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Marketing experts tell you that “the customer experience sells”.  Translation: it is a competitive advantage.  But it requires excellent systems.

Imagine calling a garage with a problem with your car, and these two possible customer experiences:

Company A Company B
Scoping We’ll have to wait until we see the problem. Based on the four questions we’ve just asked you, it sounds like you need to replace the Gizmo in your Widget.
Scheduling Some time on Friday. What about Friday morning, from 10AM to Noon?  We’ll call ahead to let you know we’re coming, and will call by 11AM if we’re running late.
Quoting We can’t give you a quote until we see it. Based on what you’ve told us, nine times out of ten this costs our customers $250; if you give me your email, I can send you a formal quote.  Your invoice will have the original estimate, so you can see any differences.
Billing Please sign this paper copy.  I’ll take it to head office at the end of the day.  They will send you an invoice at the end of the month, and then you can call in to make a credit card payment. Let’s walk through the work order and the final fee on screen on this tablet.  Please sign on the screen and hit “accept”.  Great, now please swipe your credit card through this attachment and enter your pin code.  That’s it; your work order, invoice, and payment receipt have just been emailed to you.

The experience sells.  Company B is selling convenience, ease of use, and professionalism.  What is Company A selling?

This is why you invest in processes.  Better processes mean a much better customer experience, meaning more bsiness for B.  Company B gets added bonuses: faster cash flows from better invoicing and collections, and better profits from  better scheduling (reduced downtime), better estimating (more sales), and better collection (fewer cheques to handle, which also means fewer of them to bounce).

The marketing people also tell you – and we’re telling you – that Company B has a (huge) competitive advantage.

You’ll rightly ask, “How can I afford a system like Company B?”

We’ll reply:

“Can you afford NOT to have a system like that?”  (We’ll add “the software these days isn’t as expensive as you think”.)

Profit Breakthrough:
A lot of powerful, tailored applications are available on the Cloud.  The costs can be lower than $50 per user per month – and the payback is huge.

Better processes mean a better customer experience and more profits.  It’s a huge competitive advantage.  That’s what we mean by Process is Cash Flow.