In the increasingly competitive business world, the question around how to remain competitive and relevant is perpetually high on the corporate agenda. How does a company maintain a competitive advantage in today’s digital and ‘always on’ world?
Worryingly, Australia appears to be losing momentum against other countries in the Asia Pacific region in terms of its digital advancement. According to the Digital Evolution Index1, Australia has been identified as a “Stall Out” country – which is a term used to describe countries that are losing momentum in the digital economy. While Australia has achieved a high level of digital development in the past, more recently there appears to be a shift in the digital uptake.
At Enlighten, we suggest for organisations to succeed, the answer lies not purely in technology, for the sake of technology but in in achieving a balance between innovative technology, delivering an exceptional customer experience (CX) and achieving operational excellence (OpEx). Organisations who realise the value of their customer’s and enhance their back-end operations to support the customer journey, set themselves up for future success.
Here are three ways you can ensure that CX and OpEx are achieved in your organisation:
1. Develop a company culture dedicated to continued learning and achieving excellence
The modern work environment is often spread across several geographies making collaboration and teamwork a challenge. Team silos can easily form, with different people or branches doing things their own way, leading to inconsistent processes and insufficient customer centricity. Implementing an open, transparent and collaborative work culture underpinned by easily understood metrics is imperative in these situations.
As a first step, the leadership team must set the tone for an open and collaborative working culture by ‘walking the walk’ and showing their dedication towards creating an open working culture.
Adam Christensen of SAI Global says, “it’s so easy sometimes to think that you can do a town hall, send an e-mail and say, “I want everyone to focus on this” and we’ll drop tools and start focusing on it. It never happens that way. Instead, it’s about giving the team the message of what we are doing, why we are doing it, and this is how we’re going to go about it. It is about enabling your team.”
2. Ensure there are the right customer-centric processes in place
Mismatched and unmapped data causes inefficient processes, rework and compliance risks. Additionally, having processes that don’t have the customer’s needs at the forefront mean you may miss the mark when trying to deliver an exceptional customer experience.
Start by understanding what matters to the customer – what service are they looking for? What’s important to them? Too often the focus is on improving processes that may not be working in the first place. By starting with the customer, understanding their core needs and then building or improving processes around those are what helps businesses succeed.
3. Embrace the adoption of technology
Investing in technology supports organisations to automate labour-intensive business processes and free up staff to focus on customer-facing interactions, thereby improving the customer experience. Embracing a solution that and gives you visibility on all the different parts of your businesses, enables you to match your resources to workloads, and reassign latent capacity during quieter periods into greater value-add parts of your business (such as the CX). Leveraging technology to underpin proactive management strategies results in a significant advantage over time.
As workplaces continue to evolve, perceptions are changing and technology is now seen as an enabler, rather than a ‘replacer’2. The more willing you are to embrace technology and implement solutions that inclusive and sustainable, the more likely you are to see a unique synergy created between humans and technology which will ensure profitability and growth.
Great customer experience can be achieved through operational excellence. By taking a holistic view of your company’s operations, culture, processes and data, you can create a competitive advantage and deliver the desired customer experience.