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Customer Centricity Score – Making customer centricity measurable

The topic of customer centricity has found its way into corporate strategies and operational processes in many companies. In sales and marketing, everything finally revolves around the customer. Offers are geared towards them, customer needs are anticipated and individual solutions are offered as well as real experiences are made possible. Whether they are successful in this can be checked by parameters such as the Net Promoter Score (NPS).

Since customer experiences are increasingly becoming the central lever of differentiation and their quality and relevance are important factors for success, customers should be at the centre of every entrepreneurial action. The prerequisite for this is that employees throughout the company think and act in a consistently and holistically customer-centric way.

However, the degree of customer centricity of all employees, whether in management or operationally in direct customer contact or even those without direct customer contact, is rarely surveyed so far. Thus, very few companies know to what extent customer orientation is practised in their company. It is now possible to check this customer centricity of a company:

The Customer Centricity Score is a suitable indicator, a simple measuring instrument that maps the degree of customer centricity of the organisation and enables companies to identify the levers for more customer orientation.

What is the Customer Centricity Score?

This Customer Centricity Score developed by the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HSLU) reveals strengths as well as potential for improvement with regard to customer orientation. The CCScore is based on 15 different items that are assigned to three main groups: Leadership, Collaboration and Implementation. In addition, the score can be combined with a variety of other variables, such as affiliation to organisational units, function and position in the company, length of service, gender, age, etc.

Industry study Switzerland 2016: How customer-centric are Swiss companies and industries?

In the 2016 Swiss industry study, intervista, in cooperation with the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, examined the Customer Centricity Score and thus customer centricity for 22 industries. It shows that customer centricity is very differently pronounced in Swiss companies and industries: With regard to the CCScore dimensions “Leadership”, “Collaboration” and “Implementation”, there are large differences.

The CCScore industry values result from the application of the CCScore formula:
Following the NPS logic, the percentage of HIGH scorers is subtracted from the percentage of LOW scorers, resulting in values between -100 and +100.

The 22 sectors analysed in the benchmark show values between just under +30 (consulting, personal services) and -10 (energy industry). The scatter between the values is even greater when individual companies or even individual company divisions and departments are considered.

The differentiation potential of the CCScore also becomes apparent when looking at the CCScore dimensions (and items) in detail. The different value lines for the dimensions of leadership, collaboration and implementation indicate differences in the focus of customer centricity in the various sectors.

A further differentiated analysis of the industry clusters reveals patterns with regard to the scores for the three dimensions. It is striking that sectors with a high CCScore also always have high values for leadership: A customer-centric leadership culture shapes the company, but there is a risk of losing touch with customer-centric implementation. The greatest discrepancies between the leadership and implementation scores are found above all in the food industry and in insurance companies.

Industry types of customer centricity

In addition to the general state of development in terms of customer centricity, the sectors also differ in terms of the dimensions in which they have a lot of catching up to do. A significant differentiation lies in the degree to which leadership strength, cooperation orientation and implementation orientation are pronounced in each case. Four sector types were identified from the combination of these dimensions:

  • Leaders have relatively high scores in all three dimensions. The anchoring of customer centricity in leadership is consistently translated into customer-centric processes, which in turn favour customer-centric implementation behaviour. Examples: IT, consulting, advertising.
  • Administrators are strong in planning and coordinating customer-centred activities. Customer centricity of leadership is at a medium level. These industries and companies lack customer-centric implementation. Examples: Telecommunications, Pharmaceuticals.
  • Pragmatics are those sectors and companies that are customer-centric “by nature”. The operational employees are close to the customers and know their needs comprehensively. A certain degree of customer centricity is anchored in management, while cooperation within the company is less customer-centric. Examples: Catering, logistics.
  • Laggers have a lot of catching up to do in all three dimensions. Customer centricity is neither a defining theme in leadership, the broader organisation, nor in implementation. Examples: Energy industry, public administration.

Leadership orientation behaves “linearly” in this grid: in sectors where collaboration and implementation are strong, leadership is also highly rated, and vice versa. In sectors where either only implementation or only collaboration are strong, the customer orientation of leadership is at a medium level.

After companies have collected the necessary CCScore data in an employee survey, they can now place themselves in the grid and orient themselves,
and use this as a basis for identifying the necessary opportunities and requirements for action.

Are your customers addressed individually and personally or rather not? And how can your company use the CCScore for itself?

The Customer Centricity Score can also be used to assess the customer orientation of your company. In a CCScore study, we conduct a survey in which your employees rate the customer centricity of leadership, cooperation and implementation in the company on the basis of 15 items. This CCScore survey is easy to set up as an employee survey after your company has decided to use the instrument and is accompanied by an experienced team.

The scores collected in this way are evaluated and generate a company-wide view of the development of customer centricity in your company. Areas with a high need for action are thus identified. Based on this comprehensive employee survey and the Customer Centricity Score, concrete measures can be developed to improve customer centricity and to create differentiating customer experiences. For this purpose, business models can be optimally aligned with the needs of your customers.

Depending on the requirements, existing market research studies, CRM data or newly collected data can be used to incorporate findings from the customer perspective as a basis for working towards more customer orientation of the employees.

The CCScore thus becomes the starting point for a continuous process of organisational development and allows control and feedback on progress.

Would you like to learn more about conducting a CCScore study?

We are happy to support you in conducting a CCScore study and in translating the results into an action plan with targeted measures as well as goals to increase the customer centricity of your company.

Julia Uhrbahn
Julia Urbahn
Do you have a question?

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