FinDev Canada, a development finance institution, wants to ensure they maintain client satisfaction while expanding their client base. Leger used extensive exploratory research to uncover what matters most to FinDev Canada’s clients and designed a customized VoC system and blueprint based on the moments of truth in their client journey.
In 2020, FinDev Canada, a financial institution dedicated to providing financial services to the private sector in developing countries with the aim of combating poverty through economic growth, was facing a common business challenge: how could they expand their client base while ensuring that existing and new clients are satisfied?
Created in 2018, the organization (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Export Development Canada) offers debt and equity financing in the range of USD 5-20M to businesses operating in developing countries to strengthen those markets and, in turn, create stability and prosperity for local communities. Working in Latin America, the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa and covering the sectors of ‘green’ growth, agribusiness and financial institutions, FinDev Canada is committed to economic development, women’s economic empowerment, and climate action in the regions where it works.
As of 2020, FinDev Canada is proudly serving 16 clients. They plan to expand over the coming years, and their goal is to add 15 new clients to their roster every year for five years.
THE CHALLENGE: MAINTAINING SATISFACTION WHILE GROWING ITS CLIENT BASE
FinDev Canada was seeking a partner on its journey to maintain client satisfaction while expanding its client base, managing client feedback, and delivering added value.
Specifically, the organization wanted to implement a customized Voice of the Customer (VoC) solution to achieve these objectives.
Previously, FinDev Canada conducted client surveys to measure client satisfaction. As a relatively young organization established in 2018, FinDev Canada had designed the surveys themselves. Moreover, they were administered by internal staff, rather than an independent third party. FinDev Canada wanted to ensure their survey technique benefitted from the technical expertise of professionals in survey design and deployed techniques that would ensure the feedback reflected how clients truly felt. They also wanted a long-term VoC process that could be rolled out to systematically capture customer sentiment.
As noted by Isabelle Blanchet, Vice-President, Customer Experience, Leger, “Seeking out an independent third party to measure client satisfaction was a wise choice by FinDev Canada. Unavoidably, organizations are biased toward the internal perspective: after all, they are the experts on their products and services, understand the processes and regulations associated with their distribution, and know their market and what their clients want.
Providing an excellent client experience means going beyond internal assumptions and externally validating exactly what your clients are looking for.”
With FinDev Canada’s objectives in mind, Leger’s customer experience (CX) team collaborated with Leger’s Communications and Public Affairs Research team to:
- Determine what the goals of FinDev Canada’s VoC system should be
- Design a customized VoC system for FinDev Canada
- Build a plan for FinDev Canada to implement the VoC system, given the realities facing their organization
THE SOLUTION: EXPLORATORY RESEARCH TO DETERMINE THE SYSTEM’S GOALS, FOLLOWED BY DESIGNING A CUSTOMIZED VoC SYSTEM
A crucial aspect of creating a VoC system, perhaps the most crucial, is to ensure that it measures what really matters to your clients.
As Seth Godin once said, “Measurement is fabulous, unless you’re busy measuring what is easy to measure, as opposed to what is important.”
Our CX team knew that before they could design the VoC system, they would need to know the make-or-break moments (moments of truth) along FinDev Canada’s customer journey from its clients’ perspectives.
Part One: Extensive Exploratory Research to Understand What Matters Most to FinDev Canada’s Clients
First, our teams reviewed FinDev Canada’s existing documents (including internal documents, reports prepared by previous consultants, and previous client surveys).
They then met with FinDev Canada’s key stakeholders (including the Investments team, senior management, the IT director, and others) to understand their perceptions of the client journey and the make-or-break moments within that journey. Based on this feedback, Leger’s CX team created a preliminary client journey map that reflected FinDev Canada’s perspective.
To validate the customer journey map (and determine whether what FinDev Canada’s stakeholders perceived as key steps and of most importance were also most important to clients), Leger’s research team conducted one-on-one interviews with a sample of FinDev Canada’s existing clients. These interviews focused on understanding how each client perceived their journey with FinDev Canada, including their needs and expectations, their challenges, and the emotions they experienced throughout.
The feedback gleaned from the interviews was used to revise, update, and in this case, simplify the “internal” journey map to ensure it reflected the FinDev Canada client journey from their clients’ perspectives. The final client journey map was made up of four stages: Information, Due Diligence, Agreement, and Partnership and Follow-Up. Within each of these stages, we identified:
- The steps experienced by clients
- The touchpoints that clients expect for each step
- The ideal point in time to conduct client surveys, based on the above
Part Two: Designing a Customized VoC System Based on What Matters Most
We clarified what matters most to FinDev Canada’s clients and the moments of truth within the client journey through the extensive exploratory research.
The information gathered during the exploratory phases guided the development of the VoC program and helped us to design the VoC blueprint, which included information on:
- Which customer experience metrics FinDev Canada should be measuring (based on what matters most)
- When/how frequently FinDev Canada should follow up with its clients,
- The best methods for contacting their clients (phone, email, etc.)
- The support process (including how the VoC system will integrate with FinDev Canada’s CRM system)
- And more
In addition, we also:
- Designed three customized surveys tailored to three key steps of the FinDev Canada client journey. These surveys enable FinDev Canada to track their most important customer experience indicators over time and enable clients to provide qualitative and quantitative feedback.
- Analyzed 7 different VoC platform suppliers in-depth and provided FinDev Canada with a recommendation for the top 3 suppliers best positioned to meet their unique needs (based on FinDev Canada’s business needs and their IT team’s vision).
For FinDev Canada, some of the key takeaways from this project were:
1. THE CLIENT JOURNEY AS PERCEIVED BY ITS STAKEHOLDERS AND CLIENTS IS NOT THE SAME
This insight enabled FinDev Canada to understand that clients perceived the overall journey in a much simpler way (regrouping steps into milestones) than the internal processes they go through. It also confirmed the most important value creation elements that FinDev delivers.
2. IDENTIFYING THE MOMENTS OF TRUTH WITHIN THEIR CLIENT JOURNEY
The moments of truth along the client journey are crucial because they greatly impact satisfaction and retention. To deliver the optimal customer experience, FinDev Canada needs to ensure the VoC system they put in place measures what is truly most important to their clients, especially at these specific points.
3. DIFFERENT CLIENTS, IN DIFFERENT COUNTRIES, SECTORS, AND AT DIFFERENT INVESTMENT STAGES WANT THE SAME THING FROM FINDEV CANADA
The client interviews revealed that regardless of the market, the sector of activity, the preferred financial service, and the investment journey stage, all clients have the same expectations and are seeking the same thing: a financial partner. Although their journeys may vary in terms of activities, duration, funding required, or project risk level, they experience the customer journey with the same expectations.
“Although we work in quite distinct regions of the world, Latin America, the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa, we were surprised to discover the commonalities between the expectations of our clients – they want us to be a financial partner – one that understands and meets them where they are on their journey,” said Stéphanie Emond, Vice-President (Operations) and Chief Impact Officer, FinDev Canada.
In Fall 2020, Leger presented the results to FinDev Canada’s senior management team. The organization is currently working on setting up its processes and systems to accommodate the implementation of the new VoC system.
Leger is looking forward to assisting FinDev Canada with implementing this system in the future.
ARE YOU INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE ABOUT HOW LEGER’S CX TEAM CAN HELP YOU DESIGN A CUSTOMIZED VOC SOLUTION?
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