Donald Trump could hardly hide his glee as the Iowa app debacle unfolded. He tweeted about the incompetence of the Democrats; after all, if they can’t even build an app that works, he contends, how on earth can they govern a country?
Professional technologists shuddered at the apparent incompetence and hubris as details emerged about the Iowa Democratic Party rushing a contract for its caucus results app with a little-known tech company. The telephone was relied on when the app failed, but it couldn’t cope with the volume as it wasn’t planned to be used. It really begs the question, why would something so important be given so little scrutiny?
Meanwhile over at this side of the pond, the question of ‘does digital first put customers last?’ formed the agenda for our first 2020 Visionaries session, hosted at HMRC in Newcastle. Customer service leaders from 22 leading brands gathered to exchange experiences about how their services were adapting the changing landscape.
There’s been a huge learning curve for all over the last few years. In the example of HMRC their online platform forms the main method for us to register tax returns accurately and on time. Building trust is seen as critical, as is a constant focus on eliminating ‘friction’ which can cause those who choose digital to have to call when things don’t work. The group heard how the head of digital regularly sits with teams who are handling calls to make sure that theirs and customers’ needs are fully understood. This is critical when conversations are becoming much more complicated as online deals with the majority of routine issues.
Fortunately, on the day CCA’s Slido programme worked beautifully when capturing a range of insights from the group. It had of course been thoroughly road tested in advance with contingency plans in place! Our results highlight the journey that organisations are on and the need to shine a spotlight on those cultural issues which are often the most difficult to change. All members can register to receive the benchmarks. 
Towards 2030 we will be mapping milestones on a wide range of critical issues impacting customer service and business performance. Issues including vulnerability and well-being will be top of mind for many whilst balancing the impact and need for improved and more effective digital services. We’ll be undertaking new research, collaborative programmes and of course our many forum and Conventions will help you think differently about making the changes you need to make. 
Perhaps one of our most challenging issues will be best supporting front-line managers whose remit and responsibilities are very different from what they perhaps set out to be. Find out more about CCA Inspire which is specifically designed to provide effective personal development for managers in our increasingly complex environment. 
Have a great weekend!

Anne Marie