Top priority: customer expectations, wishes and concerns
As a core value of our corporate culture, customer focus is firmly anchored in the Tchibo DNA. With this in mind, we work daily to ensure that our customers are not just satisfied but inspired: through attractive products and excellent service management across all sales channels.
We can only succeed in doing this if we know, fulfil and even exceed customer expectations. Online shopping in particular has changed customer behaviour in recent years and has increased their expectations. This is why Tchibo connects the on- and offline worlds in a cross-channel system that lets customers shop even more conveniently, and keeps developing its services. We see customer focus as a holistic process, with many interlocking cogs – from product management, purchasing and logistics, to customer consultation, comprehensive customer service, and warranty and repair services. Our aim is always to delight our customers. For example, we make improvements to our processes, e.g. our customer information systems or the repair process. We offer special training for employees who are in direct contact with customers – for Tchibo employees as well as those of our call-centre service partners. Employees from across the company are given an opportunity to ‘see things through the customers’ lens by spending some time shadowing our customer service agents.
Our customer service staff always works to make our customers’ everyday life easier and more enjoyable. We give top priority to customers’ concerns, questions and wishes are our top priority, and therefore do everything in our power to impress them with our products and services, and to live up to our claim of top quality. To this end, we have formulated a service and quality promise as a central benchmark for all employees. It concentrates on the “8 service dimensions for Tchibo customer enthusiasm”: professional competence, appreciation, surprise, speed, equanimity, reliability, individualisation, and friendliness. The individualisation service dimension can also be optimally fulfilled digitally, for example. With the Tchibo Community we have the opportunity to personally address customers and offer them with customised products or services.
Quality assurance in customer service
Besides our Tchibo shops, customer service is the only department in the company that has direct contact with customers. Due to its great variety of customer contact, it is particularly important to customer relationship management – and thus to Tchibo’s business success. In order to assess, safeguard and thus improve the quality of its core service, i.e. meeting customer requests, we evaluate telephone and written correspondence for coaching and training purposes – in agreement with our customers and in compliance with data protection requirements. This evaluation focuses on qualitative aspects such as the professional competence and communicative performance of our customer advisors.
We process customer requests in a quick, fair and reliable way. But do our customers feel the same way? We regularly survey them about this. Feedback, even and especially criticism, complaints or suggestions for improvement help us to meet our customers’ expectations and keep inspiring them. At the same time, they provide us with important input for developing innovations and revising our services.
With the aim of establishing a Tchibo service dialogue that is in line with our brand, we have expanded our basic requirements for customer communication (simple, structured, concise and attentive) to include our brand attributes. The Tchibo brand speaks in a warm, authentic and clear voice. Following these principles, we have developed a Tchibo communications manual, tonality as well as texts and templates for standard communications, and have trained our employees and business partners accordingly.
Keep developing the ranges and services
Building on our understanding of service, we are constantly developing our offers, and respond to changes in purchasing behaviour at an early stage. Since 2014, we have made online shopping even more attractive for our customers with new applications and services, e.g. the option of paying with PayPal, having packages delivered to DHL parcel stations, or using the online “Store Availability Check,” which shows customers what stores have a given product in stock.
We also adapt our product ranges to our customers’ wishes – which have changed over time: 80% of our customers are ‘deliberate buyers’ at this point. They know what they want, specifically search for it online, and buy it. For this reason, in 2014 we established a permanent product range in our online shop. On our customers’ request, the items of our permanent range have been expanded in particularly popular product categories such as underwear, children's fashion, sportswear, and kitchenware.