The consumer interests the companies because the profit comes from him. He is prospected on channels that are relevant to him so he can be influenced to buy. He is offered a variety of choices to decide for more expensive products or larger volumes. Special offers are given to him to be loyal and to strengthen the market share and the profits of the company. It is central because he has to be seduced. Companies care about the consumer because they care about themselves.
The survey conducted by Valoria, and titled the Barometer of customer centricity in Romanian companies, shows to what extend organizations have a strategy that aligns the development and delivery of company’s products around consumer needs in order to increase the value of the company. Conducted in November 2017, this study analyzes a sample of 424 responses and records very important issues related to the business environment in Romania. This is a selection of the main survey findinds, as follows:
- Although for 75% of companies understanding consumer needs comes first, consumer experience is relevant only to 18% of companies.
- Organizational culture unaligned with customer needs is a challenge for 70% of companies, which is harder to solve than the challenge of the lack of adequate technology highlighted by 89% of the companies.
- Only 15% of Romanian companies currently have a dedicated budget for customer experience, while only 29% of companies involve the customer relations team in achieving the company’s budget.
- Only 42% of companies say they provide training for employees to understand the client-centric approach of the company, but only 33% operationalize the customer-centric values of the organization.
- The responsibility of developing criteria for prioritizing initiatives to improve consumer experience belongs in 40% of the companies to top management, which can only be a management act that is disconnected from reality.
- Top-down communication, mainly used by Romanian companies for this subject, is less effective and can hardly generate authenticity and involvement.
- From the comparative analysis of the respondent segments, it is clear that only large Romanian companies have the knowledge, technology and resources needed for a coherent approach to customer focus.
- Consumer retention is important only for 27% of companies, which leads to opportunity costs in many companies, but especially to an insufficient realization of the potential of the customer base.
The customer interface is important, but even more important is the back-end part of organizational culture. Even within each company, relationships between colleagues are relationships between suppliers and customers. Some give support to others who in turn contribute and pass on to other colleagues or even to the final customer. Therefore, an organizational culture centered on the client should be lived within the organization, so that its effect can be seen in the relationship with the client to which the companies refer in the public communication.
Employee training is essential in strengthening such a culture. Functional training coupled with interpersonal skills of assertive communication, sales, or leadership center the company on consumer needs and give him a relevant experience. Trained employees are the foundation of a culture of excellence and a guarantee of quality of a company’s products and services.
Constantin Măgdălina has a 8 years working experience, while he performed in multinationals both in Romania and abroad. Constantin owns a Master in Marketing and Business Communication at the Academy of Economic Studies Bucharest. He is certified Lean Six Sigma and ITIL which provide him a good understanding of processes and transformations within organizations. In those over 4 years working activity in a Big4 company, he initiated and conducted studies which analyzed different aspects related to the business environment in Romania such as the economic growth predictions, knowledge management, the buying experience in the age of digital consumers, social media, the utilization of mobile devices in Romania.