Philip: “Fashion and hospitality are so connected as both industries are customer focused and still today I love the customer contact. Hunkemöller prides itself on creating a complete 360 degree omni-channel experience. We see our customers as the most important asset in the business and we have created a strategy to offer World Class Service in every touch point with the consumer. We have a clearly defined in-store customer journey from ‘Welcome to Hunkemöller’, at the door, to our cross-sell and up-sell element, to our fitting room experience which is critical to our customer journey. Then finally we end with our ‘kiss goodbye’ where we pride ourselves on the last element of our transaction. To ensure that we create a true omni-channel experience; giving everything, everywhere, in every way, we now offer click & collect, check & return, order in store, and return to store. These combined with our digital member card and our mobile APP means that we can prompt our consumers with relevant product at relevant shopping moments.
Having a bachelor degree in Hotel Management or Business Studies never gives you the full picture but is a great stepping stone in starting off your business life with a clear understanding of what is required, both in terms of service, operations and profit. Not one element is enough and there is nothing like practical experience to enable you to have a true understanding of what the customer needs and requires.
Service is part of your background and is driven by your upbringing, but of course every great retailer has it’s own specific service requirements which need to be taught. Our company strategy is to ‘hire for attitude and train for skill’, so we look for talented sales/customer service people who we can train to sell using our company strategy. Still I believe the best service is outside Europe in countries like the US and Japan. Here service is bred into society and the experience you receive is far greater than any European company has been able to achieve. In both the US and Japan, the customer service / sales person goes out of their way to find your name and treats you with a superior service level.”