So we are now just a couple of weeks from the New Year and so much has changed this year. It never fails to surprise me just how quickly customer expectations of service can develop. As each New Year begins I always try to think about what will be the important subjects we need to focus on for customers in the year ahead.
This is my list of subjects or trends that I think will shape 2016:
- There has been some consolidation and some strategic reversals, like Serco refocusing on the public sector. I expect a few more deals to take place next year.
- Companies are still struggling to get a single view of the customer even though it has been on their priority list for a long time now. Terms like omnichannel and Big Data appear to be less favoured and RPA is clearly the next big thing. The robots are coming.
- Security and Fraud are big areas of focus now. Companies can face an existential threat if they lose customer data, so all eyes are on how to protect important information.
- Suppliers of outsourced services are talking much more about the total cost of ownership now, rather than the lowest unit rate. It’s clear that companies are focusing on partnership with sustainable value and innovation.
- Several industries have quite specific problems. The utilities are struggling with volume and a seamless customer experience. Financial services are still regaining the confidence of customers after years of scandal and regulatory pressures. Retailers are finding the customer journey expected by mobile and online customers very hard to deliver. Telcos are moving into content, but their own infrastructure often causes delivery problems.
With all this is mind there is an exciting 2016 ahead. The relationship between companies that work on customer experience solutions is changing and innovation often arises from partnership now. I believe that many of the challenges faced by companies with a customer journey or experience issue are going to be resolved in 2016 because the importance of building a business around the customer experience has now been acknowledged.
What do you think will be important for the customer experience in 2016? Leave a comment here or get in touch via my LinkedIn profile.
Photo by Neil Kremer licensed under Creative Commons.