• Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Hospitality, insurance emerge top-performing sectors in customer service

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Hospitality, insurance and e-commerce were the top three best-performing sectors in customer service last year, the Nigeria Customer Service Index (NCSI) report has said.

The inaugural report, titled ‘State of Customer Service in Nigeria’, was launched on Wednesday in Lagos by the West African Association of Customer Service Professionals (WAACSP) and NCSI partners.

The index collected data from over 8,000 respondents using a web-based questionnaire and respondents were asked to rate their customer service experience in nine sectors of the economy while data collection spanned from January to December 2023.

The report revealed that hospitality, insurance and e-commerce had 73 percent, 69 percent, and 68 percent respectively.

The grading system for the index shows that 95-100 percent (Grade A) is exceptional; 90-94 percent (Grade B plus), excellent; 85-89 percent (Grade B), very good; 80-84 percent (Grade C plus), good; 75-79 percent (Grade C); fair; 60-69 percent, poor (Grade D); 55-59 percent (Grade E plus), very poor; and below 55 percent (Grade E), dismal.

“This year’s index findings have unveiled compelling insights into various sectors’ performance in terms of customer satisfaction,” the report said.

“Across all sectors surveyed, the hospitality sector emerged as the frontrunner, boasting the highest score of 73 percent.”

It said Nigeria’s hospitality sector has witnessed a swift and expansive growth trajectory, emerging as one of the largest and most diverse industries within the nation’s economic landscape.

The report added that the country’s hospitality sector stands as a pivotal employer, engaging millions across various enterprises encompassing hotels, restaurants, tourism, food and beverage services, among others.

According to WAACSP, the hospitality sector got a 70 percent positive impression on customer service, 17 percent neutral impression from respondents, and 13 percent negative impression.

Insurance recorded 65 percent positive impression on customer service, 25 percent neutral impression from respondents and 11 percent negative impression.

“The Nigerian insurance sector witnessed significant growth in premiums throughout the first three quarters of 2023,” the report said.

According to data released by the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), insurance companies generated N729.1 billion in premiums during this period, indicating a substantial increase of N196 billion compared to the same period in 2022.

E-commerce recorded 64 percent positive impressions on customer service, 24 percent neutral impressions from respondents and 12 percent negative impressions.

“Despite the challenges in the e-commerce sector, players in the industry support the projected growth of the sector in Nigeria. They are confident that e-commerce is set to take off to unprecedented heights in the next decade,” the report said.

“According to projections, the expected increase in internet penetration of more than 1.5 percent per year implies that by 2026, 60 percent of the country would have internet connectivity,” it added.

The financial sector scored 66 percent in the ranking followed by healthcare with 62 percent, transportation sector (61 percent), telecommunication sector (58 percent), power sector (55 percent) and public sector (47 percent).

Nigeria ranked poorly in customer service, scoring 61.8 percent. Africa’s biggest economy got a lower score than its neighbour, Ghana, which had 73 percent.

“Some organisations should know better and try to make changes this year,” Yvonne MacCarthy, board chair of WAACSP, said.

She said the project was not sponsored, adding that the research was done because of the integrity they want to uphold in Nigeria. “It is the first one; so we are trying to capture the whole experience of how consumers feel.”
Sola Ajulo, patron of WAACSP, said Nigeria, being the giant of Africa, needs to aspire to do better.

“Our goal must be that every interaction leaves a lasting impression. Every customer must feel valued and appreciated enough,” she added.
The index serves as a national gauge of customer perceptions regarding the quality of products and services utilised by residents of Nigeria, including both Nigerians and foreigners residing in the country.