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Question: How are international firms preparing for rapid technological and environmental adjustments that will impact on themselves and their customers; including modern transportation, information and communication technologies?
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Telstra Corporation Limited was founded in 1901 and is based in Melbourne, Australia (Bloomberg 2017). It is Australia’s leading telecommunications company, offering a full range of communications services. Telstra Corporation Limited provides telecommunications and information services to businesses, governments, communities, and individuals in Australia and internationally. The company operates through Telstra Retail, Global Enterprise and Services, Telstra Operations, and Telstra Wholesale segments. Its vision is to become a world class technology company that empowers people to connect (Telstra 2015). It has developed a strategy for business growth to realise opportunities in new portfolios and to pursue growth opportunities that leverage its existing strengths. Its current strategy focuses on the Network Applications and Services (NAS) portfolio, Asian growth and long terms growth opportunities such as Telstra Health, Telstra Media, the Telstra Software Group (TSG) and Telstra Ventures.
In order to cope up with the changing environmental conditions, Telstra adopted a transformative connected strategy. For a brand like Telstra, with such scale and relevance to the Australian public, there must have been a degree of trepidation towards approaching change after such a long time – or even recognising the need for it. This transformation needed to be integrated and ingrained in business units and permeated through the organisation and culture, with Telstra’s operations and processes now viewed through a customer lens. The changes were compelling and had an immediate impact. Customer experience initiatives were launched to provide reliable and convenient access. Telstra 24×7 was launched, delivering enhanced customer contact, no longer restricted to phoning a call centre. CrowdSupport, an innovative online community, was launched, enabling Telstra customers to help others with customer-led troubleshooting. Measuring customer advocacy is a key marker for this customer-centric organisation. The customer remains the hero of Telstra’s organisational purpose (Marketing 2015).
Telstra has resourced a number of strategic initiatives including their Connected Leadership program which will roll out to leaders globally, impactful diversity and inclusion initiatives such as all roles flex, and a broad-reaching customer advocacy team. Efforts need to be directed at sustainability; whilst Telstra is drawing on support from external providers in the short term, the goal is to up-skill and leverage internal resources and build a network of champions to drive change over the longer term. Finally, ‘what gets measured gets done’. Telstra has increasingly focused on how best to measure change; and whilst they still have a long way to go, their leaders are already seeing changes that suggest they are heading in the right direction (Deloitte 2015).