Ubiquitous Corporate Arrangement


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Corporate decision support systems (DSS) date back more than 40 years. Many DSS were developed in organizational silos, and therefore, were not integrated across divisional or departmental business units. However, there has been success in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategies that produce systems that are customer-centric and function in concert with a firm’s operational constructs. Initially, the CRM systems evolved to facilitate company development; the acquisition and retention of customers; and to generate long lasting customer value. Just recently, CRM systems provide constructive B2C and B2B and new approach to database marketing and personalization by-way-of a multi-conduit environment. Unfortunately, CRM, similar to the DSS platform has also experienced fragmentation to the level of silo behavior within firms. An example of fragmentation resides in the application of CRM systems separately and distinctively used by company operations; sales force automation; and call center support. When and if a company’s products and services are developed and launched under a multifaceted and unilateral set of customer oriented programs; no one is in charge of an overarching strategic customer policy.

Trust and value are important; CRM components that are fundamentally achieved through leadership’s comprehensive and long-term investment in consumer understanding and management. As such, organizations must be committed to leveraging not just account executives to manage client and consumer relationships; but so should the entire firm. The understanding, usage, accuracy, and timeliness of customer information must be ubiquitous and symmetrical. Across the firm’s operations, leaders and employees must be proactive relative to exceeding consumer expectations and constructively react when customers are dissatisfied. According to Peter and Donnelly (2003), “A sustainable competitive advantage can be based on either the assets or skills of the organization. Technical superiority, low-cost producer, customer service/product support, location, financial resources, continuing product innovation, and overall marketing skills are all examples of distinctive competencies that can lead to a sustainable competitive advantage”. These words are only true – when the customer is the primary concern of the entire organization.

Dr. Johnny D. Magwood
Northeast Utilities Service Company
V.P. Customer Experience & Chief Customer Officer; Northeast Utilities Service Company. J. D. Power Smart Grid Advisory Council; Chairman- Housing Authority Baltimore City; Next Generation Utilities Advisory Board; Utility Knowledge Customer Service Council; CS Advisory Council; Magistrate Judge Seletion Committee. Marketing Executive Council; Mechanical Engineer - The Johns Hopkins University; MBA - Loyola University of Maryland; DBA - University of Phoenix; Doctoral dissertation; Mergers and Acquisition: The Role of Corporate Executives' Relationships with Stakeholders


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