20 percent of customers ready to desert brands because of inability to retrieve customer information; Marketing costs pushed higher by avoidable IT failure
Watford, 29th November 2005: UK companies risk losing up to 20 percent of their customers simply because they cannot retrieve information contained in letters, emails or call records in time to satisfy customer queries, according to new research from records compliance management leader AXS-One.
The research shows that customers in the UK are losing patience with excuses from companies such as banks and utility companies about “missing files” and are ready to switch brands in protest. The research, conducted across a sample of 1,000 UK adults, shows that one in five (20 per cent) of those questioned gave poor customer service resulting from lost documents as a reason to change brand and six out of ten people (58 per cent) questioned said that they would lose trust in brands that lost or were unable to retrieve their information.
AXS-One’s research provides a timely warning to businesses in the UK, many of which are struggling to come to terms with rapidly escalating archiving requirements. The volume of digital archive content is estimated to be growing at 49 percent per year , with much of this material needed for customer contact in a call centre or branch office - be it digital copies of paper correspondence or electronic files such as emails, account details or call records.
According to Mark Donkersley, Managing Director at AXS-One Europe, the financial damage to companies because of lost customers is potentially severe. “Losing a customer because of what boils down to poor digital archiving is like throwing shareholders’ money down the drain”, he said. “The cost of replacing a single lost customer can range from a few pounds to three or even four figures, without even considering the lost revenue stream. What is certain is that the total cost is many times higher than the cost per customer of a robust digital archive.
“Risking 20 percent customer defections is plainly a poor business proposition. Not only is there no need for this to happen with today’s technology, but companies can actually save money and improve efficiency by having better records management systems in place.”
Other findings from the research include:
• 69 per cent of the population regards the loss of documents as unacceptable, given the IT systems that are available today to prevent this from happening;
• One in eight UK adults (rising to one in seven in the A/B social groups) has had direct experience of the problem, having been told that important documents have been lost by a bank, utility or government department.
“AXS-One’s research shows that time is running out for organisations still using ‘missing files’ as an excuse for bad service”, continued Mark Donkersley. “Customers understand that the technology now exists to solve this problem completely and they don’t react well to organisations that continue to experience problems by not adopting readily available technology. The time has come for companies that value their brand reputation to put in place a reliable answer to records archiving.
“Damaging customer relationships unnecessarily is bad enough, but in our experience the problems caused by poor records management go even wider than this. The lost time from searches for missing files can easily run into hundreds of thousands of man-hours per year, even in a medium-sized company. And many companies have incurred massive fines from courts and regulators, or have had expensive judgements given against them by employment tribunals, because they could not produce the relevant evidence quickly enough. All this pain is wholly unnecessary, especially as records management systems usually pay for themselves in storage and efficiency savings alone.”
AXS-One Inc. (AMEX: AXO) is a leading provider of high performance Records Compliance Management solutions. The AXS-One Compliance Platform enables organisations to implement secure, scalable and enforceable policies that address records management for corporate governance, legal discovery and industry regulations such as SEC17a-4, NASD 3010, Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA, The Patriot Act and Gramm-Leach Bliley. AXS-One's award-winning technology has been critically acclaimed as best of class and delivers digital archiving, business process management, electronic document delivery and integrated records disposition and discovery for e-mail, instant messaging, images, SAP and other corporate records. Founded in 1979, and headquartered in Rutherford, NJ, AXS-One has offices worldwide including in the United States, Australia, Singapore, United Kingdom and South Africa. For further information, visit the AXS-One web site at http://www.axsone.com.
AXS-One, the AXS-One logo, "Access Tomorrow Today," AXSPoint, and TransAXS are registered trademarks of, and AXS-One Compliance Platform, AXS-One Retention Manager, "The Records Compliance Management Company," e-Cellerator, AXS Desk, "AXS-One Collaboration FrameWorks," SMART, AXS-Link and Tivity are trademarks of, AXS-One Inc., in the U.S. All other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies
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