Business Development by Consolidating Customer Services
Customer satisfaction is an issue that is taken seriously in many organisations. Nowhere is this more true than in our client for this business development project. The client, a leading university in the UK, has a variety of administrative functions that operate continuously in the background. Because these services are located in different buildings, levels of customer satisfaction are likely to vary according to the issue being administered. Planning was under way to streamline these services, and as part of the business development of the university, a new central location was commissioned. However, work was needed to define the expectations of those groups of people for whom the development was taking place.
Business development needs:
The essence of this project was twofold. Firstly, there was a need to determine the agenda of the students’ issues (and the drivers of those issues) with respect to the wide range of services they consume. Following that, the relative importance of those identified needed to be measured to allow an objective view of the hierarchy of improvements that were desired.
This work was qualitative, quantitative and developmental in its character. Extensive consultation was carried out, not only with students but also with a series of face-to-face interviews with the service providers. This work was then followed up with a web-based questionnaire in order to put the hierarchy of needs on a rigorous footing.
There was a high correlation between the individuals’ expectations of the service provided and the value of the transaction. This was a reflection of the personal importance and gravity of the service. In terms of business development it gave our client a very clear direction as to where to concentrate their resource for providing services. Students had high expectations of the centre, but perhaps unsurprisingly there were concerns over how peaks in demand would be managed. Options for this eventuality were discussed at length and a clear strategy for these eventualities was evolved. Clear direction was also given by respondents as to which of the 20 or so services could be dealt with together and, more importantly, which services must be kept separate.
Following this project, our client had a clear roadmap as to what the permissible mix of services was, what the service expectations were and a hierarchy of how to manage high peaks in demand.
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