Account Management Model: Case Studies
After an exhaustive research, we were unable to find case studies of consultancies that have revamped to an account management model. However, two case studies of consulting firms working with clients to implement improved account management models have been presented below.
E Source Consulting & Advisory Services
- E Source Consulting & Advisory Services, a Colorado-based company, helped a large southeastern utility revamp its account management model.
- Some challenges encountered in the revamp were the following.
- There were already a "solid large business customer satisfaction ratings" that needed to be improved.
- The existing account management team was composed of aging employees.
- The corporate directive was to improve the account management model at the optimal cost.
- The competitive landscape was changing and preparations must be made.
- E Source solutions included business customer satisfaction studies, client benchmarking against competitors, and performance gaps identification.
- To get a better understanding of customer preferences, the consulting firm conducted internal and ethnographic business customer interviews.
- Using the insights obtained from their studies and interviews, the consulting team "segmented the client’s business customers, defined new customer tiers by using an established customer-scoring methodology, and improved the assignment of customers to the appropriate account manager."
- With the tiered structure, a new business customer service model was established, where the top tier gets the highest level of interaction, and the bottom tier gets the least.
- Additionally, the consulting team provided the client support on how to strengthen its manpower in the future, and set new workload balancing and project management standards.
- In the revamp, the client reassigned around three-quarters of its customers to align with the new model.
- The account management model revamp resulted in overall business customer satisfaction improvement.
Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG)
- Cisco IBSGA designed a business model based on global account management (GAM) for a top-tier global bank. The process would give the bank's clients "a single point of access for all the bank’s processes and services."
- Some challenges encountered in the development of the model were the following.
- There was no proper coordination among bank representatives, with clients being approached by representatives from different divisions of the bank, only to offer the same product.
- The bank’s sales approach was perceived as opportunistic rather than client-centered.
- The bank's clients wanted the bank to be always available and provide innovative solutions for their financial concerns.
- Based on client goals and the bank's strengths, Cisco IBSG developed a tailored GAM model for the bank.
- Similar to the first case study presented in this research, Cisco IBSG suggested that the bank provide the best-in-class GAM model for its elite customers.
- However, the key to success was to focus on extending the bank’s value, which was the privilege of deeper relationships in forms of advisory services, to its elite customers rather than features and prices.
- The bank was also advised by Cisco IBSG to develop methodologies for customer-centric and quick-cycle product innovations to become an “outside-in, sense-and-respond” organization.
- The implementation of global account management, along with the other recommendations of Cisco IBSG, "have yielded big returns" for the bank, reporting over 90% customer satisfaction in 2010.
To present case studies of consultancies that have revamped to an account management model, we looked for business news articles about consultancy firms adopting an account management model. We were hoping to make a secondary search for a case study or create a case study ourselves once we have identified the firms. However, after an exhaustive search from business news websites like Forbes, Business Insider, and Bloomberg, we were unable to find any such case.
Our assumption is that consultancy firms are expected to be experts in account management and other models, so any revamp in their structures is kept as confidential lessons-learned or proprietary intelligence/experience that they may use as a future reference for their clients.
Nevertheless, to provide helpful insights, we expanded our scope to companies from other industries that revamped to an account management model with the help of consultancy firms. With this strategy, we found case studies of a utility company and a bank that both revamped to an account management model. If our assumption is correct, then the revamps these consultancy firms implemented for their clients are likely to be modeled after their own case.