Developing a CX program of work
As a CX manager there comes a time when you have to start implementing changes within your organisation to help you to meet and exceed your customers’ expectations. These are the initiatives that are going to ensure you reach the goals you’ve defined in your CX strategy.
This is where the rubber hits the road in CX management. You’ve done the planning and now you’re bringing your strategy to life. It’s time to start the doing.
In small companies, there might be just one or two things that are being done at any one time. But in large companies there’s more than likely going to be multiple projects in flight which means managing the lot as a complete program of work.
Compiling the list of initiatives
If you’re in a new role within the company (i.e. they haven’t had a CX Manager before), chances are there will already be things being done to improve customer experience organisation-wide. Start by going to the head of every department in the business and asking what improvement initiatives they’re currently working on and what’s in their pipeline. Once you have that list, determine which of those initiatives will have an impact on CX and collate them into a single list.
I’ve made this sound very easy but, in my experience, it isn’t. I’ve spent months chasing department heads for their improvement initiatives. In hindsight I should have initially met face-to-face with each of them, explained what I was doing and how it related to their objectives and the company’s objectives, answered any of their questions and, crucially, gotten their agreement to send me their list by a specified date.
If you’re not the first CX Manager within your company, your predecessor, if they had been in the role long enough, should have an existing list of initiatives that are currently planned or in-train to improve CX.
Do the initiatives align with your CX strategy?
Now you need to assess if what the company is working on to improve it’s CX is in line with your CX strategy. What are the expected outcomes of each of the initiatives on your list? Is it helping (or God forbid, hindering) the attainment of your CX goals?
It goes without saying that anything that isn’t in line with your strategy should have a line put through it immediately.
What you’re left with is a list of everything that the company is currently doing to improve CX that is consistent with your CX strategy. Your next task is to determine if there are any gaps. By that I mean cross-checking the expected outcome of each initiative against the strategic imperatives contained within your CX strategy.
During this phase, you’ll be asking yourself: will the work that is currently underway ensure we reach our goals? If not, you’ll need to develop new initiatives. How you do that is a topic for another post. Suffice it to say though that its always best to involve other key internal stakeholders.
Prioritizing the initiatives
Once you have your full list of CX-improving initiatives, it’s time to prioritise them. No business will have the resources to do everything at once so you’ll need to determine the order in which these projects are going to be rolled out. Prioritisation can be done in a number of ways: by ease of implementation, by cost to execute, by benefit gained or by a combination.
Define a list of criteria against which you’ll assess each initiative. Then weight these criteria and score each project against each criterion using a consistent scale. Now you have your weighted criteria and your scores for each project, you can work out the weighted score for each project by doing a fairly simple calculation:
(Weight of Criterion 1 x Score of Criterion 1) + (Weight of Criterion 2 x Score of Criterion 2) + (Weight of Criterion 3 x Score of Criterion 3) + …..
You now have a prioritised list of initiatives that comprise your organisation’s CX Program of Work. In a future post, I’ll outline the essential project management and change management concepts you need in your kitbag to ensure your initiatives are a raging success.
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About Ben Motteram
Ben Motteram is a customer experience expert and is one of the top 50 thought leaders to follow on Twitter. He passionately believes that providing an exceptional customer experience is the only sustainable competitive advantage!
He's a passionate evangelist for putting the customer at the heart of everything a business does and has over 20 years' experience in developing and implementing customer acquisition and retention strategies in strategic Sales, Marketing and Customer Experience roles.
Our interview with Ben Motteram
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