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Agency Specialising in Customer Experience Completes Project for Arriva Trains Wales

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A small agency, based on the outskirts of Cardiff, has successfully completed a project for its biggest client to date – Arriva Trains Wales.

The agency, Seiri, specialises in helping businesses understand the experiences their customers are having and then makes use of that information in order to help businesses improve their services for customers. As a result, the agency offers its clients everything from customer feedback surveys to customer service training.

James Koash, Managing Director of Seiri Ltd, on a visit to Ebbw Vale Parkway station, which is part of the Arriva Trains Wales network.

James Koash, Managing Director of Seiri Ltd, on a visit to Ebbw Vale Parkway station, which is part of the Arriva Trains Wales network.

The project Seiri conducted for Arriva Trains Wales involved the production of a customer journey map, which is a diagram that shows all the interactions customers might have with the company at the various stages of their journey.

“It would be easy to assume that the term ‘customer journey’ refers to just the period of time that the customer is in a station or on a train, but the customer journey can also include steps before and after the travel itself, such as researching their travel or providing feedback about their experience afterwards,”

said James Koash, Managing Director at Seiri.

“It’s important to look at everything to understand all the elements that could affect how customers perceive your brand and also to determine areas where perhaps things could be improved for the customer. If customers have a good experience, they are more likely to spend again in future and stay loyal to a company.”

This customer journey map will now be shared with hundreds of staff across the company to help them put themselves in the customer’s shoes and understand how their role relates to the rest of the customer journey.

Barry Lloyd, Head of Customer Experience at Arriva Trains Wales, said:

“Seiri has completed a very complex piece of work, bringing together all the numerous touch points and customer interactions with our services in to one very detailed and easy to use map.”

The map was also accompanied with a report for managers and directors at the company making recommendations on how the experience can be improved for the thousands of passengers that travel with Arriva Trains Wales each day.

“I'm certain that Seiri would be an asset to any company looking to understand any aspects of their customers experiences further,”

continued Barry.

Whilst Arriva Trains Wales already has its own in-house customer experience experts, they commissioned Seiri as they felt they could benefit from an independent perspective. As part of the research, Seiri spoke directly to a cross-section of Arriva customers and asked for their honest opinions.

Seiri is hoping that the work they have done for Arriva Trains Wales, which has 247 stations and was ranked as the 16th biggest company in Wales on the 2015 Wales Top 300, will help them raise the profile of their agency and also raise awareness of the existence of customer experience agencies as a whole. Within the UK, customer experience agencies are somewhat of a rarity and Seiri is the first of its kind in Wales.

“There are marketing agencies in every town and city, but customer experience agencies are often nowhere to be found. That makes no sense to me as you can find all the customers in the world but if you can’t give them a positive experience then you will quickly lose them to your competitors,”

explains James.

Seiri was founded by James Koash, aged 25, who recently made it onto the 2015 WalesOnline list of 35 rising stars aged 35 and under. The business was launched in December 2013 and recently celebrated its second year anniversary.

The name Seiri comes from a Japanese word meaning “sorting” and has connotations of improvement, which is what the business hopes to achieve with its clients. The word Seiri is also a word in the Welsh language meaning “carpenter”.

“One of my reasons for setting up the business is that feedback is something I have always felt strongly about. In fact, it was recently pointed out to me that my Twitter feed is often full of messages to companies detailing bad experiences but I make no apologies for that. Companies need feedback else nothing would change,”

explains James.

Having completed the project for Arriva Trains Wales, Seiri is now currently looking for more companies headquartered in and around South Wales that might benefit from working with a customer experience agency.

“It’s not just big businesses that can benefit but medium sized ones as well, particularly those that are going through growth and expansion. We hope to continue to build our client base in the coming months,”

said James. For more information about Seiri, its website can be found at seiri.co.uk.