Over the past few decades, organizations have applied technology primarily to reduce costs. Faster computers, instantaneous global communications, and specialized software for every business function have dramatically improved productivity and driven costs out of the value chain.
But the days of cost reduction as the primary focus of IT may have ended. As noted here a year ago, “improving the effectiveness of business processes” has replaced reducing costs as the top concern of IT leaders.
Now, fresh research from the Business Performance Innovation (BPI) Network reinforces and builds on this trend. Across enterprises, business leaders are looking to IT and new technologies to help “increase agility, improve customer experience, and make their companies more competitive.”
As the mission of IT is transformed from driving out costs to driving business model innovation, IT’s profile is raised as well. Per the BPI research, almost two-thirds (65%) of enterprises “say technology has become ‘far more important’ to their organizations in the past five years. Another 28% see it as ‘somewhat’ more important.”
Continue reading “How Service Catalogs Help Enterprise IT Innovation”
The role of the CIO has shifted dramatically in the past few years, from the traditional focus on “keeping the lights on” to playing a more strategic part in aligning IT with the business, as well as embracing trends like the consumerization of IT.
Yet in his new book The Big Shift in IT Leadership, author Hunter Muller “contends that many CIOs remain focused inward, only concerned with technology,” according to Anita Bruzzese on The Fast Track blog.
As Bruzzese writes, “The best CIOs, (Muller) says, know that results beat out technology. Having great technology doesn’t mean much if customers aren’t having a good user experience.”
Muller believes CIOs should not only contribute their expertise to efforts aimed at providing a great customer experience (for both internal and external “customers”), but to take a leadership role in this area.
He views IT leaders as uniquely positioned for this task, because CIOs “have total visibility across the organization,” and with that access, “have a golden opportunity to help develop innovative strategies and spur collaborations that will have a big impact on the organization’s overall success.”
Continue reading “The CIO’s Role in Stellar Customer Experience – Hunter Muller”
As products and services become more commoditized, competition is increasingly global, and high product quality is no longer a differentiator, the potential reward for providing excellent customer service becomes ever greater. As noted here recently, having “happy customers (leads) to higher profitability and stock price.”
The costs of poor customer become greater as well. According to the latest customer service statistics, just 1% of customers ” feel that their expectations of good customer service are always met.” Meanwhile, 86% are willing to pay up to 25% more for a better customer experience.
Among other findings regarding the frustration caused by poor customer service:
- 84% of customers say that their expectations had not been exceeded in their last customer service interaction.
- 82% of consumers have stopped doing business with a company because of bad customer service.
- 58% will never use the company again after a negative experience.
Continue reading “How to Provide Simply Great Customer Service”
Have you ever found yourself so totally immersed in an activity that you lose track of time? Perhaps while putting together a puzzle, solving a complex problem, or heads-down in a hobby, you’ve become engrossed in the task at hand.
If so, you’ve experienced “flow,” the highest state of human performance and productivity.
Though the term originated in research by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and his 1990 book on the subject, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, the business world has only fairly recently recognized its potential for increasing employee happiness and improving the customer experience. Continue reading “Why High “Flow” Companies Will Win – And How to Become One”