How Telstra achieved B2B customer experience excellence with CloudSense
Telstra is Australia’s leading telecommunications and technology company, offering a full range of communications services and competing in all telecommunications markets.
In Australia, Telstra provides 18.3 million retail mobile services, 3.7 million retail fixed bundles and standalone data services and 1.4 million retail fixed standalone voice services.
Telstra transforms B2B customer experience with CloudSense
Australia’s leading telecommunications and technology company, Telstra, is transforming its business to business (B2B) customer experience through a digitization program that will allow it to serve its B2B customers through their preferred channels, empowering customers to interact and self-serve digitally.
To provide the single, end-to-end platform necessary, Telstra selected CloudSense’s Salesforce-native platform, alongside Salesforce’s CRM.
We spoke to Mirko Gropp, Telstra’s Digital Adoption Principle, and Ben Waters, Telstra’s CPQ Digitization Lead, to find out more about the B2B digitization transformation program.
External drivers for transformation
To understand the main drivers behind Telstra’s digital transformation, we first delved into the external factors that drove Telstra to undertake its digitization program.
Meeting evolving customer expectations
As with most established organizations, digital disruption across society has led to a huge shift in customer expectations.
Previously, Telstra’s customers’ primary concern when selecting a Communications Service Provider (CSP) was the quality of their connectivity. Now, as Mirko explained, connectivity is a given – customers want more, “Our customers expect an integrated solution, with value added services on top. What’s more, they want the convenience and flexibility offered by self-service.”
A changing competitive landscape
Along with more demanding customers, the competitive landscape has shifted and changes in last-mile access mean that delivering on price, product and value, and the overall customer experience, have become fundamental to Telstra’s success.
As Ben Waters reinforced, “The combination of these factors led to Telstra putting our services at the forefront of our B2B offering to drive value for customers, as well as profitability.”
The shift in customer expectations and the regional communications landscape meant Telstra’s technology ecosystem became unable to deliver the requisite customer experience.
Previously, to fulfill customer needs at specific points in time, Telstra had built numerous vertical and product-specific solutions. These systems were built to conform to Telstra’s specific requirements, and as a result, they were unable to evolve and adapt to changing technology and customer expectations.
The inflexibility and complexity of Telstra’s patchwork of systems, along with their inability to integrate with one another, meant Telstra were unable to provide a coherent customer experience across channels.
Time spent fixing errors
With systems mainly joined-up through manual processes, Ben Waters said, “Ultimately, we found too many hours were spent fixing errors, rather than on developing better services for our business customers.”
Slow, inaccurate sales cycle
The disjointed systems also impacted on Telstra’s sales cycle. From quoting services to delivery and billing, Telstra’s sales team could not deliver with the speed, accuracy and personalization they wanted to offer their customers.
In light of both the external and internal pressures to change their ways of working and their technology, it was clear Telstra had to evolve. Not only to deliver a customer experience for the digital age, but to ensure their technology is flexible enough to deal with inevitable future market and technology developments.
Building an end-to-end solution
To transition from product-specific vertical solutions to one end-to-end solution that supports all products and the customer journey on top of that, Telstra selected CloudSense’s Salesforce-native platform to provide CPQ, Order Management and a unified Product Catalog.
CloudSense allows Telstra to increase its agility and provide its sales teams, customer service agents and partners with a 360-degree view of their customers. This delivers enhanced cross-selling capabilities, while making it easier to bundle, sell and deliver to their business customers.
“The modular product architecture gives us the ability to configure, rather than build, while the digital layer, built over the top provides a self-service capability and a consistent customer experience. The CloudSense Product Catalog’s flexibility means it can interact with whatever we build for our customers,” said Waters.
The CloudSense platform has enabled Telstra to bring together the quotation, sale and delivery of all its business products and services, across every channel.
"The program is completely transformational in terms of how everything works"
The B2B digitization program is fundamentally changing the way Telstra’s B2B function works, along with how it delivers for customers. Mirko made it clear just how radical this transformation will be for Telstra:
“It’s a transformation by the business, not to the business. It’s not a systems change, not a process change – it’s a fundamental change in how we work.”
“CloudSense have touched every part of the project”
Mirko Gropp described the key role CloudSense has played within the project,“CloudSense is involved from an architecture, governance and design implementation level. They have touched every part of the project. We’ve taken all the knowledge we can from CloudSense and put it into the design of our transformation.”
Gropp continued, “The program is completely transformational in terms of how everything works. Not just to our systems, but to our people and processes. It’s night and day. CloudSense play a key role in the integrated modular and horizontal platform that is fundamentally changing the core of the whole business.”
“CloudSense play a key role in the integrated modular and horizontal platform that is fundamentally changing the core of the whole business.”