We help services organisations understand the 'lived' experience of their customers and stakeholders, from the customers' point of view.
We use our sense-making framework to focus our research not just on on what the customer experienced (i.e. the touchpoints) but on their mental and emotional experience of the whole journey and its impact on their sense of self. We find out how customers made sense of that experience, which shows us how to improve it.
- We conduct deep structured interviews, observation and focus groups to identify customer service journeys from a practical and an emotional perspective - what is the customer doing , what are they feeling? At the same time, we identify the 'cues' or signs that service users focus on that shape or 'frame' their experience.
- We use discourse analysis to interpret the findings, because discourse analysis is an academically proven way to understand interaction.
- We then quantify that journey, again from the customers' perspective.
Outputs: qualitative insight into customer journeys followed by quantitative verification for later tracking. We are experts in these methods.
Case Study - making sense of a service journey
Our client is a government agency going through a period of cultural change, and needs to ensure that it delivers the services that customers need. Our service journey research revealed that people using this service for the first time came to the experience with a particular cognitive frame. Much of this has to do with 'expectations transfer' - Australians are now so used to experiencing a certain style of service interaction from commercial organisations that they now expect it everywhere. This means that there is a significant gap between the service the organisation is able to provide and consumers' expectations. We are working with the client on communicating better to customers but also bridging gaps in organisational processes to deliver what customers need. It was important through this process to acknowledge the difference between delivering a service that was needed and one that was expected. This qualitative research helped the understand - make sense of - the survey metrics they were using
Services research is not just a pale imitation of product research. Product research and services research are different as we explain here in our Why services are different blog post.