Mopinion’s Ashley Williamson highlights the innovations in the UK customer experience sector, but calls for wider overall development to benefit customers.
Entries in the UK Customer Experience Awards 2014 demonstrate that British businesses are at the forefront of the customer experience sector - but there are still opportunities to evolve further, according to judge and UK Managing Director of Management software specialist Mopinion, Ashley Williamson. Now in its fifth year, the awards recognise, celebrate and support the contribution of UK-based organisations, teams and individuals that offer guidance for best practice and promote continuous improvement, learning and personal development in the industry.
Reflecting on his insights from being a judge at the UK Customer Experience Awards, Ashley commented, “Being a judge in the awards is as much about learning as it is about deciding which entries deserve to win. The entries this year have been outstanding and show that the UK customer experience sector is bustling with talent and innovation in the ways it serves the needs of the consumer. I have been fortunate enough to join the panel this year and to pour over entries from some of the most customer-savvy and talented teams in the UK, if not the world.”
The winners were announced at gala lunch on Thursday 25th September, following close scrutiny and debate by the judges in the morning. As well as reviewing the awards submission, each entry presented a live presentation to the panel of judges – with 50% of the marks awarded to each half of the entry process.
Ashley continued, “It was interesting to see the differences between some of the finalists and the winners in terms of their use of customer feedback metrics. The winners demonstrated use of the latest technologies whilst some of the runners up were working hard but using techniques that are somewhat behind the curve.”
The winners had a very clear strategy and investment in customer feedback techniques, as Ashley added, “What really stood out with the winning entries was that their customer feedback isn’t just used in isolation – insights are gained and used across the organisation to improve the way it works as a whole. Details from every touch-point are utilised, from the direct use of customer facilities and transactions to the passive and lasting footprint of repeated customer visits (such as financial data). This ensures the customer journey can evolve and improve to meet the needs of those that use it as well as the business providing the products and services. It’s a business model that all customer-facing businesses could learn from as it utilises existing contacts to improve the whole organisation and the way it engages with the market.”
The awards were organised by sector (including financial services, insurance, Hospitality, Leisure & Entertainment, Professional & Government Services & Utilities, Retail and Consumer Services, Technology and Telecoms and Transport, Automotive & Plant Hire) and also by discipline, with a number of awards for each. The awards also focused on specific people, with the categories recognising individuals and teams for their excellence.