I recently had a visit to Specsavers for my regular eye test and update of my glasses. It was a very good experience which made me realise that Specsavers could teach accountants a lot about processes and customer service.
My observations are:
- The shop is custom built specifically for purpose
- The shop had one optometrist and four assistants
- The four assistants were all in their 20’s (my guess)
- Everyone knew what they were doing and when to do it
- Everyone was friendly and professional
- I could book online
- Reminders came to me via SMS
- I left feeling like I had been very well looked after
My overarching observation is that Specsavers have worked out what they think is the best way to do each task and have put them all together to be “the Specsavers way”. They are very systemised and based on my experience it works really well.
My question to accountants then is this. Have you worked out the best way to do each task in the process of delivering your products and services to your clients and put it altogether to be the “your firm way”? Most accounting firm owners get the idea but somehow never quite manage to implement it.
Let me go through each of my observations and relate them specifically to running an accounting firm.
|Observation||Accounting Firm Relevance|
|The shop is custom built specifically for purpose||The Specsavers space works for both the employees and customers. Can you say the same for your office? What do your accountants need to work effectively? Are your reception and meeting room areas set up to look after clients and have a bit of a wow factor?|
|There is a lot of very specialised, sophisticated equipment used||For accountants this is mostly about having the right technology in place. Are you using 2 or 3 screens, headsets, and laptops and tablets to support client visits? Digital signing, mobile apps and other tools that enhance the client experience? Are you using software applications to automate or speed up what you do?|
|The shop had one optometrist and four assistants||This is about leverage. With the right systems and training in place the optometrist can focus on what they do best and leave everything else to the team. In my experience this is something accounting firm owners can struggle with.|
|The four assistants were all aged in their 20’s (my guess)
|They were well trained, full of energy, very polite and were delivering great service. Can you say the same about your team members? Smart young people can be trained to deliver beyond what you might initially expect they are capable of.|
|Everyone appeared to know what they were doing and when to do it||These people are trained well. For accountants it is not just about the technical training but also training in how to interact with clients and the “your firm way”.|
|I could book online
|Do you give your clients this option? Calendly is a tool to use to support this. I have a link on my website that allows for the booking of a meeting with me|
|Reminders came to me via SMS
|Health professionals and car service centres do this really well. Are you sending an SMS reminder to your clients for meetings that are booked?|
|I left feeling like I had been very well looked after
|Put yourself in the shoes of your clients. What is the client experience at your firm? Do they feel looked after. And most importantly have you systemised what you do so you can consistently deliver a great experience?|
I don’t know much about Specsavers and noticed that Wikipedia says it was founded by a husband and wife, Mary and Doug Perkins, in the UK and that it has a very large market share in the markets it serves. I am not surprised.
If you are an accounting firm owner interested in increasing your firm’s profitability through efficiency and a great customer experience, apply these ideas from Specsavers.