Information Services Executive Summary
The overall self-evaluation CSI percentage of this sector is 75 %, with 83% of senior executives reporting that they act on CX as a value proposition. This indicates that the information services sector not only views CX as important, but they believe their clients/customers are satisfied with their offering. The findings reveal that B2C companies lead the way in prioritising CX, followed by B2B2C, and B2B. This is consistent with our previous findings across most sectors, which is that B2B is lagging in using CX as a main differentiator.
In terms of CX tools and measurement, 64% of respondents reported using Customer Journey Mapping (CJM), saying that it works well for them, with the B2B companies finding it the most effective. All participants currently have CX measurement in place with 89% believing that it’s working.
Despite the fact that 67% of the participants (who have been in their role for 2-5 years) are in charge of CX training within their organisation, 100% lack formal CX qualifications. This means that there could be CX improvement opportunities that are being missed or overlooked.
Respondents have seen a sizable change (45%) in client expectations, with their customers demanding effortless interactions and higher standards. Some of the CX trends in this regard that are shaping the information services sector, participants observe as niche & new technology, remote working capabilities, and personalisation. This correspondents with the biggest obstacles participants are currently facing (predominantly by the B2B sector) which they reported as know-how in navigating the remote working model, adapting to digital CX, and overcoming challenges with hardware and infrastructure. In terms of issues facing South Africa, the sector highlights COVID-19 as having the biggest negative impact on their company, followed by loadshedding, price hikes, and inflation. It’s worth noting that companies are also feeling the effects of top talent immigrating overseas.
When asked what keeps participants up at night regarding their CX role, they highlighted getting the buy-in and understanding of CX across their organisation, as well as brain drain and communication gaps as top offenders. In this light, our recommendation for this sector is to consider their staff CX training options seriously. CX does not sleep, it is always evolving, just like a company’s clients, so once-off training is not sustainable. Effective training goes a long way in getting buy-in and closing service gaps.
We also recommend that respondents continue using CJM as one of their preferred CX tools since it’s one of the most effective in continuously understanding clients changing needs at every touchpoint. Lastly, with digital services being a cornerstone of this sector, to overcome hesitancies and glitches, we advise that service providers lead their digital strategy with a human-centric approach.
What is clear from this research study is that customer experience appears to be at the forefront of business in this sector. However, (and we find this across most of our industry
research), CX is still considered to be in its infancy, and as such is not prioritised across all departments or driven from the top-down. The conflict here results in a delay or complete
dismissal of CX re-design, which was a huge concern for the majority of respondents, who cited the necessity for redesigning business processes to suit digital interactions.
One of the key findings in the survey was the scores connected to COVID-19, price hikes, and inflation. According to respondents, the financial sector is feeling the pressure to
continuously reassure customers at this time and offer extensive support. And to achieve this, they are needing to accelerate digital strategies.
It’s no surprise then that 50% of respondents noticed a sizable change in their customers’ expectations, saying that they felt they needed to gain a more thorough understanding
of the customer’s end-to-end goals. More personable service is expected, while digital ease and functionality were listed as the most significant change in customers’ demands. All
this is underpinned by the need to keep customers informed and engaged.
What was interesting to find was that over and above the concern around faster digitisation, remote management was highlighted as a resounding obstacle for our respondents. It
was found to be the biggest COVID-19-related challenge with the most direct impact on CX strategy and company growth.
When asked about current CX interventions and strategies, the majority of our respondents (81%) reported using Customer Journey Mapping (CJM) to review their CX and said
they have seen the value and benefit this process has added to their business. However, the challenge they face is in getting company-wide and leadership buy-in to maintain
consistent CJM and implementation of CX changes.
Another concern from this sector is the ability to access real-time data. This anxiety stems from what executives reported as a key trend shaping their industry; digitisation and
integration of channels (omnichannel).
And finally, often considered the bugbear of CX by professionals, but arguably the most important is measurement. 88% of survey respondents said they have some form of CX
measurement metric in place to understand client/customer satisfaction. But only 50% said that it’s helping them to make CX improvements, i.e., they can get a basic
understanding of customers’ needs but getting beyond this point to implement changes is proving to be a challenge.
In conclusion, it’s clear that the financial services sector is ‘awake’ to CX, however, more work needs to be done in making it a top priority. We are seeing too many departmental
factors across organisations holding back a company’s CX success. CX is now the number one differentiator over price and product and is a crucial component for the competitive
environment that is finserv. To address this setback, finserv companies should consider company-wide CX training to embed a deep CX culture across all departments. Only once
EVERYONE is on the same page, and when CX is driven from the top, can things like intelligent and effective CX re-design fall into place.
We asked CEO’s, senior executives and managers from our extensive database for their thoughts on the Covid-19 crisis, how it has affected their business and its future impacts. While many answers were what we expected, there were also a few surprises.
Interestingly, the scores in the ‘overall effects of Covid-19’ category were neck and neck in SA and the UK.
Both territories felt the severe pinch of revenue loss, however enjoyed increased business in the areas of
cleaning and sanitation as well as security. A common theme throughout the report was the willingness to learn from the pandemic to be agile both now and in the future. Click the link to download the full report.