Building a holistic view of customer experience: the seven pillars of CX Maturity

We mentioned in our previous blog on CX maturity that most CX programmes only focus on the external elements of CX. In doing so, they’re missing a huge swathe of insight – insight that is critical to decision-making for both short-term CX action and long-term CX strategy.

When we talk to clients about measuring their CX maturity and evolving their programmes, we emphasise the need to take a holistic view in order to understand the entire picture of CX, both inside and outside their organisation.

To do this, we’ve created a structured approach to CX maturity which is built on seven core pillars. By assessing each pillar from both internal and external perspectives, we can help businesses assess their current position and build an insight-driven, targeted CX strategy to drive improvements.

Combined into our unique CX Compass™ framework, the seven pillars are used as follows:

1. Customer – focusing on understanding the customer, their needs and expectations. The internal perspective looks at whether the business has a clear understanding of its customers, their journeys and moments of truth. The external perspective assesses customer satisfaction and whether customers’ needs are being met.

2. Organisation – assessing whether the organisation is set up and equipped to deliver CX excellence. Internally, this examines organisational alignment with the importance of CX at every level, the existence of a single customer view, and an effective CRM. Externally, it looks at whether the business is easy to deal with and the consistency of customer experiences across channels, functions and services.

3. Measurement – assessing whether the organisation measures customer experience effectively and ties improvements made to CX to key strategic outcomes, such as ROI. The internal perspective looks at specific measures of customer experience, while the external perspective examines whether customers feel their views are listened to and if the business is open to feedback.

4. Promises – identifying what the organisation promises to its customers, the expectations it sets and whether it meets them. Internally, this analyses the promises that are made and how well these are acted upon and delivered. Externally, this examines whether customers understand the business proposition and values, how well their expectations of the business are met and the extent to which brand promises are communicated and kept.

5. Action – focusing on the action, if any, that the organisation takes in response to customer feedback, and measuring improvements in customer processes. The internal perspective looks at whether and how customer feedback is shared, and how well key customer experience metrics are embedded in the business as an indicator of success. The external perspective considers whether customers feel service is delivered in a timely, responsive fashion and whether queries or concerns are acted upon appropriately.

6. Staff – examining the organisation’s employees and their role in delivering great CX. Internally, this means assessing whether staff understand the importance of great CX, have the right knowledge and skills, and are engaged. Externally, it considers the customer perception of staff and whether they have the necessary knowledge and service skills, as well as the appropriate softer skills needed to deliver the best experiences.

7. Strategy – looking at the organisation’s overall CX strategy and whether it is based on customer needs. The internal perspective examines whether the business has a clear, evolving CX strategy, whether it is integral to the overall business strategy, and whether senior leaders demonstrate a customer-first culture. The external perspective considers whether customers would recommend the organisation, return to them in the future to use other services, and even want to support or promote the business.


Using these seven pillars, businesses are in the best position to truly understand where they sit on the CX maturity scale, how well their customers’ needs and expectations are being met, and what improvements they need to make to drive customer-centricity and embed CX at every level.

By gathering this data-driven, internal and external insight, organisations across all sectors, of all sizes, at all stages of their development, can clearly see the actionable steps they need to take to improve CX. The reward for doing so? Increased customer loyalty, reduced customer and employee churn, and positive ROI for the business as a whole.

To see these rewards within your own business, read our CX Maturity and the path to Customer Centricity, or contact us for an informal discussion about the challenges and opportunities you’re facing.

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