The Stevie Awards Blog

Collective Health Makes Customers Happy and Healthy

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Apr 17, 2018 @ 02:58 PM

The United States is experiencing a shift in healthcare today and employers are at its center. Collective Health, based in San Francisco, California in the United States, strives to give companies a smarter way to provide healthcare coverage through technology and design. They won in the 2018 Silver Stevie® Awards for Sales and Customer Service: Silver for Customer Service Department of the Year and for Best Use of Technology for Customer Service.
 
Happier and Healthier Customers

collective healthFounded in October 2013, Collective Health is backed by NEA, Founders Fund, Google Ventures, and other leading investors. Erika Alperin is the Corporate Marketing and Internal Communications Manager at Collective Health.

“We’re focused on serving the 170M+ Americans who receive healthcare coverage from their employers,” says Alperin. “We are interested in the shift to recognizing that the member experience really matters when it comes to healthcare. When people get the help they need to understand their health benefits, they are better, happier, and healthier consumers of healthcare.”

They replace traditional health plans with a flexible, data-driven alternative that enables companies to get more out of their investment while taking better care of their people.

Collective Health has become a popular choice for organizations to review their increasing costs year over year, and how to improve long-lasting effects of profits and employee spending not running as efficiently as possible.

An Effortless Experience for Everyone

Collective Health is powered by an all-in-one solution that connects and administers the entire health benefits ecosystem: health plans, benefits programs, spending accounts, and employee support. Their technology delivers a more effortless experience for everyone.

This has led them to achieving an NPS (Net Promoter Score) score that is 10 times greater than the industry average, which is due in large part to their amazing Member Advocate team. Alperin explains why their team has played a pivotal role.

“A few of our MA's joined the role because they have had to navigate health insurance and coverage issues for some of their family members. Not only were they trying to understand their plans, they were translating their coverage to family members from English to Spanish. Upon joining Collective, they helped to start a group on our team to serve our Spanish members and translate complex plan documents.”

Collective Health has also been recognized by The Wall Street Journal Top 25 Tech Companies to Watch, 2017, and Rock Health's Best Digital Health Company to Work For, 2017.

“We offer a rigorous training program, both content and cultural, work with internally built tools and technology that streamline processes, and allow us to focus on doing our job,” Alperin says.

Hiring advocates with a passion for helping others and solving complex issues can provide an important sense of empathy to customers.

Tags: best customer service, customer service awards, sales awards, customer service department of the year

Brainier Solutions Helps Companies Embrace Employee Trainings

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Apr 11, 2018 @ 06:20 PM

Brainier Solutions, Inc. is definitely making an impression in the tech world, both with their foundational Learning Management Systems (LMS) and their customer service. Consistent care has earned them the 2017 Bronze Stevie® Award for Customer Service Department of the Year. This is their third year winning a Stevie Award for Sales & Customer Service.

brainier-1Brainier was founded in 1995 in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the United States with a mission to aid clients in continuing education and training, advancing skillsets, and expanding knowledge. They offer three different computer software packages: élan LMS, Chameleon 2.0 (developed by BI WORLDWIDE), and Legacy LMS.

Brainier Solutions serves small to large enterprises dedicated to training and investing in their staff. Their software packages offer an interactive, individualized learning portal accessible to employees at any time and on any digital device they choose.

They state, “Brainier programs are developed with the understanding that employees are not machines,” the company states. “They are people balancing needs, concerns, and interests in and out of the workplace. As such, we aspire to provide a curriculum that develops work-related skillsets and personal development attributes that promote success in every aspect of their life.”


The LMS offers access to courses in Drug and Alcohol Awareness, HIPAA, IT Skills, Legal Compliance, OSHA, PC Skills, SkillSoft, as well as access to other course libraries. Employees can study at their own pace in ways they can comprehend and succeed. LMS is sure to include blended learning options with interactive e-learning and multimedia resources. Success is measured by each individual’s testing and tracking.

Employers and their administrators can manage and coordinate trainings as well as keep track of each employee’s development and success. The LMS programs also offer internal social communication via blogs, file exchange, internal messaging, and live chat.

They are repeatedly recognized for their product and services by tech guru sites like TrainingIndustry.com and SoftwareInsider.com. TrainingIndustry.com cited Brainier Solutions as one of The Top 20 companies in 2017 for Learning Portals/LMS after several years of featuring them as a company to watch. SoftwareInsider.com assessed them as “Above Average” in almost every category. The Brandon Hall Group has awarded Brainier Solutions for Excellence in Technology for Learning Management and Unique Learning Technology every year since 2013.

Brainier Solutions’ excellent product and award-winning customer service mirrors the motivation behind their LMS systems. “To advance, you must inspire and invest in their [employee] development. In-house training not only motivates employees to improve, it also gives them the tools and knowledge to do so.”

Tags: customer service awards, sales awards, customer service department of the year, solution provider awards, best sales team

The Stevie® Awards for Great Employers Issues Call for Entries

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Tue, Apr 10, 2018 @ 09:00 AM

The Stevie Awards has issued the call for entries for the third annual Stevie Awards for Great Employers, which honor the world’s best companies to work for and the human resources teams, professionals, suppliers, and new products and services that help to create and drive great places to work.

All individuals and organizations worldwide—public and private, for-profit, and non-profit, large and small—may submit nominations to the Stevie Awards for Great Employers. The early-bird entry deadline, with reduced entry fees, is May 2. The final entry deadline is June 6, but late entries will be accepted through July 18 with payment of a late fee. Entry details are available at www.StevieAwards.com/HR.

SAGE 2016 hall groupREVIEW THE ENTRY KIT HERE

An international judging panel of more than 50 executives will determine the Stevie Award winners. Finalists will be announced on August 15. Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners will be revealed and presented their awards at a gala event in New York City on September 21.

The Stevie Awards for Great Employers recognize achievement in many facets of the workplace. Categories include:

  • Employer of the Year Awards
  • HR Achievement Awards
  • HR Individual Awards
  • Solution Provider Awards
  • HR Team Categories
  • Solution Provider Awards
  • New Product & Service Categories
    • Software
    • Training Programs or Media
    • Curated Training Platform of the Year

Winners in the 35 industry-specific Employer of the Year categories will be determined by a unique blend of public votes and professional ratings. Public voting will take place from July 23–August 12.

Stevie Award winners in 2017 included Ad Exchange Group, Deutsche Telekom Services Europe GmbH, Gamelearn, Grubhub, IBM, KIND LLC, McAfee, Migros Ticaret A.S., Samsung Electronics Turkey, Wayfair, Workiva, and Yerra Solutions.

Tags: hr awards, human resources awards, solution provider awards, Buisness awards, employer of the year, Start-up, business developement

Focus on Customer Service Pays off for Travelzoo

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 01:59 PM

With competition from more than 2,300 organizations, winning a Stevie in the 2018 Stevie® Awards for Sales and Customer Service is no easy feat.

Travelzoo, founded in 1998 in New York, United States, is a company that publishes top deals on travel fares and hotels. They came away with four Stevie Awards, including the 2018 People's Choice Award for Favorite Customer Service in Leisure and Tourism, Front-Line Customer Service Team of the Year, Customer Service Management Team of the Year and Customer Service Department of the Year.

Travelzoo 1“Winning has rallied our colleagues around the world to re-double our commitment to deliver ‘100% happiness, 100% of the time,’” says Lisa Oswald, Travelzoo’s Senior Vice President of Global Customer Service. “We know everyone's job is all about doing what's best for our members—from the travel partners we choose to work with, to the destinations we curate and the rigor of our quality vetting process—we are Travelzoo 2proud to stand behind our brand.”

This is not the first time Travelzoo has come away with special honors from the Stevie Awards. Last year, the site garnered a Bronze Stevie for its use of contact center technology and a Gold award in the Women in Business Awards. Oswald also won a Gold Stevie in 2013 for Customer Service Executive of the Year.

Travelzoo 3Even so, Oswald contends that pulling in several customer service awards at the February 23 ceremony in Las Vegas was particularly gratifying. “A win for the service team has infused an even greater sense of pride and enthusiasm for our members-first philosophy,” she says.

Listening to the Customer

The company provides 28 million members with insider deals and one-of-a-kind experiences that have been reviewed by its experts.

Part of the company’s growth stems from a resurgence in the leisure travel sector. Americans spent more than $100 billion on summer vacations alone in 2017, according to a report by Allianz Travel Insurance. In 2016, spending was just shy of $90 billion.

“Research shows that experiences make you happier and are as valuable, or more valuable, than buying fancy things. It’s changing the way people travel across all generations and has given rise to the sharing economy,” says Oswald. “Consumer spending is expected to grow in ‘non-essential’ categories, including vacations and dining out, and we are poised to meet that growing need for experiences—that’s what we do.”

Even in a healthy industry, Travelzoo’s unwavering commitment to customer service has helped it stand out. Its philosophy, says Oswald, is one of continuous improvement, where the department strives to fine-tune every aspect of the customer experience.

The Voice of the Customer program is critical and elicits feedback from people who use its travel deals. The program has helped Travelzoo raise its CSAT score, a key measure of customer satisfaction, from the low 80s to the low 90s in a short period of time, Oswald continued.

“We don't have an army of people, and we don't have an unlimited budget. However, we do have a relentless focus on making incremental changes that matter to our members,” Oswald explains. “And the cumulative impact of these changes over time—changes in product, changes in process, and changes in policy—is that our members have endorsed our service at all-time record highs. I call that the ‘Thank You Effect.’”

Tags: customer service awards, customer service leader of the year, Woman of the Year, business developement

Ahjo Communications Puts Burning Creativity into Business Strategy

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Mar 28, 2018 @ 12:29 PM

Public relations teams strive to represent people, companies, services, or messages in a favorable light. Ahjo Communications is a public relations agency in Helsinki, Finland that considers itself an organization that achieves that goal with creative fire. Their vision to be known for renewing communications and the communications culture has led them to winning both a Gold Stevie® for "Crisis Communications Campaign of the Year” for their work with Heart Hospital, and a Silver Stevie for Communications or PR Campaign/Program of the Year in The 2017 International Business Awards. 

Bringing Heart to Work

Ahjo communications.jpgAhjo has been the Finnish affiliate of Weber Shandwick since 1992. Weber Shandwick is a leading global public relations firm with offices in 81 countries around the world. The Ahjo team consists of Senior Advisor Sari-Liia Tonttila, who is one of Finland’s leading crisis communications experts with experience in various company crisis communications; Communications Consultant Eeva Louko, a former journalist; and Senior Consultant Meri Marttinen, who has a background in healthcare and consumer communications in which she focused on developing influencer marketing.

“The impact has been good. Our clients have been happy for us and the prize has given us new positive publicity. The client, Heart Hospital, is very happy,” says Marttinen about Ahjo’s success with Heart Hospital. “The team is a perfect combination of three creative, brave women who always aim high and think beyond the box—strategically, but every time toward client's business goals.”

Balancing Passions

Ahjo Communications acknowledges that their success has come from many facets of their lives. Senior Advisor Sari-Liia loves to ski, exercise in nature, and come up with great, big ideas for her clients.

“[Sari-Liia] is an example of a person who works for her goals to achieve them: she wanted to bring the world-leading PR summit, ICCO, to Finland for the first time. Her work paid off. Now this year ICCO is organized in Finland!” says Marttinen.

Marttinen dreams of learning as many languages as possible, and Eeva will definitely write a book.

“Many of us enjoy hiking in nature. In addition, we love to read and spend time on other arts. We are not scared to bring out our ideas. We protect small, delicate ideas as they may grow big when further planned.”

When You Grow, They Grow

With effective communication to implement business strategy and supportive, strong networks, future pioneering positions are likely to grow in their market. Ahjo Communications provides workshops for professionals and business owners who want to build on their established platforms to reach career specific goals.

Ahjo does this by designing workshops to meet strategic and developmental needs of executives and department leaders. In the ‘Idea Leadership Workshop’, Ajho Communications helps business leaders crystallize ideas or brand goals in an understandable, pragmatic form that employees, stakeholders, and customers can carry with them and share.

Ahjo Communications wants to help you grow.

Tags: communications awards, PR awards, public relations awards, event marketing

New Owner Helps Event Marketing Firm Stay on the Cutting Edge

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Fri, Mar 23, 2018 @ 02:26 PM

Trade shows and conferences can be great opportunities for businesses to meet prospects—but they can also be crowded places where exhibitors find themselves in competition with hundreds or even thousands of other companies to catch the eye of attendees.

That’s why many exhibitors hire experts like Live Marketing, a U.S. firm that specializes in creating memorable experiences. For example, a food ingredient developer enlisted them when it sought to create a buzz around its newest solutions at an important industry event. Live Marketing’s answer: RFID sensors to trigger an interactive, multi-screen display when guests “pick and place” various food items, a novel approach that helped the client exceed its lead-generation goal.

Live Marketing pic.jpgFor a medical device maker, the team created a unique conference display featuring a glass-encased laboratory dotted with scannable hotspots that let the visitor experience its products firsthand. Each interaction prompted a brief video or augmented reality sequence, resulting in an immersive tour through the lab.

Underpinning those examples, and many other projects, is a reliance on technology to push the boundaries of what a live corporate event can be. It’s an approach that Anne Trompeter, then a 10-year veteran of the Chicago-area firm, brought to the forefront when she bought Live Marketing in 2014.

The organization has long had a prominent position within the world of corporate events. Launched in the 1970s, the agency was a pioneer in the experiential marketing industry. It was the brain trust that helped introduce the Intel Pentium processor and the world’s first flip phone to the marketplace.

When she took the reins four years ago, Trompeter’s goal was to make sure the firm didn’t grow stale. “I bought Live Marketing from its original founder with a clear vision to reinvigorate and refresh the company to be relevant for today’s sophisticated experiential marketing and technology-activated approaches,” she says.

In a short period of time, she’s helped make that vision a reality. The company has won numerous industry awards for its innovative, tech-based exhibits, and Trompeter recently garnered the Silver Stevie® award for Female Entrepreneur of the Year in The 2017 American Business Awards.

A Team Effort

Breathing new life into the agency hasn’t been a solo task, something Trompeter readily acknowledges.

One of the changes she made early on was to get the most out of what she saw as untapped potential within the staff. “I’ve shifted our creative process so we are all challenged to bring in new engagement ideas on a regular basis,” she explains.

She’s also put a premium on helping employees grow, either within their role or in new positions. In one instance, a member of the marketing team expressed an interest in being a producer, a job with which she had little experience. Not wanting to lose one of her valued employees, Trompeter helped ease her into the new role over a period of 18 months. “By mid-2017, she was full-time producer and is very happy and productive,” the executive says.

In another instance, the executive leveraged an employee’s degree in theater management by moving him up into a production role. Once an assistant to Trompeter, he’s now a full-time creative director with a roster of his own clients for which he writes and develops concepts.

“I consider it an achievement to cultivate the very best team who feels appreciated and able to do their finest work at all times,” she says. “The way I do that is listening to my team members and making adjustments based on what I’m hearing.”

As if running a top-tier events marketing firm isn’t challenging enough, Trompeter does it while juggling a litany of other roles. Among them: parent, church choir member, and triathlete.

Rather than detracting from her business responsibilities, she says those outside endeavors help keep her energized. “Training for races and triathlons plus my overall commitment to fitness keeps me physically and mentally healthy,” she says. “I apply that same focus and drive to my business. But I recognize the importance of a healthy work-life balance, not just for me, but for everyone on my team.”

A breast cancer survivor, Trompeter uses her professional success to support cancer research and other philanthropic causes and encourages her employees to perform charitable work as well. “Several employees suggested giving back more specifically to the communities where our offices are located,” she says. “So beginning last year, each office identifies and does two hands-on charitable give-backs, like serving in local soup kitchens and doing food distribution.”

“In 2018, our theme is ‘Get Engaged’,” says Trompeter. “I feel strongly that now more than ever we have a responsibility to be civic-minded. Getting more involved in our communities’ neediest populations is an immediate and personalized way to get engaged.”

Tags: marketing awards, women awards, best marketing team, business developement, event marketing

2018 American Business Awards Final Entry Deadline Extended

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, Mar 15, 2018 @ 09:30 AM

The Stevie® Awards, organizer of The American Business Awards, announced today that the final entry deadline for the 16th annual ABA competition has been extended to April 13. No additional late fees will be charged. Entries submitted through April 13 will not be penalized in any way in the judging process.

“We’ve received so many requests for individual deadline extensions that we’ve decided to extend the deadline for everyone,” said Stevie Awards president Michael Gallagher. The original final deadline was March 14.

GET THE ENTRY KIT HERE

ABA 2017 9-2.jpgThe American Business Awards are widely considered to be the premier business awards program in the U.S.A. All organizations operating in the U.S.A. are eligible to submit nominations— public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large, and small. The 2018 awards will honor achievements since the beginning of 2017. Entry details are available at http://www.StevieAwards.com/ABA.

The American Business Awards recognize achievement in every facet of the workplace. Categories include:

New categories in the 2018 American Business Awards include seven new Software Solution categories, four Lifetime Achievement Award categories, four additional Marketing Campaign categories, two new PR Campaign categories, one new category for Live Events, and Best White Paper or Research Report.

More than 200 executives on 12 juries have already begun the process of rating nominations to determine the Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Award winners.

Stevie winners will be announced on May 1, and the awards will be presented at a gala banquet on June 11 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City. Attendance is not required to win.

The list of past Stevie Award winners in The American Business Awards reads like a who’s who of innovation and business success in the U.S.A. Explore the list of last year’s winners.

Tags: customer service awards, business awards, marketing awards, PR awards

Call for Entries Issued for Fifteenth Annual International Business Awards®

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Wed, Mar 14, 2018 @ 09:30 AM

The Stevie® Awards has opened entries for The 15th Annual International Business Awards, the world's premier business awards competition, which attracts nominations from organizations in more than 60 nations and territories each year.

All individuals and organizations worldwide—public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large and small—may submit nominations to The International Business Awards. The early-bird entry deadline, with reduced entry fees, is April 11. The final entry deadline is May 9, but late entries will be accepted through June 13 with payment of a late fee. Entry details are available at www.StevieAwards.com/IBA.

IBA winner woman 2017.jpgREVIEW THE ENTRY KIT HERE.

Juries featuring more than 150 executives will determine the Stevie Award winners. Results will be announced 9 August. Stevie Award winners will be presented their awards at a gala banquet in London, United Kingdom on 20 October.

The International Business Awards recognize achievement in every facet of the workplace. Categories include:

A variety of new categories are introduced for the 2018 competition, including a new group of categories to recognize the Entrepreneur of the Year and Founding Teams in many industries. In addition to seven new Software Solution categories in the New Product & Services section, there’s a new selection of categories to recognize Content Solutions. There is one new category, Best White Paper or Research Report, in the Publication categories and one new category, Engaged Community of the Year, in the Marketing categories. There are two new PR Campaign categories in the Public Relations section. Finally, there are four new Lifetime Achievement Awards categories in the Management section.

Stevie Award winners in the 2017 IBAs included: Cisco Systems (USA), Domino's Pizza (Turkey), Freelancer.com (Australia), Garanti Bank (Turkey), KT (South Korea), Llorente & Cuenca (Spain), Meltwater (USA), MSLGROUP (USA), PRIZM (Hong Kong), Sunny Side Up (Japan), Syncron (Sweden), Telkom Indonesia (Indonesia), Thai Life Insurance Plc. (Thailand), Viettel Group (Vietnam), Weber Shandwick (United Kingdom), WNS Holdings (P) Ltd. (India), and Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting (USA).

Tags: marketing awards, PR awards, company awards, international business

Improving Customer Satisfaction with DiCentral

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Mon, Mar 12, 2018 @ 12:03 PM

DiCentral is a global leader in Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), solving complex EDI and supply chain integration challenges.

DiCentral enables customers to expand their supply chain without limits. For small business communication systems with multinational enterprises, this is pivotal in delivering greater return on investment and in reducing redundant, error-prone data entry.

Kayla Adair, EDI Onboarding and Connections Lead, has won the Gold Stevie® Award for Back-Office Customer Service Professional of the Year in The Business Services Industries category of the 2018 Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service.

DiCentral Excels in Customer Support

Dicentral.jpg
Founded in 2000 with headquarters based in Houston, Texas, United States, DiCentral has become a leading global provider of EDI and supply chain solutions. The company has 10 offices worldwide supporting a diverse business customer base in over 27 countries.

DiCentral offers computer systems communication solutions for automotive, energy, government, health care, manufacturing, oil and gas, and related industries.

“DiCentral solves complex EDI integration challenges,” says Tina Jaekel, DiCentral Marketing Manager. “As markets continue to fluctuate, leading organizations rely on DiCentral to innovate while they integrate with their trading partners.” Jaekel has expertise in ERP partnerships, certifications, channel sales marketing, automotive EDI marketing, and manufacturing EDI marketing.

DiCentral focuses on developing efficient ways for relevant product and supply chain data (inventory, order, shipping information, invoicing) to be easily viewed and shared between retailers and suppliers. They also standardize accurate and timely product-related information for trading partners looking to build aisle assortment quickly and electronically.

Being a global leader in EDI and supply chain solutions means using proprietary technology instead of outsourcing key functions, such as providing live technical support over the phone that never leave clients waiting in a queue.

“The Stevie Awards nomination gives our company credibility so that we can continue to shine,” says Jaekel. “We are delighted that the Stevie Awards has recognized our company. It gives us the pride to continue to excel in customer support.”

Kayla Adair, EDI Onboarding and Connections Lead, won the Stevie Award for training their support team. DiCentral and Adair realize the need to deliver and go the extra mile to ensure each customer is satisfied.

Proactive Engagement

DiCentral and Adair have announced expansion in their leadership team with two new senior hires as part of a global effort to drive and scale growth. Let DiCentral proactively engage with your trading community to identify your customers' unique EDI requirements and respond to ongoing mapping, communication, and business rule changes.

Tags: business awards, customer service excellence, business developement

Stevie Awards Announce Winners in the 4th Annual German Stevie Awards

Posted by Maggie Gallagher on Thu, Mar 08, 2018 @ 10:00 AM

The organizers of the Stevie Awards announced the winners in the 2018 German Stevie® Awards. The big winner overall with a total of ten Gold Stevies is Crowdconsultants 360 GmbH from Berlin.

With ten gold, one silver, and one bronze Stevie Award, Crowdconsultants 360 GmbH is the most awarded organization of the German Stevie Awards this year. The Berlin-based company can look forward to Gold Stevie Awards for most innovative company, startup of the year, and more.

German stevie 2016 3-2.jpg50 executives from all over Germany were named as a part of the expert judging panel who determined the Stevie Award winners. They have reviewed over 400 nominations, selected the most innovative solutions, organizations, and individuals, and finally crowned the winners of the Gold, Silver, and Bronze Stevie Awards.

Agenda Informationssysteme GmbH & Co. KG from Rosenheim and the Voith GmbH & Co. KGaA from Heidenheim each won five Gold Stevie Awards. Michael Gallagher, founder and president of the Stevie Awards, congratulates all winners on their achievements. "We are looking forward to a great award ceremony in Berlin", he says, and is proud that it takes place at the Hotel Adlon. On 27 April 2018, the winners will receive their trophies at a festive award ceremony.

All winners of the Golden, Silver and Bronze Stevie Awards are listed on the homepage of the German Stevie Awards.

Anyone wishing to be one of the winners of the German Stevie Awards next year can request an entry kit on the awards website in order to be informed in good time about deadlines and participation documents: www.stevieawards.com/Germany.

Tags: German Stevie Awards, company of the year, top business awards

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