Lean six sigma customer service
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Lean six sigma customer service

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It’s a well known fact: More companies focus on customer service effectiveness during a downturn than when sales are buoyant and the economy is on the boil. The approach is right. Customer retention ...

It’s a well known fact: More companies focus on customer service effectiveness during a downturn than when sales are buoyant and the economy is on the boil. The approach is right. Customer retention becomes a key focus area during a downturn, as it is 10 times more expensive to create a totally new customer than selling some more of your existing product portfolio to existing customers. Most companies lose some 20-25% of their customer base annually for a variety of reasons. An effective retention strategy will in fact be able to squeeze growth out of arresting attrition! Many companies will also take the approach that the existing customer base is an asset worth protecting and what better way to keep customers than by providing exceptional customer service!
Lean-Six Sigma may conjure up visions of a complex production / logistics based initiatives designed to improve industrial processes and drive costs out. Little is in fact known about lean-Six Sigma applied to the customer service environment. In this paper we will explore some approaches and find some pretty good arguments why lean-six sigma based programs are particularly effective in the customer service environment.

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Lean six sigma customer service Lean six sigma customer service Document Transcript

  • Your companyhas a large Customer Retentioninvestment in theexisting customer A Top Priority in a Downbase. In fact it is Economyyour company’sbiggest asset.How well are youdoing in terms of A Lean-Six Sigma Approach toserving existing Customer Service Excellencecustomers asmeans ofprotecting thisasset ? Werner Hess Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • IntroductionNewcomers to the sales environment may perceive the salesIt’s a well known fact: More companies focus on customer service effectiveness during adownturn than when sales are buoyant and the economy is on the boil. The approach isright. Customer retention becomes a key focus area during a downturn, as it is 10 timesmore expensive to create a totally new customer than selling some more of your existingproduct portfolio to existing customers. Most companies lose some 20-25% of theircustomer base annually for a variety of reasons. An effective retention strategy will in factbe able to squeeze growth out of arresting attrition! Many companies will also take theapproach that the existing customer base is an asset worth protecting and what better wayto keep customers than by providing exceptional customer service!Lean-Six Sigma may conjure up visions of a complex production / logistics based initiativesdesigned to improve industrial processes and drive costs out. Little is in fact known aboutlean-Six Sigma applied to the customer service environment. In this paper we will exploresome approaches and find some pretty good arguments why lean-six sigma based programsare particularly effective in the customer service environment. Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • Key-ConceptsThe customer service environment is perhaps one of the most challenging to get to gripswith in the organisation. The challenge is of course linked to the fact that one tries tomanage processes that are largely not directly under the company’s control. The furtherchallenge is that costs will always an issue, while customer service effectiveness will need toreach internal and external service level agreements. It is all aboutmanaging the paradox. Costs DOWN & service and customerexperience UP. It is a perpetual struggle to get the balance right.Delivering continuously improving customer experiences at an ever Managing thereducing cost per unit of customer service delivered. paradox:What does Lean and Six Sigma have to do with effective customerservice? Service UPLets firstly examine the concepts; Costs DOWNLean is a systematic approach of eliminating process waste so thatevery step adds value to the customer. EmployeeSix sigma is a process improvement methodology that strives to Satisfactionachieve levels of process accuracy and consistency in order to reduceerrors to a level of only 3 errors per million opportunities! UPTogether, the concepts of Lean and Six Sigma can go a long way interms of clarifying what needs to done in the customer service Churn DOWNenvironment, to what standards and how to deliver exactly to customerexpectations.CTQ or CCTQ are two concepts that clarify what it is that the customer wants. C=critical T=toand Q= quality. CCTQ = Critical to customer quality. These definitions, when effectivelyapplied, create the opportunity for the service centre to deliver to known customerexpectations.FCR refers to first call resolution in the case of contact centre operations and ties in veryclosely with the objectives of lean, “Right First Time”. The implication here is that customerservice should be able to resolve all customer issues the first time they are encountered. Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service View slide
  • Merging Right Brain customer centricity with Left Brain ProcesscomplianceOne concept that adds to the paradoxical nature of effective customer service delivery is thebalance that needs to be there between a process centred approach to delivering the rightquality of customer service and the “people” element. After all; this about people dealingwith people. You want to be able to take control of the customers issues and resolve themimmediately, while not losing the essential human touch, or what is referred to as the“relationship” in customer relationship management. Seems quite a challenge; Balancinghard process focused, doing it right first time actions, with the necessary addition of humanempathy and understanding in order to create the right level of positive customerexperience. Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service View slide
  • The 4 components of great customer service While customer service delivery can be regarded as a process (which it is), it is just as important to inject the right balance of empathy and compliance into the mix. The actual service delivery doesn’t just happen by itself. It needs to be designed. Providing a framework for customer service agents is an essential to do for most companies, so that the assurance is there, that every customer interaction is optimised from a business process delivery and customer experience point of view. The “4 Components” framework goes a long way toDesign the create customer friendly and highly efficient customer service processes.right deliveryplatform based Taskon: Task very simply refers to the process side of customer service delivery. The concept of process efficiency and doing it right first time • Task creates process and task readiness, so that the customer requirement can be dealt with effectively and efficiently. • Treatment • Tangibles Treatment • Education Imagine an environment where customer treatment is pre-defined. The instance where the customer deals with the organisation is defined, so that every one of your customer interactions is executed at the same level of rigour throughout all of your customer touch points and interactions. Treatment can be defined along the lines of response and responsiveness, ownership and accountability, and achieves goals for both the customer and the company. Tangibles Tangibles can also be referred to as “measurables.” In other words it refers to how accurately we deliver the customer service from the customer, as well as the company’s Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • point of view. Accuracy translates to “first call resolution” and a high level of customersatisfaction.EducationEducation enables the customer service agent to own the customer experience bycontinuously educating the customer in terms of process steps that the customer shouldfollow, to make the experience a pleasant one.How can a Lean – Six Sigma customer service effectiveness programimprove your customer service delivery? • Lean process definition creates an opportunity for you to not only understand the key customer delivery processes, it also drives waste from your process. It is inevitable for waste and duplication to have infiltrated your process environment over time, impacting process effectiveness negatively. Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • • Six Sigma process optimisation ensures that your processes are laid out to align with the VOC, (voice of the customer) achieving a level of customer centricity at the outset. Customer calls become predictable and enables your customer service agents to respond to customer requests effectively. • Lean skills provide frame works for customer service delivery and implements a “right brain – left brain” culture in your customer service agents. This level of mental dexterity enables you to deliver so called “delightful customer experience” alongside effective delivery.Carpedia use six sigma strength, assessment tools to analyse opportunities for process,service level and customer experience improvement. Our analysts normally spend a weekin your customer service environment and can provide you with very accurateassessments of how you will be able to drive up the effectiveness of your customer serviceenvironment. Should opportunities for improvement be present, Carpedia can help youdesign and deliver a lean-six sigma program that will improve effectiveness by 20-35% ,sustainably! Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • About Carpedia Consulting…Carpedia Consulting is an internationally relevant management consultancy firm, dedicatedto assisting clients to improve sales and profits through the implementation of improvementprograms. Our approach is what makes us unique. The way we design, develop and executeour programs is hands-on, solutions-based and excellence driven.Our programs are customized to the needs of your organisation and are designed to ensuresignificant and sustainable improvements are made both internally and externally – by thesales team, for the customer.www.carpedia.co.zaAbout Werner Hess…Werner Hess has spent 20 years of his career in various sales, marketing and leadership positionswith Bayer, Triad Electronics, GE and GE Plastics before serving as managing director of GE Plasticsand Polymerland. Werner’s first experience in the world of consulting came about when he joinedProudfoot Consulting as Director of Business Development, which included several internationalassignments in Europe and the USA, leading sales effectiveness projects for global clients. Werner’scurrent company, Carpedia Consulting is a specialist niche consultancy focused on sales and profitimprovement.Werner’s latest book, The Science of Selling has just been published and reveals approaches,systems and processes that can be implemented to create a successful sales platform.Werner can be reached on: whess@carpedia.co.za Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service
  • Carpedia Consulting (Pty) LtdPO Box 1701GALLO Manor2052Building 2Country Club EstatesWoodlands DriveWoodmeadSandtonSouth AfricaTel: 27-11 – 258-8813Fax: 27-11- 258-8511Mob: 27-82-888-0228Email: info@carpedia.co.zawww.carpedia.co.za Carpedia Consulting (Pty) Ltd – www.carpedia.co.za – Lean Six Sigma Customer Service