Processes over people leads to an unhappy customer
It’s been a busy year full of short breaks, spas, gigs and festivals, meaning I’ve booked a fair share of hotels and tickets for events.
One thing I’ve noticed, and I’m sure others have noticed to, is the pressures that frontline teams continue to face. And from my experiences recently, there has been lack of service, or poor service delivered, when interacting with frontline teams. Across the hospitality industry alone, businesses are experiencing 40% staff shortages and higher customer expectations, the pressure is on!
Having spent many years as a customer service advisor in retail, I’ll be the first to admit that it’s hard meeting the needs and demands of every customer and let’s face it, customers can be brutal – our expectations are challenging and we expect the impossible at times. Regardless, I aimed for every complaint to be left with the customer feeling happy, or at the very least that their issue had been resolved respectfully.
But what’s been clear over the past few months when making bookings or purchases is the lack of understanding and ability to do the right thing by the customer. It feels as though the processes in place are getting in the way of delivering the best possible experience, and sadly, that means ‘people’ aren’t always coming first.
Here are a few examples of my own experiences recently:
I had been given a voucher last year and wanted to book a spa day that was due to expire.
I had booked a concert in London as a present for my partner but due to my own stupidity, we missed it as the date moved (Covid)!
My partner and I were staying overnight in Sheffield for a day festival with friends.
Okay, I like to complain, but only within reason! And what is clear to me across all of the above is that many customer service teams are finding themselves tied up with processes. So much so, that they have little freedom to be able to use their initiative and do the right thing by the customer. All of which could have been resolved through a simple phone call and systems that work together to aid communication.
At Brand Vista, we work with our clients to produce a customer experience map showing all the touchpoints of the journey. Through qualitative research with our clients’ teams and customers, we’re able to plot the below to help our clients deliver the best possible customer and colleague experience:
How customers currently act and feel
How our clients would love their customers to act and feel
Where there are gaps in the experience for improvement