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Ultimate Software: Customer Service Organization Overhauling Customer Services: From Great to Greater with Big Business Impact.

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Presentation on theme: "Ultimate Software: Customer Service Organization Overhauling Customer Services: From Great to Greater with Big Business Impact."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ultimate Software: Customer Service Organization Overhauling Customer Services: From Great to Greater with Big Business Impact

2 Ultimate Software is a leading provider of workforce management (HRMS/payroll) solutions for mid-size companies. 550 employees – 62 are in support. Headquartered in Weston, FL Revenues total $88 M NASDAQ: ULTI 1,300 customers in all industries, representing 5,000 companies with more than 2 million employees : The Container Store, Elizabeth Arden, The New York Yankees, SkyWest Airlines, Nintendo of America and Ruth’s Chris Steak House Achieved certification by Support Center Practices (SCP) seven consecutive years 2005 Top 25 Best Medium-Sized Companies to Work for in America by the Great Place to Work Institute and the Society of HR Management 2005 Payroll Provider of the Year by the Human Resources Outsourcing Association Ranked sixth in IDC’s Top 25 Worldwide Software On-Demand Vendors list and is the only HRMS provider listed 1998 - 2005 About Ultimate Software

3 16 Years of Growth and Change 1990s Company was a license-only HRMS software company. Provides 100% employer- covered health insurance. Grew steadily, achieved profitability and goes public. All employees received stock options. 2000 - 2003 Investor confidence in tech companies plummeted. Ultimate decided to change from a license-only model to a recurring-revenue model with a hosted solution. Despite financial challenges, the company forged ahead with the new business model and technology transformation. There were no layoffs and the customer base stayed loyal. Benefits remained the same: 100% health insurance coverage and stock benefits. 2004 - 2005 Intersourcing ®, the on-demand service model, is the primary driver of the company’s growth. Company posts 7 quarters of double-digit sales growth. Has first full year of profitability again. The Play-by-Play

4 Ultimate’s Culture and Beliefs When employees come first, customers stay happy, companies enjoy financial growth. Ultimate values its workforce, takes pride in its accomplishments, fosters their continued professional growth, and encourages their ideas. Ultimate Software’s Customer Support Team

5 FROM TO License-only Model Service-centric Software-as-a-Service Approach Intersourcing ® is the primary driver of Ultimate’s recurring revenue growth. Free from large upfront fees and requirement for in-house IT support, organizations rely on their web browser for functionality & the customer support team whenever they need help. Customer Support Goals: To maintain and continually improve Ultimate Software’s industry-high customer retention rate Current retention rating = 97% To maintain leadership as the Top HRMS On-Demand Software Provider. THE GOAL: Keep Customers Coming Back for More!

6 Employee Satisfaction Customer Satisfaction Employee Satisfaction MetricsGoalScore Employee Satisfaction Current (based on retention) 96%97% Employee Satisfaction Previous Year (based on retention) > 91%95%

7 The Game Plan for Managing the ULTIMATE Customer Support Team 1.Coaching 2.Building Relationships 3.Accountability 4.Recognition COACH customer support employees to build strong RELATIONSHIPS with customers; hold them ACCOUNTABLE for satisfaction and REWARD them for it. The Customer Support Organization Ensures that Customers are Happy and Satisfied The Customer Support Organization Ensures that Customers are Happy and Satisfied Best Practice Process

8 Coaching and Motivating Customer Support is a Team Sport Employees work in teams and are recognized for team accomplishments, as well as individual achievements. Every employee receives a copy of Pat Riley’s book “Winner Within: A Life Plan for Team Players”. Major league pitcher, Al Leiter, regularly comes to employee meetings and shares techniques on how to focus in high-pressure situations.

9 Coaching and Motivating National Customer Service Week –Customer Support participates in this yearly event as each day is celebrated with fun activities and team building exercises. Each team decorates its area based on a theme and are judged by a panel of Ultimate judges. –The last day is an awards ceremony where the CEO personally thanks each customer support employee and helps distribute financial & recognition awards.

10 1998 -2005 Coaching and Motivating Employees are encouraged to receive industry certifications –Rewarded with a salary increase or a bonus. –Within the last year, 17 employees have earned industry certifications in these areas: CPP (Certified Payroll Professional) PHR (Professional in Human Resource) MCP (Microsoft Certified Professional) MCDBA (Microsoft Certified Database Administrator) CSP (Certified Support Professional) CSM (Certified Support Manager) –Their names and the certifications are displayed on plaques. –10 percent of work week can be set aside for studying.

11 Relationships Customer Support associates are entrusted with developing and maintaining customer relationships. They are empowered to make the right decisions. The organization knows that they impact business results and have a critical role in designing customer relationship initiatives. Instead of taking random customer calls from a queue, each representative has specific clients they are assigned to. Customers know the reps by name and have direct access to them on a daily basis by phone, email, or via support web site. Named Service Representatives (NSRs) have an opportunity to meet their customers face-to-face at various user meetings throughout the year.

12 Accountability Comments from Customer Surveys Awesome support. I really enjoy talking to a LIVE person who actually cares about me and wants to resolve my issues. Bravo! Richard Campbell answered my call and he was out of this world wonderful! Fixed my problem quickly and efficiently! Thanks!!! Stephanie Gill is amazing …she is patient, helpful and obviously quite knowledgeable. Her customer service is outstanding!

13 Accountability The response times to customer inquiries of NSRs are monitored by their manager. The compensation (bonuses) of NSRs are tied to performance: customer satisfaction indicators, customer retention rates, and response metrics. Financial and activity-based “rewards” are given both annually and throughout the year. Individuals and teams with outstanding performance are rewarded relative to achievements. Poor performances are handled through manager discussions on techniques for improvement.

14 Recognition and Appreciation Customer Service Representative (CSR) Hero Award -recognizes exceptional customer support –Awarded during National Customer Service Week –Everyone in the company votes. –1st place receives $500 and 2nd place receives $250 –Money and trophy presented by CEO. Employee annual and other bonuses are awarded by managers based on performance on: –Customer satisfaction indicators, –Customer retention rates, and –Response metrics Team Helmets – –Each Customer Support team has a team helmet. –Helmet stickers are awarded when a team member receives an outstanding customer note or response. –Teams get a ½ day off and lunch when they receive 25 stickers on their helmet.

15 Recognition and Appreciation Every employee benefits from Ultimate’s Employee First philosophy. –100% company paid employee health & dental benefits for entire family –Notes from CEO for birthdays, company anniversaries, and personal and professional accomplishments –All-expense paid department trips that include families each year (Key West, Orlando, etc) –Stock options for everyone –Lunches with CEO for new hires and employee anniversaries –Free weekly breakfast buffet/pizza lunches –3, 5, & 10 year seniority gifts/celebrations –Thanksgiving Dinner –Periodic surprise visits from an ice cream truck that dispenses free ice cream during the workday

16 Recognition and Appreciation Customer Support also participates in events that are not only fun but also help build strong relationships internally. –Premiere movie night with development department –Monthly group birthday celebrations –Each team competes for best decorated office space during Halloween & Customer Service Week –Bowling competition with another department

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