Where does customer effort fit?
The Henley Centre for Customer Management (HCCM) recent report on how effective customer effort is as a measure of customer experience is well worth a read. But is effort or ‘ease of doing business’ just yet another part of the jigsaw when trying to identify how to measure the customers experience? HCCM define customer effort as a customers’ perception of the amount of time and energy that they have to spend in an encounter with a brand or organisation. They also go onto recognise that effort is effectively a cost and that as with any costs there is desire to minimise it or get ‘value for effort’.
Surely no matter what particular elements of the customer relationship you are trying to measure, there is the need to understand all of those elements and their interrelationship. Understanding the big picture then allows you to delve into the key elements of it and gain that “satisfied customer”, or one that will recommend you to a friend.
In our experience this is best summed up by considering the value for money or “worth what paid for” that the customer perceives against dealing with one supplier verses another. This Customer Value Management view takes into consideration the balance that customers have when considering the cost of dealing with a company when receiving a good or service in return. That cost is likely to be a combination of the actual monetary value of the transaction, and the cost of doing business e.g. the effort.