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The 3Ps in Driving Customers Perception

by Jeannie Quek Consultant, SEA FUSION Consulting Sdn Bhd In this era where only Service (and not Price) is the key differentiator of an organisation against competitions, phrases such as Exceptional, Branded & Distinct Customer Experience no longer sounds foreign to any customer service practitioners. As the quote says, If we dont take care of our customers, someone else will. Organisations are finding ways to create that special emotional connection with customers in order to WOW them. In every organisation, regardless of the industry it belongs to and its nature of business, there are three key factors that influence customers perception towards the organisation. Coincidentally all of them start with the letter P Product, People and Process. Product: The types of products and/ or services offered by an organisation will affect customers perception and experience. In this dynamic business world, organisation needs to evolve constantly and continuously in meeting customers needs. Take the consumer based industry for instance, electronic giant such as Sony which during more than a decade ago, was the brand in provision of home appliances. In recent years, we noticed that Sony has added its product range to cameras and mobile phones. Such organisations strategic move clearly demonstrated how organisations continuously innovate in order to gain industry market share. In organisations that constantly strive to offer products and/ or services that meet customers demands, the Marketing or in some cases, also the R&D department plays a vital role. The key method to find out what customer likes or dislike is to directly ask them for feedbacks and suggestions and incorporating them into future product and/ or service enhancements. The ability to listen to your customers and then take actions to meet customers evolving needs is the key differentiator for a winning organisation. People: As any customer service front line would agree, the People element is viewed as the most important factor in driving customer perception. Front liners such as the Contact Centre and Sales Agents are the ambassadors of the organisations. The actions they take; the choices of words they use when interacting with customers; the behaviour they display when handling customers, would affect the customers perception towards the organisation. A customer would not care exactly which customer service representative he or she interacts with, as they represent the same company. As such in the mission to exceed customers expectations, organisations must ensure consistency and continuity in the service experience provided by ALL employees. In doing so, it is a common practice for organisations to incorporate standards / Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), training, monitoring and coaching into its internal human capital management process.

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Process: In order to function in a structured and manageable manner, organisations cannot avoid but to put in place different processes, which include policies and procedures. Personally, as a customer, I have came across organisations (that I am a customer of) that have put in place processes that are not customer oriented. The impact to me as a customer ultimately is negative experience because it caused inconveniences / hassle for me to do business with the organisation as a result of a newly created socalled internal policy. The primary learning area here is, whenever an organisation intends to change or revise its processes, the first thing is to think in the customers shoes. Keep in mind to ask questions such as If I am the customer and the organisation that I deal with impose such policy / procedure, how would I feel?; How would this impact my experience as a customer? In conclusion, Product, People and Process are the key drivers of customer perceptions. All drivers are equally important and do complement one another. Imagine this: an organisation offers a top quality product but has a team of unprofessional customer service agents. Will customers continue to purchase from the organisation? High probability they will not, or they will look out for alternatives such as a competitor which offers the same product quality but with better service. Organisations should focus on all three key drivers in order to provide the branded customer experience. Any element if neglected, will not make the puzzle complete.

About FUSION CONSULTING and the Author: Jeannie serves as Consultant, SEA for FUSION Consulting Sdn Bhd the leading specialist in Workforce Optimisation (WFO) Solution, Human Capital Development and Business Consulting services in the South East Asia region. Her areas of expertise include Contact Centre Operations Review and Assessment, Monitoring and Evaluation of Call Quality & Face-to-Face Service Interactions, Operations Management, Workforce Management, Performance Management, and Customer Feedback Management. To find out how FUSION CONSULTING can assist your organisation to implement a successful customer feedback strategy, please give us a call at +603 7494 0399, or email us at jeannie@fusioncomms.com

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