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DHL Global Forwarding

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2012, Click to Enter The 2014 American Business Awards

Company: DHL Global Forwarding
Company Description: DHL is the global market leader in the logistics industry and “The Logistics company for the world”. DHL commits its expertise in international express, air and ocean freight, road and rail transportation, contract logistics and international mail services to its customers.
Nomination Category: Customer Service & Call Center Awards Team Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Customer Service Complaints Team of the Year

Nomination Title: DHL Global Forwarding, U.S. Customer Service Complaint Team

Tell the story about what this nominated team achieved since the beginning of July 2013 (up to 650 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes:

Customer service is at the heart of DHL Global Forwarding. Anticipating disruptions due to a planned internal transformation in March 2014, a group of nine U.S. customer service and sales team members created a new internal process- the Customer in Jeopardy (CIJ) Dashboard.

While DHL Global Forwarding has an established complaint handling process, we realized customers frustrated to the point of leaving were being managed the same way as those with individual, one-off complaints. Developed to take our Complaint Handling process to the next level, the CIJ Dashboard was created using an existing internal site designed to increase visibility, combined with the ability to react quickly to customers expressing intentions to discontinue doing business with the company – thus in “jeopardy.”

Headed by Lisa Conners, Quality and Training Manager, the CIJ team implemented a simple, sustainable process, providing previously unavailable visibility and insight into common themes and structure. Breaking down barriers allows for the swift action required to turn a potentially lost customer into a saved one.

Beginning with the sales, operations or customer service agent receiving the “jeopardy” signal from the customer, the CIJ is promptly entered into the Dashboard. The CIJ is then assigned to a Senior Management Member (SMT) for high-level support and a Hub Project Manager (PMO) in the responsible station. Together, this unique team identifies the cause of concerns and establishes and implements a corrective action plan, keeping the commercial owner and customer informed along the way.

The CIJ Dashboard stores the customer’s complaint details, such as emails, stakeholders, dates, customer value, status, actions taken, continued customer feedback and stations involved. To best manage, a traffic light methodology was established to display customer status and organize the various process stages: new; in-progress; stalled; confirmed for closure; and saved or lost.

Using the Dashboard, calls are held twice weekly between SMT, PMOs, other business units and global stakeholders, providing a platform for quick information exchange and collaboration across countries, eliminating disconnected efforts and providing a unified approach. With high levels of SMT commitment from all team members, some of who are not typically customer facing, support and solutions are provided and bottlenecks and barriers quickly overcome. The Hub PMO role is also critical to the success of the process. The PMOs monitor their CIJ’s driving station activities, documenting process improvements, updating the Dashboard with statuses, customer retention activities, customer feedback and final resolutions (saved or lost).

A key element to this success is continuous interaction with the customer up to closure, verifying the problem’s resolution. If the customer disagrees, CIJ is updated and stakeholders revisit their action plan to address the customer’s concerns with the goal of doing everything possible to meet their expectations and retain their business. Only if the customer confirms they will discontinue use of DHL’s services is the CIJ closed as lost.

Prior to the CIJ Dashboard, the company did not have a proactive view to potential customer churn. The CIJ provides clear visibility and ownership, streamlined processes and coordination toward a common goal, unifying our efforts to save our customers. This unique platform also provides an opportunity for station employees to demonstrate their abilities to SMT members they normally have limited interaction with. SMT members utilize CIJ reporting to set strategy and report activity as far up as the DHL Global Forwarding Global CEO.

With no capital investment, using existing resources, the CIJ Dashboard has been so successful that as of October 2014, 126 customers have been saved, 87 are currently in the system, and only 35 have been lost, representing $186 million in net sales saved. The CIJ has made the short list for the prestigious DPDHL Global CEO Award, and other countries are interested in adopting the process.

With just nine people seeing a need and understanding quick turnaround not only saves the customer but builds loyalty, DHL Global Forwarding has strengthened our customer relationships and changed our culture.

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