Technology as the Major Driver of Customer Experience

Todd Martin, Director Customer Service Technology Systems, Zappos Family of Companies
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Todd Martin, Director Customer Service Technology Systems, Zappos Family of Companies

Todd Martin, Director Customer Service Technology Systems, Zappos Family of Companies

Q: What do you think are the biggest obstacles that CRM technologists face in working in a more agile and outcomes based model?

Some of the major challenges that Zappos faces today are keeping up with rapidly changing technology and the ever-changing expectations of customers. You need to listen attentively to the voice of the customer and communicate it with the rest of the company. Effectively engaging customers requires more than just technology solutions and involves a greater collective focus on the company culture and processes it creates in addition to the technology used.

  With big data becoming more important, a leader that neglects building the proper foundation will struggle to keep pace with the rapid innovation we are seeing in technology today   

he ability for a business to connect/integrate disparate sources of customer data allowing visibility into the “single customer view” is a never-ending challenge. To ensure the timely integration of new technology, build processes, detect and escalate problems to support and increase customer satisfaction, technology teams need to be tightly integrated with the business and operational areas they support.

Working in a more agile and outcomes based model shouldn’t be an obstacle that can’t be overcome if the foundation is in place to listen to what your internal and external customers are saying. 

 Q: What set of skills do you think is required for the CRM technology leaders to be successful in the new enterprise landscape?

CRM Technology no longer fits in a single silo and can’t be managed by a single group or individual. Leaders must view technology as a source to enable the ability to increase the overall customer experience. With big data becoming more important, a leader that neglects building the proper foundation will struggle to keep pace with the rapid innovation we are seeing in technology today. Leaders of today and the future leaders of tomorrow will need to embrace changing technology and customer expectations rely heavily on voice of customer tools to proactively provide solutions to their customer.  

Q: We are all dealing with CRM technology every day. How does technology drive your life?

Technology drives my everyday decisions and is responsible for changing my expectations when dealing with companies. I try to understand that not all interactions are created equal and try to be more forgiving and lower my expectations when in situations where technology isn’t as relied upon. Although data collected about you can create a positive experience, there is also a risk that it can be used for the opposite. The risk of sharing too much information is always on my mind and constantly challenges me to evaluate the companies I am loyal to. 

I don’t think people realize how much technology is influencing their lives; from making sure your commute is traffic free from the personalized playlist created for you. These simple things wouldn’t be possible without companies understanding your personal customer data.

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