img(height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=2939831959404383&ev=PageView&noscript=1")

How Stride Treglown has been improving its customer experience

Words:
Rachel Bell

Practice director Rachel Bell on how the firm used a customer experience consultant to help it engage more effectively with its clients

Stride Treglown’s grade II* listed Bristol headquarters, refurbished by the practice in 2018.
Stride Treglown’s grade II* listed Bristol headquarters, refurbished by the practice in 2018.

Stride Treglown has collected feedback for years, but we felt that there was an opportunity to engage more effectively with clients – including consultants, contractors and building users – to improve how we work and the places we create. 

We considered different approaches taken by businesses we know. One operated an in-house team while another used a third party, which we felt elicited more open discussion and honesty. A law firm referred us to Insight 6, a customer experience consultant, which helped us to develop our Engage programme. Eighteen months on from our initial pilot, it is part of everyday life, embedded in the workflow of all projects.

Our customer experience consultant conducts detailed surveys on select projects, including those that are challenging. We want the negative feedback – and have had some

Client listening takes several forms. We send out short questionnaires and schedule check-in calls at key moments, such as six weeks after appointment. One aim is to identify small aggravations early so they don’t get worse. Insight 6 conducts more detailed surveys on select projects, including those that are challenging. We want the negative feedback – and have had some – though most is positive. It’s revealed useful things we can quickly address, such as pressures within certain teams or inconsistencies between them. A ‘secret shopper’ exercise investigated whether clients receive a friendly, consistent welcome. 

Playing this back internally is so important. Insight 6 helps us run studio reviews and CPDs on the importance of the client relationship and ways of reaching out – including how to have difficult conversations. This helps to embed the ideas in the culture of the business. We are 350 people across nine studios but all practices could learn from looking at the customer focus found in other sectors, from professional services to retail.

Latest

Three borough councils are expected to pipeline their projects through a new agreement designed to build engagement between the capital's public sector clients and a diverse range of architects

Three boroughs are expected to pipeline their projects through new agreement, which launches in May 2025

Howells’ new restaurant building has turned a run-down services area into a leisure asset and made a National Trust house into a local destination

From down-at-heel services area to leisure asset

RIBA-backed platform developed by Grimshaw-led team provides comprehensive guidance and management tools to help cut carbon throughout the building process

Grimshaw-led team's guidance and management tools cover the entire building process

Design a multifunctional complex that serves client and community, a peaceful, sacred space in North Kensington or a world-leading scientific research hub - some of the latest architecture competitions and contracts from across the industry

Latest: Design an ‘exclusive/inclusive’ Moroccan retreat

Phyllite is harder and longer lasting than natural slate and it has a colour and sheen like no other. Check for four things and you'll have a product that will elevate any project

Colour and sheen like nothing else: architects are seeking out phyllite for their projects