Managing the Customer Experience - A Case
Study Part 3
This week we share part three of the case study example outlining
strategies and techniques that one of our past clients (PTC) has put in
place to effectively manage the customer experience. This multi-part
series results from a collaborative effort with Mark Hodges, DVP and
Chief Customer Officer at
previous article in this series, we discussed the importance of
executive oversight and engagement on key customer issues and methods
for achieving this goal. In this article, we will cover the approach
taken to ensure scalability of highly specialized resources who are
engaged to address complex customer issues, while ensuring the "whole
customer" is being considered.
Enterprise software solutions touch many aspects of the customer's
business and IT infrastructure. One could go so far as to consider each
customer's environment an eco-system. That is, if a "change" is
introduced to one aspect of "the system", it can have ramifications,
positive or negative, to another.
In order to effectively implement and support high-end solutions,
multiple skill-sets are required across many areas of the enterprise
software provider's organization. The key becomes leveraging these
resources in a timely manner to meet the customers' needs, deliver
consistent and repeatable results, and ensure that the customers' needs
are met "holistically."
For example, have you, or someone you know, had the following
experience: A doctor prescribes treatment to a patient to address a
specific ailment. The patient dutifully follows instructions. Meanwhile
the patient visits a different doctor to address what seems to be
another ailment (which may or may not be another manifestation of the
same issue). The second doctor subsequently prescribes treatment that,
much to the patient's dismay, conflicts with the prior doctor's
treatment and ultimately makes matters worse.
This is a common reality that occurs to customers of enterprise software
solution providers that have not (yet) developed and matured practices
for avoiding this outcome. And, it drives the customer absolutely mad.
So how do you ensure that your company presents a single face to the
customer and considers the entire customer eco-system? Ask PTC.
PTC recognized that superstars were emerging from the various
organizations involved in implementing and supporting customer
solutions. To address nuances that exist in myriad customer
environments, unique approaches were being taken to meet customer
requirements and resolve issues. A key objective became ensuring
scalability of these resources by gleaning their best practices while
ensuring each solution would be understood (by others) within the
context of the situation it was meant to address.
To support this, PTC created the Enterprise Deployment Center. This
cross-functional team is comprised of key resources from all disciplines
involved in implementing and supporting customer solutions. The team
includes senior resources from Technical Support, Consulting Services,
R&D and Product Management. Members of the Enterprise Deployment Center
work together to address key customer issues. This ensures that
all aspects of the customer's configuration are considered as the
solution is being developed. In addition, the strategies, tools, best
practice approaches and techniques utilized by the team to resolve
customer issues are documented and made available via web systems or
specific training courses to others in the PTC support functions. This
supports coaching, development and growth of a global community of
personnel (beyond the resources within the Enterprise Deployment Center)
arming them with the best skills and information to support their
customers. When appropriate the information is also shared with
Customers via "opt in" push email communities or knowledge databases.
Another benefit of this approach is that key lessons, gained from
practical customer experience, are being shared with resources who have
direct responsibility for the specification and requirements definition
of future products and services. As a result, the customer experience
directly drives improvements in reliability, supportability and
As reported by Mark Hodges: Investing in our "Tiger Team" approach, by
creating the Enterprise Deployment Center, has provided us with the
opportunity to maximize the potential of some of our most skilled
resources and to then share their knowledge efficiently and effectively.
This has accelerated the growth and development of support resources
across the organization. We are finding that, while many customer
environments have unique complexities, there are common best practices
and approaches for issue resolution that can now be leveraged based on
our methods of capturing, documenting and disseminating this
information. Being able to "clone" the knowledge and experience of key
technical resources in R&D, Product Management, Consulting Services and
Technical Support is continuously improving our Customer Services.
Stay tuned for subsequent editions of our newsletter, in which we'll
cover the remaining topics of this case study, including:
Metrics and results
Taking things to the next level
About PTC: PTC is all about helping discrete manufacturers succeed
by meeting their globalization, time-to-market, and operational
efficiency objectives in product development. As one of the world's
largest and fastest-growing software companies, PTC delivers a complete
portfolio of integral Product Lifecycle Management solutions to over
50,000 customers in the Industrial, High Tech, Aerospace & Defense,
Automotive, Consumer, and Medical Device industries.
PTC's solutions enable teams to collaborate across departments—and
across continents—helping them create innovative products that meet
their customer needs and comply with industry regulations. In addition
to best-in-class solutions, PTC also delivers expert training, software
support, and world-class services directly through PTC Global Services
and indirectly through a range of partners.
View previous articles in this series
+ Managing the Customer Experience
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