Nearly 80% of CEOs Globally Expect To Increase Hiring Over Next 3 Years
In a major new study released by KPMG International, which tracks insights on the coming three years, chief executives of global businesses said they are confident about the ability of their companies to grow over the next three years and are expressing confidence about the prospects for the global economy.
According to the 2015 KPMG CEO Outlook Study of CEOs, 69% of CEOs in Europe, 66% in Asia Pacific and 52% in the US are more confident than they were last year about growth and the global economy in the next three years. In assessing their own company’s growth prospects, 70% of European CEOs and 68% of Asia Pacific CEOs indicated they are more confident than a year ago. In the US, where the recovery is well underway, 19% are more confident than a year ago with another 46% expressing the same level of confidence about their prospects for growth. Most importantly, CEOs globally are set to hire, with 78% of respondents indicating they are expecting to be in hiring mode through mid-2018.
CEOs are also grappling with escalating competitive pressures. In order of importance: 86 percent are concerned about the loyalty of their customers; 74 percent are worried about new market entrants; 72 percent are worried about keeping pace with new technologies; 68 percent are concerned about their competitors’ ability to take business away from them; and 66 percent are concerned about the relevance of their product or service in the next three years.
Status Quo: Perhaps the Riskiest Position for any Organization
Importantly, 44 percent of the CEOs indicated that they are only ‘somewhat comfortable’ with their current business model, with five percent expressing that they are ‘uncomfortable.’ In the study, 29 percent of leaders said their organizations are likely to be transformed into significantly different entities in the next three years.
While the results indicate that CEOs are acutely aware of the need to transform their businesses in order to survive and prosper, almost one-third of CEOs say their business is not taking enough risk with their global growth strategy and more than half (56 percent) said they have not fully implemented a company-wide process for innovation.
Half of respondents noted additional challenges with how their business needs to improve the way it manages data and analytics and how they need to do more to prepare for a cyber-security event.
Strategic Priorities over the Next Three Years
Globally, executives have their sights set on the following, in order of importance: developing new growth strategies, having a stronger client focus, expanding geographically, reducing their cost structures, enhancing speed to market, and fostering innovation. When asked whether their primary focus would be on growth or operational efficiency over the next three years, 94 percent of US CEOs cited growth, while their Asian and European counterparts said they were focused on operational efficiency.
In terms of issues having the greatest impact on their company’s prospects and performance, the top three issues identified by CEOs were ‘global economic growth,’ followed closely by the ‘regulatory environment,’ and ‘disruptive technology.’
Central Europe, US Top Expansion Targets
When asked which areas they expected to devote significant capital to over the next three years, CEOs identified expansion outside their home countries as the number one area. US CEOs are focused on Europe, especially Central Europe, followed by South America and China. For CEOs in China, Japan, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain and France, the US is the region offering the greatest potential for new growth.
Today, 52 percent of the CEOs say their current growth strategies are built primarily around organic growth, with 42 percent saying it is a combination of organic and inorganic growth through acquisitions and six percent saying it’s primarily inorganic.
When asked to consider their anticipated growth strategies over the next three years, 59 percent of CEOs expect their priority will be organic growth, 22 percent indicated an even split between organic and inorganic growth through acquisitions, and 19 percent say it will be through inorganic growth. Twenty-nine percent of US CEOs demonstrated a more acquisitive strategy, identifying inorganic growth as a main growth driver.
Uncovering The Hidden Profits In Your Contact Center
A new report from ICMI—sponsored by Zendesk—uncovered several opportunities for contact centers to provide more value to their organizations and even to generate revenue. That’s good news for the more than 62% of contact centers that are currently perceived as cost centers by their organizations (as revealed in the spring 2015 global survey that informed the report).
In the new report, “Collapse of the Cost Center: Driving Contact Center Profitability,” ICMI recommends that contact centers focus on missed opportunities in several areas, including:
Service level: Only 27% of contact centers are effectively measuring and reporting service level. The report explains how measuring service level on half-hour intervals provides the typical contact center with the most actionable data.
Agent schedule adherence: 62% of the contact centers surveyed measure their agents to ensure 90% of their time is fully utilized. While 90% adherence sounds good, the report cautions against issues such as agent burnout.
Forecast accuracy: Half of contact centers don’t measure how well their forecasts matched up with reality, perpetuating inaccurate forecasts and masking opportunities for improvement.
Revenue-generation: Only 25% of contact centers have ever considered cross-sell or up-sell programs, despite evidence that well-executed programs both increase revenue and improve the customer experience.
Janco has found that the top 10 concerns have been the same for several years. The only difference is the ranking in importance has varied. The top 10 concerns include:
1. Security - as more instances of cyber-attacks are identified CIOs are well aware that their jobs are at risk if this occurs under their watch.
2. Cloud Computing - This is the new hidden IT that is driving many new applications and is not under the complete control of the CIO and IT organization.
3. Infrastructure - No longer are those interacting with the data and systems in a single location utilizing standard hardware and software. Records management, retention and destruction as well as version control are just a few of the areas that CIOs need to manage and control.
4. Consolidation - Islands of data and computing continue to exist as new technologies are implemented. Redundancy leads to disparate information and needs to be resolved.
5. Big Data - As data is consolidated it needs to be analyzed more quickly so that decision making within the enterprise is improved.
6. Automation - Traditional functions are now being eliminated and automation needs to take placed which will meet the strategic objectives of the enterprise.
7. Mobile Computing - BYOD and mobile applications are where users are looking for support in order to improve their bottom line results.
8. Staff Retention - During the past few years that has not been an issue but now with an improved IT job market staff will leave.
9. Social Networks - This is the wave of the future and needs to be managed more effectively.
10. Succession Planning - Not only for the CIO role but for all of the other key roles within the IT functions. Job family definition is now a priority.
Klever, a next generation software and services company, released the first industry benchmark report on the perceptions and realities of knowledge management programs. Klever Knowledge Benchmark Report 2015: The State of Knowledge Sharing focuses on the processes, tools, and behaviors necessary to succeed in a knowledge-sharing program. This report provides a benchmark to guide organizations in deploying, sustaining, or rebuilding their respective programs.
The report presents benchmark data in four critical areas: people and leadership, processes, technology, and culture. The analysis revealed three critical findings:
--A wide gap exists between executive perceptions of knowledge sharing execution and on-the ground practices.
--Technology is not enabling best practices yet. Knowledge-sharing processes were rated the highest benchmark by organizations overall (3.13 out of 5) while the technologies area was rated lowest (2.87 out of 5).
--While organizations have adopted best practice processes and tools, the motivation to share knowledge as part of team behaviors every day lags behind. Nearly 70% of organizations report that they tend to go back to pre-knowledge program behaviors in times of rapid change or stress. Only 31% of organizations said they always or often invest in long-term solutions like knowledge-sharing practices even when fighting fires.
Contact Center Agents are Critical Lynchpin in the Customer Journey
inContact, a provider of cloud contact center software, announced the findings of their January 2015 customer experience survey that examined consumer perceptions of service while making online or phone purchases over $25 in the previous 6 months. When feeling dissatisfied with an order, the majority (81% of U.S. adults) prefer assistance from a live representative via phone or online chat rather than using email or online self-service.
The study, conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of inContact, from January 29-February 2, 2015 among 2,028 U.S. adults ages 18 and older, reveals that 86% would be very likely to switch to another company in the future after a bad customer service experience.
Contact Center Agents are Alive and Well
The new research, asking about online or phone purchases over $25 in the last six months, shows that consumers are still frequently interacting with company service reps. According to the findings, 43% of U.S. adults who made at least one purchase online of over$25 during the last six months had interacted directly with a company representative at least once, with an average of two interactions. When purchasing via phone, 84% of buyers were in touch with a company representative an average of five times during that time.
Majority of Buyers Expect at Least Six Channels of Communication to be Available
The majority of U.S. adults expect companies and ecommerce sites to have available at least six of the tested methods of communication during the online purchasing or ordering stage of the customer service journey, including both agent-supported channels and self-service options.
In order of importance to consumers, the agent-supported channels include:
--1-800 to live reps (81%)
--Online chat (67%)
--Apps for mobile devices (50%)
--SMS/Text message (46%)
--Social networking sites (39%)
--Online video chat (32%)
Self-service channels are also important to consumers, including online self-service for order tracking (87%) and 1-800 to self-service (53%).
Consumers expect a personalized, omnichannel customer journey that includes agent service continuity and choice of channels for follow-up communications.
A major goal of the study was to gauge consumer desire for personalized and omnichannel experiences when interacting with service representatives. The following findings indicate ways in which companies need to design the customer journey for personalization and consistency across various channels.
--65% of U.S. adults expect companies to know their purchase history regardless of method of communication (e.g., phone, chat, email).
--Two-thirds (67%) expect to be able to call the same company representative they worked with previously if they had an order or service issue.
--64% would expect to be able to continue talking with the same company representative on the phone as they were talking with via online chat.