CXPA’s Innovation Awards are Coming: Are You Driving Customer-Focused Innovation in Your Organization?

By Gabe Smith,CCXP posted 01-16-2020 01:16 PM

Adi Ignatius, writing for Harvard Business Review, notes that “the origin of the phrase ‘innovate or die’ is a matter of some dispute,” with some attributing it to management guru Peter Drucker and others claiming a different provenance. Regardless, Ignatius says, “the sentiment is now widespread: stay ahead of the pace of change or you’re toast.”

Customer experience professionals, who are often tasked with improving existing experiences, can play a key role in the design of new ones. 

The CX Leader's Role in Driving Innovation

CXPA member Crystal Collier says that innovation is critical to the success of any business--and that CX must lead the way.

“CX leaders have the opportunity to drive innovation in their organization,” Collier says. “We all know that customers expect an Amazon type of service no matter what industry we're in, no matter what products we're delivering, no matter what's we doing. The expectations are so high, and we'll only get there through innovative, envelope-pushing means."

CXPA's Innovation Awards

In an acknowledgment of the critical role that innovation plays in creating better experiences for customers, CXPA recognized its first group of innovation award winners in 2012 and has accepted submissions every year since, with past winners including UnitedHealth, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Safelite Autoglass, the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder, Cisco, John Deere, Dell Technologies, and Hertz.

Greg Melia, CAE and CEO of CXPA, says that recognizing innovation is critical for the association. “A willingness to change to meet customer needs is at the heart of a customer experience commitment. CXPA is committed to celebrating the innovation accomplishments--and teams behind them--so that we can all learn how we too might better innovate and deliver next-level customer experiences.”

For our innovation award winners, "team" is critical to achieving success.

Hertz, which developed a novel process to move customers through the car rental process by using biometrics, was a winner of the 2019 innovation award. Region Vice President Jeff Nieman says that collaboration was key to the success of the effort. "To develop an innovative idea like this throughout a large corporation was done all through collaboration, from the operations to the technical teams in IT, to the marketing department who packaged and bundled this, to the project team that went on the ground to tie all of it together and to implement it." 

What's Next?

Award submissions will be accepted starting on Friday, January 31st. The first phase of the process will involve video submissions that outline how the nominees’ efforts enabled the team or company to address a CX challenge in a novel way. During the second phase, finalists will be asked to sit for a virtual interview with a panel of fellow CX professionals. The winner of this year’s Innovation Awards, in addition to all the finalists, will be honored at CXPA’s Global Insight Exchange in Orlando, Florida, April 27-29.

Stay tuned for more information about the submission process. In the meantime, you can check out past award winners. Whether you represent a multinational corporation or a small business, we can't wait to hear about your innovative solutions to improve CX.