Why this B2B company invested in a customer experience platform

At arm’s length from customers, energy giant Jemena wanted better insights and a long-term partner to drive its CX program

As an energy wholesaler, Jemena is one step removed from electricity and gas users. But wanting better visibility of customers, the B2B company decided to adopt an entirely new customer experience (CX) platform.

Backed by State Grid Corporation of China and Singapore Power, Jemena owns and operates an $11 billion energy network across Australia with a large, diverse customer base. And it's tapped InMoment to overhaul its CX system.

Jemena manager, media and external affairs, Michael Pintabona told CMO it was looking for someone to partner with and take what it was already doing and automate it.

“It’s a longer-term partnership that's going to enable us to grow our customer insights and our experience in the business,” Pintabona said.

The CX project will focus on understanding customer satisfaction across new connections, faults, outages and disconnections for its millions of household and business customers. The vendor is tasked with identifying areas of improvement and turning customer feedback into real-time actions, and the technology will be deployed across digital, face-to-face and contact centre touchpoints across all channels.

Starting with the quick wins

To begin with, the technology rollout is about creating the big picture on CX and having a mechanism to deal with spot fires as they break out.

One of the first goals is to develop a comprehensive understanding of customer experience from start to finish. Currently, the way Jemena gets insights into customers’ experiences is very “episodic”.

“You may make a phone call to Jemena and then we get feedback on that phone call,” Pintabona said. “But that doesn't actually give us insight into your experience overall. We want the totality of the experience from the moment you submit an application through to the guys in the field and then actually having the service connect to you."

The other ambition is to build on some of the things Jemena is already doing with real-time customer feedback, Pintabona continued.

"If we have a phone call with our call centre, afterwards you get a survey and it comes through as feedback, but we're actually to expedite that and start getting feedback in real-time. What that means is if something's gone wrong, we can actually escalate that internally and then start to address the customer experiences, both good and bad, in real-time,” he explained.

As a B2B2C outfit, Jemena has been at arm’s length from customers. But in recent years, it’s been working towards better understanding its customer segments. The aim is to go deeper than just knowing people want the lights on and to keep power bills lower. 

Pintabona said it’s about having better insight “into when people are using their energy, or customers wanting to have greater insight into how much energy they’re using.” It’s also about the shift to customer centrism and which bakes in the customer as a part of everything it’s doing.

“How do we actually come to them? And bring them the services that they're after, rather than expecting them to fit the model that we've created?” he asked.

Post-Covid effect on CX and EX

As InMoment MD, David Blakers, put it, you can’t manage what you’re not measuring and customer experience management is no different. He predicted brands, including essential service providers, will continue to differentiate around customer service as consumers demand more and more from brands.

“When designing customer experiences, an organisation needs to consider how they're defining the customer value proposition and the promise to the end consumers. And they need to have visibility of how consistently the organisation is delivering against that customer value proposition,” Blakers said. “When you have that information, you can start to analyse it and act upon it.”

Blakers identified three stages of CX maturity for organisations. The first is getting started but lacking a voice of customer, while the second is getting down the path with a few quick wins but lacking a CX platform fully embedded into the organisation. Then there are the organisations with a comprehensive program that democratises the insights and pushes them out into the hands of all stakeholders.

And now as the COVID-19 situation accelerates the digital transformation plans of many organisations, Blakers saw it heightening the demands of both employee experience and customer experience. 

On the employee experience front, it’s managing distributed workforces and quickly adopting collaboration software. Equally, it’s responding to demand for real-time customer insights and using those insights to adjust quickly and to pivot in the fast-moving pandemic landscape.

“For CX, it's about meeting customers where they are, giving them more choice and more flexibility - knowing they're having to interact with your organisation in this new environment,” Blakers added.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.  

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