“#DeATThStar just doing what it normally does – NOT putting their customers first!” — @JohnLegere, September 2016
In response to a complaint about a competing mobile carrier, T-Mobile CEO John Legere didn't mince words. His tweet is emblematic of the cheeky, take-no-prisoners attitude that has served Legere in remaking T-Mobile as the mobile industry’s Un-carrier. The company is upending standard business practices with a wonderfully disruptive mandate: Listen to customers and give them exactly what they want. To that end, T-Mobile has thrown out service contracts, roaming fees, and data limits. Most recently, the Un-carrier started offering unlimited 4G LTE data for every plan.
This customer-first approach is working. T-Mobile now serves 67 million people — twice as many as when Legere took over in 2012. Company stock price has more than tripled since going public in 2013, and the company has moved up from last place among the big four, overtaking Sprint. But perhaps most importantly, T-Mobile is now number one in “customer satisfaction” and “likelihood to recommend,” according to Nielsen Mobile Insights data released in August 2016.
Yet while Legere remakes the public face of the company, another more technical transformation is underway.
T-Mobile U.S. was launched in 2002, when mobile phones had half-inch screens and were only “smart” enough to support talking and text. Only a fraction of a percent of retail sales was online. Today’s customers shop in a different world. They move freely from mobile, to stores, to the web.
In today’s environment, customers expect service that’s fast, seamless, and generous. That means being able to communicate in any existing channel, including social media, and never having to provide the same information twice.
In 2008, T-Mobile’s B2B division, T-Mobile @Work, was already using Salesforce for its basic CRM functionality. But when business customers started sales conversations in retail stores, there was no way to pick up with the customer if he or she then decided to buy outside the store. T-Mobile couldn’t capture information from millions of potential buyers and move it across channels, which would save customers time. Reps were also limited in their opportunities for follow-up.
T-Mobile has now streamlined the retail sales process with the help of a custom app. Retail reps use Salesforce to capture leads and manage appointments, while easily handing off data and orders to the company’s existing back-end infrastructure. Service Cloud routes web requests from @Work to the customer support team, and the sales team uses Sales Cloud to manage the pipeline.
Millions of businesses have joined T-Mobile @Work since 2015. Customers of T-Mobile @Work now get better customer service and faster responses, thanks to better, more complete tools for information capture.
T-Mobile sales staff, meanwhile, has more time for customers. With the Salesforce app in place, reps can place orders in minutes, a 70% reduction in work effort.
T-Mobile is still training @Work representatives with the new app. Once it has been completely deployed, leaders plan to expand the app’s usage to the consumer business where they'll be able to share leads between their telesales teams, in-store retail associates, and online shopping sites.
As T-Mobile rapidly achieves new heights of customer satisfaction, not just in mobile but across all industries, Legere’s tongue-in-cheek September 15 tweet — “Everyone should switch to @TMobileAtWork. #Justsayin” — is proving to be true.