Happy Friday! ‘This week in CX’ brings you the latest roundup of industry news.

Today’s most important news is that it is International Women’s Day. Alongside some of our usual news, we’re also sharing exclusive commentary from women in business, and sharing new research about which countries women leaders are excelling in. We’re also looking at how marketers are coping with omnichannel demands.

Key news

  • Google, Meta and Microsoft are among a group of companies that have signed an open letter called “Build AI for a Better Future,” Bloomberg reports. The cohort wants to maximise artificial intelligence’s benefits and mitigate the risks. 
  • Italy spent the most between 2020 and 2023 of five major European economies on low-carbon energy policies, while the UK spent the least, an analysis by Greenpeace has found. Italy spent around €102bn (£87bn) on electricity networks, energy efficiency, fuel and technology innovation, low-carbon and efficient transport and low-carbon electricity. The UK spent around €30bn (£25bn). 
  • Bitcoin and gold prices both surged to record highs on Tuesday, according to Bloomberg. The price of Bitcoin has risen nearly 50% this year, driven by spot exchange-traded funds, briefly reaching a record high of over $69,000 (£54,230; €63,900) before falling back to $63,300 (£49,500; €58,000). Gold prices also reached $2,100 (£1,650; €1,930) per ounce, a record high.
  • New figures from the digital entertainment and retail association (ERA) show the number of independent record shops in the UK has also grown to 461 – 122 more than a decade ago. This is despite the rise of streaming, which now contributes to 84% of all music sales, as well as a dramatic fall in the number of supermarkets and specialist chains selling physical music. 

Commentary news share: International Women’s Day

To celebrate IWD, we have some comments from inspirational women. They are talking about their experiences, and their views on the benefits of a diverse workforce helping to contribute to better product development and customer satisfaction in CX:

“Women often bring a collaborative approach to problem-solving and positive team working energy! This translates directly to the development of innovative solutions that prioritise the patient experience. We also represent unique challenges that female patients face, that might not have been necessarily considered in a tech environment otherwise. An emphasis on diversity whether it be gender-based or class based enhances our ability to address disparities within healthcare.  Creating a fairer and less biased system for patients to get the help they need. The integration of diverse voices is not only good for business; it’s essential for creating technology solutions that positively impact lives on a societal level.”

Dr Reggie Sangha, Medical Director at Content Guru.

“In my role in support engineering, collaboration and problem-solving are key, and having diverse perspectives, including those of women, enhances my team’s ability to effectively address problems. In addition, women often have a strong focus on empathy and communication, which are crucial skills when trying to provide excellent customer support. Better communication means that we have a better understanding of our customer’s needs, building lasting relationships and ultimately contributing to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty.”

Meera Dasai, Support Engineer and Service Manager, Content Guru.

“As someone who has spent her career in the male-dominated IT industry, I see customer experience as a great entry point for women looking to work in this space. Women often possess soft skills, including empathy and care, which lend themselves naturally to a field basedon human connection. In my experience, women tend to excel at building cohesive teams that lead by consensus; cultivating environments where everyone feels confident speaking up and sharing ideas. We also tend to be adept at juggling multiple tasks and course-correcting as plans inevitably change.

My main source of inspiration when I joined the IT sector was my mum. She fought like a lioness to protect me and my older sister, who was born with spina bifida, and taught me to stand up for what I know is right. This enabled me to develop a thick skin that has served me well in my career. My first female role model in the workplace then taught me that we don’t always have to put on a strong front; we can use humour, be ourselves, and show our softer side, all while still being a great leader.While I now work with many forward-thinking men and women who promote inclusion, there is still a need for more female leaders; people women feel comfortable turning to with sensitive issues, to provide understanding and inspiration, and serve as advocates throughout their careers.”

Barbara Schulz, VP of International Customer Experience at GoTo.

“Ten years into my marketing career, I moved into tech. While I haven’t looked back, moving into a male-dominated environment was challenging, and I felt the lack of female role models acutely. I resolved to use my position to pave the way for others, and actively mentored young women through Innovate Her and Girls In Marketing. However, finding a mentor is not a prerequisite for success in any industry. It is possible, and powerful, to forge your own path, and building contacts through in-person events and reaching out on LinkedIn can really help open doors.

“Inspiring inclusion starts at the hiring stage, with diverse recruitment practices and thoughtful internal processes. For example, almost 40% of women who leave the tech sphere cite caring commitments as a decisive factor in doing so, but having children should not incur a professional penalty. Embedding flexible working policies that replace outdated hour-centric approaches to productivity will benefit female staff who are also parents. Companies that do this, and that foster equality through the ranks, will reap rewards, with those that prioritise executive-level gender and ethnic diversity showing a 27% likelihood of outperforming industry peers with lower diversity rates.”

Sue Azari, eCommerce Industry Consultant, AppsFlyer.

Women lead science and tech in 12 EU countries despite lower gender equality scores

Surfshark analyzed the relationship between the data on the number of persons employed in science and technology from Eurostat with the Gender Equality Index. 

The study found that women dominate science and tech sectors in most of the EU. The countries with lower overall gender equality saw a larger proportion of women in science and technology jobs.

Key insights  

In 2022, nearly 1 out of every 6 individuals in the EU was employed in the science and technology sector, totalling 76 million people. Among more than three-quarters of the countries (21 out of 27), over half of the professionals in this sector were women, reaching a total of 40 million in the whole EU.

The countries with lower overall gender equality saw a larger proportion of women in science and technology jobs. In the 12 countries where women made up more than 50% of the science and technology workforce, the overall gender equality was below the EU average. For instance, in countries that were in the bottom quartile of the gender equality index, women held 55% of science and technology jobs, compared to the top quartile nations where women represented 51% of the workforce in this sector.

The trend of lower gender equality correlating with a higher percentage of women in science and technology roles was also prominent in countries with a lower GDP per capita. The average GDP per capita in nations within the bottom quartile of the gender equality index was €21K ($23K), which starkly contrasts with €56K ($61K) in the top quartile countries.

Leading in the percentage of women within the science and technology field were the Baltic countries, Bulgaria, and Poland, with women accounting for 58% to 64% of the professionals in this area. The average gender equality score in these countries was 62.6, which is below the EU average of 67.6.

Malta, Italy, and Czechia were noted for having the lowest percentage of women in science and technology, yet women still comprised a significant 46% to 49% of the sector’s workforce. The gender equality index scores in Malta and Italy were above the EU average, with scores of 67.8 and 68.2, respectively. However, Czechia stood out as the only EU country having both a below-average gender equality score, at 57.9, and a science and technology workforce with less than 50% women.

Content chaos grows as marketers struggle with omnichannel demands

Hyper personalisation and localisation may be the end goal for most brands, but an increasing number of marketers are scrambling to manage the complex content requirements needed to deliver a truly omnichannel marketing approach. This is one of the key findings from The State of CMS 2024 report, which has been released from Storyblok. 

The report details the results of a survey of 1,719 businesses across the US, UK, Germany, Netherlands, and Sweden. 

According to the study, an increasing number of organisations are facing challenges with their content marketing strategies. This is seen as half of respondents (47%) state they are still using 2-3 CMSs in their organisation. A further third (27%) say they are now using 4 to 5 CMSs, representing a significant leap on the 11% stated in 2023’s report.

Interestingly, the survey also reveals that only one in five (19%) organisations are currently using just one CMS. In comparison, this figure stood at 24% in 2023 and 43% 2022. The inference of this insight is that organisations are turning to multiple CMSs to address modern content requirements rather than centralising with one system that can handle it all.

Clearly, customers’ omnichannel expectations and demands remain a particular pressure point in this. When asked the reason for using more than one CMS, the overwhelming majority of (67%) state the need for omnichannel capabilities. A further half (53%) say omnichannel is the most important CMS feature. 

Indicative of further content complexity to come, the report looks to a shift towards IoT CMS platforms as respondents predict a 16% decrease in website use. In contrast, respondents  forecast marked increases in  AR/VR (20%), voice-activated speakers (13%) and smartwatches (12%), further compounding the need for a future-ready content approach. 

The report also reveals much more data about the CMS industry, including:

  • Over half of respondents (53%) report serving content in 2-3 languages, while an impressive 31% serve content in 4 or more languages
  • 90% of respondents have more than one team using their CMS. The largest group (50%) work with 2-3 CMSs
  • 52% of users report that visual editing was an essential feature for their CMS, regardless of whether they were technical or non-technical teams
  • 38% state working across multiple independent platforms and migrating final content to the CMS as the top collaboration issue
  • Easier/improved content scaling is the most sought-after missing CMS feature, cited by 43% of the sample

Thanks for tuning into CXM’s weekly roundup of industry news. Check back next Friday for the latest updates of the week!

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