IT award delivered to Canada Post

Canada Post Corp.’s use of customer relationship management (CRM) software has garnered a Gartner Group CRM Award of Excellence, which was announced last week at the Chicago-based research firm’s annual Gartner CRM Summit Conference.

Ottawa-based Canada Post was selected for its “comprehensive rollout of CRM crossing sales, service and marketing,” Gartner said. Gartner, one of the world’s largest technology market research firms based in Stamford, Conn., said it was impressed with how company is using the software to help it “embrace the Internet” and introduce new channels for customers.

The award is given to the organization demonstrating best business practices in their use of CRM, Gartner said, adding that companies are judged in eight categories, including strategy, customer experience and technology.

“To get this nod of approval, really gives us the kind of impetus we need to confirm that we are on the right track,” said Canada Post spokesperson Ida Irwin. ” We recognize that the business transformation program is a really long journey that we’ve (only) just embarked on.”

“We’re probably about 25 per cent to where we have to go,” added Cal Hart, vice-president of business transformation at Canada Post.

In less than two years, Canada Post’s Business Transformation Program has streamlined 83 legacy applications into one common e-business platform with the help of implementation partners Accenture Corp. and SAP Canada, Hart said. As a result, he said customer satisfaction with Canada Post has increased.

“The real challenge is trying to get one common set of information…whether it’s through the Internet, customer service, contact centres, face-to-face sales reps or one of your retail stores – it’s a huge challenge for us,” Hart said.

“Now we’ve got one common platform across all of our customer-facing activities,” he added. “We have a total view of the customer across the enterprise, keeping in mind that we have more have more retail outlets than all the commercial banks in Canada put together.”

Canada Post needed to be more flexible and competitive as the Internet takes away portions of its letter mail business, said Jennifer Campbell, senior account executive for SAP Canada in Toronto.

“Customer relationships are the raison d’