Change: Could it be a Bad Thing?
If you don't know what your customers value, you risk destroying it...by accident!
Organizations are continually undertaking new initiatives that can have internal and external impact including process changes, policy updates and new technology initiatives. From small scale system upgrades and policy tweaks to enterprise-wide transformations such as acquisition integrations, shared service implementations, or the introduction of new product or service lines, EVERY change has a ripple effect not only internally but can impact your Customers’ Experience (CX) as well.
Are internal organizational changes affecting employees who directly interact with your customers?
Are you introducing technology that could disrupt the customer experience?
Will internal process changes affect customers if it impacts how people inside your organization get things done?
If you are making changes that will impact your customer without looking at how it may impact your customer base, you are at risk of destroying the very value you are hoping to build and improve upon. Employee experience is tightly coupled with the quality of the service employees provide. Their frustration with change will affect service delivery and ultimately customer experience. Change should be evaluated for the potential impact on both human and non-digital touch points.
Here are some examples of change and potential impact it could have on your organization:
- Change: You invest in resources to improve the quality of your product, when your customers actually place more value on the support they receive post-purchase.
- Impact: Incremental product improvements may not result in more loyalty or increased referrals.
- Change: You change your product formulation to cut costs in an effort to provide a lower cost to customers.
- Impact: You risk disintegrating your value with your customers, if they valued your product quality over cost.
- Change: In an effort to provide your customer with multiple service options, you become overly-complicated.
- Impact: Reduction in the level of ease your customers already value in doing business with you.
Impact of Capturing Customer Voice
If you don't see the relevance of capturing your customer's voice in some of your change initiatives, the ripple effect of change could disrupt your customer experience as well as your ability to deliver on your brand promise. Listen to your customer to understand what they want, need, expect and value. Then, use metrics to tie the voice of the customer to quantitative data for more customer-relevant improvement initiatives. Keep the customer engaged during your improvement process. Involve your customer in every step of the way and keep two-way communication going.
Alignment is key! Keeping your corporate strategy (e.g. cost leadership, differentiation or segmentation) aligned with your brand promise (e.g. low price, innovation, fit) with your overall customer service strategy, will help ensure that change isn't a bad thing in your organization.