PEN Customer Experience (CX) Forum

On the 5th December we hosted our latest CX Forum. This saw us bring together business leaders from across a range of industries to discuss the importance of customer experience and how to overcome the challenges of implementing effective CX within their businesses.

We covered a range of topics including Customer Journey Mapping, how to measure customer experience, and how to create a more ‘customer centric’ culture.

We had a number of people who wanted to come to the session but couldn’t make it and others who were sadly too late and we couldn’t fit in. To help you if you were in either of these groups, or if you are just looking to expand your understanding of CX, we’ve put together a brief overview of the key insights from the session to help you with your own CX improvements.


Customer Journey Mapping 

Customer Journey Mapping (CJM) is used as a tool to understand and implement changes needed to improve CX. For effective CJM it is important to spend time upfront to define personas and understand customer segmentation, as well as identifying the key journeys to be mapped and why.

During the forum we heard some great examples from our attendees of how they are using CJM to get to the heart of what their customers want and truly understand the experience their customers have when they interact with their businesses.

If you want to emulate their success, the top tip from our forum was to focus on incorporating ‘immersion’ to ensure the ‘Voice of the Customer’ is fully captured. Immersion includes running workshops, making customer visits or running interviews with customers, essentially “making the customer real”.


Operational efficiency and CX Measurement

It’s sometimes thought that CX and efficiency are not linked, but as we often find, the opposite is often true.

When looking to understand your customer experience, you will want to use a range of different metrics from across the business to get a true picture of performance. By focusing on “moments of truth” (the most important parts of the journey for the customer) and blending CX measures (such as NPS or customer effort) with operational metrics (such as failure demand and incoming calls etc) you can really understand the linkage.

This certainly rang true with our attendees and the forum uncovered a number of examples where organisations were able to make a successful link between improved CX and improved efficiency.

To truly embed a customer focused approach across your organisation, metrics related directly and indirectly to CX and associated targets should be used in all colleagues’ objectives. These need to be ‘lived’ by the business and you’ll want to ensure that there is plenty of visibility of feedback related to these across the business.


Exploring the link between CX and digital

In our forum we had a variety of organisations from across many different sectors. For some they were in the early stages of their digital journey. For others, digital was now a fully integrated part of their proposition.

Regardless, we agreed that CX Design and CJM should include digital and non-digital touchpoints together and NOT as separate journeys. Not all customers naturally gravitate towards digital and the discussion in the forum reinforced the importance of constructing accurate persona’s as part of any CX improvement initiative.

While we draw the distinction between digital and non-digital, through the discussion it became clear that “Omnichannel”, whilst a somewhat overused term, is rapidly becoming simply the ever-present reality of doing business today.

This has significant ramifications for your CX activity and reinforces the need to take an integrated channel approach at all times.


Making change happen after CJM

There is often the perception that CX improvements are just ‘nice to have’ changes and not business critical. To help people understand the importance of CX, you should ensure you are communicating the changes required and the benefits of doing so. In other words, ‘shout as loud as you can’ about its importance and implement quick wins to build support.

Our Forum cited many examples of tactics and strategies which can be used to create belief and engage people. Many of which focused on the importance of developing a robust people workstream as part of any CX improvement.

To help you ensure you successfully embed any CX changes across your business we advise setting up your own CX governance structure, consisting of steering/working groups with relevant people to share and discuss customer feedback and CX metrics.


How do you create a customer centric culture

The short answer is by putting the customer at the heart of everything you do.

When doing any CX related activity you should integrate both customer facing and non-customer facing teams – especially in exercises such as journey mapping – so that everyone understands their impact and “reach” in creating a positive customer experience.

And remember, successful cultural change is leader led, based on rich insight and stories and enabled by the right governance.


We hope you find this overview a helpful starting point for your own CX improvement activity.

We run our CX Forum’s regularly and if you would like to find out more about them and how you can attend please get in touch Talya Bernstone at talya.bernstone@penpartnership.com

If you have any further questions regarding CX or are looking to implement changes within your own organisation and require some assistance, please get in touch.