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Is Your Customer Experience Measuring Up?

Customer experience indicators often provide a general guide as to what is good or bad, but don’t enable root cause identification and tell business what to fix. As a result, they provide little in the way of granular insight around what needs to change for each touch point.

Many of these “customer experience” indicators do not assess the experience itself – rather, they focus on customer satisfaction using a binary approach to concentrate on satisfied vs. dissatisfied, or willingness vs. unwillingness to recommend. As a result, they fail to acknowledge the complexity of the end-to-end customer experience and customers’ expectations, pain points, and emotional states throughout the journey.

Performing qualitative research (especially ethnographic or contextual) before embarking on quantitative research has several benefits, including ensuring that a company understands the complexities of the customer journey. Qualitative research also enables full understanding of what’s important to customers. Making assumptions in terms of customers’ requirements can result in generic metrics that are not relevant to the South African market—or even to your business or industry. This means that companies could be investing in the wrong solutions for improving their customer experience.

Another common pitfall in customer experience measurement is isolating customer experience from the rest of the business. Customer experience measurements cannot exist in isolation and an indicator needs to be linked to outcome metrics, including revenue. Identifying correlations between customer experience metrics and revenue should be considered as a means for prioritising customer experience improvement. Additionally, the indicator needs to be operationalised to ensure that the entire organisation is united behind a common goal and incentivised to achieve these goals.

Finally, using a benchmark can help businesses understand how they rank in comparison to their competitors and what opportunities may exist for improvement and differentiation. Benchmarking can be particularly challenging in the emerging market context: while there are several indicators in the South African market, most have not been developed in South Africa, for South Africa. In response to these challenges, Deloitte has developed a barometer (the Deloitte eXperience Index, or DXi) that takes into consideration the unique needs and profiles of South African consumers and businesses.

The DXi also addresses other common pitfalls in measuring and optimising the customer experience. The DXi:

  • Is granular enough to enable actionable insight
  • Does not make assumptions around what customers are looking for
  • Allows for linkages to other metrics – including outcome metrics
  • Enables relevant benchmarking

About the author

Deloitte South Africa

Deloitte is one of the country's leading professional services firms in Southern Africa, and is dedicated to assisting companies succeed in the business environment- whether it be through our tax, audit, consulting or financial advisory services.

At Deloitte, we understand that solutions are not just a static one dimensional report, but rather, an integrated and innovative answer that helps our clients to better understand key complex industry issues. Not only do our solutions assist our clients in making strategic business decisions, but our unique approach also allows companies to succeed in a competitive business environment by staying ahead of industry trends. Through the collective expertise of nearly 3600 people in 8 cities in South Africa and in 16 cities in Southern Africa, and as a member firm of the global organisation Deloitte Touche Tohmats, we have access to deep insightful and intellectual capital of more than 150 000 people worldwide.

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