes in people’s daily work routines and outlooks. Laying the groundwork for implementing a customer-focused culture through principles, tenants, or strategies employees can rally around can help everyone better understand and buy into the bigger picture.

2. Senior executive support is critical.

Related to organizational priorities, support from senior leadership is crucial to ensure ongoing success for any customer experience program. At many organizations, senior executives don’t view CX programs as a long-term investment, especially if they don’t bring a targeted return on investment within a set period usually one or two years, at most. In other organizations, executives view CX as “fluff.”

What you can do:

Reporting directly to the CEO or, at a minimum, having a senior leader to call upon to act as the champion to get the organization moving, can be very effective. At the same time, building relationships with other departments or lines of business is helpful in building alliances and momentum.

3. Consider partnering with Human Resources.

Human Resources will help ensure your organization is hiring employees with a strong customer focus. According to one senior CX practitioner, organizations must “look inward at their recruitment processes, making sure they hire the right people.”

What you can do:

Work with the Human Resources team to make sure you’ve got an open culture that’s going to accept the data and act upon it. For best  practices, read Six Tips for Sharing Customer Insights with Employees.

4. Closed feedback loops are essential in Customer Experience programs.

This should include developing recommendations for process, behavioral, and culture changes, and then communicating that clearly and repeatedly to different lines of business throughout the organization.

What you can do:

Adding alerts to particularly significant spikes in customer feedback that are outside of normal response ranges is helpful in terms of immediate follow-up, especially with those customers that had a particularly poor experience or those customers with deeper, more extensive issues that need to be addressed.

5. Creating repeatable processes for fast customer follow-up.

Repeatable processes help to drive better outcomes, both for customers and for employees, because it allows issues to be handled quickly and efficiently.

What you can do:

Having dispersed teams throughout the world can make a significant impact in terms of resolving customer issues quickly. One senior customer advocacy director shared, “I think the ability to be able to make a reach out to a customer within 24 or 48 hours of them completing a survey response and say, ‘We heard you. We’re listening’  … is a huge best practice. It’s one I’m still amazed every company doesn’t do.”


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