The 2016 CRM Service Elite Customer Companies

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If there is a common thread in today's business climate, it is the importance of pleasing the customer—because thanks to technology, your customers are more than accustomed to getting what they want, when they want it. But this year's Service Elite winners were rewarded for their efforts at doing something more basic, though every bit as essential: helping customers in need.

And for some of our winners, the stakes were high. In Michigan, the state VA agency was charged with developing a customer service model to assist veterans and their families, as the area's veterans were having trouble getting benefits, emergency assistance, even information. By leveraging Salesforce Service Cloud's case management features, agents could more easily coordinate services for veterans and stay on top of their cases until they were resolved.

For Rx Outreach, building a more efficient contact center had healthcare implications. The St. Louis–based nonprofit mail-order pharmacy, which offers low-cost prescription medications to underinsured clients, deployed a new interactive voice response (IVR) system that let clients more easily test their eligibility, check their order status, refill prescriptions, and more. As a result, costs are down and customer satisfaction is up.

New Jersey–based Labor First, which manages retiree benefits, prioritized short hold times for clients calling about their benefits, but the sudden growth of its client base put this service mandate in jeopardy. New contact center software increased its efficiency tenfold, allowing it to take on more calls, and more customers.

And on a lighter note, some Chicago-area consumers were being deprived of a good meal. Potential patrons of Hogsalt's popular group of restaurants would call for dinner reservations during the day and be greeted by endless ringing, as the company had no off-hour call strategy in place. With a new IVR solution, neglected customers were turned into happy diners.

Congratulations to this year's Elite winners, who in each case solved a business problem that, in ways large and small, helped make the lives of their customers easier.

Below are the 2016 CRM Service Elite presented in alphabetical order:

Hogsalt Hospitality

Labor First

Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency

Rx Outreach

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