Customer Effort Score

Reducing Customer Effort Score, or making it easier for people to do business with you is usually the biggest single thing a company can do to increase profit.

Recent Customer Effort research* published in Harvard Business Review (HBR) supports earlier findings by Fred Reichheld (inventor of Net Promoter Score) and others.  It confirmations what some of us have felt for many years.

customer-effort-diagram

The HBR (Harvard Business Review)  study sampled 75,000 consumers and revealed a far greater correlation between low Customer Effort Score and future customer value than either Customer Satisfaction or Net Promoter Score.

So, if making it easier for customers is a better route to profitability than trying to delight customer, or exceed their expectations why do so few companies strive to deliver simple, intuitive customer interactions?  There are several cultural factors to be aware of:

1. Products and services evolve organically over time becoming more complex along the way

2. Politically it is far easier to argue for the add a extra feature than to take one away

3. Companies want to sell to as many different people as possible and so build in variation and flexibility without thinking hard enough about how they can do that without compromising simplicity

4. Simple can easily be confused with dumb. In reality a simple solution is far harder to create than a complex one

5. Different interest groups and vocal customers lobby for customisation and features to meet their narrow requirements.  In its desire to make the sale to a few today, companies tend to accommodate these multiple changes without thinking through how it will impact the service strategy and the resulting customer experience of the many, tomorrow.

Our customer journey approach allows companies to deliver reduced customer effort in a number of ways.

  • We can help you create your own Customer Effort Score process either at an overall level or broken down by touch-point and reported in real time if required.
  • Our Customer Journey Insight techniques allow us to identify what customers want and what they feel about the current service offering.  Our quantitative research and customer journey mapping allows us to build a robust businesses case balancing the needs of the many against the needs of the few.
  • Our Customer Journey design allows companies to develop more intuitive customer touch-points breaking down complex processes into easy steps or removing unnecessary steps altogether.
  • Our Customer Journey transformation ensures the service design works as well for those delivering it as it does for customers.  Complex processes that don't work for your people won't be delivered consistently if at all.
*'Stop trying to delight your customers', Harvard Business School, 2010