The 4 key components of a successful digital customer experience transformation
The shift to digital is driving radical change in customer service across all industries. Consumers now want an improved, more digital experience however and whenever they make contact. They demand a wider range of channels and want to be able to switch effortlessly between them during the customer journey. The pandemic has accelerated many aspects of this transformation as lockdowns closed physical shops and branches.
From the business side, digitisation brings the opportunity to increase efficiency. However, it also lowers the barriers to entry for new competitors, even in long-established sectors such as banking and financial services. All of this means that companies need to transform and focus on digital CX to compete and survive.
Despite the clear benefits, 70% of digital transformation projects fail according to the Boston Consulting Group. The best way of ensuring successful digital customer experience transformation is to put a governing framework in place. The one I personally recommend is encapsulated by the acronym, SPRO:
S – Strategy
Before you transform anything work out where you are going as a business. Start at the very beginning by defining what you are trying to achieve with your transformation. Where are you going as a business? What are your objectives and how do they involve your customers and your employees?
If it’s a customer facing initiative, start by analysing your customers. Define who they are in terms of demographics, and then use this information to understand their specific requirements. Then you can select the right channels to reach them on. If you don’t put the right strategy in place, with clear objectives, you won’t be able to set success metrics and see the results of the project.
P – Process
Once you have your strategy you should define how you are going to implement it. If strategy is the Why this is the How. So, you need to plan exactly which key processes will be involved and how will you actually operate to deliver on the strategy.
Some processes will be simple, while others will be less straightforward. For example, look at your customer interaction process. What channels do you need to take into consideration? If this involves creating (or closing) physical branches, it will clearly be more complex to deliver.
R – Resources
What resources do you need to drive the processes and deliver the strategy? Resources encompass both people and technology.
On the people side ensure your employees both have the right skills and the capacity (and time) to change. In terms of skills this should fit with your needs – for example an agent that is good on the phone might not be suited to digital channels such as chat. Support your people by clearly communicating your vision, explaining their role in delivering it. Make sure they have the ability to change, giving them the time and training to adopt new roles.
At the same time choosing the right technology is essential. Digital transformation is a broad area, covering a wide range of potential technologies and multiple areas of focus. That means it is very easy to pick technology too early, so ensure you don’t make decisions on the tools before you have set your strategy and process. What do your customers want to use? There’s no point implementing a new mobile app if your customer demographic doesn’t want to use this channel.
O – Organise
One of the core questions to ask here is how’re you going to organise and support your people to make your digital transformation? Too many people start with an org chart and try and map their programme onto it.
Instead, look at what you want to achieve and use this to organise your resources effectively. This includes coaching those in senior positions to understand the transformation that’s being rolled out and staff development and training for the people on the ground. At the same time, you need to design and implement your technology to underpin your strategy and process most effectively. Always keep thinking about the end customer, their experience and what they need, whether that is the external consumer or your internal users.
Managing successful digital customer experience transformation
Digital customer experience transformation is becoming increasingly key to business success. But to deliver it you need to follow a clear structured process. Do this and you’ll radically improve your chances of a successful outcome. Start with getting under the skin of the customer and understanding their needs ahead of setting your objectives rather than rushing to implement technology straight away. If you get it right, you’ll deliver lasting value and built a foundation for further projects down the line – get it wrong and it will impact customer loyalty, churn and revenues.
Download your copy of our essential guide to digital transformation
This guide provides companies who are looking to transform the customer experience with ways of structuring their programme to unlock the benefits of digital transformation.