29 August 2014 – Andrew Cook
We’ve discussed the importance of customer journey mapping in previous posts, but let’s have a look at a real-life example:
At 8am, Jerry was stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic on William Nicol Drive. Suddenly, a taxi changed lanes and rammed straight into Jerry’s Golf. The damage to the passenger door and side mirror wasn’t pretty, and Jerry’s knew he’d have to claim from his insurance company for the repairs.
It’s a terrible way to start a morning, but it’s a regular occurrence on the road. As soon as Jerry arrived at work, he made the call to his insurance company to log a claim (the first step in customer journey mapping). He was already annoyed and irritated, so the person on the other end of the line had to make sure they didn’t add to Jerry’s frustrations.
Kelly, a call centre agent from X Insurance, greeted him and started with a few qualifying questions, such as his ID and policy number. She was courteous and patient with Jerry and understood that having been in an accident, he was not a happy customer.
Kelly asked for details about the accident and advised Jerry to report his accident to the police to obtain a case number (the next step in customer journey mapping). She also checked whether Jerry was covered by his policy and then advised him on the supporting documents he needed to send through to the claims processing department.
Jerry went to the police station to file a case report and then scanned and sent through all of the supporting documentation to the claims processing department. Henry, in the claims processing department, overlooked Jerry’s email, and never responded (this is the first moment of failure in the customer journey mapping process).
Having not received a reference number, Jerry picked up the phone and called X Insurance to ask what was going on. Fred, a call centre agent, took the call. When he searched for Jerry’s details, there was no record of anything being sent. Fred calmly explained to Jerry that he didn’t see any record of documents being sent, but that Jerry should send everything directly to him and he’d ensure the reference number was issued within two hours. Begrudgingly, Jerry did so.
As promised, Fred received the documents and issued a reference number. He also put a note on the system that an assessor needed to help Jerry as soon as possible (another step recorded in customer journey mapping). Within 24 hours, an assessor, Boudine, was assigned and went through to inspect the damage. Boudine assessed the damage and approved the claim. Contact was made with Jerry to say that the claim had been approved and the repair centre would be in touch to book an appointment with him, which they did so.
If you were to look at Jerry’s story, you’d think that X Insurance provided him with a rather good customer journey – everyone except Henry. In this customer journey mapping process, the claims processing department was the one touchpoint that led to the customer being unhappy.
One isolated incident doesn’t define anything – perhaps Henry did genuinely make a mistake, but X Insurance could look at its customer journey mapping process more closely and to see if there were other cases like Jerry’s. If there were, management would be able to act and identify what is leading that specific area to be its weak point and be able to fix it.
Customer journey mapping allows the business to pinpoint exactly where it needs to be improved or expand services to enhance the customer experience.
Benefits of customer journey mapping:
- Customer journey mapping enables business leaders to understand their customers by “walking in their shoes”.
- Customer journey mapping reveals operational inefficiencies that create unnecessary steps in the customer experience process.
- Customer journey mapping actively improves processes and touchpoints that are not operating efficiently.
- Customer journey mapping breaks down silos within the organisation by connecting each step of the customer journey.
- Customer journey mapping increases sales and marketing efficiency and effectiveness.
- Customer journey mapping maximises ROI by enabling companies to allocate the right budget and resources where they are needed most.