Deloitte leaders focus on client service excellence
DTT CEO Jim Quigley is in Tokyo from 10-12 June discussing client service excellence with more than 250 Deloitte senior leaders from around the world. Client service is central to the business strategy of the Deloitte member firms which operate in more than 140 countries worldwide. The Deloitte organization is differentiating itself from competitors by aligning all of its professionals behind a higher commitment to clients and markets.
As part of the preparation for Deloitte’s Tokyo World Meeting, client service professionals worldwide were asked to participate in a collaborative electronic discussion around 11 “top of mind” issues for clients. The discussion topics ranged from the changing financial services industry to increased government regulation to the environment.
According to a recent Deloitte study, client service remains the most important criteria for companies purchasing consulting and professional services, even in the current economic environment.
In keeping with Deloitte’s emphasis on client service, DTT leaders will announce the winners of the organization’s Standard of Excellence Awards at the Tokyo World Meeting. These awards recognize Deloitte member firms that have provided clients with exceptional cross-border service.
Client centric collaboration
The recent economic turmoil has created significant uncertainty and challenges in the marketplace, and the fundamental changes that result will dramatically impact the clients of Deloitte member firms.
In order to prepare for Deloitte’s Tokyo World Meeting, 8,000 member firm partners worldwide were asked what the “top of mind” issues were for their clients. The 11 discussion topics that resulted ranged from the changing financial services industry to increased government regulation to the environment.
More than 50,000 Deloitte professionals contributed to the discussions, which took place on an internal Wiki. The discussions resulted in the creation of 11 white papers, based on expert subject and industry knowledge, which can be brought to bear on a client’s business and project requirements.
Despite the current economic environment, client service remains the number one determinant in choosing consulting services, with 73 percent of respondents saying it is important today. While pricing did move up from number three to number two as a factor in choosing a service provider, client service remains the most critical determinant.
Regionally, respondent companies in Asia Pacific and Latin America cared more about brand and independence than pricing and strong referrals. In Europe, the Middle East, and North America—areas that were arguably harder hit by the economic downturn—pricing and strong referrals from clients were of greater importance.
According to respondents in Asia Pacific, customized service and attention to detail were the most important characteristics of a good consulting service provider. In Europe and the Middle East, commitment to and understanding of the client’s business were deemed most important. Latin American respondents were concerned with the commitment level, ethics, and values of their consultants, while North American respondents looked most for strong ethics, values, and responsiveness.
Overall, the top five characteristics respondents identified for a perfect consulting service provider were:
- Expert subject and industry knowledge;
- High-quality service;
- Understanding a client’s business and the project requirements;
- Clear, effective communication, and
- Value for money.
Among Asia Pacific, Europe, and Middle East respondents, having a competent team was also a key characteristic of an excellent consulting service provider.
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