Guest post by Denis Lucey, Vice-President of Dell EMC EMEA Commercial Support Services

At the heart of every successful relationship between a business and its customer is a bond of trust. Today an increasing number of companies are coming to the realisation that building trust lies primarily in creating an engaging customer experience – one that is effective, consistent and, above all, personal.

How can businesses better engage with their customers and appreciate what each individual really wants? From meeting with countless leaders, organisations in Ireland are increasingly using data analytics to better understand trends and information on issues ranging from product ease of use to customer service satisfaction.

In an era of digital transformation, analysing historical customer behaviour and attitudes is no longer enough to drive customer experience excellence and improve ways of doing business. The real transformative and disruptive power of data analytics centres on predicting future customer behaviour. By using large quantities of data and tapping into external data sources, organisations can reveal, even predict new opportunities for enhanced customer engagement.

This predictive power enables businesses across all sectors to anticipate customer needs and, most importantly, adjust their product or service offering at all stages of the customer journey – from their experience of sales and marketing to maintenance and renewal.

What does this mean for customer experience leaders? Advancements in data analytics empower my team members to take charge and solve problems. It’s also enabling them to capitalise on each customer interaction, reinforcing their value to the customer.

Within many forward-thinking companies, predictive technology is being used to reach out to customers in the first instance to help them with a technical challenge before it emerges on their radar. Ultimately, it provides the tools for effective communications, consistency in approach and streamlined processes. In the digital age, customers shouldn’t have to work hard to receive excellent customer service.

In a world of constant change, data analytics are not the only ‘silver bullet’ in building bonds of trust. Customer commitment also takes perseverance, hard work and cultural change. Every single employee has a contribution to make in cultivating a customer-first culture centred around technological innovations.

With customer experience due to overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator by 2020, we will all need to invest and integrate data analytics into our business model. How are you as a business leader of today harnessing the benefits of data analytics to optimise customer experience within your organisation tomorrow?

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