On a + note

Service is the moment of truth

Posted in on a + note by flickfancy on June 2, 2014

kitty#22Coffee is big business in Canada:

► 68% of Canadians drink coffee every day

►Canadian coffee drinkers on average drink 2.8 cups per day

►Daily coffee consumption varies across the country; 71% of adults in Quebec drink coffee daily, 64% of adults on the West coast, and 63% of adults in Ontario and on the Prairies

I’m always interested in market trends and as a coffee drinker I watch the iconic Tim Horton’s, usually on a daily basis!

Until recently, Tim Horton’s with over 4,000 locations and annual revenue in excess of $3.12 billion dominated the Canadian coffee industry. However they now face serious challenges from McDonalds, Starbucks, Second Cup and an ever growing local coffee industry. It is now a huge industry with hug competition.

In addressing these challenges, Tim’s new CEO Marc Caira has been talking about the need for innovation, better customer service and using new technologies to improve operations and the customer experience. In the early morning hours I couldn’t agree more with this new approach, as the line at my Tim’s snakes out the door and spills into the parking lot. The new CEO is convinced the battle to keep Tim’s number one will be won or lost at the service counter as the customer decides if they are satisfied enough to return or go elsewhere. And I am surprised that I subconsciously (and now consciously) make that decision every morning as I near the front of the line.

So what does this have to do with libraries?

We win or lose customers with every interaction, from the question answered or not answered to the website working or not working. Every time a customer interacts with the library they are deciding whether to return or go elsewhere. We win or lose customers with every interaction. In some ways this is great, as our customers are constantly watching and evaluating us. On the flip side it’s darn scary as everything we do puts us on the edge of losing that customer.

The lesson is, everything we do with our customers matters – from the way we look, the service we provide, to the attitude of our staff – it all factors into the customer’s experience. As competition for the customer’s time and attention continues to rise, we need to be constantly and objectively evaluating the customer experience. How we can we save the customer time, improve catalog functionality, improve access to technologies and ultimately improve the customer service, every time.

If the mighty Tim Horton’s is closely watching the customer experience, it’s a good idea that we do as well in library land.

Have a great week….

I need another cup of coffee!

Kitty Pope                                                                                                 #22 June 2014



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