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Leveraging employee insights for customer care

Lynn Pine
Lead Content Producer

Positive brand experiences ( are not only for customers. 

How you treat your employees matters just as much — they can be your biggest brand ambassadors.

In this episode, we hear from Anna Skidmore , Vice President, Customer Care at IPSY , about the many layers of CX, customer care, and how automation should be a tool to free up more time for human connection.

Join us as we discuss:

  • Holistic CX and brand consistency
  • Setting clear brand values
  • Leveraging data to inform brand strategy
  • Using automation as a front line for customer experience

Listen to the interview with Anna Skidmore

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Who's in charge of the customer experience?

"No matter what we have going on in the world, a little kindness goes a really long way."

Anna Skidmore
Vice President, Customer Care

A great customer experience requires a strong and healthy balance between the customer, the business, and the cross-functional teams.

Customers are external advocates who can drive positive change and growth for brands. If we aren't listening to these key advocates, then how do we know if we're doing the right work? How are we ever going to evolve the experience to meet their needs and keep them as consumers? 

In any business, though, listening to your customers has to be balanced with the strategic initiatives and priorities of the team. So when we really look at our objectives and key results, we're laser focused on establishing the priorities that drive impact for the business and ultimately, the consumer.

Listening to employee insights

Consider employees. Is it important to focus on their mental health? Ensure that they are being heard? Capture their insights? Of course! But all that may not be data driven.

Data is important, but not everything can be data driven. You have to really understand what your stakeholders want and need. Then make sure data is informing your decisions.

Still, we can take what we learn from listening to employees and apply it to the data. As Anna said, "There's got to be a combination of technology, data, and voice."

When you pair those together, and you share the results with the cross functional teams, everyone gains valuable insight and feedback. No one knows that better than your agents or your leadership team who are dealing with these consumers every day.

Everyone needs to be communicating at all touch points as a part of this journey.

Using automation as a frontline strategy

"We remain focused not only on our members, but also our employees and their experiences, because ultimately, that's what's going to drive forward a positive customer experience."

Anna Skidmore
Vice President, Customer Care

Traditional operations are still very much a part of people's world. However, a shift is coming. Automation will grow. It's inevitable.

Brands must lean into this as a part of their traditional strategy. Consider something like email or voice chat. Those are not efficient ways to run a business. That's why more brands are stepping away from their traditional approaches and experimenting with new ways to serve customers .

Just look at social media's growth over the last ten years. What do you think will happen in the next decade? It's going to continue to explode. Customers expect real-time support on social media now. If you don't have an automation strategy in place to offer that, your consumers may shop somewhere else.

As you automate, be sure you're using your human resources to make your stakeholders feel extra special — like they're VIPs.

Leveraging digital assets in CX

"Customer data is extremely important when making decisions or building out your user journeys."

Anna Skidmore
Vice President, Customer Care

Establish who your internal advocates are.

Who will be your internal cheerleaders for your products and your brands? Make sure those people are in the right meetings. Give them the data you provide to your cross-functional teams.

"It's one thing to just put someone in a meeting," Anna told us, "but you really need to arm them with these insights and data."

Equally important, you need to ensure that your senior leadership team advocates for the role of experience in key business metrics. They need to clearly express the importance of experience especially with regard to churn retention.

You've got to have the highest level of buy in. If you don't have that, and you're just driven by finances or something else, then you miss the mark of driving member loyalty and creating members for life.

Episode takeaways

  • Establish a clear brand promise and a set of brand values that underpin what you're doing across the organization, not just externally with your customers, but also internally with your employees.
  • Use data to inform both customer experience and brand strategy.
  • Use automation as the front line of customer experience so you can free your human resources to have personal, meaningful interactions with customers.

Interviews with customer service leaders

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