Customer excellence was the theme of this year’s IWFM Women in FM Conference which took place on January 30th at the impressive Wellcome Trust building in London.
This enlightening full day event addressed the importance of customer experience and discussed a number of challenging topics within the FM industry.
There was acknowledgement of the need to understand the changing requirements of occupants of the managed environments within FM.
It was recognised that users expect not only a great service from their FM provider but an interactive and bespoke experience.
Building and sustaining customer excellence in any business drives growth and gives a competitive advantage but requires investment of resources and a continuous improvement approach.
The conference covered a wide range of topics delivered by a selection of FM and business culture leaders.
Kiran Kachela, Director of CI Projects gave insights into how organisations can build a customer-centric culture using Lean Thinking. Lean implies eliminating waste and improving processes, service delivery and increasing value for the customer. Kiran looked beyond FM and shared examples of this customer-centric approach across other industries to understand what learnings could be drawn upon. Disney is a prime example of this customer-centric and continuous improvement culture. The FM industry needs to take a cue as “what delights a customer today will become a basic expectation tomorrow”.
Claire Smith of Moneypenny delved into the impact of the right customer culture on the bottom line. Her key message was – look after your teams and they will look after your customers.
Nicola Lathbury, covered the impact of toxicity in the workplace while Mary Jane Flanagan of MJ Inspire explored the need for employees to be empowered personally so that they in turn can surprise and delight customers.
Liz Kentish & Nick Hart underlined the importance of Ethics and Morals in customer service and the University of Oxford team (Sarah Walden & Aileen Peverell) shared their journey to customer service excellence.
Overall it was a stimulating event and an exciting time for CI Projects to be part of the changing landscape of the FM Industry. There is more excitement in store as we feature in the February issue of FMJ.