Industry super funds are embracing the sorts of market research tools prevalent in the corporate world to better understand who their members are and what they want.

Twelve years after the introduction of ‘choice of fund’ legislation, and as the threat of an even more radical overhaul of default arrangements looms, industry super funds are under growing pressure to come up with better member retention strategies.

One popular approach is to implement a ‘voice of customer’ strategy.

At the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees’ Conference of Major Superannuation Funds 2017, to be held on the Gold Coast on March 22-24, Local Government Super chief marketing officer Michelle Hopwood will chair a panel titled: The five steps to a successful voice of customer program.

The panel will feature Bastion head of brand strategy Kristen Boschma and Qualtrics customer experience expert Vicky Katsabaris.

Ahead of the discussion at CMSF 2017, Hopwood talked Investment Magazine through the basics of a voice of customer program.

IM: What is voice of customer?

MH: It’s about engaging with members. Listening to them and understanding their wants and needs and how they behave, then acting on the information to improve the customer experience across relevant touch points to meet and exceed their expectations.

Why is it important that super funds develop a strong voice of customer program?

A common theme that comes up amongst funds is the desire to improve member engagement and member experience. Listening to what members want and then acting on the feedback is key to this. That’s where a voice of customer program comes in.

Do you have a voice of customer program at Local Government Super?

I’d say that, like most funds, our voice of customer program is evolving. We conduct a variety of member research programs, listen via social media and receive feedback every day through our member-facing teams.

What is the main thing to get right?

One of the challenges is in centrally storing, analysing and sharing the data easily, in a timely way, and having processes in place so it can be acted upon. I think we will have a great opportunity to learn something new from our experts who will be presenting to us at the CMSF session.

What’s the hardest thing about implementing it?

I think one of the hardest things is for organisations to become truly customer-centric. That needs to be at the core if a voice of customer program is to achieve success and drive meaningful change.

To register to attend the Conference of Major Superannuation Funds, March 22-24, 2017, on the Gold Coast, CLICK HERE.


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