Who Owns Customer Experience?

ITA Group

CX on wood blocks

Hint: If you are looking for a sole owner than you’re going about the question incorrectly. The customer experience (CX) isn’t “owned” by one person or a single department. Just like how marketing and sales are most effective when they join forces, the customer experience should be an organization-wide effort.

A challenge could be in definition: CX means different things to different departments. That’s why leaders must be clear about the target. For some organizations, improving CX might mean developing a mobile application with an eye-catching design and user-friendly interface. Others are putting a lot of effort in how to speed up the product delivery using outsourced delivery mechanisms such as the food industry using Uber Eats. And still others are elevating the customer service standards by looking at alternative channels to deliver top-notch services.

These days, customers don’t want to simply be served—they want a seamless and consistent experience across different touchpoints, which means it’s time for organizations to think omni-channel. Creating a positive customer experience is imperative to compete and meet rising expectations.

The happier your customers are with your brand, the longer they stay with you. So, if you treat your customers poorly and ignore their feedback, then they're more likely to leave.

This is why companies that deliver a superior customer experience outperform their competition. Combine different channels, both online and offline, and tie experiences across these touchpoints to ensure that the customer can comfortably interact with your band.

The Champions of Customer Experience: Building Your Core Team

Instead of trying to find just one owner, you can build your strongest team by bringing together different roles that directly impact the CX:

1. Marketing

The marketing team should keep customers up to date on your product or service, and helps customers trust your brand with the relevant information from your company. Remember, the best content should inspire the customer to take action—that is, to continue buying or subscribing. When the content is relatable, it will also have a shareable factor to it—the customer may share this content on their social media or talk about it to others. Personalizing content through the customer experience on websites, emails or any engagement, will lead to building better connections between customers and companies.

2. Sales

Your sales people have the insights into how sales and selling works for your product and/or service and are crucial in understanding what generates cross-selling and upselling opportunities. The best way to ensure that you are focused on your customer in the sales process is to actively listen to what they tell you. Really understanding their needs is critical to you offering a solution that satisfies them for the long-term.

3. Customer Service

Customer service teams interact directly with customers all the time, which allows them to gather real-time information on customer behavior. The best customer service teams are taking the initiative and reaching out to customers first, before any issues arise, so they can improve engagement and offer an outstanding customer experience. By ensuring problems are solved before they even arise, customer service teams are actually turning their clients into loyal advocates.

4. UX Design

User experience must always be seen in the larger context of customer experience, otherwise it makes no sense even when it is done successfully. Customers want both a good product and great service. Designing a user-friendly website won’t mean a thing if your warehouse isn’t able to satisfy the deluge of orders and your customer support agents are not able to handle the inflow of calls, the overall customer experience turns sour.

5. Product Management

Product managers already have a deep understanding of customer needs and wants. They sit at the cross-functional intersection of the organization—across business, design and technology. Because of this, they have a unique perspective and are in a position to influence change everywhere.

Tout CX Leaders Rather Than Owners

While customer experience should be the result of a complete organization-wide strategy, decisions still have to be made, and someone has to make them. Marketing is often the first touchpoint for customer interaction, so CMOs can be seen as holding the keys to customer experience. CSR teams might be your last—those who check-in with the client and monitors social feedback after the sale of your product or service.

Ultimately, it takes organization-wide collaboration to positively impact the overall customer experience. Encourage synergy among your CX shareholders to better ensure lasting and profitable customer relationships.

The best way to begin improving your customer experience is by looking within. You cannot expect a great customer experience if you don’t also have a great employee experience. Learn more about the impact of the employee experience on the customer experience