In a panel discussion, Susan Forgie, Vice President, Operations, ASSA ABLOY Americas, and Dana Hyatt, Vice President, Customer Experience, Thomson Reuters, examined how customer care and customer experience teams can capitalize on data consistently.
Susan Forgie, Vice President, Operations, ASSA ABLOY Americas, and Dana Hyatt, Vice President, Customer Experience, Thomson Reuters, explored data and its importance in building a data-driven customer care or customer experience team in a panel discussion to Argyle's Customer Care membership at the 2016 Customer Care Leadership Forum in Dallas on Feb. 23. During the discussion, "Leveraging Data to Maximize the Customer Experience," the panelists shared their thoughts on what it takes for a business to optimize the data at its disposal to bolster its customer interactions.
So what does it take for a business to leverage customer data? A data collection and monitoring strategy is key, as this enables a business to find customer insights it can use to achieve its goals. In addition, a company must develop metrics based on the customer data this is available. And by doing so, a company will be able to collect comprehensive data sets and gain actionable insights from this information over an extended period of time.
Also, businesses must determine where they are going to focus before they begin collecting customer data. Because a wide assortment of customer insights is available, a company that focuses on how it will use this information can make the most of the data at its disposal consistently.
Creating a simple access point to customer data within an organization is key. By doing so, an organization can reduce the risk of silos forming. And ultimately, an organization can empower employees to view customer information from a variety of angles and gain comprehensive insights they can use to improve the business as a whole.
"It's the what to do with [data,]. If it was just intent, we would all be doing something else today. But we have so much intent and interest around [our data]."
Accountability also remains important because employees who are held responsible for customer information have the ability to use it to grow their businesses. And as a result, employees may feel more engaged and become more likely to discover new ways to leverage customer data as well.
"It's the what to do with [data,]" Hyatt said. "If it was just intent, we would all be doing something else today. But we have so much intent and interest around [our data]."
A customer care or customer experience team plays an important role within an organization. Adding employees to this team who possess an analytical background may help an organization mine a variety of data sources and make the most of customer information from these sources.
Having employees who come from a range of backgrounds may help a customer care or customer experience team maximize its results. Employees who are willing to devote the necessary time and resources to understand customer data may be able to discover innovative insights that a business can use to enhance its customer experience or customer satisfaction levels as well.
"If they're complaining about wait times in the call center, is it that? Or is it that [our employees] didn't get the proper training because we didn't onboard them right? Helping them get to the root of the problem and building a manageable plan to act on it ... the data then helps me get to the point where I'll hear something different from the customer," Hyatt said.
The metrics on every business level must make sense for all members of a customer care or customer experience team. And as such, a business must drive metrics from a top-down perspective to tie in the business strategy to the customer experience. A company that explores ways to incorporate customer experience metrics into its overall business strategy can highlight the importance of the customer experience in all departments.
"If they're complaining about wait times in the call center, is it that? Or is it that [our employees] didn't get the proper training because we didn't onboard them right? Helping them get to the root of the problem and building a manageable plan to act on it ... the data then helps me get to the point where I'll hear something different from the customer."
Furthermore, having a customer service infrastructure in place within an organization can deliver long-lasting value. Hyatt, for example, pointed out that Reuters recently added a chief customer officer, a C-suite executive who is responsible for promoting customer service initiatives across departments. And with the right infrastructure in place, Hyatt said her organization has been able to promote collaboration successfully and move closer to achieving its customer service goals.
An easy-to-understand infrastructure also ensures an organization can launch customer service initiatives without delay. This infrastructure empowers C-suite executives to launch these initiatives from the top down, and allow employees in all departments and at all levels to understand their importance.
Hyatt noted an effective infrastructure has served her organization well, particularly in regards to customer service initiatives. And with this infrastructure, an organization can promote its customer service mission quickly and efficiently to all employees.
"That's very different from the organization I came into 18 months ago, and I think really exciting," Hyatt said. "I think those kind of models where there is a clear mission, that message is rolled out to everyone. And then at the local level, there's that engagement opportunity."
Dana Hyatt leads a multifaceted, customer-centric career guided by one philosophy: Relying on a product is not enough—you have to know your customer to not only survive, but thrive. This has inspired her since the start of her career at Neiman Marcus, where she learned the value of dedication to exceptional customer experience.
While holding field sales and operations, corporate and consulting leadership positions, her entire career has been steeped in innovating, strategizing, executing and measuring customer experience to drive revenue. She has successfully applied her breadth of experience across multiple industries: Neiman Marcus, Citibank, Acxiom (Gucci, Wal-Mart, Federated), Zale Corporation, Gold’s Gym International, Accor North America, ADT and, most recently, Southwest Airlines.
With the realization long ago that her professional opportunities and successes were tied together by a common thread—cultures connected by an aspiration to customer centricity—Dana pursued her passion for a more holistic perspective of customer experience as a differentiating business strategy to catapult her to the next step in her career. She is a proud founding member of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA.org), a global non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of customer experience management practices. Founded in 2011, the CXPA has already grown to over 3000 members strong. In 2012, she co-founded the Dallas CXPA Networking Events to bring networking and sharing of best practices to local CX professionals and remains active as a leader today. Leveraging her diversified background and proven skills driving Customer Experience as a core business strategy to enhance the bottom line has led her to her current position as VP of Customer Experience, where she leads the transformation of the customer experience across the global Thomson Reuters Tax and Accounting enterprise.
An Arkansas native, Dana graduated from TCU. She lives in Dallas and enjoys yoga, hiking, travel and volunteering on behalf of homeless animals.