Harley Manning

Vice President, Research Director

Forrester Bio

Harley Manning

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Predictions 2019: Customer Experience Comes Under Fire

Harley Manning November 5, 2018

Let’s face it: 2018 was not a fabulous year for customer experience. On average, CX quality was flat, with Customer Experience Index (CX Index™) scores showing little movement for the third year in a row. And what little movement that did happen was toward the middle of our scale, where 62% of brands bunched up in […]

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Customer Experience Q&A: Etsy’s Abby Covert, Information Architect

Harley Manning May 30, 2018

If you care about CX, you have to admire Etsy. It was the top digital retailer in Forrester’s Customer Experience Index™ in 2017. It excels at differentiating itself with a unique set of products and a distinctive online store, where buyers routinely upload pictures of their purchases alongside gushing reviews. Unsurprisingly, Etsy is also one […]

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Customer Experience Q&A: Etsy’s Abby Covert, Information Architect

Harley Manning May 30, 2018

If you care about CX, you have to admire Etsy. It was the top digital retailer in Forrester’s Customer Experience Index™ in 2017. It excels at differentiating itself with a unique set of products and a distinctive online store, where buyers routinely upload pictures of their purchases alongside gushing reviews. Unsurprisingly, Etsy is also one […]

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Countdown To Forrester’s 10th Annual CXNYC Forum June 19–20

Harley Manning May 18, 2018

Back in 2009, Forrester launched its first customer experience forum. We picked New York as the location because for years we’d put on a financial services event there, and we knew that our attendees from the banking, brokerage, and insurance industries all had CX on their minds. We didn’t know how well the new event […]

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What Chief Customer Officers Talk About Over Dinner

Harley Manning December 11, 2017

For a CX transformation effort to go beyond the small and tactical, organizations need an executive in charge of leading the effort. Although these senior leaders go by various titles, the most common is still Chief Customer Officer (CCO). That’s why I was immediately interested when Dell’s CCO Karen Quintos, and her Dell Technologies colleague […]

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Human + Machine: Forrester’s CXSF Forum, 10/19 - 10/20

Harley Manning October 3, 2017

Forrester’s CX team is putting the final touches on Human + Machine, our customer experience forum in San Francisco for 2017.  This year we shine a spotlight on how AI can improve customer experience. That includes both how companies innovate with AI today, and the most exciting opportunities for tomorrow. We’re starting out with a case […]

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Customer Experience Q&A with Scott Jones, VP, Global User Experience Design, Expedia Worldwide

Harley Manning October 5, 2016

In its early days, the online travel industry focused on speed, ease-of-use, and cost-effectiveness. That was a great start but it didn't go far enough:  Travel is a complex and often daunting purchase decision — one layered with conflicting emotions like aspiration, excitement, and even fear. How has the industry evolved to deal with the […]

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The US Customer Experience Index for 2016, Part 1: The Bar for CX Quality Inched Up

Harley Manning July 18, 2016

It’s time for one of Forrester’s big annual events: The publication of this year’s Customer Experience Index report for US brands. The report is based on Forrester’s CX Index™ methodology, which measures how well a brand’s customer experience strengthens the loyalty of its customers. We use this methodology to create an annual benchmark of CX […]

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Customer Experience Drives Revenue Growth, 2016

Harley Manning June 21, 2016

In 2015, we explored whether customer experience really matters to business success or whether CX is just the latest hype. Our conclusion: superior CX drives superior revenue growth in industries where customers are free to switch business and competitors deliver a differentiated customer experience. This year we repeated our study to see if the results […]

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Don’t Let Volatile Markets Scare You Away From Customer Experience Investments

Harley Manning March 8, 2016

If you like horror shows, forget The Walking Dead and check out global markets: In 2016, US stocks got off to their worst start ever. Oil prices are in the toilet — taking oil company stocks with them — and neither looks to fully recover any time soon. Of course, both of these Nightmares on Wall […]

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Better Customer Experience Correlates With Higher Revenue Growth In Most Industries

Harley Manning July 15, 2015

Does customer experience really matter to business success — or is CX just the latest flavor of hype? Recently, Forrester completed a six-month research effort aimed at answering that question by examining the relationship between superior customer experience and superior revenue growth. Why did we pick revenue growth as the measure of business success? Because […]

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Book Mini-Review: "Customer Experience: What, How, And Why Now"

Harley Manning July 13, 2015

Over the weekend, I read the manuscript for Don Peppers' upcoming book, Customer Experience: What, How, and Why Now. Because Don is a talented writer, and because I love customer experience, it wasn’t hard for me to start reading it. It was, however, hard to stop reading it. If you’re also into customer experience, you’ll no doubt have […]

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When Was The Tipping Point For CX? It Looks Like It Started "Tipping" In 2010!

Harley Manning July 7, 2015

Last week, I stumbled across "The Behavioral Economics Guide, 2015" (which you can find here). I’m kind of a Daniel Kahneman/Dan Ariely junkie so I immediately started scrolling through it looking for articles of interest. And there, on page 8 . . . big score! A graphic that plots the relative Google search frequency of […]

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US Cab Companies: To Beat uberX, Improve Your CX

Harley Manning December 2, 2014

About two years ago I stopped taking cabs from my home in the suburbs of Boston to Boston’s Logan airport. I wasn’t drawn away by uberX; my local cab company pushed me away with its awful customer experience. Here’s what happened: When I first started using my local cab company years ago, I’d call for […]

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Customer Experience Q&A with Roland Boekhout, CEO ING-DiBa

Harley Manning October 20, 2014

Have you ever heard of a bank that’s as popular with its customers as Amazon is with Amazon’s customers? Me neither – at least not until we ran our Customer Experience Index study in Germany this year. That’s when I found out about ING-DiBa. So what does ING-DiBA do that makes it so special? Attendees […]

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Q&A with Olivier Mourrieras, Vice President, Customer Experience Centre of Competence, E.On, Part 2

Harley Manning October 15, 2014

You know what the Holy Grail is for an analyst? It’s results data – especially financial results data. And that’s especially true for analysts who cover customer experience because all too often CX professionals don’t track – or won’t share – their results. That’s why I’m especially pleased with what I am able to share […]

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Q&A with Olivier Mourrieras, Vice President, Customer Experience Centre of Competence, E.On -- Part 1

Harley Manning October 10, 2014

Here’s an objection I sometimes hear when I talk to people about how improving  customer experience can boost business performance: “Sure, it sounds great for glam industries like automotive or fashion.  But I sell widgets.” Okay, it’s fair to say that the business value of CX is more obvious for industries that advertise in magazines […]

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Customer Experience Q&A With Andrew Murphy Of John Lewis

Harley Manning September 29, 2014

I get just as excited as the next analyst about the latest and greatest startup. But you know what? There’s something extra cool about a brand that’s been around since 1864, and yet runs neck-and-neck with Amazon in our UK customer experience rankings. That’s why we invited Andrew Murphy, retail director of John Lewis Department […]

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Great Customer Experience, European Style

Harley Manning September 12, 2014

I love Europe. I especially love the fact that in a very real sense there is no “Europe” as such: The UK experience is not the German experience, which is not the French experience, which is not the Italian experience, and so on. Yet all of these countries are so close together that once I’m […]

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Some Friendly Advice For Dell Customer Service

Harley Manning August 26, 2014

Right before school started last year I bought my son a new Dell laptop, a Windows 8 machine with a touchscreen. He loves it. Fast forward to a month ago when our family rented a vacation house. My son brought his laptop along so he could play DVDs on it – online gaming was right […]

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