New business models and changed customer behaviour are increasing the need to understand what a modern purchasing journey can look like. PostNord Stralfors has therefore developed a method of customer journey mapping. In a workshop format, all interfaces with the consumer are mapped out, together with the stages in which there are opportunities for improvement.
Karin Rydh and Jacob Lindborg are project managers at PostNord Stralfors and lead the team that developed the service together with Henrik Kihlberg, Director Consulting Communication Services.
“The customer mapping initiative came from management at Stralfors. It’s a totally new approach and an opportunity to understand what consumers demand,” says Karin Rydh.
On the basis of needs, PostNord Stralfors can look at the whole customer journey from beginning to end, or just a small part of it.
“The work method differs between customers. At an initial meeting we present the model and our work method. We then decide which customer journey we’ll be looking at. It’s best if you can find an area where there’s potential for development,” explains Jacob Lindborg.
Collaboration between departments
The initial workshop often involves ten or so people from different departments, who work together to identify challenges and pain points.
“This blend of competences is important in order to understand what a customer journey can look like. People with a theoretical perspective can achieve new insights from meeting employees who have direct contact with the end customer,” says Karin Rydh.
The group has a chronological discussion about what the interfaces between the company and the customer look like and which activities they contain. PostNord Stralfors’ role is not to tell the customer what they should do, but to guide the discussion forwards.
Mapping out the challenges
During the workshop, participants identify the pain points that exist and consider how they can be addressed. About two weeks later, Stralfors issues a summary of the group’s conclusions and convenes a new workshop.
At this point, PostNord Stralfors provides inspiration material showing how other people who faced similar challenges resolved them.
“We then map out the impact of different measures,” explains Jacob Lindborg.
The solutions are graded according to how difficult/easy they are to implement and what the impact might be. There is often an aha! experience for the customer when the different departments in the company help each other to complete the picture.
“The customers we’ve worked together with have been very positive.”
They have, for example, received much faster payments and increased customer satisfaction, while at the same time the number of calls to customer service fell.
“In connection with our jointly prioritising the possibilities, it has in all cases resulted in measures that the customer has been able to implement at once, either themselves or with assistance from PostNord Stralfors.”
Positive interactions before, during and after a purchase increase the chance that the company will retain the customer.
Why Customer Journey Mapping?
- By starting with the customer’s activities and how he or she feels at various stages of the customer journey, you often identify opportunities for improvement that affect the customer experience.
- When you perform the mapping exercise in a workshop, together with people with different responsibilities and competence, you create a joint view and understanding in the company of the customer’s situation.
- In an age when digitalisation is creating new customer behaviour, there is an increased risk of new competitors and fast-moving customers. By performing a mapping exercise, the customer acquires knowledge of how the interfaces with the end customer can be improved.