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Employee Experience

Great Customer Experience means Engaging your People First

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Look after your people and they will look after your customers.

Not long ago, employee experience (EX) was where customer experience (CX) used to be years before that: acknowledged as interesting and thought provoking, but dismissed quickly at the mention of linking it to business profit. Now, the link between the experience your customers receive and employee engagement is as clear as day; Temkin Group’s recent study showed that “companies that excel at customer experience have one-and-a-half times as many engaged employees as customer experience laggards do”. Gallup comments “companies with highly engaged workforces outperform their peers by 147% in earnings per share”

There is no disputing the benefit that employee engagement has on productivity and bottom line; CX and EX go hand in hand.

Chris Garthwaite, CEO and Founder of CGA, has a unique vision on how brands and organisations will win in the future. CX has come a long way in the last 15 years since Chris founded CGA. In the beginning it was about delivering functional service consistency through operational service excellence and exploring new channels to market. As the confidence and influence of consumers has grown through the choices they have available the branded experience has become a key point of differentiation. Capturing the heart of customers has become a main board agenda item.

The compound effect of increased convenience, digital connectivity, social interaction, real time feedback and economic disparity is causing customers to radically rethink personal priorities and relationships. In a more anonymous and time pressured world a more emotional relationship is emerging with customers who are choosing to engage with organisations and brands that are sincere, authentic, responsive, caring and personal in the way they engage. Customers increasingly want to engage at an individual level, valuing personal authentic interactions.

Quoting Sir Richard Branson “Customers do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your customers”

So, do we actually ask our people – “why do you work here? What are you passionate about?” In short, do we understand what motivates them intrinsically to engage in the work at hand? Are we able to design an employee experience that’s tailored to their drivers and desires?

Chris comments “it is critical to look at the employee experience from the outside in, with CX principles in mind; not from an HR angle but from a human angle. It is all about creating a sincere culture of wanting to support and serve but doing so will demand a deep understanding of your employees’ needs and a continuous effort to do so. Driving an exceptional customer experience and knowing where to focus effort and attention, however, is increasingly complex. Experiences demand a blend of skills – rational process and seamless delivery excellence, logistically pleasing to the head; emotional experiences that capture the heart; and individual engagement to feed the soul!”

Chris is an experienced keynote speaker and his Head, Heart & Soul concept has inspired many audiences to rethink their priorities for Customer Experience Transformation– it is simple: look after your people and they will look after your customers.

For company leaders trying to get their arms around EX in 2017 / 2018:

  1. Make ‘employee experience’ a top priority
  2. Designate senior team leadership to own it
  3. Listen to their voice
  4. Measure it
  5. Agree action points for change and then
  6. Build into your CX roadmap for transformation

Come and talk to us about our Voice of Employee and Voice of Customer measurement programmes. Click here to book a call


Why CX? Why now? The urgency to invest in CX is rising

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Successfully measuring your customer experience (CX) can optimise business performance

Whether your company is successful and growing like crazy or it’s currently going through a bad patch and needing some care and attention, you need more than ever, to have a closer look at your customer experience (CX) and how you take care of your customers.

Chris Garthwaite, CEO at CGA, comments ”A great Customer Experience (CX) performance improvement program can ensure that your growth continues, potentially more profitably, and if you’re in trouble, it can help stop the corporate bleeding and drive you towards a faster turnaround. Above all, success here will drive you towards the critical outcome of optimising how your business performs.”

The truth of the matter is that many companies are not getting the high level acceptance they need to sign off on enterprise wide CX programs and so are only dipping their toes, silo fashion, into the CX pool. For example, you may be already measuring Net Promoter Score…but may not understand how to drive performance improvement. Boards need to be convinced of the link between customer experience performance improvement and increased business performance.

CGA has been at the leading edge of Business Performance Improvement by providing and measuring better customer experience for over 16 years. We have found that every company in every industry can potentially leverage great customer experiences for business gain by improving and optimising the way they perform. Depending on your business, the benefits of CX can include higher customer retention; faster revenue growth; the ability to command a price premium; lower operating costs; less regulatory pressure; and more engaged employees which all lead to better and more improved business performance.

Across all of the industries and geographies we operate in, we observe 3 commercial imperatives that win over executives who have previously been sceptical of the impact of successful CX transformation programmes:

  1. A CX measurement programme which monitors the most relevant customer interactions
  2. Customer insight which correlates tightly to existing business metrics and analysis
  3. Delivering agile operational evidence to prove ROI and the business case for CX improvement initiatives

CGA can help you:

  1. identify all your key customer interactions
  2. discover whether you’re measuring them effectively, and
  3. indicate where you can derive clear business value

Talk to one of our Practitioners about how CGA’s CX measurement assessment can help you turn your CX program into clear business value.

The Search for Elusive Sales Growth in the FMCG Sector

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‘Top-up shopping’: How changing shopper behaviour has been driving growth in discounters and the convenience channel

Over the past 4 years research shows that the 50 largest FMCG global companies have found recent growth more elusive, growing only 0.3 percent on average per year. By contrast, midsize companies have expanded sales by 3.8 percent and small companies by 10.2 percent. Once average players have upped their game and larger players are finding it much harder to differentiate themselves

However changing shopper behaviour has been driving growth in discounters and the convenience channel. British consumers are more demanding in their choices, and less inclined to buy large baskets in large stores on a weekly basis.

The Convenience sector is therefore showing continued healthy growth, but with 75% of stores being independents, the challenges of addressing this sector efficiently demand a rethink of priorities and resources:

  1. Creating loyalty with retailer customers who like to ‘shop around’ to get the best deals
  2. Presenting locally relevant sales propositions and growth plans
  3. Remaining front-of-mind with a target audience who tend to be digital ‘laggards’
  4. Maintaining healthy and productive supplier-customer relationships, even if route-to-market is indirect

Graham Ryan, leading CX Practitioner for the FMCG sector, comments Customer journey mapping is a well-established discipline in understanding consumer journeys, but applying the technique to the B2B Convenience Retail Customer has already identified significant incremental growth opportunities. ‘Top up shopping’ in particular has seen recent growth which has had a direct impact on the convenience store sector. This is a critical area for FMCG organisations to understand the retailers’ journey from their perspective and to consequently deliver a better customer experience.”

CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAPPING: An enabling framework to identify sustainable growth

CGA’s Heartbeat® methodology has successfully identified both growth drivers as well as efficiency gains in this sector.

Identifying the gaps between customer expectation and current delivery is where we start. Based on that insight we work to define a blueprint for the future customer experience and how an organisation can allocate the most efficient use of omni-channel resource to deliver real performance improvement. CGA will also deliver real-time metrics for experience performance improvement which can be correlated with regular operational KPI’s to validate decision making.

Stage 1 – Identify the gaps between customer expectation and current delivery
Stage 2 – Use the insight to define a blueprint for the future customer experience
Stage 3 – Allocate the most efficient use of omni-channel resource to deliver real performance improvement
Stage 4 – Deliver real-time metrics to track experience performance improvement
Stage 5 – Use these metrics to correlate operational KPI’s to validate decision making

The most forward-looking FMCG organisations recognise that such data will help them better understand—and expand into—high-growth areas.

Need more information? Talk to our experienced FMCG team click here

‘Employee Experience is the Future’ – Chris Garthwaite talks to Tip TV

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Chris Garthwaite, CEO and Founder of CGA Experience, talks to Tip TV CEO Nick Batsford about how ’employee experience’ is key to transforming customer experience for any business.

If you would like to talk to Chris personally about his vision for 21st Century Customer Engagement then get in touch. We would love to hear from you

Follow Chris on Twitter

Renault: Re-thinking the Dealership Experience

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Congratulations to our client Renault for taking No 1 spot for ‘Best Car Dealer 2016’ as voted for by Auto Express readers!

CGA are delighted to share the results of this recent customer experience poll, click here to find out which manufacturers have the most trustworthy car dealers and which ones are not coming out on top.

Renault is one of the world’s leading automotive and since 2013, Renault and CGA have worked in partnership to ensure that its customer experience proposition matched the needs and expectations of the emerging customer market.  As a CX transformation consultancy our brief was to propose the ideal customer experience to support Renault’s strategic service ambition across all countries. The results are and continue to be phenomenal – as well as consistently high rankings on customer experience polls – Renault is also achieving superior financials. Read our case study and take a look at their recently released top line commercial results.

The dealership experience in general is as old as the car industry itself but whilst cars have changed and continue to evolve and innovate, the retail experience remains much the same. Extending brand relationships to beyond the car is essential in today’s flooded customer market and a strong dealer network can certainly tip the balance in favour of one brand over another. Many brands offer many different models, in addition to countless configurations and the average salesperson at a dealership can struggle to expertly educate shoppers on an increasingly complex number of choices.

CGA has impressive credentials within the automotive industry and has worked on transformation projects with Hyundai, Michelin and Inchcape amongst others. Our economic analysis help our clients to build a robust business case for transformation by quantifying both cost-efficiency savings and enhanced revenue benefits. By systematically measuring and managing a brand’s new customer experience we are able to then link improved customer experience to new commercial value generated.
Talk to us about how we can help you re think your dealership experience

Well done Renault!

Delivering a Customer Experience for the ‘Millenials’.

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Our very own Chris Garthwaite has just come off stage at the DSA Conference today ~ having delivered an insightful keynote on delivering exceptional customer experience in a changing marketplace.

We are delighted that Chris has been asked to speak alongside Jim Lawless at this year’s DSA Conference

Chris is regarded as one of the most exciting and provocative speakers in the industry. He is widely recognised as a leading pioneer of innovative customer experience solutions in an ever changing market and has delivered measureable transformation programmes across a range of global organisations across almost every sector.

If you would like to talk to Chris personally about his vision for 21st Century Customer Engagement then get in touch. We would love to hear from you

Follow Chris on Twitter

Ryan Smith’s Qualtrics Capitalizes On The Rise Of The ‘Experience Economy’

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A Series of Forbes Insights Profiles of Thought Leaders Changing the Business Landscape:  Ryan Smith, Founder and CEO, Qualtrics.

CGA are proud to be Platinum partners of Qualtrics and a recent trip to Qualtrics’ Insight Summit in Salt Lake City proved fascinating – particularly on Disruptive Innovation by Clayton Christensen, along with brand presentations from the likes of Allianz, Adidas, Michelin, GE and Air BNB amongst many others.

We want to share with you this Forbes article on the ‘Rise of the Experience Economy’ by Ryan Smith, Founder & CEO of Qualtrics.

Come and talk to us about how the business landscape is rapidly changing and how CGA can help future proof business brands

The Experience Gap

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Transforming Customer Experience: closing the gap between customer expectation and actual delivery?

In our increasingly 24/7, Omni-channel digital world, meeting customer expectations and adding value is a tough challenge. Why? Because transactional business models are being disrupted by new digital propositions that provide consumers with convenience and access to a wide array of products in increasingly new and innovative ways.
Leadership teams are under pressure to understand the value of their future customers and quickly identify how to improve the current service experience. Which is a tough ask when organisational transformation and structural change may be required to future-proof the business. Understandably they ask themselves: How can I mitigate the risks involved, and what will the ROI be?

Chris Garthwaite, our leading CX practitioner comments, “in this more anonymous and time pressured world we are seeing a more emotional customer emerging, one who is now choosing to engage with brands that are sincere, authentic, responsive, caring and personal in the way they engage.”

In a renowned survey conducted by Fred Reichheld, 80% of companies believe they deliver a ‘superior service’ but only 8% of their customers agreed.  These results have been proclaimed as ‘The Experience Gap’ by many within the CX industry and exist because businesses simply aren’t recognising the importance of their customers.

So how do organisations close the gap between customer expectation and actual delivery? For brands and organisations to win in future, success will involve transformation of the way they themselves think and behave. It will demand a deep understanding of customer needs and a sincere culture of wanting to support and serve their customers.

This requires a consistent focus on individual relationships that are valued not just driven by financial transactions and efficiency. But knowing where to focus attention and effort is increasingly complex and customers are increasingly promiscuous. What’s required is a blend of skills. Both a rational and systemic process and a emotional experience that captures the customer’s heart.

  • Customer Experience: Delight at every touchpoint
  • Employee Experience: Improve engagement, retain top talent, develop leaders
  • Brand Experience: Create brands that everyone wants to associate with

We need to become more customer centric. How do we do that? Where are we on the continuum? Are we talking about evolution or revolution?’   

Talk to us about how we can help close your experience gap in 2017


Customer Experience – what can you expect in 2017 and beyond?

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Read why an increasing % of CEO’s are now putting Customer Experience at the top of their strategic priorities.

Every year new data demonstrates that CX is becoming more important than ever. Forrester reports that 72% of businesses say that improving the CX is their top priority. No one can afford to ignore CX anymore. So what can you do to ensure you stay competitive and relevant?

Here are 7 trends to consider in 2017:

  1. Customer service is getting better

The best brands are setting the bar higher and creating new levels of customer expectation. There is a new benchmark emerging and other brands will find it difficult to keep up with their customers’ newfound expectations.

  1. Value and experience are becoming more important than price

Unless you want to be recognised as a low-cost provider, the value proposition of good customer service can make price less relevant. That’s how smaller independent retailers are competing against big box stores. This concept is not limited to retail. It crosses into all types of businesses and industries.

  1. Personalisation creates a better CX

Technology has made it easier than ever to track customer preferences and history. Big data gives us trends and insights with uncanny accuracy. There is no reason to not create a more personal experience to cater for individual needs and anticipate future ones.

  1. There is more focus on customer success

It’s not new, but the concept of “customer success” is gaining momentum. Some brand experiences have naturally higher levels of frustration or need for customer support. The goal of our customer success programmes is to ensure that the customer has success without the frustration. For example, I recently bought a new software system, the brand provided me with coaching sessions to eliminate the frustration I would have experienced as I learned the new software.

  1. Proactive customer service is gaining in popularity

Brands are getting better and spotting problems and fixing them before the customer notices and complains. We help our customers to measure and manage every stage of their customer journey so they can be proactive in mitigating or eliminating problems before they arise for most customers.

Talk to us about how CGA can support your CX challenges for 2017

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