Show cover of CX Files

CX Files

CX Files features your hosts, CX industry analysts Mark Hillary and Peter Ryan, speaking each week to leading analysts, thinkers, and practitioners focused on managing the Customer Experience (CX). In each episode Mark and Peter talk to their guests about the future of CX, the important trends, and what customers really expect from brands today.


Aymen Ismail - smart - Creating Smart Cars And Building Great Customer Relationships
Aymen Ismail is the Head of Customer Engagement Solutions at smart Europe GmbH. He is based in Stuttgart, Germany.   The smart auto company was founded in Germany in 1994. The brand was originally famous for quirky small cars, such as the ForTwo. Now, the company is focused on EV production and battery technology.   The auto industry is surfing an extreme wave of change at present. Electric vehicles, autnomous vehicles, retail purchasing, leasing... change in the traditional dealer-focused business model is all around.   This also changes how customers build a relationship with auto brands. In this conversation, Peter Ryan talks to Aymen about the modern auto business and how to serve the day-to-day needs of customers alongside building long-term relationships.    
30:40 5/22/24
Seandette Wiltshire - The Contact Hub - CX and BPO Is Taking Off In Barbados
Seandette Wiltshire is the founder and director of strategy and operations at The Contact Hub. She is based in Christ Church, Barbados. The Contact Hub offers contact center and marketing services to companies in Barbados - and beyond. In this conversation with Peter Ryan, Seandette talks about creating a new BPO in Barbados and how the region is developing a growing reputation for the quality of CX services.  
31:58 5/16/24
Steve Mosser - Sensée - Flexible WFM & Total Footprint Optimization
Steve Mosser is the Group CEO & Chief Innovations Officer at Sensée. He is based in London, UK.  Sensée is a work-from-home specialist, but has recently purhased The Contact Company, in Liverpool UK. This more or less doubled their size, but means they now offer both contact center and WFH options. In this conversation, Steve focuses on the evolution of workforce management and flexible working patterns, why this is good for the clients and the agents, and how to create flexibility while still investing in agents - rather than creating a casual workforce.    
29:54 5/9/24
Chris Gillen - A Closer Look - CX With AI And Humans Working Together
Chris Gillen is the CEO of A Closer Look. He is based very close to Atlanta, GA, so the CX Outsourcers conference is a local event for him. In this conversation he gave Mark Hillary a preview of his CXO keynote speech on CX and AI and keeping humans in the loop    
13:53 4/29/24
Alex Muñoz - Hispanic Media Center - The Complexity Of CX For The Hispanic Community In The USA
Alex Muñoz is CEO of the Hispanic Media Center in San Diego, CA. He is focused on advertising and marketing for the hispanic community in the USA. Alex talked to Mark Hillary from Mexico City about the importance of understanding the complex nature of the hispanic community in the US and not just assuming there is a broad need for an "English" customer experience and another in "Spanish"... Alex will be talking about this in more detail at the CX Outsourcers conference in Atlanta on May 1/2. This conversation is a short preview where Alex talks about his forthcoming talk with the CX Files...
20:07 4/25/24
Barry Winkless - Future of Work Institute - Creating Attractive Destinations For Talent
Barry Winkless is the Chief Strategy Officer at Cpl Group & Head of the Future of Work Institute. He is based in Dublin, Ireland. Barry is speaking at the CX Outsourcers conference in Atlanta on May 1/2. In this conversation with Mark Hillary he gives a preview of his keynote talk about making companies - and countries - more attractive locations for investment and improving the ability to attract talented people.  
19:09 4/22/24
Paula Kennedy Garcia - CX Digital Delivery
CX Outsourcers Special Edition: For the next two weeks CX Files will be published on both Monday and Thursday giving previews of the talks that will be taking place in Atlanta at the CX Outsourcers conference on May 1/2... --- Paula Kennedy Garcia is an old friend of the CX Files. She has senior experience in several leading BPOs and is know as a leader in CX innovation and new delivery models. Paula is based in Belfast. In this conversation with Mark Hillary she talks about her planned talk on digital CX to the CX Outsourcers conference in Atlanta on May 1/2. Unfortunately, Paula has had to cancel her visit to Atlanta just before the broadcast of this epsiode (Peter and Mark recorded this about a week before broadcast), but it would be a shame to not hear the conversation so we have still published it here.  
14:14 4/18/24
Alex Mead - Total CX - Bahrain For Nearshore And Offshore CX
Alex Mead is the CEO of Total CX. He is based in Bahrain. Alex is a long time friend of the CX Files and he has featured before talking about the need for better CX advice and expertise across the industry. In this discussion with Peter he is talking about Bahrain and the opportunity for this region to emerge as a nearshoring BPO destination... Bahrain may not have been on your radar before, but listen to Alex and it may well be!
27:15 4/11/24
Nirali Amin - LivePerson - The State Of Customer Conversations And The AI Gap
Nirali Amin is the SVP Global Solutions and Success at LivePerson. She is based in the US. LivePerson recently published a report focused on the state of customer conversations and the emerging "AI gap" between the willingness of customers to use and accept AI customer service solutions and the willingness of executives to roll out these solutions. This gap points to a bigger picture that is focused on the digital transformation of customer service processes. Mark Hillary called Nirali to talk about the research and the bigger picture for tech solutions in customer service today. State of Customer Conversations 2024: Digital Transformation:
31:49 4/4/24
Chris Hague - yoummday - CCW Berlin Feedback And The Future Of CX
Chris Hague is the head of marketing at yoummday. He is based in Prague, in the Czech Republic. Chris was at the recent CCW conference in Berlin and he posted some of his thoughts online about his views on the future of BPO - based on the conference trends. In this conversation with Mark Hillary, Chris explores some feedback from the CCW conference and also asks what the BPO or CX specialist of the future needs to look like? Chris talks about the discussion in Berlin affecting all professional jobs - how do we plan CX if employees want more control over where and when they work and which brands they are representing? Where is CX heading in future and how will companies in this industry eventually be serving others?
45:51 3/28/24
Rod Jones - "75 Not Out" And Looking Back At Half A Century Of CX
Rod Jones is a legend in the CX industry. Based in Johannesburg, South Africa, Rod is now a speaker, trainer, and coach - focusing his experience of contact centers and CX on the next generation of managers. Rod was 75 a few days back and he started his first business in 1972 - so he has experienced CX and customer service processes up close, or as an advisor, for over half a century. There are very few people in the industry with this level of experience so Mark Hillary and Peter Ryan called Rod to wish him a happy birthday and to ask for some background on how he started out and what has changed in CX in all that time... Rod also takes a look forward to the future, applying his experience to some ideas around what might be coming next. We hope you enjoy this 75th birthday conversation with Rod - do go to his LinkedIn to leave him a happy birthday message! Rod will also be at the CX Outsourcers conference in Atlanta on May 1/2 - all of us hope to see you there if you will be attending. Mark, Peter, and Rod all together:  
33:52 3/21/24
Matt Kendall - BPO Bullhorn - A New Newsletter For The BPO & CX Community
Matt Kendall founded Cognitive Copy, a B2B copywriting and ghost-writing specialist. He is based in Madrid, Spain. He recently launched a newsletter focused only on the BPO and CX community called BPO Bullhorn...  Mark Hillary called Matt to talk about BPO Bullhorn and why newsletters are still a useful way to build a community. Matt also reminded Mark that he has been on the podcast back in 2021 - Mark forgot this during the introduction! Here is that earlier show... Contact and Show Details: Sign up for the BPO Bullhorn newsletter here:  
40:23 3/14/24
Dr Lollie Mancey - UCD Innovation Academy - Resilience And Work/Life Balance In The CX Workplace
Dr Lollie Mancey is an anthropologist and AI ethicist based in Dublin, Ireland. She is the Programme Director for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (Digital tech and resilience) at the University College Dublin Innovation Academy. Lollie is focused on workplace performance and this includes how work/life balance should be managed and what causes anxiety and other issues that may damage work perforamnce, home life, or both. Lollie isn't focused specifically on CX, but her research covers workplaces that are similar to those we see in BPO and CX and her ideas in this conversation with Peter Ryan are valuable lessons on how to look after your people - if you don't then they will not be around for much longer.  
36:09 3/7/24
Bruce Winder - The Future Opportunities And Challenges For CX In Retail
Bruce Winder is the president at Bruce Winder Retail. He is a leading analyst focused on the retail sector, with a long history of senior management roles in the retail industry. Bruce is based in Toronto, Canada. Bruce talked to Peter Ryan about trends and challenges for CX in retail in the 2020s.    
25:00 2/29/24
Vaishali Dialani - Konabos - CX And Data-Driven Analytic Decisions
Vaishali Dialani is a Senior CX Strategist at Konabos. She is based in Dubai, UAE. Vaishali is passionate about how data can be used to help both customers and brands by identifying preferences and trends. Peter Ryan called Vaishali to talk about making better business decisions by using data-driven analytics.
22:39 2/22/24
Rob Dwyer - Happitu - What Can We Learn From CX Podcasting?
Rob Dwyer is the VP of Customer Engagement at Happitu. He is based in Wichita, Kansas. Rob also hosts the Next In Queue podcast - another CX-focused podcast. Peter Ryan called Rob to talk about CX lessons from his main day job, but also what he learns from talking to CX leaders across the world on his podcast.  
31:26 2/16/24
BONUS - Sensée Buys The Contact Company ... CX Files talks to both CEOs
On February 5, 2024, British contact centre company The Contact Company (TCC) was put into adminstration. Struggling to recover from a cyber attack in 2022, the previously successful company found itself in the red. On February 7, 2024, the UK media - starting with the Liverpool Echo - explained that the assets and business of TCC had all been sold to the British work-from-home specialist Sensée by the finance company FRP Advisory - the company called in to save the business. Mark Hillary spoke to Steve Mosser, the group CEO at Sensée and Asif Hamid, CEO at TCC on a call together in Liverpool just after concluding the deal and even before a press release had been released - the press release went out on Feb 8. This CX Files is a recording of that call - immediate reaction to the deal from both CEOs.
15:03 2/8/24
Mike Harfield - Sigma Connected - Developing Great Career Options For CX Teams
Mike Harfield is the COO and Co-Founder at Sigma Connected Group. He is based close to Birmingham in the UK. In this epsiode of CX Files Mark Hillary speaks to Mike about developing careers in CX. He explains how his company has explored impact sourcing initiatives across South Africa and the UK and how a focus on training, support, and developing genuine career paths for people working in CX helps employees to perform better now - and creates options for their future. Mike is passionate about developing his team and this conversation demonstrates that ESG and impact sourcing are not just 'nice to have' initiatives - they can improve how your business operates today and also demonstrate a real commitment to the team.
27:32 2/8/24
Nina Čaprić - NCR Voyix - How BPOs Can Manage Government Relationships
Nina Čaprić is the Government Relations Manager EMEA at NCR Voyix. She is based in Belgrade, Serbia. Peter Ryan called Nina to talk about her role managing government relationships. How is the public sector different to the private sector and do BPOs need to behave in a different way when national - or regional - governments are the client?  
29:30 2/1/24
Jo Garland : Remote Employee Engagement In Contact Centers (WFH)
Jo Garland is an experienced CX professional. She is based in Surrey in the UK, close to London. In this interview Jo is speaking in a personal capacity as Peter Ryan called to ask about her experience of a Master's Degree in Leadership at Henley Business School. Jo graduated in 2021 with a distinction so the research was clearly appreciated by the course supervisors. Jo used the experience of the pandemic to focus her research on how the CX and BPO environment changed because of the move to a work-from-home and hybrid business model. We have often talked about the corporate experience of WFH on this podcast, but in this interview Jo goes into more detail on how WFH looks from a research perspective. How did office-based employees emulate the experience of working in a team when they all had to work from home? What worked and what is essential now that this is now normal? How can managers with remote teams ensure that they enable the creation of teams, no matter how the team is constructed  and how are we building a flexible future for CX? Do you have the leadership skills and structures in place to really manage in a remote environment? These are the questions that Jo and Peter explore in this edition of the CX Files Episode 300 of CX Files... here's to another 300 in the future! Mark & Peter
26:45 1/25/24
Randy Arellano - DATAMARK - BPO Has Transformed In The 2020s And This Change Favors Mid-Size CX Experts
Randy Arellano is the head of sales and marketing at DATAMARK. He is based in Dallas, Texas.  DATAMARK offers contact center and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) services with delivery centers in the US, India, and Mexico. In this discussion with Mark Hillary, Randy talks about how rapidly the entire BPO landscape has progessed since the start of this decade. The period of the pandemic created a wave of flexible working practices and work-from-home (WFH) that has persisted across the industry. This has also led to new expectations around data security - to protect customer data when services are being delivered using a hybrid of WFH and in-office teams. Randy also talks about how AI is offering new opportunities to support agents inside the contact center and improve the customer experience.  With all these developments available equally to the big and medium players, Randy argues that there is no longer a need to work with the giant BPOs if you want to access the latest technology and flexible working practices - it is equally possible in mid-size partners now. A modern BPO is not stronger just because they have more agents. They are stronger because they have insight and ideas for how to transform CX processes and the ability to work in partnership with their clients - size is no longer a marker of service quality. BPO has transformed inside this decade and we are only at 2024 - listen to Randy explain what has changed and why it is important for CX executives to understand this evolution.  
30:27 1/19/24
More Than AI: The Less Obvious CX Predictions For 2024
Every analyst and journalist is saying that AI will be important in 2024. It's obvious... but what are the less obvious predictions we can make for CX trends in the new year? CX Files host Peter Ryan (Canada) hosted a discussion focused on CX in 2024 featuring: Mark Hillary  CX Files co-host (Brazil) Lian Rowlands Principal Consultant, Tayma Solutions (UK) Stephen Loynd Founder and Principal Analyst, TrendzOwl (USA)      
33:36 1/11/24
CX Files Year In Review: Mark Hillary and Peter Ryan look back at 2023
It's the festive season. Mark and Peter have decorated the podcast for Christmas. Although many people will now be off work for the Holidays there are millions of CX agents out there still helping customers to get their presents on time. In this final CX Files of 2023, Mark and Peter look back at the key CX trends of 2023 and some of their favourite interviews from the year. CX Files will return on January 11 with a panel of expert analysts exploring the trends to watch for in 2024.    
22:00 12/21/23
Adrian Swinscoe - Punk CX - Defining A Punk Future For CX
Adrian Swinscoe is well known in the CX community as an adviser, speaker, and writer. His Punk CX book argued for a new approach to CX and he also publishes the Punk CX podcast. Adrian also writes about CX in the business magazine Forbes. He is based in Edinburgh, Scotland. In this conversation with Peter Ryan, Adrian argues for a new approach to designing and managing CX - especially when hiring a customer service specialist. He argues for genuine partnership rather than the traditional client and supplier relationship. The punk approach is to tear up the traditiional rules and try something new.  
32:35 12/14/23
Southeastern - Managing CX For A Railway And Building A Great CX Partnership
In this discussion, Mark Hillary talks to Christine Heynes, Head of Customer Transformation, and Yvonne Quinn, Head of Customer Relations, at Southeastern Railway in the UK. Southeastern is the public-facing name of SE Trains Ltd - a train operating company that serves the south east area of England.   Southeastern serves the main London stations of Charing Cross, Waterloo East, Cannon Street, London Bridge, St Pancras, Victoria and Blackfriars. The network has route mileage of 540 miles (870 km), with 180 stations.   Christine and Yvonne explore the complexities of managing customer expectations on a major rail network and how to manage daily complaints and refund demands alongside building a CX strategy for the future.   They also explore the importance of finding the right CX partner. They are happy to talk about their relationship with Teleperformance, a contract that has been extended. It's interesting to note how they see Teleperformance as a CX expert that can guide the rail company, rather just just a supplier of customer service solutions. This collaboration recently won an award (best cross functional collaboration) at the ECCCSAs 2023.   In the interview, Yvonne answers the first question - Christine joins from the second question.    
34:14 12/7/23
Sidharth Mukherjee - Teleperformance - How CX Can Really Use Generative AI
Sidharth Mukherjee is the Chief Digital Officer at Teleperformance. He is based in San Francisco, California. Sid is focused on all things digital and CX and in this conversation with Peter Ryan he talks about the explosion in interest in Generative AI in 2023 and how it can really be applied to improve the customer experience.
23:34 11/30/23
Andrew McNeile - ThinScale - WFH Security And How Covid Changed BPO Forever
Andrew McNeile is the Chief Customer Officer of ThinScale Technology. He is based in Dublin, Ireland. ThinScale enables remote and hybrid work using bring-your-own-device by ensuring that remote employees can connect securely. The company saw a boom as the pandemic forced office workers to work from home, but what does the situation look like now?  Is WFH and hybrid here to stay in CX and BPO? Mark Hillary called Andrew at his base in Dublin to catch up and see how he thinks BPO will evolve...
32:15 11/23/23
Sagufta Janif - Outsource Fiji - How Is A South Pacific Island Nation Succeeding At BPO?
Sagufta Janif is the Executive Director of Outsource Fiji. She is based in Suva, Fiji. Fiji is located in the South Pacific, east of Australia and north of New Zealand. It is an island country with a population of approximately one million people, but Fiji has been punching above its weight in CX and BPO. What is Fiji offering and why are so many companies interested in BPO from Fiji? Peter Ryan called Sagufta at her base in Suva to explore these questions.
24:38 11/16/23
Chris Hague - Yoummday - Is Traditional BPO Dead Or Just Evolving?
Chris Hague is the head of marketing at Yoummday. He is based in Prague in the Czech Republic. Yoummday is based in Germany and offers a platform-based approach to CX that resembles the GigCX we have often talked about on CX Files, but in the interview Chris explains how Yoummday differs from the classic gig approach. Mark Hillary called Chris after reading an article Chris published asking if the traditional BPO model - contact center and customer service employees - is dead... Chris argues that there is a more positive and flexible future where agents can choose the brands they are working with, choose their working hours, and choose to work from home. They get more flexibility and also earn more - and this flexible approach costs the brand less. Is this flexible model of CX going to replace traditional BPO? Listen to Chris and decide for yourself...
33:39 11/9/23
Nerys Corfield - Injection Consulting - What's Going Wrong With Digital CX?
Nerys Corfield is the founder and director of Injection Consulting. She is based in South Wales, close to Newport. Nerys posted on LinkedIn recently about how a retail bank is using digital non-voice customer service channels - it wasn't a compliment. Peter called Nerys to discuss why so many organisations are getting voice right, but are not paying attention to chat, email, and texting... why are so many companies dropping the ball when it comes to digital channels?
23:47 11/2/23

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