At the Custommerce India Chapter 6 meet held on January 29, 2010, we aimed to examine strategies that help organizations not only weather the economic challenge, but also pick up strategies that help differentiate them from competition.(From Left, Dr. A. Parasuraman, Mr. Raja Gopalakrishnan, Ms. Tuhina Pandey, Mr. Gautam Mahajan, Mr. S. Ramaswamy)
The ‘Great Customer Service Debate’ witnessed eminent speakers from various facets of industry like Dr. A. Parasuraman (Vice Dean of Faculty, James W. McLamore Chair in Marketing, University of Miami), Mr. Gautam Mahajan (President, Customer Value Foundation), Mr. Raja Gopalakrishnan (Group Managing Director, Asia Pacific; (FIS)), Mr. Sundaram Ramaswamy (Entrepreneur, Director & Thought Leader), and the topics for discussion were:
- ‘Technology is an enabler for desired customer experience – Yes / No'
- ‘Which drives desired customer experience better? - Value based strategy or Metric driven strategy’
During the discussion, views were presented in favor of and against each dimension. Based on this, strategies to enhance customer experience were arrived at.
Appended below are some key takeaways from the presentations:
• Technology must aid in providing great customer service and satisfy the needs and requirements of customers. The customer must choose the time, place and manner of usage and should be provided at competitive price points. Technology has to be consistent, scalable and sustainable and it must be something that fits your business goals. While technology per se is not bad, its implementation is crucial. Implementation of technology has to be in line with the business goals, customer requirements and customer usage patterns.
• Value and metric-based strategies do not have to necessarily be in conflict. The reason that there is a perceived conflict between these two things is that most companies do not measure the right metrics. What they measure in terms of metrics is customer service and other things connected to service as perceived by customers. A lot of these metrics are easily measurable. For example, how much time the call centre took to answer, the attitude of the employees and the aspect that they show customers are the process related services that have a much bigger impact on customers. So that is where the conflict comes and not just in measuring the right metrics.
We thank all our sponsors for making Custommerce India Chapter 6 a success.
For more information, please visit http://www.custommerce.org/chapter6/index.html