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Bridging the Customer Experience Chasm


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Bridging the Customer Experience Chasm

  1. 1. volume 1 Customer Experience Exchange Transforming the Customer Experience with home Technology editor’s letter bridging the Customer Experience ChasmEmployee Focus Transforms Customer Experience Management Strategies Measurement, Monitoring Essential to Customer Experience Management bridging the Customer Experience Chasm Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 1
  2. 2. editor’s slug story letter The View from Outside: home Do Your Customers See You editor’s as You Want to Be Seen? letter W bridging the Customer Experience Chasm elcome to the inaugural issue of Customer Experience Exchange. ThisEmployee Focus Transforms bi-monthly e-zine offers insights into and tips about the customer ex- Customer perience. We will be covering customer engagement and loyalty, ana- Experience Management lytics, social and customer-facing initiatives, cross-organizational communication Strategies and how companies are maintaining a single view of the customer. In this issue, find out how to get customer-facing groups to buy into customer Measurement, experience management (CEM) and make it a priority, how employee satisfaction Monitoring Essential may or may not affect customer loyalty and how CEM fits into a company’s overall to Customer strategy. Experience Management First, Beth Stackpole walks through the process for establishing a customer expe- rience champion and how this role can help companies look outside of themselves and see how the customers view them. Did you know you have CEM to thank for the recent retraction of those annoying monthly $5 debit card fees? Then Rose Cafasso explains why it’s also important to consider the employees’ point of view and make sure that they are engaged in CEM strategies. Although it may seem obvious that the front-line employees’ feedback is valuable to ensuring a positive customer experience, many companies tend to ignore this feedback. Finally, Anna Fiorentino shows how Coca-Cola and ING Direct have incorpo- rated CEM into their corporate strategies using techniques such as a loyalty pro- gram via Facebook and social listening. These CEM approaches help companies meet customer needs in real time, which is becoming more and more a customer expectation. We look forward to sharing the best CEM ideas and tips in Customer Experience Exchange. If you have a topic you’d like to see us cover, please feel free to send me an email or reach out on Twitter (@JacquelynHoward). Kind regards, Jacquelyn Howard, Executive Editor Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 2
  3. 3. cover story story slug Bridging the Customer home Experience editor’s letter Chasm bridging the Customer Experience Chasm Management may be pushingEmployee Focus Transforms Customer Experience Management a customer-centric mandate, but without the right culture and Strategies Measurement, Monitoring processes in place, it’s difficult to get employees get on board. Essential to Customer Experience Management By Beth Stackpole tune into business news these days and it’s hard not to see the effect that the voice of the cus- tomer is having on day-to-day business decisions. Bank of America and other large banks’ recent decision to ditch their much-maligned plans for a $5 monthly debit fee is a recent example showcasing how powerful cus- tomer influence and how important customer experience management (CEM) have become, thanks in part to social media venues like Twitter and Facebook. Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 3
  4. 4. cover story story slug While it’s hard to find a company optimize quarterly results, not cus- that isn’t paying some sort of homage tomer satisfaction. to the concept of improving customer “Most companies tend to be com- experience, the reality is many are pany-centric for obvious reasons … home struggling to carry out their objectives, and their commitment is provid- hampered by longstanding cultural ing value to shareholders,” adds Paul editor’s customs that favor controlling, not re- Greenberg, president of The 56 Group letter sponding to, customer interaction and LLC, an enterprise applications con- messaging. sulting firm focused on CRM strat- bridging the Customer It’s not exactly that companies aren’t egies. “But what shareholders are Experience listening to customers; it’s more that looking for in terms of return on Chasm they’re having a hard time translating investment is not necessarily what what is said. Seeped in longstanding customers are looking for from aEmployee Focus Transforms traditions, it’s difficult for companies company. Companies have to make ad- Customer to move past their conventional in- justments to understand things about Experience Management ward-focused cultures, making it next their customers, but it’s really hard.” Strategies to impossible to interpret the percep- tions and priorities that rank top-of- Measurement, Monitoring mind with their customer bases. “Companies have a hard time seeing “Companies have a Essential to Customer what they look like in the eyes of their hard time seeing what they look like in the eyes Experience Management customers,” explains Bruce Temkin, a managing partner at Temkin Group, a customer experience research and con- of their customers.” sulting firm, and the co-founder and Bruce Temkin, Temkin Group chairman of the Customer Experience Professionals Association, a nonprofit organization dedicated to working It may be hard, but it’s not impossi- with customer experience profession- ble, according to Greenberg and other als. “Companies are not deciding they CEM experts. To understand the cus- don’t want to be good at customer tomer point of view, companies have experience—it’s just that over time, to invest in technology tools to inject they’ve built out the processes, proce- that accurate outside-in view from cus- dures and perspectives that get in the tomers. At the same time, they need way of being customer-centric.” to build out a culture designed to help Larger firms, especially those that employees not only understand the are publicly traded, commonly fall into mission, but be well equipped to pull the trap of prioritizing shareholder it off. needs over customer needs—a tactic Establishing formal processes and that leads to decision making tuned to procedures that guide customer-fac- Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 4
  5. 5. cover story story slug ing employees through interactions is petencies, you can redesign the experi- part of the retooling. So is implement- ence to be better for the customer, but ing internal metrics so everyone has it will go sour sooner than you expect.” a clear understanding of the expecta- home tions and goals of the customer-facing program. Championing the Effort editor’s Temkin Group identifies four core Adopting a corporate customer expe- letter competencies that are critical to ensur- rience champion should be a strategic ing success with customer experience. part of the plan. This can be organic, bridging the Customer There must be purposeful leadership with people in individual business Experience with a clear and consistent mission; units taking on the customer experi- Chasm a compelling brand value that deliv- ence champion role or it can be an ers on its promises at every customer official position in a central organiza-Employee Focus Transforms touch point; active employee engage- tion that spearheads CEM while serv- Customer ment, meaning stakeholders are com- ing as a change agent for the cultural Experience Management mitted to the mission; and customer transformation. Strategies connectiveness, a strategy, Temkin Lynn Hunsaker, president of Clear- says, rooted in feeding the ongoing Action, a CEM consulting firm, advo- Measurement, flow of insights back into the collective cates the latter. “Making this a C-level Monitoring Essential consciousness so employees can take job and having a central organization to Customer action. overseeing enterprisewide deployment Experience Management “Unless a firm masters all four com- is better,” she explains. “If you put Goals for the Customer Experience Champion p evelop a clear plan of what the goals of the program are and communicate D the plan to all customer-facing employees. p reate formal processes for common activities, such as returns and complaints. C Identify in which situations agents should escalate a customer interaction to a supervisor. p dentify customer experience leaders in the customer-facing groups to help I evangelize the plan. p Use metrics to analyze customer interactions so executives and employees can easily understand the impact of the customer experience program. p When the customer experience program is established and running well, consider introducing incentives to further engage employees. n Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 5
  6. 6. cover story story slug CEM inside of marketing, it becomes “There’s a difference between a a marketing thing, and if you put it script and a guide,” says Donna Fluss, inside of service, it becomes a service president of DMG Consulting LLC, a thing. Then the rest of the company contact center and analytics industry home will excuse themselves.” analyst and consulting firm. “You need Educating employees on why cus- to have guidelines and you need to editor’s tomer experience is important to the train people to follow the guidelines, letter firm’s future should be part of the but they need to be able assimilate and champion’s role. In addition, experts apply them on a consistent basis.” bridging the Customer say there should be individuals within Best Buy has put a lot of effort into Experience various departments that help evange- empowering its customer agents to re- Chasm lize the effort, using tangible results solve issues, according to Jeff Radecki, to drive home the potential benefits of the firm’s customer experience man-Employee Focus Transforms getting on board with CEM. “Some- ager for the exclusive brands group. As Customer times it’s just a matter of a narrative opposed to a series of set procedures Experience Management of a customer who went from being that are part of a training guide, agents Strategies a detractor to an advocate because of are trained through coaching and role some social action that was taken—it playing on how to evaluate custom- Measurement, doesn’t have to be hard metrics,” The ers by looking at their histories and on Monitoring Essential 56 Group’s Greenberg explains. how and when to use tools to mitigate to Customer As active as champions must be, tense situations—for example, issu- Experience Management their efforts have to be buttressed with ing credits or gift cards or even returns formal processes and training that edu- if the situations warrants it, Radecki cate employees on their roles as well as explains. what is expected in terms of customer “One of the core metrics we look at interactions. For example, it’s impor- is resolution rates and if [agents] don’t tant to create procedures for dealing feel empowered to take steps to resolve with returned merchandise, forgiving issues, it’s not going to work,” he says. late charges or escalating a call to a “Agents are empowered to take the sit- supervisor so that all employees know uation and react accordingly, depend- how to diffuse some common negative ing on the customer they are dealing customer interactions. with.” Rather than enforcing rote scripts Nevertheless, Radecki agrees it’s a or rigid policies, however, experts ad- balancing act. “There’s the customer, vise giving employees the flexibility to the employee and the shareholder, and modify their approaches to best meet the ultimate decisions have to be bal- the situation while ensuring overall anced between all three,” he says. “If consistency. Again, proper training is you’re constantly giving money away, essential for helping employees strike you’re not keeping the shareholder in this balance. mind.” Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 6
  7. 7. cover story story slug Employee Engagement and CEM around customer service as well as be A set of specific yet simple metrics something the individual employee around customer experience also can control. keeps Best Buy employees on the right Esteban Kolsky, founder of ThinkJar, home track. Customer service reps are mea- a research and consulting firm spe- sured on three core metrics: customer cializing in CEM, cautions that in- editor’s satisfaction, likelihood to recommend centive programs work best when the letter and resolution. Reps can log into a CEM program is already under way portal at any time and see their scores, and people have a clear sense of what’s bridging the Customer Radecki says. expected. “You can’t say this is the di- Experience “We try to simplify for the front- rection we’re going in and tie bonuses Chasm line agent what it means to have a to that,” he says. “It has to be already good customer experience,” he ex- under way so people can see it’s not aEmployee Focus Transforms plains. “There are so many differ- punishment but a reward.” Customer ent approaches out there, it can be The old carrot-and-stick approach is Experience Management overwhelming.” also essential for getting employees to Strategies Providing reps with visibility into embrace a customer-centric culture. their performance has been an im- After all, if they’re not feeling the love Measurement, portant factor in encouraging inter- from corporate, it’s impossible to ex- Monitoring Essential nal competition and getting buy-in. pect them to be goodwill ambassadors to Customer “We’re delivering transparency so an of top-notch customer service. Experience Management agent knows exactly what is coming,” “You can do everything you can for Radecki says. “If they’re doing really the customer, but if you treat your em- bad on CSAT (customer satisfaction) ployees horribly, it doesn’t matter what scores, they know a quality rep is going you tell them to do—they won’t be to come and talk to them.” happy, and it won’t come across to cus- Incentives are another tool for fos- tomers,” notes DMG’s Fluss. tering employee engagement, whether In the end, it could come down to they are prizes, bonuses or even rec- some employees just not being a fit for ognition. The first step is to come a customer-centric culture. “Sometimes up with key performance indicators the people you have aren’t the people (KPIs) that are specific to customer ex- you need,” Kolsky says. “You may get to perience and factor those results into the point where you need to make per- employees’ overall performance re- sonnel changes or reassign people to views. To be effective, the KPIs need to different functions because their atti- reflect what the firm wants to achieve tude is just not what you need.” n Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 7
  8. 8. Employees as Customers story slug Employee focus transforms home customer editor’s letter experience bridging the Customer Experience ChasmEmployee Focus Transforms Customer Management strategies Experience Management Strategies Measurement, Monitoring Essential CEM initiatives suffer when employees can’t provide their to Customer Experience Management perspectives on customer concerns. by rosemary cafasso Most business managers know there is a link between happy employees and satisfied customers, yet they are often challenged to capitalize on this connection when implementing customer experience management (CEM) strategies. However CEM projects are at risk if managers don’t focus more on em- ployees. Two issues come into play for CEM initiatives, which are typi- cally cross-company efforts aimed at improving customer experiences throughout the lifecycle. First, managers need to find ways to help em- ployees care more about their jobs. Otherwise, customers immediately recognize an apathetic employee, and that can damage even the best mapped-out CEM plan. Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 8
  9. 9. Employees as Customers story slug Second, managers need to create “It is logical and straightforward, opportunities for employee feedback, but a lot of managers don’t connect the not just on jobs and tasks, but on com- dots,” said Jim Clemmer, president of pany plans. The goal is to factor that The Clemmer Group, a customer ex- home feedback into CEM projects. As several perience and management consulting analysts note, employees, particularly firm in Kitchener, Ontario. editor’s those on the front lines of customer letter service, can often provide the best in- sights into customer concerns. Experts Say Executive bridging “The best companies have the most Support Is Key the Customer Experience engaged employees,” said Jeanne Without executive support, employees Chasm Bliss, co-founder of the Customer Ex- likely will not be a priority in a CEM perience Professionals Association initiative. Often, executives are soEmployee Focus Transforms (CXPA). “If the employee is at the focused on the market and the com- Customer table, everyone is working towards de- pany’s competitors that internal strat- Experience Management livering something better.” egies drop down their priority lists. In Strategies turn, that thinking trickles down to the managers running the customer-facing Measurement, Monitoring “The best companies projects, analysts said. “This can’t be lip service,” said Kate Essential to Customer have the most engaged Leggett, an analyst with Forrester Experience Management employees.” Research Inc. in Cambridge, Mass. “It has to be in the DNA of the Jeanne Bliss, CXPA company.” A second problem stems from the Bliss recalled her own experiences traditional organizational structure as leader of customer experience at that creates silos of expertise. Typi- Lands’ End, a clothing retailer well- cally, managers charged with employee known for customer service and now relations are tucked away in human owned by Sears Holding Corp. Once a resources departments, preventing month, the company president would collaboration between them and the meet with a few dozen employees to business managers running the CEM hear comments about all aspects of the initiatives. business, Bliss said. But companies having success keep- But analysts said that while ideas ing employees engaged are using a such as the Lands’ End group sessions combination of survey software and seem obvious, these efforts often can old-fashioned employee encounter be stymied by a corporate culture that programs. One example is Nicor doesn’t give employee feedback much National, which sells home warranty value. and energy management plans. The Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 9
  10. 10. Employees as Customers story slug company, a division of Nicor Inc. ter managers twice a month to discuss and based in Naperville, Ill., relies on various issues. automated survey programs, but it doesn’t shy away from the soft tactics, home either. Creating Emotional Bonds “We begin with the strong belief that Industry analysts said managers should editor’s the environment for our employees look for tactics that help employees letter is the one our customer experiences,” feel more emotionally connected to said Barbara Porter, vice president of their workplace. Often, this comes bridging the Customer business development and customer from sharing the big picture with Experience service. workers. CXPA’s Bliss recalled a cli- Chasm Porter said the company uses sur- ent that made children’s cups. When vey tools from Allegiance Software to the company began seeking input fromEmployee Focus Transforms gauge employee satisfaction and cus- employees, not just as workers, but as Customer tomer satisfaction. It has been able people and parents who understood Experience Management to chart direct correlations that show what children liked or didn’t like, they Strategies when employees aren’t happy, custom- found employees were more enthusias- ers start giving Nicor lower service tic about their work overall. Measurement, marks. Emotional connections also could Monitoring Essential That data helped Porter get funding be forged from a variety of low-cost to Customer for new contact center software that incentive programs. Paul Greenberg, Experience Management acts as a front end to several contact president of The 56 Group, spoke of center legacy systems that employ- a company that hands employees the ees had found increasingly difficult to authority to give occasional company- use. This change boosted agent perfor- sponsored $50 rewards to co-work- mance, and customer satisfaction has ers who they believe have done great increased as well. work. Porter said her group uses other Finally, Kathleen Peterson, founder methods to help employees become of Powerhouse Consulting in Bedford, more engaged. She points to the com- N.H. said to simply ask employees di- pany’s contact center ambassadors, rect questions and listen to what they who work on employee concerns with say. She suggests starting with this managers. Ambassadors are elected query: “What are the smartest things each year and meet with contact cen- we do, and what are the dumbest?” n   Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 10
  11. 11. Customer Experience Analytics Measurement, Monitoring home Essential editor’s letter to Customer bridging the Customer Experience ChasmEmployee Focus Transforms Customer Experience Management Experience Management Strategies Measurement, Monitoring Essential Learn how Coca-Cola and ING Direct expanded their customer to Customer Experience Management experience management in social media approaches by measuring goals and monitoring customer feedback. By Anna Fiorentino Advertising is nolonger the only way to create effective customer impres- sions. Today, customers themselves are helping companies improve cus- tomer experience management (CEM). Most companies today are using social media sites as spaces for interactive dialogue about their products and services. But do they realize there is more to launching a successful social CRM campaign than creating a Facebook page? Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 11
  12. 12. Customer Experience Analytics story slug “So many companies say, ‘We’re go- creating value for its members as well ing to build a Twitter campaign,’ with as internal and external partners. no goal in mind of what kind of return “Measurement is key,” says Kaitlyn they want,” says analyst Zach Hofer- Dennihy, a strategist at Engauge, the home Shall of Forrester Research Inc. in social media agency of record for My Cambridge, Mass. “There is often little Coke Rewards. “Translating overall editor’s regard to who a customer is and who business goals into measurable actions letter that customer is not.” within social has allowed us to track Hofer-Shall has seen this sce- the impact of our communities as well bridging the Customer nario many times before: A company Experience launches a social media campaign “So many companies Chasm without setting specific standards or goals. The truth is, companies can eas-Employee Focus Transforms ily set and meet goals by doing things say, ‘We’re going to build Customer Experience such as using software to track online a Twitter campaign,’ with CEM metrics or establishing customer Management Strategies ambassadors. no goal in mind.” Instead of just getting a brand out to Zach Hofer-Shall, Forrester Measurement, the general public, Hofer-Shall says a Research Monitoring Essential company should send its messages di- to Customer rectly to a loyal customer database on Experience Management social media platforms. The Coca Cola as manage and exceed expectations for Co., he says, is one company that is do- the social space. Every content piece in ing that well. social must include a call to action for the user that can be measured.” The social media goals of My Coke My Coke Rewards and CEM Rewards are quantified by the code en- Coke’s My Coke Rewards program, try and points spent on specific items. housed on Facebook, is using social “We can best optimize the program media as a living, breathing focus by assessing consumer actions, behav- group. The members-only site allows iors and sentiment,” Dennihy says. customers who already buy Coke prod- “Members are having detailed conver- ucts to collect codes from products in sations surrounding the program with return for rewards. Now, instead of or without our participation. In order carrying around bottle caps, individu- to influence this dialogue, we join the als enter promotion codes through conversation to participate, inform and text messages and desktop widgets. influence.” By listening and monitoring customer It’s important to provide a consis- conversations and codes, Coke has tent program and a systematic value managed to deliver real-time results, through targeted content and informa- Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 12
  13. 13. Customer Experience Analytics story slug tion strategy, according to Dennihy. Maybe the most all-encompassing My Coke Rewards provides quality of the bunch, Radian6—which Sales- content and builds one-on-one rela- acquired this year—tells tionships with the social media com- companies such as ING Direct who is home munity as well as every department saying what and whether customers within the company, she said. are communicating through a news editor’s “With insight into areas such as cus- site or blog, for example. The software letter tomer service, product merchandising can also judge, based on Web traffic and exclusivity, we can deliver real- and readership, how influential the in- bridging the Customer time results that impact the program dividual who made the post is. Experience and create value for our members as “Often we find there is internal or Chasm well as internal and external partners,” external detective work to service cli- Dennihy says. ents, so it’s great to see these tools builtEmployee Focus Transforms into Radian6,” says Gloria Chik, social Customer media lead at ING Direct. Experience Management ING Direct and CEM “If we get a client complaint, it’s Strategies ING Direct, an online-centric bank been fantastic to get a full profile of that is part of Netherlands-based ING, that person.” Measurement, also believes that meeting customer Chik said companies should tread Monitoring Essential needs is the basis for creating a thriv- carefully with Radian6 while handling to Customer ing social media campaign. confidential client financial informa- Experience Management ING Direct boosted its bottom line tion, making sure to look at each client by listening to online consumer con- complaint or compliment individu- versations with the help of a program ally—even if that means passing it on called Radian6, a social media moni- to the sales team. toring platform that allows compa- But whether companies use qualita- nies to not only know what’s being tive or quantitative methods to track said about their brands, industries and return on investment on customer competitors online, but to also help response management, one thing is them measure, analyze and report on certain. their social CRM efforts. It’s just one “There has to be a goal around sup- of many tools now used for measuring porting customers,” Hofer-Shall says. Web activity—others include Alexa for “That goal may be tangible—like solv- providing statistics on visitors, Google ing a problem for a customer. Or it Analytics for summarizing search can be intangible—like looking at the trends, and Summize for providing likelihood of a customer returning to a tweet searching capabilities. site.” n Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 13
  14. 14. author slug story bios As a veteran business and tech- nology reporter, Beth Stackpole has spent the last 25+ years writ- ing for a variety of leading publica- tions and Websites, including home TechTarget, Computerworld, CIO, eWeek, Manag- ing Automation, Design News, and others. Over editor’s the years, she’s honed expertise in a variety of letter subject areas, from enterprise applications to cloud computing, to leveraging technology to Hannah Smalltree achieve business advantage. Editorial Director bridging the Customer Experience Chasm Jacquelyn M. Howard Executive Editor As Associate News and Site Edi-Employee Focus Transforms tor, Rosemary Cafasso writes Rosemary Cafasso Customer content for and Associate Site and News Editor Experience contributes to the overall manage- Management Strategies ment of the site. Lena J. Weiner Associate Site Editor Measurement, Monitoring Essential Jason Sparapani to Customer Anna Fiorentino is an award- Copy Editor Experience winning writer and journalist Management based in Portsmouth, New Hamp- shire. She has reported over the Linda Koury years for newspapers around New England, in- Director of Online Design cluding The Boston Globe and The Portland Press Herald. She has also contributed to publications by leading international institutions such as Michael Bolduc Publisher Dartmouth College and Education Develop- ment Center. For sales inquiries, please contact: Michael Nadeau Director of Sales TechTarget 275 Grove Street Newton, MA 02466 ©2011 TECHTARGET. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Customer Experience Exchange • november/december 2011 14
  15. 15. Bad online experiences can wreck your business.In today’s hyper-connected world, unfavorable “word-of-mouth” can do serious damage.In fact, 54% of online adults* say social media content has influenced their online transactions.At Tealeaf, we give you visibility into every customer’s complete visit. Even from their mobiledevices. So you can ensure that each experience is a positive one—and leverage yourcustomers to help build your business, rather than knock it down. To learn more, go* 2009 Tealeaf Online Transactions Survey, Harris Interactive, September 2009©2011, Tealeaf Technology, Inc. and/or its licensors. All rights reserved All other names and brand names are the propertyof their respective owners.
  16. 16. RESOURCES FROM OUR SPONSORSee ad page 15• Fuel your Online Business Through Customer Experience• Improving the Customer Experience for Mobile Consumers• Reducing Online Customer Struggle: Findings from Econsultancy’s 2011 Customer Experience SurveyAbout Tealeaf:Tealeaf provides online customer experience management solutions and is the leader incustomer behavior analysis. Tealeafs CEM solutions include both a customer behavioranalysis suite and customer service optimization suite. For organizations that are makingcustomer experience a top priority, these solutions provide unprecedented enterprise-widevisibility into every visitors unique online interactions for ongoing analysis and web siteoptimization. Online executive stakeholders from ebusiness and IT to customer service andcompliance are leveraging Tealeaf to build a customer experience management competencyacross the organization.