Home » Home » Round Table Conference Summary: Managing the Shifting Dynamics of Customer Engagement in a SMAC driven World

Round Table Conference Summary: Managing the Shifting Dynamics of Customer Engagement in a SMAC driven World


The Round Table Conference on June 13th, 2015, organized by the Customer Experience Community of Practice, LASSIB Society  on the topic “Managing the Shifting Dynamics of Customer Engagement in a SMAC Driven World” was phenomenal success driven by the distinguished panel, with their insightful discussions as experts on the subject, generating commendable output during the day-long event.


SMAC, the Social-Mobile-Analytics-Cloud is a paradigm shift for the industries entirely changing the eco system of engaging, delivering and sustaining stakeholders and systems of an Organization within and around itself in this post-digital era. With over a Billion socially engaged people, via a Billion mobile devices, generating over 4 Billion GB of data, the power of cloud combined with analytics of such data is providing insights to businesses about their consumers, like never before.

While each of the four technologies can impact a business individually, their convergence is proving to be a disruptive force that is creating entirely new business models for service providers.

The objective of the RTC was to explore the challenges faced by Organizations today to allow the positive adoption of SMAC and some of the ways to overcome the same.


Five distinguished panel members, mentioned in the alphabetical order, from the industry participated and brainstormed in this conference, moderated by the Customer Experience COP Lead Meera Srinivasan.

  • Abhijit Gupta, Director, Customerfuture
  • Alok Shende, MD, Ascentius Insights
  • Kamlesh Manuja, Head of Service Delivery, CignaTTK
  • Mandar Kanvinde, Founder – BrandCapita
  • Ravindra Datar, Director – BrandCapita

After a warm welcome by KM Riyazuddin, Chairman, Mumbai Chapter, Lassib Society, there was a brief shared by Pranay Jaiswal, Vice Chairman. This was followed by a quick ice-breaker by Bhavya Dholakia, Evagelist of the Society, paving the way to an intense brainstorming session by the 5 panellists and the moderator.

At the end of 4 gruelling hours, with multiple inputs from other members of Lassib Society, namely Rudolf D’Souza, the COP Lead for KM; Viiveck Verma, Evangelist of Lassib Society and other members of the Society, Ajay Dusane and Anuragi Raman, the team nailed the main 5 challenges and identified the approach to addressing these going by best practices and suggestions by the expert panel.

The Top 5 Challenges to adoption of SMAC for Customer Engagement in Organizations

  1. Understanding Customer Adoption & Changing Expectation
  2. CSAT Measurement in the light of SMAC
  3. Adoption of SMAC Technology by Organizations
  4. Adoption of SMAC aligned Process
  5. People Skills aligned with SMAC

Brainstormed points under each of the above areas are bulleted below in brief.

Understanding Customer Adoption & Changing Expectation

Challenges identified

  • Customer Profiling is not proper
    • identification of target segment is rather vague and broad
    • Customer expectations and concerns are not known or not being sought
    • Accuracy of information is questionable
  • It is difficult or almost impossible to differentiate between Fictitious information and Real information
  • Poor response times by the Organisations for understanding customer adoption and customer expectations are also changing swiftly
  • Inadequate insights

Solutions recommended

  • Managing Segmentation and Speed of Response through
    • Capturing right data across lifecycle at the right time in the right format through the right channels and response at the right time
    • Use of historic data / Trends for better predictability and proactive approach
  • Enabling customers on SMAC channel
    • Establishing and making available, mechanisms for engagement including Apps
    • Putting cutting edge Technology to use (intelligent IVRS)
    • Information delivery; Pre-emptive anticipating needs
    • Ensuring Easy to Use; Reliable tools, technology and interface for customers
  • Increasing Customer Engagement
      • Customer advisory board: involvement of customers
      • Response based on Transactional Analytics / Insight
      • Capturing Real time Voice of Customers

CSAT Measurement in the light of SMAC


Challenges identified

  • Inadequate measures and parameters for CSAT to suit a SMAC channel: at present, not enough parameters are in place or being used for measuring CSAT, suitable for a SMAC channel
  • Impact of CSAT on other business goals not understood: Most organisations work only on improving CSAT, ignoring other business goals. For example, it is not a good idea to focus on improving the CSAT, when the market share in contracting. Such approach may result in short term gains, but can actually hurt the organisation in a long term
  • CSAT from the right stakeholders at the right time through the right channel: This does not happen most of the time. Wrong combination of any one of these three result in incorrect CSAT or worse, if done intentionally, biased CSAT. Again, of the of the main reasons for this to happen is to seek short term gains and ignorance of other business goals

Solutions recommended

  • Enhance metrics beyond CSAT Score: For example NPS; Sentiment scores through
    • Measurement across customer life-cycle, across channels
    • Introduction of Non-intrusive methods of feedback
    • Use of appropriate strategy to suit the segment. E.g. Gamification approach
    • Perform Root Cause Analysis on critical customer concerns
    • Use of Analytical models for forecasting and identifying CSAT Elasticity
    • Integration of internal data with external metrics
  • Identify causation of CSAT metrics with Enterprise performance levers such as Profits, Revenue, Retention
  • Translate real-time CSAT into action
  • Identify more SMAC driven CSAT metrics
  • Adopting industry benchmarks to measure CSAT scores using analytical tools
  • Nullify discrepancies caused by agencies; greater integrity using technology to measure feedback

Adoption of SMAC Technology by Organizations


Challenges identified

  • Right Technology to be adopted: organisation have to ensure the use of right technology
  • Organizational buy-in(WHY has to be clear): Without this, adoption of SMAC completely fails
  • Lack of budget addressed through an ROI/ Business Case: Lack of budget should not be a hurdle in adoption of SMAC. It is to be addressed through Return on Investment calculations or by creating / understanding a Business case
  • Change Management:  This is very critical step after the Organisation Buy-in. If the change brought in does not get imbibe by the stakeholders, mainly employees in this case, then there is high probability that adoption of SMAC fails
  • Investment – requirements changing constantly: This is easy if points 2 and 3 are addressed properly

Solutions recommended

  • Technology Adoption
    • As-Is Vs. To-Be gap to be understood; Technology blueprint needs to be drawn
    • Technology enabling customer self-service
    • Use of Analytics to fine-tune requirement
    • Cross-industry learning to be adopted in the technology space
  • Implementation
    • To be addressed through greater sensitization
    • Application Integration of front-end and back-end
    • Data integration
  • Driving Internal Adoption of SMAC oriented Technology
    • Training; Orientation; KPIs
    • Incentivise users
    • Knowledge management
    • Skillset to implement technology

Adoption of SMAC aligned Process

Challenges identified

  • Inadequate process and training to address exceptions
  • Lack of channel integration
  • Lack of SLAs / Tracking of requests

Solutions recommended

  • Recognize SMAC as a channel and reorganize the Organization structure
  • Recruitment and Training of people aligned to SMAC
  • Simplicity of Process to ensure a culture of FIRST TIME RIGHT
  • Multi-channel integration of processes – OMNI Channel
  • Data availability of customer engagement people
  • SLAs for SMAC processes; Response accuracy – measurement; Prioritization of SMAC channel for faster response
  • Sensitization / Customer orientation
  • Cross-selling process using SMAC
  • Empowerment and escalation matrix; process building and deployment
  • Self-service processes – power on the hands of customers
  • Escalation and Exception processes for SMAC processes
  • Regulatory/ Compliance of processes
  • Benchmarking across industries on similar SMAC processes

People Skills aligned with SMAC

Challenges identified

  • Skillsets not aligned
  • Low CSAT
  • Data availability on performance measurement
  • Dependence on vendors for execution
  • Cultural issue – smiles; Sharing culture missing

Solutions recommended

  • Training and Competency Building
  • Resources recruitment to be more aligned with segments; For e.g. Young demography of customers
  • ESAT precedes CSAT and needs to be actioned upon
  • Performance measures to be aligned with SMAC goals, metrics / KPIs
  • Alignment of Outsourced agencies to SMAC segment with measurable SLAs
  • Real time / Instant Rewards & Recognition to employees
  • Process change ideation from employees
  • Sensitization to customers
  • Empowerment; Risk tolerance;
  • Compliance sensitivity;
  • Technology support
  • Knowledge Management
  • Customer orientation
    • Encourage Listening culture  (change performance measures)


The session and presentation was concluded with a recording of the webcast and followed by a Vote of Thanks by Kavita Parti, Secretary, Lassib Society Mumbai Chapter.

Meera Srinivasan shared that more RTCs on the topic would be planned in future with deep dive into each of the areas identified above, to facilitate a deeper discussion for adoption of SMAC in the industries.


Do follow us on


Find what you are looking for