Coordinating CX Across the Enterprise: What does it look like?

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In a recent post, I offered a collection of questions to assess an organization’s overall customer experience (CX) governance structure. A key thread across the answers to those questions was the involvement of a core CX team – its relationship with cross-functional stakeholders, its positioning with and support from senior leaders, and its ability to influence internal programs outside of its direct control. The core CX team is a linchpin of any CX governance model and most organizations, rightfully, spend a lot of time trying to figure out exactly what the CX team needs to do.

Obviously, any given organization’s CX strategy, level of commitment, and stage of CX maturity can make the roles it puts in place to support its customer-centric culture and operating processes look very different. But in my report on federating customer experience, I did dive into how a centralized CX team serves the organization. These responsibilities become even more important as an organization starts to distribute CX capabilities across the enterprise and the centralized CX team spends less time driving specific CX tactics because the business has taken that on for themselves. Whether these responsibilities are fulfilled by a few people or by many, the core CX team is fundamentally a catalyst and a coordinator: overseeing the setting of goals and objectives, proliferating expertise and insights, enforcing enterprise-wide standards to prevent unwanted deviations, and acting as a hub for cross-pollination of ideas and success stories to celebrate progress and spur change.

So, what does the “job” of catalyzing and coordinating CX across the enterprise really look like? In my research I identified these main areas of focus:

  • Enterprise CX Strategy and Governance. A CX program won’t do much for the business without clear direction and executive involvement and support. The job: work with senior executives to define a common CX vision, strategy, and priorities for the organization and engage cross-functional senior business stakeholders to advise on that strategy, guide resource allocation, model desired behaviors, help with obstacle busting, and hold people accountable for results.
  • Insights, Metrics, and Reporting. A very important component of any CX roadmap is a voice of the customer program that provides relevant and timely insights to the organization. The job: coordinate everything from data rules and survey standards to metrics selection and insights analysis and reporting, all while working hard to ensure insights users will be successful.
  • Standard Methodologies and Tools. In order to drive consistency and efficiency from early days through the expansion and maturation of a CX program, it’s important to introduce and institutionalize CX tools and approaches for the organization to use. The job: establish company-wide definitions around CX, decide how the company will use tactics like customer journey mapping, customer communities, and internal CX ambassadors, distill external thought leadership and trends to understand how they will impact the CX strategy, and disseminate CX knowledge and approaches so that CX practices can be adopted across the company.
  • Central CX Storyline. Wherever an organization is in its CX journey, employees across the company need to have a shared understanding of why customer experience is important and what success looks like. The job: create the CX storyline, infusing success stories and the key themes from customer and employee experience and operational data into internal communications, training programs, and customer-facing messages.
  • Portfolio Management. Once an organization’s CX strategy gains momentum, the number and type of CX-related efforts happening inside the company can grow quickly. Eventually, many of these are driven not by the centralized team itself, but by employees and teams across the business. The job: track progress of the portfolio of CX efforts, make sure that distributed pursuits underway across the lines of business stay aligned the overall CX strategy, and step in to provide assistance when the business can’t do it on its own.

Want a little more detail? This table breaks down what enterprise-wide CX coordination looks like further:

CX teams will grow into these “jobs” as the CX strategy and roadmap grows and the CX capabilities of the organization mature. In some cases, CX roles will be filled by generalists who, given the size or capacity of the CX team, will need to wear many hats, while other teams will have specialists who possess critical skills needed support specific technologies, methodologies or use cases in place. Successful CX core team members will be ones who master key skills that enable them to understand the business, connect CX to the organization’s business and brand objectives, activate employees to do their part with CX, and ensure the organization is continuously learning from its customers and employees and rapidly adapting based on what is learned. Core teams who are ready, willing, and able to take on the work of coordinating customer experience across the enterprise have the opportunity to make a tremendous impact and have a fulfilling experience of their own along the way.

Aimee Lucas
I am a customer experience and employee engagement researcher, advisor, speaker, and trainer. I focus my work on guiding clients on how to optimize their employee and customer experience management programs, identifying and publishing EX and CX best practices, and shaping the future of experience management (XM). I have over 16 years of experience improving service delivery and transforming the customer experience through people development and process improvement initiatives.

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