How Operational Excellence Affects Customer Service

October 21, 2015

One of our clients works in the corporate space delivering programmes to corporates. They work with upper management teams within corporates such as Bank of NZ, Two Degrees, McDonalds and Fonterra to improve their productivity (and creativity).

Their delivery of customer service is exceptional. It needs to be in order for them to have reached the level of success that they have. Their focus has been on the delivery of their product and in building relationships, but at the point of meeting them, their time and resources were stretched. This resulted in an area of their business falling squarely in the weaknesses box of their SWOT analysis and in order to achieve world domination and take their business to the next level, they needed to improve on this.

This area of their business is Operational Excellence and means their systems, processes and procedures don’t match the same levels as their delivery. In day to day business this has resulted in feeling like they are juggling too many balls in the air. For example:

  • Have they followed up on their proposal to John Smith for the keynote next month?
  • How can they utilise the software they are paying monthly subscriptions for to help manage the details?
  • Is this meeting in his calendar a call or a skype?
  • When they took on a new trainer, what information did they have on hand for the induction?

We were bought into the relationship to help catch some of these balls.

  • To manage some of the day to day admin so it’s done timely, and frees up my clients so they can concentrate on what they do best.
  • To evaluate software and see where it can add value to their operations. Implement these changes and make them easy to integrate in the day to day so the software is a) used, and b) adds value.
  • To start documenting these processes and building a resource library so inductions are managed better, workshop preparation time is reduced and procedures are no longer in the ‘heads’ of our clients … they are now a physical asset and documented part of the operation.

These steps toward operational excellence add value to their customer service. Customer service is not about sales support! It’s about making sure every single interaction your customer has with your business is a positive and beneficial one. It’s about having faith (not to mention peace of mind) that your operations support and add value to your customers’ experience. Because, at the end of the day, without customers there is no business.

Think of it like this (and I can’t help it, the All Black’s game against the French this weekend in the Rugby World Cup semi’s and I’m still buzzing); if the All Black organisation didn’t have operational excellence do you think those players would have the health, skills, attitude and strategy it takes to win on game day? Having it doesn’t mean they will win, delivery comes from the players, but they have the tools needed to deliver thanks to operational excellence.

How can you improve your operational excellence?

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