There is a management adage that “businesses that do well tend to be businesses that are easy to do business with”. Looked at from a client experience management perspective, it could be easy to believe that many firms adopt attitudes, approaches, policies and procedures which have quite the opposite intent.
My strong view is that client strategy must sit at the heart of all strategy – without clients we simply don’t have a business. What that means in practice is that any initiative must be stress-tested by looking at it through the eyes of the client. By asking a small number of core questions, based around new client benefits and the building of sustainable competitive advantage, it is quickly possible to identify the overall cost-benefits of projects competing for limited resources and make the best possible prioritisation decisions.
Understanding the client experience can be achieved by looking in detail at the touch points with the firm. Some of these will be physical, for example the accessibility of premises, the quality of the built environment or the efficiency of front-of-house services. Others will centre on service delivery such as the ease with which lawyers can be contacted, responsiveness and clarity of communication. Taken together this touch point analysis provides the management team with an accurate perspective on “how it feels to be a client”.