In Business, Data Analytics Will Always Be Critical to Gain the Competitive Advantage

It’s an adage as old as capitalism: to know the customer, one must become the customer. It’s imperative that companies keep up with customer sentiment in order to remain one step ahead of any complaints or concerns that might arise. Business analytics, however, enable organizations to collect customer feedback in an effort to provide structure amongst the unstructured data that pours in continuously. But when there’s so much chatter to weed through and decipher, it’s not always easy to decide what your brand’s next steps should be.

That’s why customer data plays an important role.

Business Analytics (BA), of course, refers to the data-driven practices, skills, tools, and techniques for continually analyzing business performance and exploring new ways of gaining a competitive advantage. BA provides actionable insight relative to decision makers, recommenders, and influencers according to loyalty and satisfaction scores. BA also makes it possible to combine satisfaction and operational data to gain further insight into purchase behavior by nature of the job or role within a customer organization.

Yet, despite countless years of data talk, many organizations have yet to master the analytics walk.

In an article that preceded his groundbreaking 2007 book, “Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning,” Tom Davenport explored the importance of analytics when describing the future of business. More than a decade has passed since its publication, but Davenport’s wise words still ring true.

“Organizations are competing on analytics not just because they can—business today is awash in data and data crunchers—but also because they should,” the Babson College professor of Information Technology and Management, and independent senior advisor for Deloitte Analytics, wrote for Harvard Business Review. “At a time when firms in many industries offer similar products and use comparable technologies, business processes are among the last remaining points of differentiation. Aand analytics competitors wring every last drop of value from those processes. So, like other companies, they know what products their customers want, but they also know what prices those customers will pay, how many items each will buy in a lifetime, and what triggers will make people buy more.”

Modern companies now recognize, without a doubt, that business analytics can differentiate them from the competition, but many are still behind when it comes to bringing the data to action. They’ve instituted the technology necessary to collect customer information, but they have yet to establish processes for parsing the data and using it to fine-tune operations. Instead of sitting on this data and allowing it to go to waste, they must develop a team that can transform said information into actionable insight.

Davenport also noted that the companywide embrace of analytics requires changes in culture, processes, behaviors, and skills for many employees. Thus, as with any major transition, this requires leadership from executives at the top who “have a passion for the quantitative approach.” Ideally, this advocate will be the CEO, as top-down buy-in provides the entire organization with a solid foundation on which to build its evolving analytics initiatives.

“Culture is a soft concept; analytics is a hard discipline,” Davenport explained, noting how the two aspects might clash upon introduction. “Nonetheless, analytics competitors must instill a companywide respect for measuring, testing, and evaluating quantitative evidence. Employees are urged to base decisions on hard facts. And they know that their performance is gauged the same way. Human resource organizations within analytics competitors are rigorous about applying metrics to compensation and rewards.”

Teams that effectively learn how to bring the mounting data to action will ultimately be able to predict how customers might react to impending updates or upcoming campaigns. Such insight will allow these employees to curb any issues before they arise, resulting in peak performance and peak results. Predictive analytics also serves as an important differentiator in today’s competitive landscape, as employees can detect what consumers want from their customer experience and make these dreams into reality before other companies can target weaknesses within the industry and lure the consumer to their rival brand.

However, as Davenport emphasized, not all decisions should be grounded in analytics. When it comes to building an effective team, it’s often best to let your conscience be your guide.

“Personnel matters, in particular, are often well and appropriately informed by instinct and anecdote,” he added. “More organizations are subjecting recruiting and hiring decisions to statistical analysis. But research shows that human beings can make quick, surprisingly accurate assessments of personality and character based on simple observations. For analytics-minded leaders, then, the challenge boils down to knowing when to run with the numbers and when to run with their guts.”

Successful leaders understand that success requires both instinct and intuition. While it’s essential for all employees to have the technical skills necessary to execute the company’s mission, it’s also important to create a team of people who can make the connection between facts and feelings. Customer relationship soft skills training for your frontline is a key ingredient to enable this balance. These are the people who will advance your business analytics strategy to the next level and develop an indomitable customer experience that excels far beyond anything the competition has to offer.

CRMI Honors 35 Companies for Delivering ‘World-Class’ Customer Service; 3 Cited for Certification in Employee Customer Relationship Training

CRMI Honors 35 Companies for Delivering ‘World-Class’ Customer Service; 3 Cited for Certification in Employee Customer Relationship Training

-Recipients of CRMI’s 2018 NorthFace ScoreBoard Award? and CEMPRO Award? have consistently exceeded customers’ expectations with highly engaged employees-

Chelmsford, MA: April 30, 2019, – Customer Relationship Management Institute LLC (CRMI), specialists in driving companies’ revenues and profits by implementing Customer Experience (CX) strategies that increase customer satisfaction and employee engagement, announced today that 35 companies have qualified to receive its NorthFace ScoreBoard Award 2018 for superior customer service.

Also, CRMI recognized 3 companies for meeting the rigorous employee customer relationship training requirements needed for CEMPRO Award certification. The Certified CEM Professional (CEMPRO) program was established in 2010 to provide best-in-class training curricula for organizations who want to ensure that their customer-facing groups (CFG) have mastered the skills needed to deliver consistently exceptional customer service. The award criteria requires the entire applicable CFG to receive the training and 90% must achieve a minimum test score of 80% within a calendar year.

Now in its 19th year, the NorthFace ScoreBoard (NFSB) award is presented annually to companies who, as rated solely by their own customers, achieved excellence in customer service during the calendar year.

“The NorthFace ScoreBoard Award is widely recognized as the most prestigious award for customer service excellence due to its unique customer only vote criteria. The award recognizes organizations that not only offer exemplary customer service but those who have chosen to make their CX Strategy a key component of their company’s DNA”, said John Alexander Maraganis, President & CEO of CRMI. Each year thousands of companies, both domestic and international, are invited to apply for the NFSB Award. In 2018, more than 1000 companies were invited to participate in NFSB Audit Program – over 300 projects, many international in scope, were audited. CRMI conducts a review/confirmation of CSAT survey results and requires written verification of CSAT survey results by the company’s CX executive management. The majority of NFSB award and CEMPRO award companies are repeat recipients, which confirms that investing in a CX strategy is a reliable, proven way to achieve business success.

CRMI methodology measures customer satisfaction with services on a 5-point scale (or an equivalent rating system) in such categories as technical support, field service, customer service, account management and professional services. The 35 companies achieved a 4.0 or above out of a possible 5.0 or an equivalent rating system.

Due to its unique ‘customer-only vote’ criteria, the NorthFace ScoreBoard Award has been viewed from its inception in 2000 as the only objective benchmark for excellence in customer service,” Maraganis said. “CRMI defines ultra-customer loyalty as customers who continuously purchase from the same vendor – even though other choices may offer significantly better pricing – because the vendor consistently exceeds its customers’ expectations via team of engaged employees.”

CRMI will formally present the NFSB and CEMPRO awards to recipients during ceremonies at its SCORE Conference 2019, scheduled to be held at the Seaport Boston Hotel & World Trade Center during Q4. Now in its 19th year, SCORE remains the only event in the customer service industry focused on CX best practices to acquire, retain, grow and win-back customers. SCORE speakers also explain how CX principles can be applied to customer-facing operations such as contact centers, field service, professional services, help desks and technical support. Thousands of service, support, sales, marketing and human resources executives from the country’s leading firms have attended the past conferences.


NFSB Award 2018 Recipients:

Nineteen-time recipients:
Haemonetics Corporation: Braintree, MA
Kronos Incorporated: Lowell, MA

Eighteen-time recipients:
ZOLL Medical Technical Service: Chelmsford, MA

Seventeen-time recipients:
Alfa Wassermann LLC: West Caldwell, NJ

Sixteen-time recipients:
Boston Scientific Corporation: Natick, MA

Fifteen-time recipients:

Fourteen-time recipients:
KVH Industries Inc: Middletown, RI

Thirteen-time recipients:

Twelve-time recipients:

Eleven-time recipients:

Ten-time recipients:
ACIST Medical Systems Inc: Eden Prairie, MN

Nine-time recipients:
NETSCOUT: Westford, MA

Eight-time recipients:
Diagnostica Stago Inc: Parsippany, NJ
Pitney Bowes Software, Worldwide Software Support: Troy, NY
Wolters Kluwer Health, Learning, Research & Practice: Norwood, MA
Wolters Kluwer – UpToDate: Waltham, MA
ZOLL Medical Customer Support: Chelmsford, MA

Seven-time recipients:
Broadcom Inc: Washington DC
ERT: Philadelphia, PA
Yaskawa America Inc: Waukegan, IL

Six-time recipients:
Avaya Inc: Coppell, TX
Illumina Service: San Diego, CA
Nutanix Inc Support Services: San Jose, CA

Five-time recipients:
Alfresco Software Inc: San Mateo, CA

Four-time recipients:
Bruker BioSpin Group: Billerica, MA
Citrix Systems Inc: Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Deltek Inc: Herndon, VA
Fresenius Kabi USA LLC: Lake Zurich, IL
Wolters Kluwer Health Individual Member: Hagerstown, MD

Three-time recipients:
Rubrik Inc: Palo Alto, CA
Kongsberg Digital Inc: Asker, Norway
Cohesity Inc: Santa Clara, CA

Two-time recipients:
Cengage Learning Inc: Independence, KY
Corning Optical Communications LLC: Hickory, NC
Hologic Domestic Customer Support: Marlborough, MA
Hologic Domestic Service: Marlborough, MA
Hologic Technical Service EMEA: Manchester, UK
InterVision Systems LLC: Chesterfield, MO
Nutanix Inc Consulting Services: San Jose, CA
Veritas Technologies LLC: Santa Clara, CA
Zeus Industrial Products Inc: Orangeburg, NC

First-time recipients:
Braze Inc: New York, NY
Druva Inc: Sunnyvale, CA
Hologic Customer Support EMEA: Manchester, UK
Illumina Technical Support: San Diego, CA
REPLIGEN Corporation: Waltham, MA
Thycotic Software Inc: Washington DC

CEMPRO Award 2018 Recipients:

First-time recipients:
Rapiscan Systems: Torrance, CA

Second- time recipients:
Rubrik Inc: Palo Alto, CA

Third- time recipients:
Fresenisus Kabi USA LLC: Lake Zurich, IL

Note to Editors: City and state denotes either company headquarters or principal location where CX strategy work was conducted.

About CRMI

Since 1999, the Customer Relationship Management Institute LLC (CRMI) has promoted that CX is the most critical component of company’s’ DNA. Further, that consistently exceeding customers’ expectations builds customer loyalty and requires competent-engaged employees. As a membership-based resource, we provide “One-Stop Shop” for “everything CX”. Whether you are new to CX strategies or a veteran practitioner, you will join thousands of like-minded professionals eager to share their CX experiences.

For more information on how to qualify for the NorthFace ScoreBoard AwardCEMPRO Award or to attend SCORE Conference 2019, visit or call (978) 710-3269 and ask for Diane Rivera,