Category Archives: Blog


In 2016, Harvard Business Review published 5 Ways to boost your resilience at work stating that, according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, a quarter of all employees view their jobs as the number one stressor in their lives, and describes stress as the “global health epidemic of the 21st century”.

 

With our worlds becoming ever more demanding and the stressors both in and out of the workplace continuing to increase, there is an emergent need to offer support and guidance to the workforce to help build resilience to effectively manage work life.  Living in an environment where the overload of information is always present, and the ability to disconnect becoming harder, taking responsibility for our wellbeing is vital. We prioritise putting our phones on charge to ensure they have enough battery to function every day, but can we honestly say we do the same for ourselves?

 

Making an important skill stick, such as improving personal resilience, can be hard particularly when people may feel that they are too busy to take the time out. This is where the initial challenge begins, providing people with the right tools and skills in manageable bite sized chunks is key. It’s got to feel easy and interesting to the individuals for them to sit up, take note and change their habits.

 

We have found that engaging our teams with small nuggets of inspiring workshops and providing them with tangible techniques that work is driving a passion for improving mental toughness within the business. Tagging on a short 30 minutes at the end of our quarterly company briefings has become the perfect opportunity to have widespread positive impact that is vastly growing a healthy culture within the business.

 

One workshop that we hosted, which saw high positive outputs, focused on The Chimp Paradox theory by Prof. Steve Peters. Learning a simple technique of managing any unwanted thoughts or feelings and driving a more resourceful healthy output has resonated with all those who participated, and has driven a positive shockwave throughout our employees.

 

We are seeing improvements in how our managers manage their teams, in how the sales and field teams deal with resistance and generally higher levels of motivation across our head office and contact centres with some improvements noted in performance measures.

As a business, our dedication to supporting individuals improve resilience is having a positive impact on the performance of our teams, and our business. We believe we have a duty of care to ensure that our employees charge themselves as habitually as they charge their phones.

 

Nicole Kite, Training Manager

The UK is finally enjoying a sizzling hot summer and the holiday promotions are rolling out, however, for brands, retailers and CPM alike it’s never too early to think about Christmas. It may not be until November when sales really take-off, but every year Christmas seems to come earlier. The first consumers usually start to buy for the festive season in September!

 

Shoppers in the UK will spend a record £4.5bn on food and drink in the final week before Christmas, this year, shrugging off higher prices caused by the fall in the value of the pound since the EU referendum and total spending on festive feasts will be up by 3.6% as families prepare for the big day, according to analysts at Nielsen.

 

However, the stark fact facing brands is that that due to this pressure on store staff, availability and promotional compliance of brands can drop by almost 10% at this most critical time of the commercial calendar.

Fortunately for Brands, CPM’s focus on compliance and availability saw us deliver some great results for our clients in 2017. For a leading FMCG brand, we drove an over-index on facings v planogram for 7 key SKU’s, and an ROI of 19:1. A great achievement at a crucial time of year.

 

Every year we get better, and last Christmas saw us deliver a 91% increase in incremental sales versus 2 year previous (2015) – demonstrating our commitment to continual improvement to drive more for our clients.

 

Calling into grocery, high street and discounters, the team are ready to switch on when and where you need them, with as little as 48 hours’ notice. They are made up of 350+ retail experts, who spend more than 27,000 hours in store every single month – giving them an unrivalled view of the store. We use this insight, along with our store relationships to drive results for our clients.

 

The team can deliver across a number of services including;

  • Merchandising
  • Driving promotional compliance
  • Influencing in store
  • Increasing shelf capacity
  • Siting POS
  • Pre-selling promotional activity
  • Printing and fixing SEL’s
  • Auditing
  • Activating lapsed distribution
  • Ordering new stock

We are now booking in Christmas activity, and would love to talk to you about your brand plans, and how we could help.

Get in touch today – 01844 261777 hello@uk.cpm-int.com

We’re thrilled to announce that CPM UK Jobs is starting the summer in style with the launch of our new careers website. With a fresh look and feel, and improved functionality, the site has been designed and developed to offer online candidates a fantastic user experience and successfully guide them to take the next step in their career journey with CPM.

 

We’re people first

We work in sales and we know that we’re nothing without our amazing teams. Finding, developing and nurturing the best talent in the UK is what enables us to help our clients achieve their goals.

 

As an outsourced partner, providing Field Sales and Contact Centre solutions – people are our product, so we have to win the war for talent to attract and retain the best people.  That journey starts with attracting and engaging candidates through an innovative and user friendly site, allowing us to match talented people with amazing opportunities with the likes of Diageo, Mars, Wrigley, Sky, Stanley, Black and Decker and many more.

 

New and improved

New features include intuitive navigation, greater functionality, easy search, mobile responsiveness, all while enabling candidates to browse our latest selection of sales opportunities up and down the UK.

 

Online portal

Candidates can now create an online application account that makes it easy to view the status of job applications, keep up to date with all communications related to new opportunities and makes it simple to schedule interviews. Personalised job alerts will let candidates know when relevant opportunities become available and the new and improved search functionality gives users the freedom to search for roles by keywords or by sectors that include office, contact centre, permanent, part time and flexible field vacancies.

 

#NotYourEverydayCareer

Our new website is bright, engaging and vibrant – exactly the qualities that we look for in our candidates! As a client of CPM, you can be confident in our commitment to winning the war for talent and delivering world class people and teams.  Please take a look at our new site


 

International Women’s Day #IWD2018, is taking place on 8th March this year and the theme is #PressforProgress, more information can be found on https://www.internationalwomensday.com/

 

Now, more than ever, there’s a strong call-to-action to press forward and progress gender parity. There’s a strong call to #PressforProgress motivating and uniting friends, colleagues and whole communities to think, act and be gender inclusive.

 

TAKE ACTION >

 

 

To help celebrate IWD at CPM we have been busy asking women from around our business to share their stories and experiences with us.  You can read all of the interviews by clicking on the links below.

 

 


Karen Jackson

Elaine Woods

Jane Cottrell

Rachel Cleverly

Alexa Hester
 

Claire Hall

Jenny O’Donnell

Kate O’Dowd

Linda Chassagne

Jo Farnham

Welcome to our first edition of Leadership Team Blog articles for 2018, from CPM International Contact Centre, Barcelona ” Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning: Demystified ” which comes from Emanuele Ceppelli, IT Director at CPM International Contact Centre.

“Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning: Demystified”

Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most significant transformational break-throughs – and perhaps least understood – in modern times. In many ways, the charm of AI is that we don´t realize we are using it when we use Siri, Alexa, or when the phone automatically corrects your grammar.

 

In very good company with the more notorious innovations like the steam engine, electricity, and the combustion engine, AI is the most important general-purpose technology of our era. But, what is AI doing and how quickly is it improving? Two are the areas of progress that best support the AI journey to improvement: perception and cognition.

 

Perception

With regard to the “perception”, some of the most practical advances have been made in relation to speech. Voice recognition is still far from perfect, but millions of people are now using it — think Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant as an example (by the way – this article was dictated to a computer and transcribed with sufficient accuracy).

These advances in voice recognition have evolved into the ability of a computer to recognize the human natural way of speaking. This ability is known as Natural Language Processing, or NLP. Rather than face limited touch-tone or rigid Directed Dialog, customers can now speak naturally to the device in use.

 

A study by the Stanford computer scientist James Landay and colleagues found that speech recognition is now about three times as fast, on average, as typing on a cell phone. The error rate, once 8.5%, has dropped to 4.9%. What’s striking is that this substantial improvement has come not over the past 10 years but just since the summer of 2016 (source: Stanford Education Research)

We are also assisting to a rapid improvement in the machine’s ability to recognize images.

An app running on your smartphone will recognize almost any bird in the wild. Image recognition is replacing ID cards and customers analytics, access control; public safety has also started counting massively on facial recognition.

 

Cognition

In terms of “cognition” on the other hand, the improvements are going as fast as those around “perception”.
Machine learning (ML), is based on learning from examples rather than a rigid code telling the software what to do and at what time. This is an important break from previous practice.

In a world where DATA are produced at an astonishing rate and machines can learn from examples, we have served the perfect loop for constantly feeding AI engines with relevant information to exponentially grow the ML capability.

 

A system using IBM technology automates the claims process at an insurance company in Singapore, and a system from Lumidatum, a data science platform firm, offers timely advice to improve customer support. Dozens of companies are using ML to decide which trades to execute on Wall Street, and more and more credit decisions are made with its help. Amazon employs ML to optimize inventory and improve product recommendations to customers. Infinite Analytics developed one ML system to predict whether a user would click on a particular ad, improving online ad placement for a global consumer packaged goods company. JPMorgan Chase introduced a system for reviewing commercial loan contracts; work that used to take loan officers 360,000 hours can now be done in a few seconds. And supervised learning systems are now being used to diagnose skin cancer (source: JPMorgan, Bloomberg)

Let´s see how AI can help our Contact Centres to deliver a better service more efficiently.

 

Powered by ML and NLP, an Intelligent Front Door replaces and upgrades traditional IVR routing. It allows offering the ease of conversational communication, with Natural Language intent capture at the outset of every call.

An Intelligent Front Door can provide benefits in:

  • Personalisation
  • Self Service
  • Effective Agent

Personalisation

Customers are still calling and every year their expectations are higher than the previous year.

AI helps to offer a proactive and personalized experience from the start. With AI and the right data, customers are recognised and their needs anticipated.

 

Self-Service

More than half of the customers liaising with a Contact Centre wants to “self-serve”.

artificial intelligence

source: smartactions (trademark)

With an AI engine and the right DATA, it is possible to provide a personalised and efficient self-service to customers starting from a natural conversation. Many are the processes that can be automated thanks to AI.

 

Effective Agent

By removing the initial contact steps thanks to an intelligent front door, Agents are talking only to the right customers and at the right moment, those that need them most. Customer experience success and failure often revolve around customers’ experiences with Agents.

Since routing and self-service can be automated for the repeatable tasks, Agents are likely to be more engaged. They have access to calls and the most updated customer data through CTI and/or screen pops; warm transfers become the norm thanks to AI and as most of the customers hate repeating information, the Agents do not have to make them.

 

In summary, AI is likely not a fake and the first to use it effectively will reap the most benefits. Whilst still in its infancy phase, the pace of innovation is exponential and the signs of progress will never be so slow again. Speech recognition has reduced the error rate by 50% only in the last 12 months. This means that in a blink of an eye many Contact Centres will run AI engines as they have configured IVRs until now. But it is only through trial and error that businesses can reach effectiveness in using AI.

 

To find out more or if you have any questions, please contact Emanuele Ceppelli on: emanuele.ceppelli@cpm-int.com.

Each year Omnicom invites 60 of its brightest talents from across its 1,500 agency network to come and participate in a Senior Management Program (SMP) at Babson College in Boston, MA. Lectures and think-tank style discussional exercises are conducted by legendary Harvard Business School Professors such as Len Schlesinger, Thomas DeLong, Nancy Koehne and Luis Huete. This year, Sophie Chelmick from CPM Barcelona was one of the selected participants to attend this premier educational initiative.

 

“It was transformational” explains Sophie, a Business Unit Director within CPM Barcelona after successfully finishing the SMP graduate program this July. “Our lecturers; incredible, experienced professors both professionally and academically discussed real-world case studies, strategies and solutions enabling us to explore new methods and approaches to traditional leadership concepts” explains Sophie. “it was also an opportunity to network with execs from a wide spectrum of Omnicom agencies to share ideas for taking back into CPM – as well as some potential future collaborations with those agencies”.

 

“This was very special” Sophie goes on, “a new kind of understanding emerged amongst all of us; particularly regarding some of the shared challenges the agencies face and how together we may overcome some of them; how, even as Omnicom businesses we all have an urgent and pressing need to focus on new solutions and innovations if we are to survive the future and harness the digital revolution”.

 

A key part of the program is to lead an initiative inspired by the course teachings; Sophie explains; “I was particularly struck by AMV BBDO’s creation of “Flare” in direct response to the threat of creative crowd-sourcing agencies and I want to bring the concept of “self-disruptive innovation for survival” into CPM. My initiative will be around the future of work in the contact centre both from a tech and people perspective to meet future needs of customers and employees.”

 

“My insights were deeply personal and emotional as well as professional, I learned how critical it is to spend time with my family and that by doing so I can be more effective as a leader. I now want to to ensure I pass on these learnings to our amazing teams here at CPM so that all my CPM colleagues as well as our clients can concretely benefit from the Omnicom SMP program!”

 

Omnicom is an inter-connected global network of leading marketing communications companies. The Omnicom portfolio provides the best talent, creativity, technology and innovation to some of the world´s most iconic and successful brands. With 75,000 people working globally and serving 5,000 brands in a 24 / 7 / 365 world – Omnicom is made up of 1,500 agencies worldwide and CPM is one of those agencies.



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