Operationalising customer experience vision requires not only the consensus on how customer insight is collected, analysis performed, development organised, and measures followed, but also the preparation of foundations to enable the delivery of visioned customer experience. In the previous article, we shortly discussed how the customer experience foundations are closely connected to the organisation’s capabilities to operationalise the vision. In our framework, foundations are the underlying continuous element of customer experience.
We perceive the foundations to form as a combination of people & organisation, processes & ways of working as well as tools & technologies. When organising each area of the foundations, based on our experiences, the following questions are important to be considered:
|People & Organisation||Processes & Ways of Working||Tools & Technologies|
|What kind of roles and responsibilities as well as governance structures should we have for executing the customer experience vision?||What kinds of ways of working should we have within and across different units to enable coherent customer experience development?||What kind of tools could we utilize to systematically maintain a shared view on development, lead and coordinate the development processes as well enable the measurement of experience while gathering and sharing the customer insights for customer interfaces, development, operations & other relevant parties?|
Foundations enable everything above in the framework to function. Thus, it underlines even further the wideness of the foundations – there are a lot of things to consider. In the context of change, when we align the customer experience vision and all the customer experience related activities, we also need to consider the foundations on which the changes are built on top of. The maturity of the customer experience ethos for the change in the organisation determines to a great extent whether the changes can be implemented successfully. Thus, it is important not to underestimate the significance of the foundations and the change management activities needed in implementing new vision on foundations level as well.
Simultaneously, while we know that there is a lot to consider, it is also important to identify the most critical aspects of foundations for the context of the organisation. Regarding people & organisation, customer experience is dependent on the definition and structuring of roles and leadership. Based on the maturity of customer experience in the organisation, there are different solutions for the structure. While more novice CX organisations may benefit from one central team responsible of CX, more advanced CX organisations may have it anchored across the organisation. However, regardless of the maturity, high-level ownership of customer experience is crucial for the success of operationalising the vision and to maintain a shared understanding of the direction the organisation is going. Similarly, in all organisations, also from the change management perspective, it is important to learn together and have someone facilitating that sense-making in operationalising the vision. It can either be a person or an organisation structure which supports teams over functions to define shared ways of working. The cross-section alignment enables capability and process development, so that teams don’t fall into silos while developing their practices.
Then also processes & ways of working as well as tools & technologies need to be aligned to support the iterative cycle of improving the customer experience. Based on our experience, especially the way these processes & ways of working and tools & technologies connect teams, functions, and individuals across the organisation internally and externally, is what critically affects the success keeping the cycle functioning. These areas also define how the organisation shares the customer insights to relevant stakeholders in the organization including different customer interfaces and channels, development, and other relevant functions. It includes topics such as defining how to engage employees to the development by sourcing ideas from them and developing solutions together with the whole organization, how to systematically analyse the customer feedback data and create feedback loops and how and with what processes and tools customers could be involved to the customer experience development etc.
All in all, we see that it is highly important that employees are encouraged to come up with new ideas to improve the customer experience and that there is a clear and transparent process for collecting and processing ideas, to succeed in operationalising the vision on foundations level. This creates a continuum of ideation and commitment. In the next article in the series, we will dive into the customer insights and analysis in our customer experience framework.
For the past 10 years in Finland, we have researched and analysed Finnish organisations’ digital capabilities and maturity in different channels. This work around digital customer experience culminates each year in our Digital Leaders Study publication, which compares the digital maturity of the largest Finnish companies in customer experience through digital channels. In the study, we aim to unravel the digital capabilities in selected Finnish companies across sectors and find best practices to gain digital competitiveness and success.
If you are interested in this work, please find our latest Digital Leaders Study 2023 in Finnish. In this study, we analysed all together 68 Finnish companies across 14 sectors both by collecting data through customer interfaces and conducting interviews.
You can also find the global Digital Leaders Study in which all together, 679 companies have been assessed across 21 sectors in 11 countries.
Senior Manager, Digital & Strategy
Senior Business Consultant, Digital & Strategy