The below blog post was written by Guidant Global employee Nat Jackson around Customer Experience and their use of Clientshare.
“To win in today’s increasingly customer driven world, companies must understand their customers’ needs and satisfy those needs better than any of their competitors.” Medallia
What is Customer Experience?
Customer Experience (CX) comprises all the interactions a customer has with a company over the course of the relationship with that business.
Building a great customer experience has traditionally centred around having great people who will build relationships and give a great customer experience. While this remains vital to business success, customer experience is no longer just about physical, human interactions.
Businesses are starting to realise that a customer’s journey is no longer isolated to in-person interactions, with an increasing number of interactions happening between customers and the technologies utilised within the service provided. These interactions, whether positive or negative, will impact brand perception and ultimately affect your ability to retain and win new business.
Often the biggest challenges B2B businesses face is bringing digital and personal interactions together, especially as the very nature of most B2B contracts requires people and technology. If you have a great digital CX on but a poor CX when it comes to how your people are viewed by your supplier, your overall CX will suffer.
“81% of marketing leaders responsible for customer experience (CX) say their companies will mostly or completely compete on the basis of CX in two years. Yet only 22% say their CX efforts have exceeded customer expectations.” Gartner
Customer experience should be viewed as the entire end-to-end customer journey across all physical and digital touchpoints.
Identifying this and understanding that every digital interaction is a chance for brands to simplify and improve customer experience will help businesses to utilise this as a differentiator with customers and prospects.
Over the last few years, there has been an explosion of customer technology that is redefining what should be expected from customer experience.
Consumers now expect better interactions across the board, driven by the positive experiences of industry leaders like Amazon and Uber, and start-up disrupters like Monzo and Slack. Getting customer experience right can have a real impact on business growth.
“Leading executives have recognized that really moving the needle on customer satisfaction requires a more ambitious effort—a transformation of the entire customer experience.”
McKinsey & Company
What are industry leaders doing in the market?
Businesses are now acting to simplify and improve the way customers interact with them by utilising customer experience technology.
For Cisco, the focus has been on artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). Cisco are utilising data to identify customer vulnerabilities, provide solutions, identify challenges to the successful adoption of its products and services, and effectively eliminate barriers to renewals.
On the other hand, Comcast have utilised Medallia’s Net Promoter System (NPS) and AI text analytics technology, to create an effective elevations feedback loop to provide customer experience feedback across every customer interaction. This has allowed Comcast to review customer data, consider improvement opportunities for customer experience, and ultimately improve their ability to make better insight-driven decisions.
Finally, for FedEx, the second most trusted B2B company, the focus has been on using technology to streamline its communication to create a single customer-focused newsletter. Streamlining communication has made it easier for customers to easily find accurate information and has stopped customers getting similar content from different areas of the business.
“It seems simple from a consumer perspective, but too often, brands fail to deliver the basic information and experiences that customers expect and need.” Gartner
Using CX technology to support with business decisions
Forbes recently identified that for businesses to succeed they must modernise and simplify the way they approach and interact with customers giving them the right content, at the right time.
Customers expect relevant content in relation to what they’re doing anytime, anywhere, in the format and on the device of their choosing. This is where customer experience technology can support businesses. CX technology enables businesses to be more effective — providing customers access to the right information when they need it.
This change doesn’t happen overnight. One of the main challenges, especially for established companies, is dealing with rigid legacy systems. But beginning to implement CX technology either alongside legacy systems or by gradually upgrading or replacing them will help to improve the digital aspects of each customers journey.
How are Guidant Global improving customer experience for customers?
In 2017, we partnered with Clientshare, an innovative customer experience platform, to help our customers make better business decisions.
Clientshare is a CX platform designed to make business relationships easier and better. Clientshare believe that in B2B relationships there are handful of CX moments that matter, where digital and physical come together. How companies perform in these moments can make the difference between a great CX and a poor CX.
Clientshare simplifies the way Guidant and our customers share and access key information, giving our customers complete visibility of how our partnership is performing, in line with objectives and Service Level Agreements (SLAs), and how we will continue to improve the MSP programme in the future.
While our people will always be central to our service delivery, we understood that we could further strengthen our partnerships with our clients and supply partners by utilising CX technology.
Investing in this market-leading digital solution has made it easier for our customers to access the information that is most important to them, whether they’re at their desk or on the go. It has also provided an ever-present secure forum to share feedback, suggestions and ideas to drive continuous improvement within our customer partnerships.
Customer Experience Technology is not going to replace human interactions, and it doesn’t detract from the importance of these interactions for your brand and your customer experience.
71% of PwC respondents said in a study that a company’s employees have a significant impact on their experience, so it won’t matter if you have the best technology solutions if your people don’t believe in and care about your service.
But as our world becomes more digital, with more interactions happening through technology, not utilising customer experience tech will inevitably see some businesses being left behind.
There is an exciting opportunity for businesses to now improve customer experience across the board by beginning to review customer journeys at every interaction point, whether human or digital. With consumers demanding better engagement and different solutions, the companies that get both right are going to be best placed to retain and win new customers
Headquartered in London, the Clientshare purpose is to help companies retain and grow contracts. Clientshare works with companies like Interserve, Xerox, Guidant Global and CH&Co helping improve buyer-supplier relationships, making business easier and improving retention rates, typically by 18%.