Mehiläinen is a strong innovator in the field of occupational health care services. About 14,000 businesses and 400,000 private customers use Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services. The lessons we have learned on managing customer relationships are clear:
-Customer relationships pretty much work the same way as any other relationships. With business cooperation based on partnership and trust, we are able to serve both companies and employees to the best of our ability, says Andréa Alvarez-Tarjasalo from Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services.
The success of customer cooperation is at the core of Mehiläinen’s occupational health care services. Our duty is to maintain the work ability of our customers’ employees as effectively as possible while understanding the needs of the organisation’s management and the goals set to the occupational health care cooperation. The key objective of Mehiläinen’s business operations is to understand the needs of these different customer groups – the employees and the corporate decision-makers – and fulfill those needs. I strongly believe that building cooperation based on partnership and trust ensures the best possible services for both of these customer groups.
Courage and expertise
How to build trusting cooperation? I find that trust is built when our corporate customers feel that the mutually agreed matters are in order and when we dare, when necessary, to challenge each other as well. I believe Mehiläinen’s experts should also dare to question the choices of the customer if there is reason to do so. I think that is what our customers expect from us: courage and expertise. Customer relationships are not that different from any human relationships. Trust requires mutual and open dialogue where we can discuss both positive things and challenges.
It takes a while to build real trust in any partnership. In addition to time, it requires commitment and resources both from the multiprofessional team at Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services and from our corporate customers. At its best, cooperation means that both parties have a shared interest and sufficient resources to achieve the desired goals of the occupational health care cooperation. Unfortunately, not everything works out perfectly. For one reason or another, trust may be hard to achieve and, once built, it may also be broken. There may be situations where trust needs to be rebuilt if there are, for example, changes in the personnel of Mehiläinen or the customer or if the customer’s business environment changes radically. I personally believe that, even in these types of challenging situations, trust can be rediscovered through open discourse and partnership can be rebuilt by actively making the necessary changes together.
At Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services, we want to constantly improve and develop our relationship with our corporate customers and serve their employees to the best of our ability. In order to track our success, we regularly study the customer satisfaction of corporate decision-makers with a customer satisfaction survey and the customer service experience of the employees with an NPS survey.* Our results in both surveys have been great, but that does not mean we could not do better and further develop our operations. Satisfied customers are the heart of our operations, which is why Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services is even more committed to develop its corporate customer service and experience this year by training our employees, renewing steering group activities and customer satisfaction surveys, etc.
* Mehiläinen uses the internationally renowned Net Promoter Score to measure customer experiences. Mehiläinen’s survey is sent to the Working Life Services’ customers about two hours after their appointment.
The text was written by Andréa Alvarez-Tarjasalo, Director of Mehiläinen’s Working Life Services (major customers and B2B marketing).