In the second of a series of six articles, Charlie Mai – former VP of Domestic and International Sales & Marketing for Star Entertainment Group – explains the process for implementing internal and external CRM in the casino environment.
The first article in this series about internal and external CRM and organizational change management in casinos introduced the basics of these concepts.
This article, the second in the series, provides casino practitioners with a comprehensive process for the three phases of internal and external CRM: adoption, implementation, and evaluation and evolution.
These are shown below:
Internal and External CRM Adoption
Internal and External CRM Implementation
- Information technology
Internal and External CRM Evaluation and Evolution
Internal and External CRM Adoption
The readiness assessment is an audit of a casino’s readiness for adopting an internal and external CRM solution based on four contexts: social-cultural, environmental, technological and organizational.
- The social-cultural context assesses whether the casino’s values, norms and culture are employee-customer-focused or not. If not, the casino is not ready for an internal and external CRM solution.
- The environmental context considers whether the casino is suitable and has potential financial benefits for an internal and external CRM solution, based on four common characteristics: (1) high employee and customer retention rates; (2) significantly higher costs to attract new employees and customers than to retain existing ones; (3) the ability to calculate profit at an employee and a customer level; and (4) the ability to easily segment employees and customers based on volume and profitability.
- The technological context deals with the perceived benefits of internal and external CRM systems and compatibility with existing structures, such as data accuracy, higher process efficiency, improved employee and customer satisfaction, sustainable competitive advantages, improved relationships with business partners, and channel integration.
- The organizational context concerns whether the casino has sufficient organizational resources, top management support, and existing employee and customer knowledge management practices and processes for an internal and external CRM solution.
The vision development is the starting point for an internal and external CRM solution. The vision should paint a picture of the kind of relationship that the casino wants to form with its most valuable employees and customers. The formulation of the right vision requires the casino’s top management commitment for employee-customer-centricity as a path to business success and employee and customer value propositions. This vision must also be in line with the casino’s corporate vision and strategy as well as address the other issues of internal and external CRM guidelines, employee and customer value propositions and segmentation.
The strategy development describes the way the casino wants to realize its internal and external CRM vision and defines the basic understanding of the internal and external CRM program. The strategy development also defines goals and objectives for adopting the internal and external CRM solution. For example, an overarching internal and external CRM goal is to collect, compile, and make the best use of employee and customer information to provide valued employees and customers with a seamless, consistent, outstanding experience across various touch points, and ultimately a casino’s profitability.
Internal and external CRM implementation: People, processes and information technology
A key to successful internal and external CRM implementation is transforming the casino’s organizational culture, structures, and the behaviors of its employees and business partners towards an employee-customer-centricity, so that the promised value propositions are seamlessly delivered. The successful transformation requires top management commitment and organizational collaboration across all levels of the organization. Leaders should set the stage for leadership, strategic direction and alignment of vision and business goals. Managers and staff should share information and develop and nurture relationships with their peers not only within their department but across other departments with which they are interconnected, internally and externally. Nurturing internal relationships and information sharing results in a better appreciation of identities, a clearer understanding of business processes, and a sharing and understanding of culture and empathy.
These processes can be grouped into four main perspectives: employee-customer-facing, employee-customer-oriented, macro-level and cross-functional:
- The employee-customer-facing processes are systematic processes to manage employee and customer relationship initiation, maintenance, and termination, across all employee and customer contact points, to maximize the value of the relationship portfolio.
- The employee-customer-oriented processes deal with activities that seek to satisfy a need or to solve a problem. These employee-customer-oriented processes are further differentiated into three forms: delivery processes, support processes and analysis processes.
- The macro-level processes deal with activities that create market intelligence to build and sustain a profit-maximizing portfolio of employee and customer relationships through two sub-processes: knowledge management process and interaction management process.
- The cross-functional process is a holistic approach to five generic cross-functional sub-processes: the strategy development process, the value creation process, the multichannel integration process, the information management process, and the performance assessment process. This process is the most pervasive view of internal and external CRM in terms of providing an explanation of each internal and external CRM process, and it enables a better understanding of internal and external CRM for successful adoption and implementation.
Information technology is an enabler to redesign business processes for achieving improvements in organization performance. Information is the backbone of internal and external CRM and critical for product tailoring, service innovation, consolidated views of employees and customers, and calculating employee and customer lifetime value. Employee and customer information is the basis of the value creation process. It allows the casino to target and focus on its employee and customer needs and wants. If acquired, managed, and modelled correctly, employee and customer information can be key to a sustainable competitive advantage.
Whereas technology facilitates the internal and external CRM processes by involving leveraging of data, information, employee-customer-facing applications, and supporting information technology infrastructure to enable internal and external CRM to work as intended. Internal and external CRM applications take advantage of technology innovations with their ability to collect and analyze data on employee and customer patterns, interpret employee and customer behaviors, develop predictive models, respond with timely and effective customized communications, and deliver product and service value to individual employees and customers. The use of internal and external CRM applications to acquire, process and distribute employee and customer information through multiple channels is expected to positively impact the casino’s ability to manage employee and customer encounters and thereby create employee and customer satisfaction.
Internal and external CRM evaluation and evolution
The development of internal and external CRM measures gives the casino better idea of how its internal and external CRM program is working, how it is meeting expectations and whether it is sustainable in the long run. These measures should be defined based on the internal and external CRM vision and objectives. Proper performance metrics help the casino to make objective decisions regarding continuation, modification, or termination of an internal and external CRM program. A series of metrics should include lifetime value, retention, share of wallet, satisfaction and loyalty, experience, and organizational collaboration. These metrics are strong predictors for behavioral variables such as repurchase intentions, word-of-mouth recommendations or loyalty, and primarily serve to identify loyal employees and customers and evaluate their worth to the casino.
When an internal and external CRM performance is measured and evaluated against its performance metrics, decisions must be made regarding its evolution: its continuation, termination, enhancement, or modification of the relationship engagement. There are several factors impacting the evolution decision such as relationship performance and satisfaction, change of leadership, acquisition, merger, or divestiture.
In summary, this Article 2 of the series about internal and external CRM and organizational change management in casinos has provided casino practitioners the comprehensive process for adopting, implementing, and/or conducting an evaluation and evolution of their internal and external CRM programs. The next Article 3 will discuss internal and external CRM practices in casinos.