How Analox started its journey to customer excellence…
Author: Michelle Wilson
Offline Marketing Manager and Customer Experience Champion
Date of publication: 11.05.23 Updated 05.10.23
“And the winner for the ‘Customer Focus’ award for SME is… Analox Group!”
The 7th of March 2023, Emma and I went to the UK Customer Satisfaction Awards hosted by the Institute of Customer Service in London. I couldn’t have imagined that we would have been in this position 4 years ago when we started this journey.
To give thanks and celebrate this amazing award, I want to share with you our journey to customer excellence.
2019, the start of a beautiful friendship
Back in 2019, Analox embarked on a journey to be a truly Customer Focused company. We joined forces with the Institute of Customer Service (ICS), the UK’s independent professional customer service body. The ICS always keep their focus on the customer, ensuring that the companies they work with give great customer service day in, day out. We knew they would be the right people to help us on our way.
Our official launch with ICS happened in February 2020, where the whole company took some time out to celebrate our new partnership. Lyndsey Phillips from ICS came along to welcome us all into the ICS family, from day one Lyndsey has been a great mentor to the Customer Experience (CX) Team.
Our first year with ICS was led by our MD, Emma Harbottle with a cross functional team that had members from across the business. We created a 5 year strategic plan that ensured all departments were involved.
This 5 year plan highlighted 2 key points;
- Everyone at Analox plays a part in the customer journey
- Internal customers matter just as much as external customers
Eye opening data and the start of a new role
Being a member of the ICS means that they send out an independent questionnaire to both our internal and external customers. It was an exciting but nervous time as we looked at the data but Lyndsey Phillips from the ICS was on hand to mentor us through. We finally had a place to start from and more importantly, we had places to improve!
After looking at the data it was decided that a dedicated Customer Experience Champion was needed. This new role was to drive the customer experience team further, empowering them to utilize not only each other, but others around the business who could help to deliver our customer experience projects. An internal job role was sent out company wide to find our champion.
Michelle Wilson, our Customer Experience Champion!
Following the application and interview process, I was chosen as our first Analox CX Champion. I have worked at Analox for over 20 years and was already a part of the original CX Team, so applying for this new role seemed like the right step forward.
‘It was her understanding of Analox coupled with her knowledge of customers and relationships with internal staff that made her an ideal choice for this position.’ said Emma Harbottle.
2021, slow and steady and in the right direction
In 2021, as the team progressed with implementing the strategy and seeing continuous statistical improvements in the yearly ICS questionnaire feedback, we decided to apply for an Institute of Customer Service award under the SME category.
The aim was to benchmark ourselves against those companies of a similar size, and even if we didn’t make it through, the application process highlighted areas where we could improve in the future.
But to our surprise, the team was delighted when it was announced that we were nominated finalists for Customer Focus SME award!
Although we didn’t win (this time!), by looking at the amazing nominees in our category (Better2Know, Crest Pumps, New Homes Customer Care and The Edinburgh Casting Studio), and going down to London for the conference and the show, we really got to understand what it takes to aim for great customer experience.
2023, an award and a bright future
Fast forward to the start of 2023 and the CX team is stronger than ever, it now consists of at least one member coming from each department, ensuring every area in Analox has a CX advocate.
Following Lyndsey’s mentoring and guidance, we focus on independent feedback as a key driver for all the CX projects that the team works on, and our success is measured by the next year’s results.
We also decided to submit an application for the Customer Focus SME award and we became a finalist for second year running! On March 7th, Emma and I went down to London for the ICS conference and UK Satisfaction Awards.
And that was where Emma and I heard these words..
This award is an acknowledgment for the hard work that the CX team and Analox has put in for the past 3 years, going above and beyond for our customers.
To win this award, as an SME with a turnover of less than £10M, you need to display a well communicated customer strategy and provide evidence of employee engagement in executing the strategy. That evidence needs to show the extent a customer has shaped the business and how this has improved overall company results.
Winning this award is just the beginning and shows that we are on the right path to customer excellence.
To carry on the momentum from this award, I am proud to announce that our team now has a new name and a new mantra…
Customer Excellence Team
Excellence as standard.
The Customer Excellence team aims to support all areas of Analox so our customers can benefit from this vision. We are excited to continue with this journey and I want to say a big thank you to all those who are involved in providing Excellent Service as Standard.