In today's highly competitive real estate landscape, the importance of being customer-centric cannot be overstated. By prioritising the needs, preferences, and overall experience of tenants, companies can significantly enhance their commercial properties’ competitive edge and long-term viability.

Within Keppel’s Real Estate Division, a steadfast commitment to customer-centricity is not just a strategic initiative but also a core philosophy ingrained in every facet of our operations. Spearheaded by our dedicated Customer Experience (CX) team, we strive to uphold a culture of excellence that places customers unequivocally at the centre of our endeavours.

Debunking The Common Misconceptions Of Customer Experience

Prioritising customer experience requires a dynamic, multi-faceted strategy that involves the entire organisation. To truly excel in the realm of customer experience, companies must embrace a holistic approach, acknowledging that the customer journey is a complex tapestry of human interactions. Here are some common misconceptions of customer experience.

Myth #1: Customer Experience Is Solely About Surveys And Research

While we are not disparaging the value of surveys in understanding tenant satisfaction, customer experience requires a dynamic, multi-dimensional approach. It should encompass every touchpoint the customer has with a brand, from initial awareness to post-purchase interactions.

The aim is to create a seamless, positive experience throughout the customer journey. So, while companies may perform market research, it would not paint the whole picture. Instead, customer experience is about going beyond data points by understanding the emotions, motivations, and expectations of the customer. That requires real insights that come from combining quantitative data and qualitative understanding from customer interviews and observations.

Myth #2: Customer Experience Is A One-Time Effort

The truth is that customer experience is an ongoing, ever-evolving process. It is not a one-time affair but a continuous commitment to improvement. After all, tenant expectations can change, and property owners must adapt accordingly to stay ahead. That requires regular assessments, refinements, and innovations to maintain a positive customer experience.

Myth #3: Customer-Facing Service Teams = Customer Experience

Many have this misassumption that customer-facing service teams equate to the entire customer experience. As a result, they erroneously place the responsibility on these teams. While front liners play a pivotal role, the process should be a collective effort involving every individual within the organisation, as every department contributes to the overall customer experience.

Myth #4: Positive Customer Experience Is Achieved Solely Through External Initiatives

Many companies often focus on external factors, such as appearance and novelty, to generate positive customer experiences, but miss out on internal factors like values and motivation of staff. However, experience-led companies find that engaging employees with a positive service mindset can directly influence external customer experience. After all, an organisation that values its employees is more likely to find them motivated to deliver exceptional service.

R.E.A.L Service Values

Myth #5: Technology Can Solve Every Customer Experience Challenge

While technology can help enhance customer experience, it is not a panacea to all challenges. Human touch, empathy, and understanding remain irreplaceable components of a positive customer experience. Technology should complement, and not replace, the personal connection between a brand and its customers.

Embracing Customer Experience as An Organisation

Customer Experience

Throughout the article, we have touched on the importance of a collaborative effort in providing a positive customer experience. So, what does this look like in practice? Let us demonstrate by sharing the initiatives Keppel has launched to support this endeavour. 

1. Customer Obsession Portal

Customer Obsession Portal

As part of the CX team’s effort to foster continuous learning and develop in-house capabilities within Keppel’s Real Estate Division, a digital resource hub was set up to provide employees a seamless access to the customer experience resources. Beyond that, Customer Obsession Awareness training courses are conducted online to establish consistent knowledge about applying customer centricity approach across different business units.

2. R.E.A.L Service Values

R.E.A.L Service Values

Our R.E.A.L Service Values demonstrate the Real Estate Division’s commitment to service excellence for our customers. We ensure our more than 1000-strong crew of service front liners, operation executives, supervisors, and line managers receive and benefit from regular service training to deliver a positive customer experience for our tenants.

Meanwhile, service front liners who embody and exemplify our R.E.A.L Service Values  - Responsive and Reliable, Easy to Engage, Anticipate Needs and Listen with Empathy, are recognised for their efforts. The primary objective of our Service Values is to define a set of principles, guiding our employees on how they can communicate and engage with our customers at every touchpoint. That includes both internal and external stakeholders.

3. Keppel’s customer journeys

Our approach to customer centricity extends to the design of experiences of our commercial properties, by developing Customer Journeys through understanding the needs of tenants and operators. This ensures delightful, frictionless experiences at our managed properties, incorporating practices like green leasing and efficient facility management to enhance productivity and well-being.

In an ongoing partnership with NUS’s Division of Industrial Design, Keppel’s Real Estate Division worked with six teams of 18 undergraduate students in 2023 to embark on  journeys that aligns coursework with practical applications on the topic of sustainability.

At the end of the programme, various innovative design solutions and prototypes co-created by the students and their Keppel mentors were presented and showcased to the broader organisation, so as to inspire other departments.

This joint venture is part of 25 journeys worked with various business partners as we continue collaborating to discover new opportunities to develop for the future.

NUS x Keppel Showcase

4. Detailed Feedback System

We value our tenants’ opinions. That is why we have instituted a dynamic customer feedback programme across our assets that not only captures the voice of the customer, but also actively responds to their feedback, turning insights into impactful actions.

Our management team is also deeply committed to ensuring the best possible experience for our customers, regularly reviewing key customer metrics in leadership forums, and integrating customer interests into our business solutions. 

At Keppel, we believe that we should not merely meet customer expectations but also exceed them, and that prioritising customer experience could be the key to unlocking success and ensuring positive business outcomes for all stakeholders. If you are interested in learning more about our customer experience, feel free to contact us today.



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