An annual survey conducted by market research company Ask Afrika since 2001, called the Ask Afrika Orange Index®, has ranked South Africans’ opinions about which companies are delivering the best customer service. They conduct 33 000 independent interviews and survey more than 110 companies across 22 industries. This year’s Top 20 overall winners both come from automotive brands, VW and Toyota, with the only bank on the list, Capitec, placing third.
I had a really interesting discussion with a prospective client recently. He is the MD of a multi franchise vehicle business. Successful? – no doubt. Customer-Centric? – I don’t think so.
It’s extraordinarily easy to make uneconomic investments in customer experience – much of the time and money ‘invested’ is wasted because organisations fail to understand the criticality of systems thinking and the need for ‘silo-busting.’ They also focus on how they ‘deliver’ experiences rather than understanding how people ‘have’ experiences. It is how people ‘have’ an experience that influences the choices they make in the pursuit of what they really want.
The term ‘sustainable company’ is spoken about and referred to fairly frequently these days. At the core of this trend is the fact that consumers and the general public are not satisfied with businesses that focus solely on short-term profit maximisation. People want businesses to be far more considerate of broad based human needs.