Ten years ago many commentators were quick to herald what was described at the time as a “customer experience revolution”. They were referring to the advent of bundled services in the telecoms sector.
That same approach is now prevalent in utilities, with companies teaming up to offer packages that include water, electricity and any variety of data or communications packages. Some question whether a blend of this nature will work; their fears are based on whether it will be easy for organisations to find the right business partners, against which reputations can stand or fall. In other words, the choice of partner clearly has a direct impact on business performance, reputation and the overarching service delivery. There are also concerns about creating faceless corporations who fail to really understand the customer’s needs as they become too slow to respond proactively.
But in my view, bundled services in the utilities sector is worth pursuing. Customer expectations have heightened, especially around speed, ease and convenience; and our research indicates that they really do want integrated services; as long as it works across the whole service chain. What is absolutely critical is the quality of customer experience design.
In fact in my mind we have only just begun on the path of bundled services which will connect many different sectors and services to create seamless customer experiences.