59% of IT managers surveyed said delivering first-class customer service was one of the Top 2 priorities for their senior leadership teams.

It's no secret that any business that needs to sell a product or service is investing in digital transformation to get closer to their customers.

With Amazon’s arrival in Australia, retailers have taken a defensive position to prepare their businesses to be more customer-centric by improving their supply chain, customer service to overhauling their IT systems to deliver a better customer experience. 

Even long established retailers such as Woolworths have taken digital transformation a step further by creating a separate business entity, WooliesX, which will focus on using data and technology to serve its customers better.

When it comes to delivering the right customer experience, Australian businesses are already thinking ahead. In research we conducted amongst Australian IT managers earlier this year, more than half (59%) of IT managers surveyed said delivering first-class customer service was one of the Top 2 priorities for their senior leadership teams. 62 percent of IT managers believe a high-speed network will improve their customer service and offer a better customer experience.

All Show but No Go

Without having the right infrastructure in place from a high-speed network or cloud infrastructure in place to transmit, store and analyse the significant volume of customer data generated by Customer Relationship Management (CRM) applications, executives will not be able to utilise big data analytics to gain deeper insights about their customers, but more importantly, their purchasing behaviours.

Only a quarter of mid-sized enterprises surveyed have data integration capabilities needed to perform customer analytics. Mid-sized businesses are expected to be further disadvantaged as less than a quarter (17 percent) of IT managers intending to invest in big data analytics over the next two years.

In order to deliver innovation, but efficiently, businesses are starting to embrace artificial intelligence for its customer service channels with technologies such as chatbots. Chatbots now complement customer service agents to manage customer interactions at the first level using data accumulated from previous interactions and predictive analytics to swiftly and accurately answer queries. 

Not only does this offer a better customer experience with speed and efficiency, customer enquiries can be managed around the clock with chatbots. The potential to use artificial intelligence to improve customer experiences is immense, but only 13 percent of IT managers see the potential for supporting the growth of their business. 

Are IT managers failing to recognise how artificial intelligence can improve customer experiences? What technologies are businesses planning to invest in over the next 12-24 months to get closer to their customers? Learn what these priorities are by downloading the our research findings.

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