Company: CDK Global, Inc. Company background: With more than $2 billion in revenues, CDK Global (Nasdaq:CDK) is a leading global provider of integrated information technology and digital marketing solutions to the automotive retail and adjacent industries. Focused on enabling end-to-end automotive commerce, CDK Global provides solutions to dealers in more than 100 countries around the world, serving approximately 28,000 retail locations and most automotive manufacturers. CDK solutions automate and integrate all parts of the dealership and buying process from targeted digital advertising and marketing campaigns to the sale, financing, insuring, parts supply, repair and maintenance of vehicles. Contact: Tom Kelter / Deb Buczynski Title: Vice President / Senior Director Related URLs:
Lithy category: B2B Community Innovator 1. Describe the innovation(s) and how you settled on the decision to innovate (user request, Lithium suggestion, internal idea, etc.)
Some are afraid of change. Not us. Innovative change is exciting! We want to be a part of it and help shape the future. We are CDK Global! We are committed to improving the customer experience and exploring all possibilities to connect with our customers. We’re creating a platform to build better connections between us and our customers and across dealers to provide industry-approved solutions for a better customer support experience, and our Lithium partners play a huge part of that journey.
In an effort to enhance the satisfaction of our customers, our new Service Connect Community platform, allows us to deliver a best-in-class online support community simultaneous with a more efficient model than our traditional phone / case / chat support model. That captures two of our four key strategic pillars which we are focusing on for our current fiscal year. We partnered with Lithium to develop a solution where our customers enthusiastically share their knowledge and expertise with others in the automotive retail industry while integrating the knowledge of our CDK technical support associates to deliver accepted solutions to non-critical customer questions. To set out on this journey, we knew we needed the right tool.
We had a homegrown existing online B2B support community with workflows that were seemingly more focused on our CDK workflows rather than a stream that resonated best with our customers. Based on the voice of the customer and how our customer views the problem in the context of their role in the dealership, we completely revamped our support workflows to address each type of customer inquiry that comes into our Technical Support forum. We knew the requirements we needed in a tool and looked at multiple vendors who provided online community platforms. The demographic in the automobile industry is ever-changing particularly with the influx of millennials who are more inclined to communicate electronically for their technical support needs and we needed a more robust solution than our homegrown community solution.
After consulting with our Lithium business partners as one of those vendors, we realized the real power of the Lithium community offering and the opportunity to provide an online community workflow that addressed our objective to design the community from the customers’ viewpoint. We then staffed it with the expertise of our CDK support associates, Community Most Valuable Players (MVPs) and peer-to-peer leaders in action. There is no other DMS provider in the industry who offers innovative support the way we’ve modeled it. It’s a true competitive advantage. We’ve offered this as a ground-breaking service channel and we are leading the industry with our new Service Connect Community solution. 2. Tell us about how you made it happen Did you stage it first, who got an early look, how you drove adoption/use, and any iterations you had to make to get it right.
Our support strategy for many years prior was to have the user always start with Service Connect which was launched directly from the point in the software application they were using when they encountered the question. The advantages to the Service Connect support strategy showed how we now include multiple channels of electronic and traditional support (eCase, chat, knowledge search, immediate callback, and online community) and gave the user options in how they preferred to get support. Our initial homegrown Service Connect Community option sufficed to test the concept of an online support channel, but the growth potential was not there in the existing platform. Although customers were pleased with the tool, it had limited feature/functionality and very limited use. It wasn’t going to get us to that enhanced customer experience nor a more efficient service model. We needed a more robust tool, so we looked to Lithium for growth, innovative technology and sustainability.
Early Service Connect Community Version 1
This is the early look at our Service Connect Support strategy prior to the introduction of our Lithium community which drew users to our electronic portal including our community portal. It served us well as a B2B offering but provided limited benefit back to the business and needed improvement to be fully accepted by our customers.
Our first look at the CDK Community strategy and client feedback from the original B2B offering.
In order to increase registrations, conversations and solutions in the Community, and to create a more sustainable environment, we evaluated multiple vendors who were recognized as leaders with online community forums. We selected to partner with Lithium as our vendor of choice because we felt Lithium provided the best solution, most knowledge of the industry and had the most robust technology. The Lithium offering was far superior and the knowledge and experience of the Lithium organization stood out as best-in-class.
Enhanced CDK Service Connect Community
We structured the Lithium environment and the Service Connect portal to mimic our customers’ business by dealership area to optimize the user experience. The user now seamlessly relates what they see in the Community to their job role in the dealership. Having organized our Community solution by dealership department facilitates quickly finding relevant content for their job/role. The enhanced search, easy navigation and new labels and tags in our Lithium platform make it convenient and highly effective for our customers’ use. Finally, the “Accepted Solutions” feature in the Lithium platform allows an organic build of an extensive knowledge base as our customers are able to highlight the reply that best answers their question and mark it as “solved.” The entire online community serves as a knowledge repository for other customers with the same question to quickly find the solution using the Lithium “search” feature.
The scope of our Lithium solution extends beyond the original intention of the community for the Automotive Retail segment. Our initial launch of the Service Connect Community, constituted three distinct market segments of our business including Automotive Retail and Heavy Duty Truck, Heavy Equipment, and Motorcycle and Recreational industries. We are also launching a brand new support offering that leverages our online community as a primary support channel for non-critical events.
Marketing collateral for our new Service Connect Lithium offering
Because of this industry-unique support offering we focused on rapidly building our MVP population and constructing a “war room” staffed by expert CDK Technical Support associates for the Community. We value the expertise and experience of our users and knew we needed to leverage their expertise in the solutions that our community members would trust. To do that, we rapidly grew our MVP program from a previous count of six to over 80 MVP Leaders and Experts in just two months. Our MVPs were excited and enthusiastic to share their knowledge and expertise with other members of the community. They were incentivized by Lithium’s native gamification and reward system with earning badges and ranking up for participation, as well as the robust CDK partnership offering. Understanding the power of a solid MVP program, we committed to dedicating one of our leaders as the liaison focusing on the following areas:
manage the MVP relationship
vet and qualify the MVP candidates
provide ongoing communication to the MVPs
be the central focal point at CDK for MVP
It was a win-win for our customers, our MVP Leader and Expert members, and for CDK.
This marketing brochure describes our strategy for how we successfully grew our MVP program in a short time period using valuable CDK offerings to incentivize member participation. The offering has resonated with our customers and there is a strong expectation for continued growth of MVP Leaders and Experts.
MVP Welcome Kit sent to our two levels of MVP – Leader and Expert
Community War Room Strategy
Our new Service Connect workflows route non-critical customer questions directly to the Service Connect Community for response by CDK experts as well as our MVPs and trusted community peers. Part of the innovation in this new workflow was establishing a B2B “war room” which we likened to a Social Media Strategic Command Center. This room is staffed by CDK technical experts working collaboratively with our MVPs and Community peers to provide trusted solutions to the posted questions from our customers. The primary tool used by CDK associates in the Community is the Lithium Social Media Management (SMM) tool to manage incoming traffic and respond very quickly to the posts.
The war room is currently staffed 12 hours per day during the peak activity period of our customer requests. The eight (8) wallboard monitors using data from the Lithium Social Intelligence (LSI) tool are spread strategically throughout the room to serve as the primary monitoring mechanism for all associates and leaders to track critical activity and response times. In this room, there are no phones because it’s intended for a live collaborative environment with hands on the keyboard and swarming of knowledge from top-level associates to respond to customer inquiries. SMM has served as the foundation of our Community Support room and shout-outs go to Baldev Solanki for his expertise in configuring the SMM tool optimized for our needs.
Guiding Principles of “The Community War Room environment”
Continuous Fun atmosphere …. Everyone is responsible to make it fun!
Supports collaboration between software applications and cross-functional pods with walk-around assistance and comfortable environment where associates aren’t tethered to their workstations
Fully committed to the growth and success of the Service Connect Community
Works only from posts, not cases.
No Phones, No traditional CRM tracking tool needed
No backlog. Ensure all work is completed each day. Nothing is open at the end of the day – every day starts fresh
Embrace new and completely different support methods from traditional support. Community Room is a “living” constantly changing space and encourages open discussion, healthy debate and cross-functional problem solving
Measured by team, not individual – true team concept
Promotes customer peer-to-peer solutions as primary focus, rewarding our MVPs with recognition and rewards for participation
Solving issues as a team around a table working with fellow associates and looking over shoulder to help solve problems
No / minimized handoffs from client perspective. No need for handoffs that customers see today because now we’re in cross-functional “pods” and collaborate on the solution
Service Connect as it is today shown with the Community icon front and center from the home panel as well as embedded in the workflows under “Need Assistance.”
3. What were the results? Tell us how it impacted your customer experience or the outcomes you seek as a business.
As result of launching the new Community support team, expanding our MVP program and the rapid growth of community membership we anticipate that the CDK ‘hand-in-glove’ partnership with our peer-to-peer community will significantly enhance the overall community experience while at the same time providing an enhanced service level than what could be provided in a traditional service model. Since our Go-Live, the comparison below shows the Community results versus the results of the same type cases from the month prior to Go-Live. The results show a reduction in response time and resolution time indicating the Community is meeting our goals. Our focus now is increasing the volume in the Community in an effort to continue to improve customer experience, customer satisfaction and our cost model.
Community Milestone data showing our customers have enthusiastically embraced the community.
LSI for our first week of launching the Service Connect Community War Room, starting August 6, 2018 showing a significant increase in activity.
Member Overview of our first week of Community Room Launch, starting August 6, 2018
Community Health Index showing a significant increase in Community responsiveness, liveliness, traffic and content.
SC Community Video
SC Community Home Page
SC Community MVP Information Page
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