Operationalize Insights to Drive Business

February 7th, 2012 by Stacy Leidwinger

According to Annette Franz [@Annettefranz], “A key component of a VOC Initiative is getting the right feedback at the right time from the right customers. Then glean insights, create action plans, and drive it all back to the right departments and the right employees who take action at the right touch points at the right time.” This was the basis of a recent #CXO chat as we discussed, “Operationalize Insights to Drive Business” with guest Annette Franz, Seasoned Client Services (CX, VOC, SaaS) executive.

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Tags: #CXO tweet chats, analytics, Big Data, business insight, customer experience, customer insight, Information Optimization, operationalize insights, Voice of Customer (VOC)
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Who Owns Your Customer Experience?

January 30th, 2012 by Stacy Leidwinger

A few weeks ago I heard a story of “extreme customer service.” Strangely enough, it wasn’t about a great experience but about a failed service experience. My friend absolutely loved a particular fast food chain and ordered the same thing every visit. On her last visit she was charged more than the listed price at the drive thru. Miffed, she pointed this out to the sales associate and then the supervisor on duty. But they both summarily dismissed her indicating that she was charged the new price. She then took measures to ensure the company heard her and fixed the issue. Twitter and FaceBook were immediately alerted. In fact, anytime she has a bad experience, or an exceptional one for that matter, she takes it social. In her words, “I will go to the extreme to get the service I deserve. I own my customer experience.” She expects a good customer experience and will take matters into her own hands to get it!

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Tags: customer experience, customer interactions, customer knowledge, customer service, customer-centric culture, social media
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Making Complexity Your Friend

January 23rd, 2012 by Tracey Mustacchio

Our businesses are relentlessly becoming more complex. We are engaging with an expanding network of contractors and partners to get our work done. We are utilizing more diverse channels to reach more customers. We are operating in more countries and in more languages, while we wrestle with more regulations and market variables.

In one sense, this complexity is a dangerous enemy. Complexity can increase the probability that some process somewhere will break or that somebody will do something wrong. Orders get screwed up. Customers get ticked off. Revenue goes out the window.

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Tags: collaboration, competitive advantage, complexity, information organization, information socialization, information technology, ROI, search, Velocity
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Evolving Beyond Traditional Search

January 9th, 2012 by John Porter

Effective search is a difficult problem to solve for most organizations. The challenge of tackling complex interdependencies between source systems and trying to satisfy stakeholders with different search needs can be daunting. Unfortunately, poor search isn’t just an inconvenience, it’s a liability. The inability to find critical information when it’s needed most diminishes trust in systems impedes employee learning and leads to less than optimal decisions.

The good news is, these problems can be solved.

Search-based applications enter the findability fray promising to shape enterprise search in a manner uniquely suited to tame the information explosion challenge. These applications have the inherent ability to aggregate information from multiple systems while applying contextually relevant domain knowledge, allowing them to answer questions not readily available from any single source system.

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Tags: clustering, concept searching, contextual intelligence, dynamic adaptability, enterprise search, entity extraction, information connectivity, Information Optimization, relevance, relevancy ranking, social interaction, text analytics
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Customer Experience Motto for 2012

January 3rd, 2012 by Stacy Leidwinger

Recently, I came across a great quote by Kerry Bodine of Forrester Research, Inc. where she said, “Companies need to start treating customer experience as a business disciplinenot a bumper sticker.” It made me wonder if companies, as they start planning their strategy for 2012, are  truly embracing what it means to build a customer-centric culture.

Working in the customer experience industry, weekly I meet with numerous Fortune 500 organizations. I am always surprised to hear comments like, “this year we are focusing on our customers first and foremost” or “we have just hired a new senior director to really lead our customer experience initiative.” For many of these companies, they are just starting to embark on the customer experience improvement journey. A 2011 study from the Temkin Group shows only 7% of companies think they are customer experience leaders while 61% of them want to be at the top in their industry in three years. The question I ask then is, “Why now?” Haven’t you always been concerned about your customers?

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Tags: customer experience, customer knowledge, customer satisfaction, customer-centric culture, empowering employees, increase revenue
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Committed to Wasting Time

December 27th, 2011 by Tracey Mustacchio

Innovation often feels risky. Typically, it entails committing significant resources to something that may not bring about the needed outcome. This uncertainty often causes decision-makers to shy away from innovation.

But as the rules governing business performance continue to mutate, it may be reasonable to look at innovation from the opposite direction: Why are we committing significant resources to something—in this case, the status quo—that will certainly not deliver the needed outcome?

And there is no doubt that our present IT solutions cannot deliver needed outcomes. As Andy McAfee, Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Sloan School of Management’s Center for Digital Business, recently explained, “We have collaboration tools that are not social, and social tools that are not collaborative.”

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Tags: collaboration, data repositories, information socialization, innovation, IT solutions, knowledge management
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Use the Four Vs to Better Understand the Big Data Ecosystem

December 20th, 2011 by Mark Myers

There is remarkable unanimity among industry analysts and thought-leaders on the nature of big data. Rather than a phenomenon of volume alone, big data is almost universally described as having the dimensions of velocity and variety as well. The term velocity recognizes the speed with which many types of big data, such as sensor output or social network interactions, are generated. Variety recognizes the many forms that big data can take, from very compact “blips” from sensors or clickstreams to text documents to multi-gigabyte geospatial images.

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Tags: Big Data
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Are You Future-Friendly?

December 12th, 2011 by Tracey Mustacchio

One of the most unfortunate casualties of the current economic downturn is the diminished ability and willingness of business leaders to think seriously and practically about the future. When you’re facing crises in revenue and margins today, there is a natural disinclination to think much about tomorrow. After all, if you don’t survive the present, it doesn’t much matter what’s going to happen in the long term.

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Tags: Big Data, business performance, collaboration, competitive advantage, customer satisfaction, data growth, economic value, Information Optimization, knowledge management, social media
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Who Comes First in Shaping Customer Experience: Customers or Employees?

December 6th, 2011 by Stacy Leidwinger

[Excerpt from Vineet Nayar, vice chairman and CEO of India-based HCL Technologies] “The conventional wisdom, of course, says that companies must always put the customer first. In any services business, however, the true value is created in the interface between the employee and the customer. So, by putting employees first, you can bring about fundamental change in the way a company creates and delivers unique value for its customers and differentiates itself from its competitors.”

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Tags: #CXO tweet chats, collaboration, company strategy, company vision, competitive advantage, customer knowledge, customer service, customer-centric culture, employee engagement
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Leveraging Information Assets to Optimize Customer Value

November 21st, 2011 by Stacy Leidwinger

When asked to identify the greatest barriers to improving multichannel customer experience, “Thirty-four percent of respondents identified difficulty unifying different sources of customer data.” This would indeed be a barrier as understanding your customers’ needs is intrinsic to delivering an exceptional customer experience. To understand the customer, organizations must take each morsel of information left at touch-points across the organization and weave them together to create the customer’s story. The need for information optimization and big data applications then becomes vital. I had the honor of being in the hot seat as we explored this topic at one of our tweet chats. Here is a glimpse into our discussion:

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Tags: Big Data, CRM, customer experience, Customer Facing Professionals (CFPs), customer insight, customer knowledge, ERP, Information Optimization, leverage information, WCMS
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