By Brian Wolff
Customer experience (CX) has gotten complicated and competitive in the last five years! I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, but what started out as a location, location, location business has turned into a technology-fueled and customer choice driven business. Gone are the days when we could hang a sign at the entrance, open the gates and let them in. Parking customers are making choices about where to park long before they arrive, with devices that didn’t exist 15 short years ago (their smartphones). And when they arrive, that gate better go up, or they’ll tell you–and millions of other people–about that negative experience via social media.
If that wasn’t challenging enough, delivering a great customer experience has become the guiding light for every company on the planet, which means the experience you deliver to your customers isn’t measured by how the “parking guy” down the street does it. Rather, experts tell us that every experience is compared to the best experience that customer has ever had. That means you are now competing with Disney, Amazon, The Ritz Carlton, AND the guy down the block!
The good news is that the same technology that made your life more complicated, and business more competitive, has also created infinitely better tools for you to help your customers. Innovative companies are leveraging the Internet, cloud computing, and smartphones to give you the ability to know more about your customers, give them more choices about how to choose and pay for parking in your facility, and help them when they get stuck.
This same technology has also made it easier for collaboration between innovative companies, bringing their technologies together to deliver a better CX for your customers. There is no turning back to the good old days. We all must move forward, embrace the digital transformation sweeping our industry and meet our customers where they are–on their smartphones and in the cloud.
Brian Wolff is president and CEO of Parker Technology. He will present on this topic at the 2021 IPMI Parking & Mobility Conference & Expo, Nov. 29 – Dec. 3, in Tampa, Fla.