Report: Engaging A Tethered Workforce

1701_engagingatetheredworkforce_coverWe just published a Temkin Group report, Engaging A Tethered Workforce.  Here’s the executive summary:

Companies across a number of industries create and deliver customer experiences (CX) through a combination of traditional employees and other workers who they do not directly control – such as contractors or employees of channel partners or outsourcing partners. Despite not being directly employed by the company, these other workers – who make up what Temkin Group calls a “tethered workforce” – still play a critical role in delivering experiences that represent the company’s brand. However, tethered workers differ from typical full-time, corporate employees in ways that pose challenges to brands’ efforts to align these workers with their customer experience goals and objectives. In this report, we examine how brands are tapping into these tethered employees. Here are some highlights:

  • Companies must manage three connections: 1) Between themselves and their partners that employ the tethered workers, 2) Between their partners and the tethered employees, and 3) Between themselves and the tethered workers.
  • We share over 30 examples of best practices from across Temkin Group’s Five I’s of Employee Engagement: Inform, Inspire, Instruct, Involve, and Incent.
  • We offer brands a blueprint for engaging tethered workers with key things to think about across the three connections of tethered workforces.

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Here are the 17 best practices described in the report:

1701_bestpracticesforengagingtetheredworkers

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Report: Tech Vendors: Product and Relationship Satisfaction, 2017

1701_ds_techproductsandrelationships_coverWe just published a Temkin Group data snapshot, Tech Vendors: Product and Relationship Satisfaction of IT Clients, 2017.

During Q3 of 2016, we surveyed 800 IT decision-makers from companies with at least $250 million in annual revenues, asking them to rate both the products of and their relationships with 62 different tech vendors. HPE outsourcing, Google, and IBM SPSS earned the top overall scores, while Trend Micro, Infosys, and SunGard received the lowest overall scores. To determine their product rating, we evaluated tech vendors across four product/service criteria: features, quality, flexibility, and ease of use. And we calculated their relationship rating using four different criteria: technical support, support of the account team, cost of ownership, and innovation of company. We also looked at how the average product and relationship scores of tech vendors have changed over the previous three years.

This research has a report (.pdf) and a dataset (excel). The dataset has the details of Product/Service and Relationship satisfaction for the 62 tech vendors as well as for several tech vendors with sample sizes too small to be included in the published report.

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Here’s a link to last year’s study.

The research examines eight areas of satisfaction; four that deal with products & services and four that examine relationships. Tech vendors earned the highest average satisfaction level for product features (64%) and the lowest for total cost of ownership (57%).

As you can see in the chart below, the overall product/service & relationship satisfaction ranges from a high of 76% for HPE outsourcing down to a low of 42% for Trend Micro.

1701_techproductrelationshipoverallresults

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Report: Lessons in CX Excellence, 2017

1701_lessonsincxexcellence_coverWe just published a Temkin Group report, Lessons in CX Excellence, 2017. The report provides insights from eight finalists in the Temkin Group’s 2016 CX Excellence Awards. The report, which has 62 pages of content, includes an appendix with the finalists’ nomination forms. This report has rich insights about both B2B and B2C customer experience.

Here’s the executive summary:

This year, we named five organizations the winners of Temkin Group’s 2016 Customer Experience Excellence Award – Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC), Century Support Services, Crowe Horwath, Oxford Properties, and VCA. This report highlights specific examples of how these companies’ customer experience (CX) efforts have created value for both their customers and for their businesses, describes winners’ best practices across the four customer experience competencies: purposeful leadership, compelling brand values, employee engagement, and customer connectedness. it includes all of the winners’ detailed nomination forms to help you collect examples and ideas to apply to your own CX efforts.

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Here are some highlights from the winners: Read More …

Business-to-Business-to-Customer (B2B2C) CX Best Practices

We often get asked by companies that don’t directly serve consumers if they can learn from customer experience content that seems to be more focused on business-to-consumer (B2C) models. The answer: Absolutely yes!

Our research does include some items that are B2C-oriented, but most of our core ideas apply quite well in other models, including business-to-business (B2B), government and non-profits.  We’ve had no problem using our insights to help a wide range of organizations.

In our report The Secret to B2B2C Customer Experience Success, we discuss a more complex B2B model, business-to-business-to-customer (B2B2C). The goal of CX in B2B2C is to:

Enhance end customer experience in a way that satisfies the needs of channel partners

B2B2C CX is all about four relationships:

  1. Company to Channel Partners. To deliver great CX to customers, a company also needs to nurture its relationships with its channel partners to help them be successful.
  2. Channel Partners to End Customer. In this relationship, a company can only influence how channel partners think about and deliver CX in the partner’s interactions with the end customer.
  3. Company to End Customer. These interactions provide the company with the best CX opportunities to deliver great CX to the end customer because such interactions are wholly under a company’s control.
  4. Company and Channel Partner to End Customer. These are times when a company and a channel partner engage the end customer as one unit. In these instances, both partners need to share a common vision of how the CX should be delivered.

1611_b2b2cfundamentalsIn the chart below, you can see how to infuse these four CX core competencies across the relationships:

  1. Purposeful Leadership: Operate consistently with a clear set of values.
  2. Employee Engagement: Align employees with the goals of the organization.
  3. Compelling Brand Values: Deliver on your brand promises to customers.
  4. Customer Connectedness: Infuse customer insight across the organization.

1611_b2b2c4cxcompetencies

The bottom line: Good CX practices transcend business models.

Report: 2016 Temkin Experience Ratings of Tech Vendors

1610_temkinexperienceratingstechvendors_coverWe just published a Temkin Group report 2016 Temkin Experience Ratings of Tech Vendors that rates the customer experience of 62 large tech vendors based on a survey of 800 IT decision makers from large North American firms. This is the fifth year of the ratings, here are links to the 2012, 20132014, and 2015 ratings.

Here is the executive summary of the report:

The 2016 Temkin Experience Ratings of Tech Vendors evaluates the customer experience of 62 large technology vendors. We surveyed 800 IT decision-makers from large companies regarding three components – success, effort, and emotion – of their experiences with these IT providers. Out of all the vendors we looked at, HPE outsourcing, IBM SPSS, and Google earned the highest ratings, while Capgemini, Infosys, and Accenture received the lowest ratings. The average score for the Ratings dropped by one percentage-point over the past year, down from 59% in 2015 to 58% this year. Furthermore, our research shows that the Temkin Experience Ratings are strongly correlated with multiple elements of loyalty behavior, including likelihood of repurchasing from the company, likelihood of recommending the company, likelihood of trying new products, and likelihood of forgiving the company if it makes a mistake.

This product has a report (.pdf) and a dataset (excel). The dataset has the details of the 2016 Temkin Experience Ratings, including all three components, for the 62 tech vendors as well as data on customers’ likelihood to repurchase from the vendors, their 2016 Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, and their 2016 Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient. It also includes a summary of the 2015 Temkin Experience Ratings, likelihood to repurchase, and Temkin Forgiveness Ratings.

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The Temkin Experience Ratings of Tech Vendors evaluates three areas of customer experience: success (can customers achieve what they want to do), effort (how easy is it for customers to do what they want to do), and emotion (how do customers feel about their interaction). Here are the overall results:

1610_techvendortxr_companies

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Report: Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2016 (B2B)

1609_technpsbenchmark_coverWe just published a Temkin Group report, Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2016, The research examines Net Promoter Scores and the link to loyalty for 62 tech vendors based on feedback from 800 IT decision makers in large North American organizations. We also compared overall results to our benchmarks from the previous four years. Here’s the executive summary:

For the fifth year in a row, we examined the link between Net Promoter Scores® (NPS®) and loyalty for technology vendors. We surveyed 800 IT decision-makers from large North American firms to learn about their relationships with their technology providers. Of the 62 tech vendors we evaluated, IBM, HPE outsourcing, IBM SPSS, and VMware earned the highest NPS, while Cognizant, Capgemini, and Infosys received the lowest. Overall, the average NPS for the tech vendor industry decreased by almost 2 percentage points from last year. Our analysis shows that promoters are much more likely than detractors to increase their spending with tech vendors, try new products and services when they are announced, and forgive tech vendors after a bad experience. We also found that Software AG and HPE outsourcing are the top companies for purchase momentum, while IBM SPSS, IBM software, and IBM outsourcing have the highest Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient, and HPE outsourcing and IBM SPSS are at the top of the Temkin Forgiveness Ratings.

The report includes graphics with data for NPS, purchase intentions, likelihood to forgive, and likelihood to try a new offering. The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 62 companies as well as for other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2015.

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As you can see in the chart below, the NPS ranges from a high of 61 for IBM software down to  a low of -10 for Cognizant IT services.

1609_techvendornpsclear

The industry average NPS decreased to 29.9 this year. The research also includes data for Purchase Momentum (how much customers are planning to buy), Temkin Forgiveness Ratings (likelihood of customers to forgive after a bad experience), and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient (likelihood of customer to try a new offering). We not only list the results for each company, but we also show that NPS is highly correlated to each of these items (as you can see below for Purchase Momentum).

1609_techvendornpstrendandcorrelatoin

Report details: When you purchase this research, you will receive a written report and an excel spreadsheet with more data. The report includes graphics with data for NPS, purchase momentum, Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient for the 62 tech vendors that had at least 40 pieces of feedback. The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 62 companies as well as for other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2015. If you want to know more about the data file, download this SAMPLE SPREADSHEET without the data (.xls).

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Note: See our 2015 NPS benchmark2014 NPS benchmark2013 NPS benchmark and 2012 NPS benchmark for tech vendors as well as our page full of NPS resources.

P.S. Net Promoter Score, Net Promoter, and NPS are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems, and Fred Reichheld.

Report: Lessons in CX Excellence, 2016

1601_LessonsInCXExcellence_COVERWe just published a Temkin Group report, Lessons in CX Excellence, 2016. The report provides insights from eight finalists in the Temkin Group’s 2015 CX Excellence Awards. The report, which is 100 pages long, includes an appendix with the finalists’ nomination forms. This report has rich insights about both B2B and B2C customer experience.

Here’s the executive summary:

This year, we chose eight organizations as finalists for Temkin Group’s 2015 Customer Experience Excellence Award. The finalists for 2015 are EMC Global Services, Hagerty, InMoment, Safelite AutoGlass, SunPower, The Results Companies, Verint, and Wheaton | Bekins. This report provides specific examples describing how these companies’ CX efforts have created value for both their customers and for their businesses. We also highlight best practices across the four customer experience competencies—purposeful leadership, compelling brand values, employee engagement, and customer connectedness. We have included all of the finalists’ detailed nomination forms at the end of this report to help you compile examples and ideas to apply to your own CX efforts.

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Here are some highlights from the finalists: Read More …

Report: Tech Vendors: Product and Relationship Satisfaction, 2016

1601_DS_TechProductsAndRelationships_COVERWe just published a Temkin Group data snapshot, Tech Vendors: Product and Relationship Satisfaction of IT Clients, 2016.

During Q3, 2015, 800 IT professionals from companies with at least $250 million in annual revenues rated both the products of and their relationships with 62 tech vendors. The research examines satisfaction with eight areas: product/service features, product/service quality, product/service flexibility, product/service ease of use, technical support, support of the account team, cost of ownership, and innovation of company. Some of the findings include that Intel, Google, and HP outsourcing earned the highest overall satisfaction ratings, while Unisys, Sage, and Cognizant IT services earned the lowest. When it comes to product satisfaction, Intel leads in product features, Apple and IBM IT services lead in product quality, Google leads in product flexibility, and NetApp leads in product ease of use. When it comes to relationship satisfaction, HP outsourcing leads in tech support and in cost of ownership, Intel leads in account team support, and Google leads in innovation.

This product has a report (.pdf) and a dataset (excel). The dataset has the details of Product/Service and Relationship satisfaction for the 62 tech vendors as well as for several tech vendors with sample sizes too small to be included in the published report.

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As you can see in the chart below, the overall product/service & relationship satisfaction ranges from a high of 74% for Intel down to a low of 46% for Unisys.

1601_ProductRelationshipSatisfaction_Ratings

The chart below shows the average scores across all satisfaction criteria. Tech vendors scored the highest in innovation (64%) and the lowest in cost of ownership (56%).1601_ProductRelationshipSatisfaction_Elements

Report details: When you purchase this research, you will receive a written data snapshot and an excel spreadsheet with more data.The dataset has the details of Product/Service and Relationship satisfaction for the 62 tech vendors as well as for several tech vendors with sample sizes too small to be included in the published report. If you want to know more about the data file, download this SAMPLE SPREADSHEET without the data (.xls).

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Report: B2B Customer Experience Best Practices

1510_B2B CX Best Practices_COVERWe published a Temkin Group report, Business-to-Business (B2B) Customer Experience Best Practices. This report provides data on the state of customer experience (CX) in B2B as well as 20 CX best practices across five critical B2B processes. Here’s the executive summary:

Temkin Group research shows that although business-to-business (B2B) organizations are raising their customer experience (CX) ambitions, they still have a way to go before achieving their goals. Despite the fact that most large B2Bs have a low level of CX maturity, our research shows that 57% of them aspire to deliver industry-leading customer experience within three years. However, to improve their CX, B2Bs must master Temkin Group’s four customer experience core competencies: Purposeful Leadership, Compelling Brand Values, Employee Engagement, and Customer Connectedness. Our research uncovered 20 practices that B2Bs can emulate when applying those competencies across these five key business processes: sales and account management, implementation/project execution, support and issue resolution, partner alignment, and product management and innovation. To assess your organization’s CX maturity, use Temkin Group’s Customer Experience Competency Assessment and compare the results to data from other large B2B firms to chart your path to improvement.

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The report examines the state of B2B CX, including the results from large companies that completed Temkin Group’s CX Competency & Maturity Assessment:

1511_B2BCXMaturity

To help B2B organizations raise their CX maturity, we identify 20 best practices for mastering Temkin Group’s four customer experience core competencies: Purposeful Leadership, Compelling Brand Values, Employee Engagement, and Customer Connectedness. These practices are aligned with five key B2B activities: sales and account management, implementation/project execution, support and issue resolution, partner alignment, and product management and innovation:

1511_B2B5Processes

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Report: Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2015 (B2B)

1509_IT_NPSBenchmark_COVERWe just published a Temkin Group report, Tech Vendor NPS Benchmark, 2015, The research examines Net Promoter Scores and the link to loyalty for 62 tech vendors based on feedback from IT decision makers in large North American organizations. We also compared overall results to our benchmarks from the previous three years. Here’s the executive summary:

To examine the link between Net Promoter Scores® (NPS®) and loyalty, we surveyed 800 IT decision-makers from large North American firms to learn about their relationships with their technology providers. Of the 62 tech vendors we evaluated, SAS Institute, HP outsourcing, and Intel earned the highest NPS, while Accenture, CA Technologies, and Hitachi received the lowest. Overall, the tech vendor industry’s average NPS jumped to 31.8 in 2015—an increase of more than eight points—after two straight years of declining scores. Our analysis shows that promoters are much more likely than detractors to spend more money with tech vendors, try new products and services when they are announced, and forgive their tech vendors after a bad experience. Our results also revealed that SAS Institute and Cognizant outsourcing were the top companies for purchase momentum, IBM SPSS and Intel have the highest Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient, and HP outsourcing and Intel scored the highest in the Temkin Forgiveness Ratings.

The report includes graphics with data for NPS, purchase intentions, likelihood to forgive, and likelihood to try a new offering. The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 62 companies as well as for 25 other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2014.

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As you can see in the chart below, the NPS ranges from a high of 57 for SAS Institute down to  a low of 1 for Accenture consulting.

1509_TechNPS_Listing

After declining for the past two years, the industry average NPS increased to 31.8 this year, almost reaching the level from our initial study in 2012. The research also includes data for Purchase Momentum (how much customers are planning to buy), Temkin Forgiveness Ratings (likelihood of customers to forgive after a bad experience), and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient (likelihood of customer to try a new offering). We not only list the results for each company, but we also show that NPS is highly correlated to each of these items (as you can see below for Purchase Momentum).

1509_TechNPS_TrendPurchase

Report details: When you purchase this research, you will receive a written report and an excel spreadsheet with more data. The report includes graphics with data for NPS, purchase momentum, Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, and Temkin Innovation Equity Quotient for the 62 tech vendors that had at least 40 pieces of feedback. The excel spreadsheet includes this data (in more detail) for the 62 companies as well as for 25 other tech vendors with less than 40 pieces of feedback. It also includes the summary NPS scores from 2014. If you want to know more about the data file, download this SAMPLE SPREADSHEET without the data (.xls).

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Note: See our 2014 NPS benchmark2013 NPS benchmark and 2012 NPS benchmark for tech vendors as well as our page full of NPS resources.

P.S. Net Promoter Score, Net Promoter, and NPS are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Satmetrix Systems, and Fred Reichheld.

Report: Lessons in CX Excellence, 2015

1501_LessonsInCXExcellence_COVERWe just published a Temkin Group report, Lessons in CX Excellence, 2015. The report provides insights from 8 finalists in the Temkin Group’s 2014 CX Excellence Awards. The report, which is 98 pages long, includes an appendix with the finalists’ nomination forms. This report has rich insights about both B2B and B2C customer experience.

Here’s the executive summary:

This year, we chose eight organizations as finalists for Temkin Group’s 2014 Customer Experience Excellence Award. Finalists are Activision Customer Care, Aetna, Crowe Horwath LLP, Dell Inc., EMC Corporation, Texas NICUSA, The Results Companies, and TouchPoint Support Services. This report provides specific examples of how these companies’ CX efforts have created value for both their customers and for their businesses. We also highlight their best practices across the four customer experience competencies—purposeful leadership, compelling brand values, employee engagement, and customer connectedness. At the end of this report, we have included all of the finalists’ detailed nomination forms to help you collect examples and ideas to apply to your own CX efforts.

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Watch Temkin Group webinar about this research.

Here are some highlights from the finalists:

  • Activision Customer Care. Activision demonstrates its commitment to creating great game player experiences in a multitude of ways, such as emphasizing the use of player feedback to identify improvement opportunities. Activision combines this dedication to listening to its players with a willingness to redesign significant interactions. For example, it revamped its “Contact Us” page to include ambassador chat and callback scheduling, which resulted in higher satisfaction and lower effort for customers.
  • Aetna. Despite being in an industry undergoing tremendous change, Aetna is focusing on its 2020 vision to make the company 100% customer-centric. It has implemented many changes to help achieve this goal, including providing service over the phone and investing in text and speech analytics to better identify customer pain points and improve the behaviors and skillsets of its call representatives. The latter effort has already resulted in reduced repeat calls, improved accuracy, and a higher Net Promoter Score (NPS).
  • Crowe Horwath. With a client engagement score towering 33 points above the accounting industry average, Crowe Horwath is seeing the pay-off of its efforts to deliver an exceptional client experience. These efforts include establishing a firm-wide governance model and measurement scorecard, implementing a closed-loop voice of the customer program, incorporating customer journey mapping to uncover moments of truth, and engaging employees through training, client-driven CX recognition programs, and an employee ambassador program.
  • Dell. Dell’s CX efforts start with an emphasis on listening to and engaging with customers and employees. Dell enlists different groups from across the company—including engineering, marketing, sales, support, and digital—to make improvements to the entire customer journey. As a result of this work, Dell has opened 16 solution centers—which gives customers a place to experience solutions—and has provided proactive support over a wide variety of social channels, simplified Dell.com for consumer and business users, and implemented more than 540 customer innovation ideas.
  • EMC Corporation. The Total Customer Experience (TCE) program at EMC works across the enterprise to enhance the company’s customer experience by listening to customer feedback, analyzing data, and taking directed action based on that feedback and data. The program also raises awareness of how every person at the company impacts customer experience. As its CX efforts have matured, the TCE team has evolved to take on more challenging tasks; its projects now include predictive CX analytics, measuring its partner experience quality, and optimizing the experience across many different customer segments and solutions.
  • The Results Companies. To support its work as a business process outsourcing provider, The Results Companies uses its own unique operating model called CX360, which allows for continuous business process refinements that improve the customer experience. Built on three pillars—people, knowledge, empowerment—CX360 has helped the company ensure that its 8,500 employees around the globe remain focused on CX. The operating model has also contributed to Results’ strong growth in new clients and year-over-year revenue.
  • Texas NICUSA/Texas.gov. Texas NICUSA provides support for Texas.gov and implements technology solutions for Texas governmental agencies. It serves over 50,000 monthly site visitors and 300 state and local governments. Its three-tiered multi-channel customer service approach includes a general customer service Help Desk (phone and online), a Service Desk to support governmental agency needs, and a group of Technology Subject Matter Experts who can provide escalated assistance to either citizens or agency employees.
  • TouchPoint Support Services. TouchPoint Support Services streamlines support services within healthcare facilities. The company’s business goals, known as Top of Mind Objectives, guide the work of its 6,800 associates, helping them to find inefficiencies and improve patient satisfaction, associate engagement, safety, unity, and budget compliance. Touchpoint uses many methods for aligning employees with these objectives, including special training for managers and frontline employees, coaching from dedicated customer experience managers (who visit sites regularly), and associate recognition programs.

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If you enjoyed this report, check out Lessons in CX Excellence, 2014 and Lessons in CX Excellence, 2013.

The bottom line: There’s a lot to learn from these CX Excellence Finalists.

CX in the C-Suite: Webinar With Mercedes-Benz CEO

1410_CXfromCSuiteMBUSAAs part of Customer Experience Day, I interviewed Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) CEO Steve Cannon on a CXPA.org webinar called Customer Experience from the C-Suite. Cannon was energetic and informative in describing how MBUSA has infused a strong sense of CX across its organization as well as across the company’s network of 375 dealership franchisees.

One of the highlights of the webinar was when Cannon said that “customer experience is the new marketing” and is critical for fulfilling MBUSA’s brand promise, The Best or Nothing.

Here are some other highlights and lessons from the webinar:

  • The CEO plays a critical role in CX. Cannon was clear on the role of the CEO in driving CX across the organization. “If the CEO doesn’t take CX personally, he’s not going to be able to convince people that it isn’t just the flavor of the month.” He called himself the “Chief conversation starter” and “Chief Evangelist.” Cannon mentioned that CX is a topic in every single town hall and when he visits a facility, he says, “Don’t give me a facility tour, give me a customer experience tour.” (Related: CX Mistake #1: Faking Executive Commitment).
  • Change takes focused leadership. Cannon pointed out that historically; CX resided in too many siloes (sales, marketing, presales, etc) across MBUSA. One of the first thing Steve did was reorganize around CX, carve CX out of different business units and put them together in one unit with a General Manager who reports directly to him. (Related: State of CX Management, 2014).
  • Alignment is well worth the investment of time. When CX became the MBUSA’s main objective, the executive team went offsite and spent two days debating and critically examining the organization’s CX—where they were coming from and where they were going. This meeting incorporated the voices of General Managers into MBUSA’s CX plans, making them what Cannon called “co-architects.” Afterwards, Cannon held similar meeting with the next two levels of leaders across the company. (Related: WL Gore Succeeds Without Employees).
  • It all starts with employee engagement. Cannon said that Employee Engagement is a precursor to CX. Cannon stated that “MBUSA is committed to investing in people because they are the only ones who can create great CX.” And Cannon is investing in this area. He discussed the company’s Immersion Program. Over the next few years, 26,000 employees will visit the MBUSA plant in Alabama and go through a learning journey that includes driving cars and visiting the company’s brand center. (Related: The Untapped Value of Employee Engagement (Infographic)).
  • CX is about culture, not a veneer. Cannon mentioned that great leaders create culture that creates great customer experience. That’s why Cannon is so proud of MBUSA leadership academy. He said that CX is in the DNA of the MBUSA, and is its higher calling. (Related: Driving Customer Experience Transformation, Made Simple).
  • Satisfaction isn’t enough.” Cannon stated that any company can satisfy customers just by operational excellence and performing a transaction right. Instead of satisfaction, MBUSA wants to delight its customers. To measure this objective, MBUSA is changing its metrics to include Net Promoter Score within a basket of other metrics. (Related: Customer Effort, Net Promoter, And Thoughts About CX Metrics).
  • Engage your channel partners. Cannon was clear that dealers have the ability to amplify, accentuate, or marginalize everything MBUSA does. He explained that 2.5 points out of the 5.5 points of performance bonus that dealers can earn are related to delivering great customer experience, which results in a $40 million customer experience payout across dealers. Cannon was proud of the “Drive a Start Home” program that provides dealer employees with a Mercedes-Benz to drive for two days. (Related: Our B2B content plus an upcoming report on B2B2C CX).

Check out last year’s webinar with Dan Hesse, CEO of Sprint.

The bottom line: CX leaderships requires executive leaders like Steve Cannon.

Report: Raising Customer-Centricity Across the B2B Enterprise

1404_B2B CX Case Studies_COVERWe just published a Temkin Group report, Raising Customer-Centricity Across the B2B Enterprise. The research provides in-depth case studies of five B2B firms. Here’s the executive summary:

Temkin Group research shows that good customer experience (CX) drives loyalty with business customers. These same business customers, influenced by their personal experiences as consumers, have raised their expectations in their business-to-business (B2B) relationships. While most large B2B organizations have a low level of CX maturity, our research shows that 56% of them have the goal of delivering industry-leading customer experience within three years. To understand how B2B organizations are improving their customer-centricity, we compiled case studies of five organizations that are raising the bar in CX: Ciena, Crowe Horwath, Fiserv, Genworth Financial, and Oracle. To assess your organization’s CX maturity, use Temkin Group’s Customer Experience Competency Assessment, and compare the results to data from other large B2B firms.

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The report provides 40 pages, including rich details on B2B CX and benchmark data to evaluate your B2B CX against other large organizations. Some of the data points in the report include:

  • 12% of large B2B organizations are in the highest two levels of CX maturity (out of six levels).
  • 8% of large B2B organizations have very good ratings in Compelling Brand Values, the lowest rated CX competency.
  • 79% of large B2B organizations identify “other competing priorities” as a key obstacle to CX success, compared with 65% of non-B2B firms.
  • 56% of large B2B organizations have a goal to be CX leaders in their industries within three years.

The five case studies go deep into how some great practices for infusing good CX across B2B organizations:

  • Ciena: When Ciena began its customer experience journey 18 months ago, it set out to “engage, inform, and transform” the organization. It started its journey by using deep customer insights to hone in on what matters most to customers and now focuses on strengthening its culture and continuously improving.
  • Crowe Horwath: As a professional services firm, Crowe’s employees are its customer experience. Therefore, Crowe focuses its efforts on capturing and sharing all client feedback with its employees, and it uses a variety of tactics to involve them in shaping its CX efforts.
  • Fiserv: While technology underpins the customer experience tools, analyses, and reporting that drive Fiserv’s CX efforts, the company also integrates a human element into its efforts by using employee coaching, performance management, and rewards and recognition programs to engage employees in their work.
  • Genworth Financial: The CX team at Genworth uses a combination of approaches—from customer journey mapping to service dashboards to innovation ideation—to involve employees across the organization in its customer experience efforts.
  • Oracle: Oracle continues to raise customer-centricity across its global footprint by listening, responding, and collaborating with customers to identify and take action on customer experience improvement opportunities.

The case studies highlight practices affecting all four customer experience core competencies:

1406_B2B4CXCompetencies

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The bottom line: B2B firms need to improve customer experience.

Where’s All The B2B CX Data?

Readers of this blog see a lot of consumer data which we use to rate and benchmark companies. This data shows up in research such as Net Promoter Score Benchmarks, Temkin Experience Ratings, Temkin Forgiveness Ratings, Temkin Customer Service Ratings, and Temkin Trust Ratings.

B2BDataAlmost every time we publish one of these consumer-based studies, I receive some form of the questions: What about B2B (business-to-business)? When will you have that type of data for B2B? Since these questions always seem to come up, I figured it was worthwhile to write a post with my answer.

First of all, we do have B2B data. For the tech sector, we have an NPS benchmark, the Temkin Experience Ratings, and the satisfaction of products and relationships to name a few. This research is based on feedback from a key customer group:  IT decisions makers within large North American organizations. Our data about what companies are doing, such as The State of CX Management, includes a large sampling of B2B (along with B2C and many that have both B2B and B2C). We sometimes break out the B2B data in reports like Best Practices in B2B Customer Experience and posts such as B2B Versus B2C in VoC.

However, there is certainly a lot more data available for B2C than there is for B2B, especially with customer-driven feedback. This does not reflect the lack of CX effort in B2B companies; as a matter of fact, a large portion of Temkin Group’s client work is in B2B. So why is there such little data in this area? Because of some basic structural constraints of B2B CX:

  • B2B requires specific respondents. While you can ask a consumer about a bunch of things from hotels to retailers to fast food restaurants, you can’t do the same in B2B. It would make no sense to ask an accountant about the performance of an infrastructure tech vendor or to ask an IT professional about the quality of a bank’s treasury services. As a result, studies must be targeted at individual sectors, one at a time.
  • B2B data is more expensive. If you want to survey a B2B customer group (such as IT decision-makers), then you will likely have to purchase the sample from a vendor who manages B2B panels. Since Temkin Group does a lot of research, we are able to receive pretty competitive pricing for our studies. Yet, the cost of a single B2B respondent costs us about 10-times what it costs for a consumer respondent.
  • B2B serves a variety of roles. When selling to a large company, there are often many people involved in the relationship, fulfilling roles such as decision-makers, influencers, end users, and economic buyers. The results from any study can vary widely based on which of those customer audiences you survey. A complete B2B study often needs to cover multiple audiences within each client company.

The bottom line: The lack of B2B data does not mean a lack of B2B interest or activity

Why Net Promoter Score May Not Align With Business Results

I just received a great question: “Why do companies have a very healthy growth although their NPS is low and vice versa why can growth be decreasing although the NPS is very high?” I get asked versions of this question all the time, so I decided to capture my typical answers in this blog post (check out our Net Promoter Score (NPS) Resource Page).

My take: We’ve found a high correlation between NPS and customer loyalty across a large number of industries. But that does not mean that NPS will provide a clear understanding of a company’s business results. There are many reasons why a company’s business might perform differently than its NPS might suggest. Here are some of the common reasons that I’ve seen:

  • NPS is not the ultimate question. In many situations, the amounts of promoters and detractors are roughly correlated with customer loyalty and business success, but that’s not always the case. It’s not a universally good metric as it’s not correlated to business success in all situations. For example, NPS may not be at all indicative of business success if customers are trapped because of a high switching cost, limited competition or monopolistic power of the company, unique product or service offerings, etc.
  • Comparison NPS trumps absolute NPS. In general, health plans have low NPS scores yet many of them do well financially. Customers may not be likely to recommend their health plan, but if they don’t believe that there are any better options then it will not affect their loyalty.
  • B2B roles are under-appreciated. There are different dynamics in B2B situations. If we ask treasury assistants in large companies to provide an NPS for commercial banks, we might believe that it should represent the health of a bank’s business. But what happens if CFOs, who control the banking decisions, give banks  a completely different NPS?
  • Non-customers are often overlooked. A retailer may have a high NPS, but still lose share if its products and services start appealing to a narrower audience. This type of situation is often missed, because companies tend to get considerably more feedback from existing customers than from prospective non-customers.
  • Segmentation can alter the analysis. When an organization looks at its overall NPS, it might miss important trends in different customer groups. What happens if NPS is getting lower for high value customers and getting higher for low value customers? The overall NPS could stay the same or even improve while the company’s results decline.
  • Survey design affects results. Many companies have a mismatch between the way they deploy NPS surveys and the insights they attempt to glean from the data. Companies ask the NPS questions at different times and frequencies, which can affect the overall results. If we ask NPS after a customer service event, then the results will likely be different then if we ask it periodically to a random sampling of customers.

The bottom line: NPS can be an effective metric in many situations, but only if used correctly