Ionut Petrache, Service Management Lead, Michelin CBS Bucharest
- What are the trends related to technology that 2022 will bring or will continue in our industry? How will they impact us? What opportunities and challenges should we expect? How do you plan to use them in your favor and to be ahead of the others?
I reckon that 2022 will be a year of change; we will have to be bold and decide what enablers are better fitted for our organization and which of them resonate best with our strategy. Over the past years, technology enablers have evolved significantly; this is not just an “attractive trend” in using the newest tools – it really is a necessity.
The question for 2022 will be: “which technology to go for?”. How do you chose from an attractive panel of technologies – all with the same promise to simplify your world in early adopting stages, with no efforts? The recommendation is to stay anchored to your mission and to go the extra mile to simplify your business by leveraging the power of standardization, change management and waste elimination, before introducing another piece of technology that will just add complexity on top of the other technologies.
Challenges come into play when different technologies are being added within the business, with the intent to automate and reduce workload, but with little consideration given to employee experience, onboarding or user experience. This makes it difficult to retain talent or to build the right profiles that can sustain all this evolution.
For Michelin Corporate & Business Services in 2022, it is key to remain focused on our operational excellence framework and on the designed toolkit with all the projects, initiatives and technologies that we’ve chosen to support this framework. One thing we’ve learned for sure is that the operational framework should stay unchanged, while the toolkit should be renewed every year, to ensure we stay competitive. This will give us the advantage of being early technology adopters, without losing the identity of our designed operational excellence framework.
- The way of working, recruiting, onboarding and so on were probably the most affected by the pandemic. What do you think is here to stay and what new trends will emerge in 2022 when it comes to work? What challenges will companies face? How companies as well as employees will be affected? Does your company plan to implement new strategies for recruiting and retaining people? Do you intend to go back to the office? When? What changes should your employees expect to see there?
As much as we would like to anticipate the future, nobody can have 100% certainty on how the current context will evolve. It’s important to remain focused on the core talent principles: to attract the best talent and to keep a high focus on the wellbeing of employees. The year 2022 will be a year of change, as people, while at home, have had plenty occasions to reflect on what they really like for themselves, for their development or for their careers. The context is favorable already, as the majority of the businesses are unlocking new strategies for growth and expansion. It will soon start to have an impact on retention – this, however, should not be a surprise and has been predicted since early 2021.
It is up for each company to define what is best for their organization and that there will be plenty of strategies to choose from. For us, blending work from home with office work has already given good results, and in the future we will be working with our teams to discover new ways on how we can amplify the social factor (events, meetings, gatherings), in the event that COVID restrictions are lifted.
- Are there any trends in the customer experience area? Do you foresee any change in the way our industry delivers services? Is the customer satisfaction affected by the pandemic? What opportunities do you see for this year? Did your company find any new solutions to improve the customers’ experience?
There is a significant vibe in the global business services industry about creating experiences or moments that matter for clients, suppliers, employees, contractors and so on. The trend is so strong that a lot of projects now have the word experience attached, and many job opportunities on the market are seeking for people whose focus should be creating experience. The challenge with the experience-based services is that you need to rely on huge amount of data in order to define what is the new experience you can deliver via your service or product.
In the global business services sector, the name of services has been rebranded as experience – but in reality, the service stayed the same and the appraisal mechanism remained attached to the traditional NPS scoring. The experience-based services will require many more insights from customers or beneficiaries in order to elaborate and improve items that can uplift the experience promised.
In Michelin Corporate & Business Services, we have moved away from the NPS and we have redefined new dimensions (related to our services) that our partners are being asked to evaluate. Instead of willingness to promote us, we are seeking feedback and appreciation for communication, quality of experience, innovation, digital or automation. Any suggestion is also welcome. Experiences, in our opinion, are created based on business partnering, where the difference will be made by knowing how to position yourself, your services and focusing on solutions. Partners will always seek solutions for their businesses, so the solution offered is the one that dictates what kind of experience they had.