Written by Sven Van Hoorebeeck
Our economy is currently going through the largest stress test one could have ever imagined. People and companies are forced to adapt quickly to the new normal, which is inextricably linked to the acceleration of digital transformation. Digital laggard’s weaknesses are now fully exposed, while digitally leading organizations thrive and are leaving their competitors behind. Maybe you think this is just a temporary situation but it’s not, after this crisis we won’t be going back to business as usual. Companies who will perform well during this crisis will be in pole position for the post-crisis economy. However, companies who fail the stress test, will have to work hard to catch up and ensure their long-term survival. Do you know what you need to do to safeguard your company’s success?
Connect with your customers
One of the most important challenges for organizations during the COVID19 lockdown, is to stay in touch with their customers. Not only in the short term to ensure (part of) your current revenue stream, but also in the long term. The emotional distress generally felt today, will make customers remember the way they were treated clearly. So, when customers will have to choose where to do business after the crisis, the compassion, purpose and effectiveness of companies they felt during crisis situations will turn out to be the decisive factors.
Customer experience is key while navigating your company through this crisis. Make sure to establish regular communication, stay present, and that your customer knows how to find you by optimising existing or building new digital touchpoints. If customers lose sight of you, your revenue streams will decrease drastically, and in the long run your business continuity will be at risk. Some companies excel here. For instance, Les Tartes de Françoise closed all its shops but started sharing their recipes to keep in touch with their customers and keep their brand alive.
Support your employees
Besides customers, employees also appreciate their companies having flawless digital channels and processes in place. Employee engagement is essential and remote work can be frustrating when you cannot meet your normal productivity levels due to inadequate digital support. Moreover, most organizations’ team structure has been changed over the past few weeks. External colleagues are no longer needed other colleagues are temporary unemployed which has a significant impact on your team’s dynamic. Not only will you have to re-organize your team in line with the new operating model and implement your processes (digitally) in the appropriate way but you also have to ensure they are remotely accessible and that you support your employees in the new setup. This will increase the chances of success, now and later, significantly.
Respond quickly and effectively
Rapid changes require rapid actions. The current situation requires companies to respond quickly to their customers. In normal times, projects can take multiple months before going live and even longer before creating real impact. Now, more than ever, we need a culture of innovation in which people aren’t scared to try out new things. Many processes must be digitalized to ensure business continuity and customer touchpoints should be expanded through digital channels. Maintaining a steady course while doing so is not easy but we can help you.
BrightWolves tackles these challenges at a high pace by focussing on two key aspects:
Expanding customer interaction through digital touchpoints, by evaluating and redesigning your customer journeys as well as implementing intuitive and convenient customer service processes and digital touchpoints.
Ensuring business continuity through process digitalization, by making a quick scan of current processes to identify which most critical processes are not fully able to function remotely yet. Immediately after the scan, selected processes will be digitalized. An agile way of working enables to make iterations at a continuous base and to steer towards optimal results.
See the opportunities
Bearing all of this in mind, we can’t forget that while the COVID-19 pandemic might force companies to change their dynamics, it also provides an opportunity. Generally, people tend to be more enthusiast about new initiatives in a crisis. Moreover, customers will remember organizations that manage to take their service from an ordinary to an extraordinary level and will reward them for that with their loyalty. This is an opportunity to boost your customer satisfaction, employee engagement and business continuity and should not be squandered.
Some companies have already proven that they are able to react quickly to respond to the current challenges and implemented a whole range of digital solutions to support their business. Many SME’s, for example, have reacted quickly to the customer’s demand to the possibility of shopping local online. They created new digital customer touchpoints to respond and as such stay in contact with their customers in order to continue their business. Other companies had to reorganize themselves to respect social distancing which meant that digital processes needed to be put in place quickly to avoid any disruptions. Even large organisations, such as banks, that were already digitally active needed to elaborate a more complete set of their services to be offered through digital channels. This illustrates how digital solutions can be implemented in a short period of time and make a huge difference.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to BrightWolves for more information or to help you in delivering fast results to come out stronger after the COVID19 crisis.