USPS CUSTOMER CARE
Kelly Sigmon is being recognized for her efforts to reimagine the USPS customer experience by improving the customer care and case management processes, and empowering employees to deliver their best for USPS customers.
In August 2018, Postmaster General Megan J. Brennan appointed Kelly Sigmon as the organization’s first Vice President (VP) of CX to help the organization more effectively reach and engage our customers, bringing their expectations more prominently into our strategy development.”
With the breadth and scope of USPS’ customer base, some may have sought to tackle it all. Sigmon, however, strategically prioritized improvements in areas where she could effectively implement changes quickly: issue resolution touchpoints, including the care center, case management, and digital self-help.
Care Center: The USPS Care Center receives on average 298K calls a day, which continues to grow dramatically as customers send and receive more packages. Sigmon, new to care center operations, first learned as much as she could on the ground. She visited each USPS Care Center to see how sites and teams were managed, shadowed live agents, and took customer calls herself. She then developed an aggressive plan to deflect calls from care center agents to digital options such as the interactive voice response (IVR) system and USPS.com, and worked with others across USPS to prevent customer issues from arising in the first place. Within months, Sigmon implemented technology enhancements like SMS text and visual IVR, which are focused on digital self-service, to better assist customers, effectively handling thousands more calls monthly and reducing customer wait times.
Case Management: Cases are created for customer inquiries that cannot be resolved over the phone or with digital self-help options, amounting to 17.6K service requests daily. These cases are then managed by approximately 75K frontline employees across 30K local post offices. Like many other government systems, the legacy systems for customer inquiries were siloed, costing the organization more to maintain and making it harder to deliver exceptional CX. Sigmon recognized significant opportunities to streamline and integrate disparate systems used to track customer inquiries across USPS. Sigmon partnered with IT and key field representatives to understand the pain points of the former case management system and then worked to source and implement a new tool to transform the experience not only for customers, but also for employees. Harnessing the power of technology, Sigmon successfully integrated multiple systems and applications to help resolve customer inquiries faster; the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform, Customer 360, shows when, where, and how often a customer has previously contacted USPS across touchpoints. “The integration of information between the call centers, district offices, and local post offices is key to timely resolution of customer issues.” At the same time, the new tool makes it easier for agents and field employees to do their jobs: “I love the navigation, and it’s easy on the eyes. When the screen pops up, I see everything. I don’t have to keep repeating. It already populates the information I need,” said one field employee.
SERVICE TO THE CITIZEN AWARD WINNER
VICE PRESIDENT, CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Digital Self-Help: Giving customers options and opportunities to resolve their own questions has been a priority for Sigmon and her efforts to improve the issue resolution journey. In parallel with the launch of the new CRM tool, Sigmon revamped customer-facing FAQs on USPS.com (reach: 6M visits daily) and created an option for customers to submit inquiries online (instead of calling the call center). Taking a disciplined approach, Sigmon and her team identified which customer inquiries could easily be handled through digital platforms and began making changes in how inquiries were routed and handled. To leverage technology for even more gains, Sigmon invested in artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to improve experiences across channels. As a result, resolutions to customer inquiries are quicker and more consistent.
At the base of Sigmon’s CX strategy is listening to customers and employees and using data to make informed decisions. Sigmon has worked tirelessly to bring the voice of the customer (VoC) into decision-making at USPS. On average, nearly 4.4 million customers respond to USPS’ customer surveys, which Sigmon has used to frame solutions and measure impact. What’s more is that she has worked to make CX a shared goal. On a weekly basis, CX survey scores and insights are shared with both headquarters and the field (30K post offices). Having anchored her strategic priorities on the voice of the customer and fostering commitment to CX across the organization has set USPS up for long-term, sustainable progress.
USPS’ mandate to deliver to every household in the country makes delivering exceptional CX complex; on an average day, USPS has over 187 million touchpoints with customers. “For our customer, they don’t see multiple post offices, they only see THE Postal Service,” explains VP CX, Sigmon.