Evil IT guy with black leather coat sitting on a throne. (AI generated)

Are CTOs the CX bad guy?


New tools to enhance customer experience (CX) can come with baggage. While well-intentioned CX leaders see a beautiful wooden horse, tech leaders see the fall of Troy and their inevitable beheading. Risk and breaking working systems are concerns. For this reason, IT leaders endure frustration, thought of as evil IT super-villains, but Davor Bozic, Senior Leader, CX at Cisco says getting the CTO to adopt CX technology isn’t as painful as it sounds.

How CTOs can empower CX

Carte blanche tech adoption leads to broken processes, exposes your teams to security threats, and leads to an even more siloed organization. On the other hand, while tight CTO policies may ensure squeaky clean systems, they also leave companies exposed to CX disruption. Tech leaders forced to approve all organization decisions are left behind the ball, leading to customer churn.

Speaking to 3 Tree Tech, Bozic says the primary concern for both tech leaders and CX leaders building customer-centric processes is real collaboration. “CTO’s collaboration with CX leaders and other stakeholders in creating a shared understanding of the customer journey, the value proposition, and the desired outcomes ensuring alignment with company’s customer experience strategy,” he explained. Bozic has proven track record optimizing CX processes, avoiding cost-headaches and mitigating risk.

Executives in rapidly growing organizations truly need to be in alignment in all business objectives and share their plans with tech leaders. How? “Aligning CX outcomes with company’s IT scalability, data management, integration, agility, privacy, user experience, analytics, innovation, collaboration, and cost management within the technology infrastructure.”

Getting the CTO to adopt CX technology

Photo courtesy: Davor Bozic

As your customers adopt new technology at a rapid pace, collaboration between tech and CX leaders is vital to get right. Your customers have little sympathy for what appears to be your disorganization. If you’re a CX leader reading this, getting the CTO to adopt CX technology is more straightforward than you believe.

There are two scenarios where tech leaders and CX find this rhythm, says Bozic. The first is with support from the top. “With CEO-level support for the CX strategy, and opportunities, CTOs find themselves needing to initiate this alignment and take the lead.” Bozic said.

This can also work by simply reaching out directly to the CX team. “In [the] second scenario CTO’s can demonstrate potential of agile development, data-driven insights, customer-centric design, and various other valuable frameworks by showcasing them through specific projects that they choose to present to the CXO team.” This tight collaboration is worth pursuing.

Enterprise or small organization CTOs will see their efforts directly contribute to customer acquisition and lessening customer churn. For example, existing customer data on various platforms like chat bots, calls, databases, emails, and social media can be fully integrated allowing for personalized service.

“Part of this strategy would include building data repository that would allow different data sources being mapped, standardized, and structured consistently to enable effective analysis. Data connectors and API’s would enable standardized data connectivity to repository.” Bozic told us. “This data can be then mapped against customer journey map and could be possibly analyzed by advanced machine learning algorithms to identify unknown trends.”

This kind of collaboration achieves a true 360-degree customer view. Bozic has seen continuous improvements via this feedback loop model proven successful. “To ensure a shared understanding of the customer and a coordinated approach, CTO’s can facilitate and foster collaboration between IT, data analytics, and CX teams.”

Connect with Davor Bozic on LinkedIn

Justin Kent

Justin Kent is Editor in Chief for 3 Tree Tech. His work focuses on how security and CX technology empower leaders to scale faster. He has previously written for The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Harvard Business Review and others.