Innovation May Follow Hard Times; Phil Stewart, Director of Customer Service, Virgin Media Business, on How the Industry Is Planning to Tackle Future Challenges

Daily Post (Liverpool, England), February 17, 2010 | Go to article overview

Innovation May Follow Hard Times; Phil Stewart, Director of Customer Service, Virgin Media Business, on How the Industry Is Planning to Tackle Future Challenges


Byline: Phil Stewart

BUSINESSES up and down the country have found the last two years very challenging. Yet Keith Goffin, professor of innovation and new product development at Cranfield School of Management, believes that hard times can result in great ideas.

"The time to get maximum return on innovation is in a recession," he says.

And Goffin isn't the only one who thinks so. His thoughts are echoed by a growing number of businesses looking to invest in telecoms that makes them quick and nimble. Companies know that, if the foundations aren't right, then they won't be able to take advantage of new technologies such as cloud computing, unified communications and virtualisation. Equally, they want to ensure that they are getting value for money.

I believe that to help customers innovate, you've got to do the same yourself. Innovation in business telecoms goes much further than simply just technology.

When it comes to getting creative, our values give us a helping hand.

QUALITY To my mind, delivering a quality service isn't about technology, but people.

The right people, with the right knowledge, that deliver the right service. If it was that easy, though, every telecoms company would be doing it. Despite all our experience, we still need a helping a hand from you.

Increased collaboration was highlighted in the CBI's report, The Shape of Business - The Next 10 Years. The report found that, with business concern in 2010 about access to finance still high, many felt that, in a more collaborative, less transactional world, closer relationships will become more commonplace. We couldn't agree more. We've put in place the channels for customers to feed back directly, but we're also working to ensure that our employees are given a voice and have the right autonomy to make decisions about customer care based on their relationship with you. …

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