Bringing Value Onboard: Optimizing The B2B Customer Onboarding Experience

THE FIRST DAYS and weeks of a B2B relationship are critical toward driving customer satisfaction and building value. Companies must boost their customer understanding, fully align their functional groups, and improve communications in order to succeed during the onboarding period. And those achievements require appropriate investment. If your firm just gained a new business-to-business customer, a strong focus on performance in the first days or weeks of serving that customer can boost the lifetime value of the relationship. However, B2B product and service providers often fail to truly take advantage of the critical period immediately following a contract closure and before the relationship enters a “business as usual” steady state. Half of firms say they don’t do a very good job of delivering products and services when and where they’re needed during onboarding. Only slightly more companies report that their clients have a solid understanding of what to expect in this period. And only a third of firms rate themselves as doing a very good job of delivering accessible and uncomplicated customer interactions. B2B suppliers face three major challenges during this period: limited customer understanding, lack of alignment of functional groups, and poor communications. On the upside, companies that say they invest adequately in the onboarding period are much more likely to report success in meeting these challenges. More of these onboarding “Prioritizer” firms report higher levels of revenue growth as well. These are among the conclusions of a global survey about B2B client onboarding conducted by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services among 330 executives (including 79 executive managers or board members)...

B2B Customer Onboarding