3 Challenges Utilities Brands Face When Aligning Strategy, Ops, and Services to CX Needs

Customer experience (CX) leaders from utilities brands are facing unprecedented challenges in 2022. Increased government regulation and new market entrants with unique service-based offerings are creating a disruptive wave of change that traditional utilities need to respond to. But here at InMoment, we don’t like to merely dwell on obstacles and complexities. We like to provide you with strategies and solutions.

With that being said, Graham Tutton, InMoment’s Global Head of Consumer Products, has put some thoughts together around some of the biggest challenges facing the utilities sector, and what customer experience leaders can do about these for our latest webinar. And to save you some time, we’ve taken those and compiled them into this quick article.

Let’s dive in! 

Challenge #1: Disparate Data

Utilities companies typically have a lot of data spread across multiple silos across the business. The challenge is combining the operational, technical, financial, and even the metadata (like weather data) that is currently sitting in legacy systems or different departments, and is also aggregated with feedback data. Additionally, brands have not figured out how to tap into 85% of data—the unstructured kind—so they miss out on the bigger picture. 

Solve the Challenge: Combine Data Sources 

Many CX leaders in this space find it challenging to stitch together holistic customer feedback in one place, and know how to take action from it. At the end of the day, you need a single platform that can combine direct survey data from customers, but also indirect data (like social media reviews), and inferred data (like contact centre chat logs).

Challenge 2: Figuring Out Customer Trends

Because data is spread across the organisation, making sense of emerging customer trends is even harder. Businesses want to make the best decisions based on the available information. However, these decisions are often flawed because businesses do not have the ability to understand the data they’re looking at. Businesses cling to the easy insights floating at the top of their datasets, but often miss the deeper insights hidden behind unstructured data. 

According to IDC, 85% of enterprise data is unstructured and is growing at a rate of 55% every year. With this rate of growth, businesses that fail to adapt miss out on the bigger picture and are making flawed decisions based on only a small percentage of the data available.

Solve the Challenge: Text Analytics to the Rescue

Luckily, text analytics capabilities are getting better and better each year! Businesses should leverage human-led, knowledge-based taxonomies by finding a partner that offers high accuracy and actionability, offering economies of scale from a wealth of knowledge gained in your industry, language and use case. 

Challenge #3: Taking Action on Feedback

Some utilities brands find it tricky to know which actions to take after analysing their customer experience data. There are many reasons for this—most customer experience solutions require multi-language translation, human interpretation and maintenance, and continuous tuning of surveys. To make matters worse, because the process is so slow, the accuracy of the insights are impacted too. CX leaders are often stuck in the cycle of wading through data and less enabled to actually take action on it. 

Solve the Challenge: Have a Roadmap From the Beginning 

If you build your CX program around a roadmap (with clear checkpoints, of course), it will help you stay focused on your ultimate goals. You should be checking in with your roadmap monthly, and evaluating actions against the checkpoints every quarter. By constantly referring back to the original plan, it will help build your organisational culture around the customer, and this will definitely help with momentum of your program, taking you further than you could possibly go if you were shouldering the weight of the CX program alone.

To learn more, check out Graham’s full CX webinar designed just for utilities brands.

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