Tailoring Customer Contact Journeys

Business challenge

The Consumer Council for Water (CCW) developed a strategy to put the voice of the consumer at the heart of everything they do when resolving complaints from water companies.

CCW had previously used a customer journey map to navigate customer complaints to resolution, but believed that tailoring the customer journey to the needs of different customer groups and complaint types would result in higher satisfaction with its complaint handling.

What we did

We used a three-phase approach.

Pre-interviews: analysis on existing data to define sample frame and steer depth interviews

We ran a project initiation workshop where CCW outlined the different areas of customer complaints they help to resolve, and the current customer journey. We spent time on site with the customer service agents responsible for liaising with customers to understand first hand current customer touch points, processes and any barriers.

We then conducted quantitative analysis of CCW Customer Satisfaction data from 2017-2019 to gain a picture of the various customer journeys and segments. Five different segments for specific customer journeys were identified using CHAID and segmentation techniques. The CHAID analysis identified, for each segment, the areas which maximise satisfaction. These findings were shared with CCW in a workshop, and the topics for further exploration in the depth interviews co-created by Impact and CCW.

Depth interviews: semi-structured questioning and fusion with analysis

The customer segments developed in Phase 1 were appended to CCW’s resolved complaint sample (from the past 6 months) to explore the customer segments qualitatively in depth and to confirm that the segments identified were roughly following the customer journey identified. 75 semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted to understand best fit and attain extra journey information such as relative importance of touch points. Interviews were equally split into household and non-household, and included a range of customers in vulnerable circumstances.

Practical application

Finally, both phases were analysed together to build specific customer journeys for the front line staff to follow to increase customer satisfaction. A segmentation algorithm was also developed.


Five different customer segments were identified, and tailored customer journey maps produced that highlight how to best meet customer needs at each stage of their journey, with specific actions that CCW employees can implement to increase customer satisfaction.

Impact derived an algorithm to quickly identify segment membership and the appropriate customer journey at point of first contact. This enables CCW to direct cases down the appropriate route, maximising satisfaction potential.

Impact co-presented Phase 1 findings at the CCW Research Conference in Birmingham in January 2020. CCW are currently integrating the journey maps into their CX systems and the resulting impact on satisfaction will be carefully monitored.