Tag Archives: self-service

Retention is Not the Same Thing as Satisfaction

Last year I posted about the research Dennis Campbell and I did in financial services where we found the surprising result that self-service can increase costs (the article was just published in Management Science.)  Dennis and I have been working …

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Upside Down Operations: Self-Service Can Increase Labor Costs

A “self-service” play almost always has a strong cost component.  The model’s logic is that if your customers are doing more of the work, then your employees can do less of it — and can be paid less for it.  …

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Self-Service Innovation at USAA

The NYT recently described an innovative new iPhone “app” that allows customers to use their phones to deposit a check.  Take pictures of the front and back of the check with the phone’s camera, and then use its email function to send the pictures to …

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Customer-Operators: Not Paying Them Doesn’t Mean They’re Free

People, it turns out, are desperate to be helpful.  Verizon has discovered this and joined the growing ranks of companies using what I call “customer-operators” to do the work employees used to do, everything from generating new product ideas to …

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Customers for Hire

Embracing the humanity of your customers has another distinct advantage — customers can also help you run your business. Companies that recognize that their customers are thinking/feeling/doing human beings often learn to work effectively with them to operate and improve …

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Self-Service Revolution or the Worst Meal I’ve Ever Bought?

I fought off anxious flashbacks yesterday to the least satisfying meal I’ve ever exchanged for hard currency. These memories were not a welcome intrusion. We live in complex times. But anxiety is a blunt instrument – it doesn’t distinguish between …

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Self-Service Revolution: Response

Self-service is very tricky to get right.  My rule of thumb is that self-service excellence needs to be designed such that customers prefer the self-service to a readily available full service alternative. A great example is airline check-in kiosks. When …

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