Unanticipated costs can quickly become the bane of any business project, customer experience (CX) or otherwise, if they’re not carefully considered before pens have been put to paper. It’s thus imperative for CX practitioners who want to pitch their programs to anticipate and prepare for unexpected costs as much as possible.
We’ve listed the three most effective considerations that practitioners can use to anticipate and avoid unexpected experience program costs:
- Vendor Scalability
- Vendor Flexibility
- Nonparticipation Costs
Factor #1: Vendor Scalability
This tip may seem gratuitous, but program scalability actually isn’t considered as often as it should be, and brands can end up paying extra for that mistake. Practitioners can avoid a lot of headaches with their own teams, the C-suite, and the accounting department by selecting an experience partner that can scale programs from the very beginning.
This approach enables brands to select and begin a program that grows alongside both their CX accomplishments and aspirations. It also allows organizations to reduce operating costs from the very beginning, which can result in both a much healthier program and a CX budget that always stays in the black. CX practitioners can use this method to strive for an ambitious program while still avoiding unanticipated costs.
Factor #2: Vendor Flexibility
Though picking an experience partner and implementing its capabilities is no small task, the days of rigid, prepackaged experience programs are drawing to a close. This is great news for businesses because they can now work with vendors to create a versatile experience solution instead of attempting to wrap themselves around an unflinching list of features (many of which a given company may not actually need).
Solution flexibility enables CX practitioners to avoid unanticipated costs by paying only for what they need from a vendor. For example, would your brand benefit from an analytics team or does that capability already exist within your organization? What about a self-service approach versus full management from the vendor? Once practitioners consider these questions, they should select a partner that’s flexible enough to meet their needs without showering them in unneeded extras and—you guessed it—unnecessary costs.
Factor #3: Nonparticipation Costs
There’s another element to cost consideration that often goes, well, unconsidered when brands talk about implementing an experience program, and that’s what happens when companies don’t have such an initiative in place.
Feedback collection, experience improvement, and customer centricity are all more important now than ever before. These ideas are the means by which brands can both create a better experience for customers and use that capability to plant a flag at the top of their vertical. Therefore, brands should consider the very real opportunity cost of not collecting, analyzing, and implementing feedback. An experience program isn’t a luxury anymore—it’s non-negotiable for any company that wants to succeed.
Taken together, these three methods can empower brands and the experience practitioners who work for them to avoid unanticipated costs and keep their programs viable. They can then use their programs to achieve what we just talked about: a meaningfully improved experience for customers and thus a more commanding presence in their marketplace.
For more information on how to effectively pitch and prove the worth of CX programs to anyone and everyone, check out our new eBook on how you can make a business case to your CFO (or anyone else) here.