Driving CX Leadership at Atlantic Union Bank
For the second year in a row Verint pulled off another amazing virtual conference. Engage21 was held May 19-21 for thousands of participants representing over 80 countries. The theme of Boundless Possibilities was addressed in over 60 keynote, breakout, and educational sessions.
As a longtime industry analyst that has followed the contact center industry from the 10,000-foot level, I really enjoy the case studies. Let me share some highlights from the “CX Leadership: A Conversation” session. This was a Q&A between Verint’s Eric Head, Vice President for Experience Management Solutions, and Jason Huffman, Senior Vice President and Director of Customer Experience for Richmond, Virginia-based Atlantic Union Bank.
Establishing a formal CX program
With 21 years of experience at Atlantic Union Bank, a $19 billion institution serving the mid-Atlantic region, Jason thought he had seen it all. However, he confided that nothing prepared him for the challenging task of driving a customer engagement culture and formal initiative. Fortunately, an important reason for the company’s continued success for over ten decades was its foundational belief in superior customer care.
Jason explained how the Atlantic Union Bank team created metrics for evaluating the success of different customer touch points and strongly stressed the importance of gathering and relying on customer feedback. He was emphatic about the importance of voice of the customer data and particularly the actual verbatims.
These verbatims drove an innovative “customer insights” program. This replaced the legacy “customer complaint” function with a formalized customer data collection and process aimed to resolve customer disputes fairly and amicably. Recognizing that customer satisfaction and employee satisfaction were tightly intertwined, the Atlantic Union Bank team is evolving, and currently transitioning from “customer experience” to “enterprise experience.”
Looking to the future
As the bank begins the process to grow from customer experience to full enterprise experience, several teammate and responsibility additions are in the works:
- CX Governance: Similar to traditional project management, CX governance will manage administration, including influencing and providing CX “green lights” for new initiatives. It will also help departments with experience mapping and collecting and analyzing voice of the customer and related data.
- Insights and Actions: CX business line directors will work with departments to provide data-based recommendations and foster implementation. They can help run interference to clear logjams that may occur between departments.
- Office of the President: This elite group will manage the enterprise complaint platform and program, including any and all expressions of dissatisfaction that can lead to improvements for the customer and teammate experience. They will also be on point for complex situations, social media servicing, and executive escalations to ensure that all customers who wish to reach the President and CEO receive that attention.
- A focus on the customer must be embedded in the corporate culture. Senior management commitment is essential.
- All consumer information is important. Listening to verbatims is essential.
- Collect metrics from every touch point and for each channel. Traditional CX metrics are valuable but do not shy away from developing custom metrics.
- Work closely with a trusted vendor. Jason credits Verint’s support as a strong element of the team’s program success.
Early indications are this program is working out just fine. As evidence, Atlantic Union Bank achieved the number one ranking in the Mid-Atlantic region in the J.D. Power 2021 Retail Banking Satisfaction Study.SM
Founder and Chief Analyst
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