Simplify customer experience so that it is ruthlessly focused on…

… the outcome the CUSTOMER is trying to achieve. Original article, company page and other insight here

Friday Musings : Who’s job was it to spend all that money making it harder for customers to do what we want them to?


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There is a lot of talk and focus, now and always, about multi-channel or omni-channel or (insert clever, slightly Latin descriptor here)- channel experience and for sure, little argument that there is £billions being spent on creating, enhancing and managing such experiences.

What gets lost is it’s just experience, and I want to do it in the way that’s simplest to me.

Brought to life by these two epic fails literally a day apart in my somewhat ordinary, unremarkable life.

Firstly, imagine my delight on Wednesday at being emailed a direct debit mandate that I must now print, fill out and post back if I would like to set up the aforementioned direct debit. 1991 called, it wants its process back.

“Who asked you to do that Alan?” I hear you cry….

Wait for it, it’s good…

The Information Commissioners Office. They need it to confirm my suitability to manage customer’s data responsibly.

That’s writing down my bank details on a hard copy form that will be handled by c 10 people with no security and no audit trail so I can get it in the hands of the people overseeing data management practices (and who fan-fared how easy it was to interact with them digitally btw).

Ignoring that they ran over Irony in their car, reversed and ran it over again to make sure it was truly dead. If you would like me to pay you, and pay you in a cost effective and efficient way for you, how about you make it easy for me – you might have wanted me to sign up, in fact you offered me five whole bucks to do so. What was more cost effective and efficient to me was to pay the full amount with a debit card (yes, we all have those now). Looking forward to talking next year, feel free to send me a form to print out and I will feel free to pay another way, again.

Having other more important things to do than pay the ICO I’m due a phone upgrade and for someone who is user non-technical and absolutely not a features and functions ‘geek’ all I see at this point every two years is hassle (sigh!). And besides, phones don’t change very much, and I like the one I have…

However, this time there’s a phone that flips in half – what’s not to love about that? Once you’ve finished adding your own insults about what a flip-phone user looks like you can worry no more.

My chief concern was that the phone (or I) would look a bit ‘insert insult fitting —ky here’ so I thought I’d have a look first. As we have at least eight mobile phone shops in town I assumed I’d get to see one, even if it was a plastic ‘no moving parts’ version… WRONG!!

So it’s the first, biggest, nay, only fundamental change to phone design (exterior) since touch screen (no edges DOES NOT COUNT, geeks) and Samsung and it’s UK reseller market don’t believe human beings will want to see, touch and feel this fundamentally different device before choosing it…

Really… Really…? If it’s going to sell itself that well why did every shop cross sell me to… Surprise, surprise, the S20 that they could physically place in my hand. They’re paid and bonused on sales; they won’t waste their time and mine on what they can’t sell.

Digital first, multi-channel, it’s just experience so forget where it is facilitated and ask yourself how you would like it to be facilitated if it were you doing the thing you just asked your customer (or hostage) to do.

Posted from my beautiful, fully functioning, SIM Only Samsung Galaxy S9 – Turns out I don’t need an S20, but I might have wanted a Z Flip.

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