Four reasons ANZ firms are lagging in customer obsession – Forrester

Forrester has identified four key areas where firms in Australia and New Zealand are struggling in ‘customer obsession’.

Forrester’s new ‘Customer Obsession Assessment’ (COA) surveyed more than 1000 global executives to give firms a global benchmark for their customer-first habits. In one of Forrester’s latest reports, ‘Australia And New Zealand Firms Jump-Start Their Journey To Customer Obsession’, vice president and research director Michael Barnes identifies four key areas where ANZ firms are lacking in ‘customer obsession’.

“Many firms invest to improve their customer experience (CX) capabilities to better satisfy customers,” writes Barnes.

“But very few firms and their CMOs have a customer-obsessed strategy that extends beyond CX initiatives to include other parts of the organisation.”

According to Barnes, despite an increase in discussion of customer-centric attitudes in the ANZ, many firms are yet to demonstrate sufficient action.

Marketing director for Ansell Mitchell Mackey explains, “Translating the rhetoric of ‘customer-first’ into meaningful action and overcoming legacy attitudes remains hugely challenging.”

 

Create a customer-led culture

“Most ANZ firms have pockets of customer-obsessed employees but struggle to embrace processes that amplify and augment their good work,” says Barnes.

According to Forrester’s report, multiple public-sector agencies are addressing this by identifying internal champions of customer-centric attitudes to overcome a general culture of compliance.

 

Technology investment pay off

Forrester says the mature firms it surveyed in the ANZ excel at using software development resources to create CX differentiation.

Barnes advises businesses effectively engage with technology organisation and embrace agile processes and design thinking – critical to leveraging technology to keep pace with customer demands.

 

Secure executive buy-in

Forrester found that less mature firms in ANZ have not appointed C-level positions solely dedicated to customer experiences, citing the adage “a fish rots from the head.”

Barnes notes BT Financial Group, which appointed a CCO not to change the attitudes of thousands of employees, but to redirect the conversations among senior decision makers.

 

Measurement

According to Forrester’s report, less mature firms in ANZ are not effectively measuring key interactions along the customer journey and lack the cultural imperative to use metrics daily.

Barnes continues, “ANZ companies can learn from US federal government agencies that are successfully connecting CX success to mission success and coordinating across the organisation on the right metrics to track.”

 

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Image credit:Steven Lelham

Josh Loh
BY Josh Loh ON 2 October 2018
Josh Loh is a newswriter and editorial assistant at MarketingMag.com.au