Digitization is at the core of providing a superior customer experience, according to Gilles Leyrat, Senior Vice President of Customer & Partner Services, Cisco Systems.

During his keynote session, “There’s Never Been a Better Time to Digitize and Create Customers for Life,” on June 7 at the Pegaworld 2016 Conference in Las Vegas, Leyrat talked about how digitization has transformed a $50 billion company.

“We do $50 billion a year so we have a lot of transactions so automation is very important,” Leyrat told attendees. “Digitization creates a backbone for us to link up different parts of our processes. Our digitization is a way for us to invest in people. We look at digitization as a way to raise the bar for the whole team. We make sure we can take advantage of automation and take advantage of better processes, providing the best experience possible. It’s really at the heart of what we’re doing.”

Gilles said that digitization is at the core of Cisco’s strategy.

“The pace of change is accelerating and when we digitize, we have to do a number of critical things as far as changing our processes and the way we do business,” he explained. “Digitization helps us transform. One of the key things we really need to do is move fast at the pace of our business. The world is changing. We know what product we want to innovate and it takes a couple of years to develop those products. With digitization, it’s changing everything. Your customers know better how your products compete in the marketplace than you do. You have to communicate to customers in a very different fashion.”

Digitization, Gilles noted, “isn’t something that happened five years ago. It’s actually a pretty old concept.”
Gilles talked about how the Sony Walkman was a major innovation when it came out and did very well before the iPod appeared along with the introduction of iTunes, which completely digitized music.

Despite the fact that Cisco is either No. 1 or No. 2 in every single market it competes in, Gilles said there is never a time to rest on your laurels.

“The market is changing around us and we need to change at the same pace,” he said. “We digitize to make sure we understand how we use information and how we can have information to provide to our customers and partners at any time. We use technology to simplify and automate processes. It’s about getting efficiencies, using data to do real-time process change and provide additional data to your partners. That’s what digitization is all about.”

But, the bottom line for Gilles is this: “Above and beyond, it’s about people. It’s about providing people with information that’s relevant to them. Spend time engaging with customers. It’s about changing the Customer Experience. People should really look at it as a growth engine and engage with customers in a very different fashion.”

Gilles noted three keys to be successful with digitization: Excellence in operations; growth; and experience.
“You have to make sure the customers are satisfied and they have great experiences,” he said. “That’s the way you make sure your business continues to grow. Stock prices will increase with great CX. It is so critical for your business. Companies that have higher CX indexes have growth of revenue from those customers by a factor of two.”

How did Cisco achieve excellence in digitization?

“Simplify, simplify, simplify,” Gilles said. “It’s so critical. If you don’t, you’ll increase your costs. Take your collected data and do real-time analytics on those. It’s truly about using the intelligence, the making of team, and doing something very valuable for the company. It really works. It allows you to change the game in terms of how you’re operating and the way in which your people are working. Make sure you drive a delightful experience. You will build a customer for life.”

About the Author: Mark Johnson
Mark is CEO & CMO of Loyalty360. He has significant experience in selling, designing and administering prepaid, loyalty/CRM programs, as well as data-driven marketing communication programs.

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