ServiceNow and Qualtrics this week announced a strategic partnership they said could help bring increased empathy and insight into the operational issues organizations need to prioritize in order to improve customer and employee experiences.
The two companies said the partnership would bring together Qualtrics’ CustomerXM applications with ServiceNow’s Customer Service Management (CSM) to let service agents and managers automatically trigger workflows based on feedback and uncover drivers for customer satisfaction. The results could include a boost to metrics such as cost-to-serve, and the effectiveness of content used to serve customers.
Qualtrics has been trying to build upon its origins in survey software to develop a category it calls experience management, or XM. ServiceNow, meanwhile, is well known for products that help contact centre agents and IT teams within an enterprise manage service volumes and IT service delivery.
According to Michael Ramsey, ServiceNow’s vice-president of product management for Customer Workflow Products, the two firms share a number of joint customers, and an integration already exists to connect their platforms together.
However the strategic partnership would make it even easier to bring sentiment data from Qualtrics into ServiceNow customer and IT workflows. One of the joint customers includes a national restaurant chain in the U.S., he said, where sentiment is particularly vital for those in customer-facing roles.
“We’ve have ben expanding our capabilities to focus not just the customer engagement but what the customer actually asks or requests,” Ramsey told 360 Magazine. “They’re often looking for more than one knowledge article or an FAQ page. They have an issue that actually requires something to be done.”
Combining Qualtrics’ technology with ServiceNow means organizations could use customer feedback to tie operational metrics like first call resolution to C-suite priorities — namely, whether the relationship with customer is actually improving, Ramsey explained. There is also a lot of feedback from employees that could ensure the wrong business processes or tools aren’t getting in the way of doing their best work.
“We are still working with Qualtrics on what some of the best possible use cases might be, as well as with our customers,” he said.
Working more closely with Qualtrics could also allow ServiceNow to engage with CX leaders other than those in a specifically customer service role. Already, Ramsey said the company is seeing interest in its platform expanding to executives such as CMOs or even COOs.
Beyond the available integrations, ServiceNow and Qualtrics will assess when it makes sense to create a more purpose-built solution for a joint customer, Ramsey added. The strategic partnership could also influence the way the firms approach their go-to-market strategy.
In some respects, having the two firms join forces more formally makes sense, given Qualtrics was bought by SAP while under the leadership of Bill McDermott. Last fall, McDermott left SAP to join ServiceNow as CEO.
Shane Schick tells stories that help people innovate, and to manage the change innovation brings. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of Marketing magazine and has also been Vice-President, Content & Community (Editor-in-Chief), at IT World Canada, a technology columnist with the Globe and Mail and Yahoo Canada and is the founding editor of ITBusiness.ca. Shane has been recognized for journalistic excellence by the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance and the Canadian Online Publishing Awards.