Speaking the same language - Alcohol retailer takes control over enterprise services
Best customer experience in all channels
Finnish alcohol retailer Alko started operations in 1932. The company is owned by the state of Finland, has 359 stores and 65 pickup points, and employs around 2400 people. Alko’s operations and its monopoly of the retail sale of beverages containing more than 5.5% alcohol are based on the Finnish social and health policy objective of mitigating the adverse effects of alcohol consumption. Alko has a clear goal: it wants to act as responsibly as possible and it wants to offer excellent customer experience.
One of Alko’s strategic objectives is “Best Customer Experience”, realized through most professional and personal service. To follow this strategy, Alko built a plan to offer a top customer experience to its customers through various channels, also taking advantage of digital and social aspects. Building an online store to retail the products from more than 500 international producers was the first step on Alko’s omnichannel customer service strategy. Webshop development brought Alko’s logistics, customer service, communications and IT functions to the same table. One project, one project team and common priorities, goals and metrics were keys to success. Today, IT and business collaborate so closely that they can even stand in for each other.
Managing any service with common tools
The new business model and new digital channel to serve customers required major changes in Alko’s IT and logistics system environment and processes. To serve customers in best possible way, Alko realized that ICT services and processes as well as internal services to support those need to be managed in a centralized and systematic way. For successfully doing this, the company needed a new toolset.
Alko is a great example of a company where boundaries between different functions and businesses did not stop the organization from creating a true Enterprise Service Management solution right from the start. This means that different functions are utilizing the same platform to offer and manage services and process flows, facing both internal and external customers. “We were able to develop the solution across functional boundaries because discussion about digital services and processes was taken high enough in the organization early on – all the way to our Management Team,” says Paula Kujansivu, Alko’s Executive Vice President, responsible for online and supply chain. “Uniform ways to make service requests and track their progress simplify the lives of both customers and the producers of services”, Kujansivu continues.
At Alko, Efecte’s service management solution supports common operating models and service processes in the online store, customer service, logistics, money handling and IT.
| Common tools
| Common language
| Excellent service
Read a blog post where Paula Kujansivu from Alko and Henriikka Åkerman from Efecte discuss the importance of shared language between IT and business. Business executive: How about trying to speak IT for a change?
See a presentation by Paula Kujansivu on how management of service processes enable great customer experience. (in Finnish)