Breaking Down Silos to Create a Unified, Customer-Centric Experience with John Holland Group

  • 2023

  • Design Strategy

Commissioned By:

John Holland Group

Designed In:


The Customer Experience Company (CEC) worked closely with John Holland Group (JHG) to gain a deep understanding of their customers’ needs. This allowed JHG to implement ways of working that ensured they were creating positive experiences at every stage of a project from the tendering process to final delivery.

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  • JHG aspired to deliver an exemplary customer experience in line with their status as a Tier 1 infrastructure company. In a fiercely competitive industry, JHG recognised the influence that their organisational behaviour and enterprise-level collaboration had on their project tenders. JHG needed to build a rich understanding of the needs of their customers and develop ways of working that would challenge their traditionally siloed approach to customer experience. JHG at the time lacked a common understanding of the experience created across the different business units and how this contributed to customer perception of the enterprise as a whole.

  • CEC adopted a human-centred approach by conducting qualitative research interviews with a diverse group of customers (past, present and potential) and JHG staff across the enterprise. Over multiple years, CEC gained deep insight and discovered 13 key actionable insights and 16 strategic opportunities for JHG to enhance their customer experience. CEC created state-specific and business-unit-specific insight reports and ran corresponding business-unit playbacks to drive organisational alignment on opportunity areas that JHG could pursue holistically. Facilitating workshops with JHG Senior Leadership resulted in tangible next steps for JHG to implement, demonstrating their commitment to customer satisfaction and organisational alignment.

  • Implementing the strategies developed in partnership with The Customer Experience Company, JHG’s Building Group business unit saw a remarkable transformation, achieving an NPS uplift from -10 to +25 and winning 70% of their tenders. The renewed customer understanding enabled JHG to translate their strategic vision into action and create a more consistent brand experience across all business units: Infrastructure, Rail & Transport, Building, and Major Projects. JHG’s department leaders understood and were committed to delivering high-quality customer experiences that contributed to the overall enterprise-level customer satisfaction, reflecting JHG's commitment to excellence.

  • A human-centred research approach was core to our continued working relationship with JHG, with rich insights sought across the whole organisation and across customer segments. Through this approach, JHG was able to gain a much deeper understanding of their customers' needs, and by socialising and engaging with each business unit, as well as senior leadership and the CEO, we ensured that the research insights were fully heard, understood and valued. Prior to this project, JHG had been relying on feedback received during the tender and sales process, which was found to be inadequate in providing an accurate reflection of the overall customer experience, leaving JHG in the dark about how their customers truly felt about the brand. No amount of quantitative surveys could have provided JHG with the richness of insight uncovered through the research and engagement efforts, which truly transformed JHG’s understanding of their customers and set the enterprise up for customer experience success.