Understanding customers’ needs and desires has always been a challenge for brands but post-COVID-19, shifting expectations and the changing environment has made the need greater still.
However, there are two ways to look at this situation. You can either see challenges or can find opportunities that come with the new digital-first mandate. In a hybrid reality, where the physical and digital worlds merge, experience is the key brand differentiator, creating opportunity for brands to differentiate from their competitors through the delivery of world-class customer experience (CX).
Recently, Melissa O'Brien, Research and Operations Leader, HFS Research joined the Startek® CX webinar series to reveal findings from proprietary research conducted with 300 U.S.-based customer experience decision-makers. This research insight shines a light on how customer experience strategy is evolving compared with other stakeholder experiences and how the future of experience strategy will unfold.
The digital dilemma
The hybrid world has turned experience strategy on its head. Creating digital solutions for customers and employees is critical to create brand differentiation. Therefore, Employee Experience and Customer Experience go hand in hand. Brands must align automation, people and process.
The pandemic shock exacerbated the challenges of an already stretched-thin CX organization. Now, CX leaders’ greatest challenge is developing experiences that bridge physical and virtual realities
Knowing and understanding customers is the second-greatest challenge where many companies struggle with data strategy and governance to create a holistic view of their customers.
The good news! Basic execution and budget constraints are not prevalent challenges. Although this may change with a shifting economic outlook.
“Get regular polls and feedback from your employees and customers. Make sure you are listening to them regularly and understanding their experiences and then using those data and insights to improve your experience strategy constantly.”Melissa O'Brien, Research and Operations Leader, HFS Research
Changing the leadership guard
According to the HFS survey findings, the role of the Chief Experience Officer had an overwhelming (93%) positive impact on CX. A new leadership strategy is emerging to take on all things “experience”.
Chief Experience Officer positions are becoming more essential than ever and are an integral part of digital transformation. Savvy companies are investing in leadership to drive the experience agenda, generate growth and open new streams of value. But world-class experiences are not made in a single department and alignment across the C-suite is imperative to experience strategy for better business outcomes.
Avoiding experience pitfalls
Jumping into the implementation of new tech and processes without analyzing the existing gaps and timely planning may lead to pitfalls. The success formula lies in seamless orchestration between speed, strategy, partnerships and data mindset. HFS research has identified five experience pitfalls that organizations must avoid.
The future of experience in a hybrid world
According to research, digital transformation leaders strongly feel that the future of the staffing model for CX outsourcing is Humans+Bots. The growth and training of agents and a customer-centric approach must be prioritized alongside a future-focused experience strategy based on foundations of adaptability, agility and preparedness for change. Brands have the opportunity to further enhance the experience strategy by using data as a foundation to gather the insights and information required to execute a digital strategy that not only meets hybrid needs but also creates differentiation.
At Startek we understand that it is the outcome that determines the success of any program. Our approach combines people, data and technology to build experience driven by meaningful, actionable insights.
Contact us to learn more.