Customer centric firms ‘grow faster and are more agile’

tech_2Customer centric organisations grow nine times faster and are four times more likely to have highly satisfied employees, and the ability to change in months what would take their rivals years to achieve.

That is the bold claim of a new study by experience design consultancy, cxpartners, in partnership with Google, which surveyed 110 businesses across Europe.

The State of Customer Centricity report reveals the scale of the advantage that Europe’s most customer centric companies have, with on average the top 36% achieving around nine times the annual year on year revenue growth compared to lower maturity companies.

However, customer centricity is more than having good customer service. It is all about the way the entire company runs – from HR, to technology, to product. In essence, customer centric organisations are ones where everyone is constantly asking: “how can we better serve our customers?”

The research is based on the cxpartners’ Customer Centricity Model, which measures an organisation’s customer centricity across five different dimensions that determine whether they can create great user experiences. These are people, process, governance, facilities and communication.

The differences in performance between a high- and low-scoring customer centric organisation are startling, the study claims.

Organisations with high customer centricity have an average annual revenue growth rate of 8.7%. In comparison, organisations with low to medium levels of customer centricity, have an average of 0.8% growth.

The team of researchers believe there are two reasons for this. Customer centric organisations are more likely to retain customers, which creates a strong foundation for growth. In turn, these customers are more likely to recommend those organisations to their friends and family, accelerating growth.

Over 90% of high customer centric businesses have a high employee satisfaction rate, compared to just 20% of low-scoring organisations.The researchers believe that a customer centric operating model provides employees a clear mission that gives their work meaning. Employees empowered with a greater sense of autonomy also deliver a higher performance when they are trusted to do what is best for the customer.

In the increasing battle for talent, a customer-centric operating model seems to offer a clear advantage.

The research also finds that 65% of highly customer-centric organisations are able to adapt by making major changes to their systems within weeks or months, rather than the years taken by low-scoring organisations.

The researchers put this down to two things. First, high performing organisations are focused on the customer impact of their technology choices, rather than cost or internal politics. Second, high maturity organisations are able to make better decisions faster and deliver more value to customers.

Giles Colborne, CEO and co-founder of cxpartners, said: “The benefits of customer centricity are clear. Organisations that create a culture, and an operating model that’s customer centric are able to tackle the biggest challenges facing business today. How do we reignite growth? How do we attract the best employees? How do we change in a volatile environment?

“Above all, strong customer centricity gives organisations a sense of energy, and purpose. The leaders and managers we spoke to in the most customer centric organisations inspired and empowered their employees – there was a sense of everyone in the organisation being given the opportunity to excel.

“The customer centricity model we’ve developed is a powerful tool for leaders in any organisation to drive a change towards customer centricity and enjoy the benefits for themselves.”

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