Hi Janine, tell us about yourself and your background.
I’ve spent the last 10yrs in the world of SaaS implementation and support; the last 3yrs have been spent working at a fintech startup called Flare. What attracted me to Flare was the opportunity to work in an organization that is on a mission to help every working Australian live their best financial life. The ability to combine best-in-class HR, benefits, and employee engagement platform with advanced financial products and programs designed to help Australians plan for a secure future. The ability to create a customer experience that spans both B2B and B2C and across multiple product lines is what keeps me excited (and challenging!).
What is the biggest misunderstanding about customer experience, in your opinion?
Customer experience is human-driven, and while scalability requires the introduction of automation and, in many cases AI based chatbots, there is still an underlying human experience. For example, every customer reacts differently to the same website, and the most perfect customer journey won’t change that. For me, the biggest misunderstanding when creating a customer experience is that all the processes and metrics should not take away from the human experience for each User. Personalization in the era of scalability and automation will be a key determinant, I believe, in the successful creation of a customer experience.
What are some of the newer CX companies/solutions you’re keeping your eyes on right now?
Great question! Really loving what MessageBird is doing at the moment and very excited to see what’s to come.
What can companies do to improve customer loyalty and retention?
While metrics are great indicators of the quality of customer experience offered, they rarely contain high levels of context. One initiative which I have run previously that worked well was the creation of Meet Ups, which enabled a forum for our customers to meet each other while providing us feedback on either our products or services. It assists in building your customer community; however, in the time of COVID, this has posed a challenge.
The easiest option, and probably the most basic, would be to just give customers a call and check in on how they are doing. It might be old-fashioned, particularly in the era of scalability while reducing costs, but it is by far the most effective way I have found to not only build rapport with customers but to get a good sense of where they are in terms of loyalty.
What do you think is most relevant and why: CSAT (customer satisfaction score), NPS (net promoter score), or CES (customer effort score)?
Personally, I think all three metrics are closely intertwined and should not be assessed and viewed in isolation from each other. Each measure a slightly different customer metric and, depending upon when questions are posed to users, can determine if they are lagging or leading indicators of customer experience.
What is your opinion on AI-based chatbots to handle customer support?
AI-based chatbots are a wonderful addition to customer support from a scalability and support ticker deflection point of view. With that said, there needs to be a degree of personalization with chatbots and close monitoring of customer satisfaction metrics to ensure the same or better levels of service are produced.
What was the best movie you saw that has come out during this past year?’
The best movie I’ve watched has been Knives Out – a wonderful whodunnit movie!
Last but not least, what is your favorite CX metric?
The Customer Effort Score (CES) is a great predictor of loyalty, which provides real-time insights into the experience of our users, allowing us to pivot and change our approach quickly if needed.