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Martyn Gerrard

Mystery Shopping at the heart of a staff development programme

Cultural transformation to a positive learning environment

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Martyn Gerrard Estate Agents are award-winning, family-run estate agents selling and letting property in North London and North West London. They pride themselves on putting people before property, and providing the best possible service to both buyers and sellers.

Crucially their staff are empowered to act with complete integrity, and deliver a professional and personal service that they themselves would expect to receive.

The Challenge

Driven by the need to deliver the best customer experience they possibly can, Martyn Gerrard constantly seek customer feedback. Already having a customer review process in place, and the confidence to publish verbatim customer quotes on their website, the team wanted to take their improvement programme to the next level.

They needed to see their own customer experience through the eyes of the customer, and more importantly be able to share this with their whole team as part of their staff training and development programme. Knowing their greatest asset is their people, they are always looking to improve, and test themselves.

They approached Yomdel with very clear objectives in mind:

  • Align customer experience delivery with business and customer objectives
  • Set and achieve staff and team KPIs – including call, appointment and listing targets
  • Continue to promote healthy competition between their branches
  • Set CX standards and SLAs, and track performance
  • Emphasise focus on consistency of service across channels
  • Deliver ‘compliance expertise’ as a natural part of customer experience
  • Celebrate success with a monthly newsletter and prizes for top performers
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Selling their ambitions to their staff is also a key part of the motivation. They want their staff to be confident that this is a supportive, developmental initiative, so that the whole business succeeds as a team.

The Solution

Since May 2016, Yomdel have developed a comprehensive mystery shopping programme with Martyn Gerrard. Designed around their sales, lettings and commercial functions, the programme measures all aspects of the delivered customer experience:

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    • Martyn Gerrard branch visits
    • Competitor benchmarking branch visits
    • Martyn Gerrard telephone enquiries
    • Competitor benchmarking telephone enquiries
    • Martyn Gerrard website & email enquiries
    • Property viewing assessments
    • Competitor benchmarking home valuation assessments

This provides the team with a structured, objective customer’s eye view of their business. It ensures a fresh perspective is available, which cannot be matched when you work inside the industry.

Each mystery shopper assigned is a regular person local to the area, who could genuinely be Martyn Gerrard’s next customer.

Carrying out combined telephone and web mystery shopping enables the team to check consistency of approach, and holistic/seamless delivery across channels. ie. web enquiries should be dealt with as carefully and comprehensively as telephone calls, answering the specific query posed by the customer. Nowadays this is more important than ever, with customers actively choosing the web channel over telephone, yet the lack of personal interface can lead to lower quality response. This process ensures that is not the case at Martyn Gerrard.

Yomdel works with Martyn Gerrard to help identify breakdowns in systems and processes, not only providing the fundamental mystery shopping results, but also adding further analysis to help optimise enquiry handling in detail at each discrete stage of the customer journey. These become actionable insights which lead directly to process improvements, and consequent business success.

The Results

Management reporting provides detailed analysis of results, with competitor comparisons, tracked over time, highlighting performance trends. Martyn Gerrard’s scores have shown regular, consistent improvement, right from the start. They have been able to make tangible improvements as a direct result of mystery shopping insights.

A golden example in their experience uncovered a system/process glitch in leads referred from a property portal, where they had been completely unaware of customers requiring follow up. Through no fault of their own, they were not able to give the service they wanted, and without mystery shopping would never have known.

In September this year, they achieved their best ever scores, with one branch getting a perfect  100%. Prizes were awarded, success was celebrated, but this fabulous team know that they still have  more to learn and can get even better! They have even upped the incentive with a trip to Cyprus on the cards for the outstanding performers in their mystery shopping programme.

Branch managers are able to analyse mystery shops and play back experiences, which triggers direct action points, and drives granular customer experience innovations.

Mystery shopping results are now highlighted in the Martyn Gerrard monthly newsletter, and form a key part of team and branch KPIs. Martyn Gerrard have successfully created a positive learning culture. This didn’t come overnight, and lots of hard work went into aligning the whole team around the programme.

They are now confident enough that they can recognise - “that sales person scored 100% but they could also have done x, y and z to be even better” – which is the sign of a business built on a genuine culture of constant improvement.

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“Putting the mystery shopping programme with Yomdel at the heart of our staff development programme has driven real behavioural change.

It fuels our already ambitious team to reach new heights, ensuring we perform consistently at the top of our game to look after Martyn Gerrard customers.

Directly attributable business results have followed.”

David Smith FNAEA MARLA - Director

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