solvatio® BLOG
A Blog about solutions for customer service and support, artificial intelligence and automation in service.

A brief look back at Unleashing Omnichannel & Digital Customer Experience Summit 2019

Veröffentlicht von Fabian Metz auf Apr 16, 2019 9:12:03 AM
Fabian Metz
Find me on:


Omnichannel and Digital Customer Experience Summit_1 (1)

The customer and their experiences with companies was the focus of attention on this sunny but cold Thursday. Cross-industry leaders from different countries gathered in the Rode Hoed in central Amsterdam for the Unleash Omnichannel & Digital Customer Experience Summit on April 11th & 12th 2019. Photo by Marit de la Vera.

I was eager to get to the location wanting to prepare for the day as the chairman of the event and to meet the team. Having just been in Amsterdam the week before I enjoyed discovering yet another side of the city: Amsterdam is even more charming at 07:00 am in the morning when the streets are empty and only lone riders cross paths on their bicycles.

I was welcomed by the Global Executive Events Team around Emilia Coverdale at the nicely prepared Rode Hoed, an old church on Keizersgracht which had been the scene for a famous Dutch talk show in the 90s. A massive organ still sits at the center of the room just behind the stage making it even more of a majestic place to hold a conference.

Omnichannel and Digital Customer Experience Summit_1 (3)

Panel discussion with Le Quan Truong, Ioana Iordache, Linda Nieuwenhuis and Fabian Metz (left to right). Photo by Marit de la Vera.

Panel Session: Insights and Experiences 

The day started with a lovely introduction and after my opening remarks, the packed room embarked on an exciting and informative day with the first panel session. Linda Nieuwenhuis (Wolters Kluwer), Ioana Iordache (Mont Blanc) and Le Quan Truong (Staples Solutions) shared their insights on why the customer is at the center of their attention and why it is so important to get the whole organization in the right mindset to make a CX initiative successful.

Besides helpful insights on why "starting small and showing results early before allocating massive budgets" will help to get c-suite support, the tone was clear: even when CX initiatives are successfully launched and show measurable positive results, the operational change and the handling of data that comes with an omnichannel approach, remains a challenge even for experienced leaders. 

CX innovation: how to make it sustainable

What followed throughout the day were great sessions and case studies on an outstanding level from different industries. No shortage of references to Uber, Amazon or Apple and everybody agreeing that we need more "hell yeahs" in the room. There was literally more experience and valuable insights in all the sessions than I would ever try to fit in a quick read article. But I want to point out one that kept me thinking all weekend: 

Helen Page, Product Experience Lead & Glen Broomfield, Head of User Research & Product Experience from Stepstone UK spoke about sustainable innovation and how they transformed their innovation process around CX. What struck me was that they used a better experience for their team and their developers to create better customer experiences through Design Thinking. The concept is simple: gather a reasonable amount of people (2 pizza rule) for X amount of time in a room and make them come up with solutions to problems that are based on direct customer feedback.

Essentially it comes down to "the experience becoming the product" - inside and out. By following such a "hands-on" battleplan they were able to not only create better DCX but also involve and excite the developers in finding the best solutions for the customers instead of just having to execute what the CX people came up with. That’s organizational change fueling better CX.

Interactive workshop: the challenges around CX & Omnichannel

The day reached its pinnacle in a workshop that divided the room in two. One side was tackling challenges in e-commerce and the other side tackled their top 5 challenges with an Omni/CX approach.

The results were interestingly alike: the biggest challenges are architecture and data. Going omnichannel is one thing but generating value from that approach by leveraging data is something else. The solutions on the market don't go with an agile approach, they are too heavy, too expensive, too disruptive for the organization and when starting a CX initiative it's hard to sell large investments or three-year contracts with platform providers with no data to prove the ROI to the c-suite.

A small, more POC based solution - to create measurable results from leveraging data to showcase how companies can profit from an omnichannel approach - that's what I felt was needed.

Omnichannel and Digital Customer Experience Summit_1 (2)

Photo by Marit de la Vera

Omnichannel: Why we need the dots connected? 

I had the honor to give some closing remarks to a fantastic day and tried to sum it up something like this: there's no blueprint for CX because people, meaning the customer, don't fit in boxes or can easily be divided into generations mute or CX. We all like different things, have different values and different expectations (fast, cheap, good quality, great service, convenient, luxurious). In the end, no matter how much of the new oil (data) we try to refine or how much context we try to add by connecting the dots through an omnichannel approach: the experience the customer has is highly individual and dependent on so many variables. People can choose who they buy from, work with or talk about and the core of that choice is based on the values they cherish. Companies, therefore, have no choice but to take a holistic approach towards CX and omnichannel and most importantly to stay true to their core values along the way.

Great day, great event, great discussions

The day concluded with the sponsored drink reception and lots of chats about the day, the insights and the presentations. Personally, I loved the vibe in the room, the vast amount of expertise between the delegates and the great presentations by everybody who spoke in front of the massive organ. A big “thank you” to the Global Executive Events Team for inviting us and kudos to the whole operation. See you next time. “Hell yeah”.

Topics: Customer Experience, congress, Summit, customer service

solvatio - smart troubleshooting solutions

solvatio provides leading solutions for automated troubleshooting and malfunction resolutions in technical systems & devices. Originally founded as spin-off of the Department for Artificial Intelligence and Applied Computer Science of Würzburg University more than 20 years ago, solvatio continues to push the boundaries of AI for automated data-driven knowledge generation and AI orchestrated troubleshooting.

It is our mission to minimize service efforts, reduce support costs and achieve superior operator and customer experience across all interaction channels while ensuring the provision of excellent technical support and flawless operation.

Current Posts