Wearing the Customer's Shoes
Have you ever tried your company’s services as a client? When Sundata recently moved from our home of 19 years, we took the opportunity to do just that - step into the customer’s shoes and experience our service delivery first-hand.
Many is the time we hear about the cobbler’s shoes or the plumber’s leaky taps. Asking for feedback is one thing, but there’s nothing quite like actually living the customer experience as an objective test of the quality of your own services.
We had the opportunity to do exactly that when Sundata recently moved offices after 19 years at South Brisbane. Our move to Toowong encompassed the full catastrophe – end of lease deadline, a new office requiring some renovations plus a full fit out, changing phone systems, new comms….I’m sure it sounds familiar. Daunting at the time, but nothing new or unique and things we have helped clients with on many, many occasions.
Only this time, the pain was ours.
From all the usual fun of dealing with various tradesmen, to a mysterious, unplanned chopping of the fibre cable two weeks before moving day, we had to apply a cunning mixture of detailed planning plus the right amount of scramble defence (to borrow a footy analogy) to ensure we got across the river in one piece on the anointed day.
So what did we learn from our day in the life of a Sundata customer? Well, firstly we were reminded that it’s amazing what miracles can occur when people have a compelling deadline. In this case, we had only the slightest margin for delay before facing the financial penalty of extending our stay in the old premises.
Second, communication is a two-way street. We did everything we could to inform our team what to expect, both in the lead-up to the move and on the big day itself. As the client, we found it useful to remember that even though the prospect of extending the old lease was not directly relevant to the technical services our guys were there to provide, it was a major factor in how satisfied we would be with the outcome. Keeping the technical team fully informed of our other priorities helped them understand the measures of success for the job at hand. Armed with this knowledge, they could schedule their time more effectively, manage risk and better communicate their progress.
Finally, good attitude turns out to be just as important as technical skill and I’m pleased to say our team demonstrated their tremendous approach in a multitude of ways from finding workarounds for short term issues, to working after hours to get the job done.
The cherry on the top was the reconnected fibre lighting up at 4.30pm on the first full day minus 1.
It was an all hands to the pumps exercise and the team did a great job. Now if we can just get the plumber back to fix the hot water system….