Established in 1903 by Henry Ford, Ford Motor Company became an empire over its 115 years of activity. The American multinational with its headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan went public back in 1956, and is one of the biggest as well as one of the most profitable companies in the world. In addition, for more than 100 years it has been in continuous family control, being one of the largest companies in the world to be family-controlled. In 2008, the company produced 5.532 million automobiles, and in 2017 it had global revenues of $156.7 billion – showing that it continues to be successful in the 21st century.
When it comes to the Ford customer experience, the company followed the model of other big brands such as Delta Airlines, Apple, and Amazon, naming a top executive whose role is to eliminate problems regarding customer service. Ford Motor Company appointed Elena Ford as the Chief Customer Experience Officer, who worked with the Chief Executive Officer of Ford, Jim Hackett and the Executive Chairman of the Board, Bill Ford in order to design a plan which can improve customer engagement.
Elena Ford is the great-great granddaughter of Henry Ford, and the daughter of Charlotte Ford, an heiress to the Ford Motor Co. fortune. She has been with the company for more than 24 years, dedicating her long career towards understanding what drives customer’ perception. She joined the operations in January of 1995, and is the first female Ford family member to have a significant position in the company. She is leading the transformation of online as well as offline interaction between Ford, customers, and dealers into world-class experiences.
Prior to her new role, Elena Ford worked as the Vice President of Global Dealer and Customer Experience, and the Director of Global Marketing, Sales and Service Operations, among other roles. In order to train for her new position as Chief Customer Experience Officer, she spent time in Dallas and Beijing, where she studied customer behavior as well as corporate strategies in order to identify the problems which are plaguing customers.
Elena Ford stated that this is a global effort, the improvement of the Ford customer experience being done in Europe, Brazil, Chine, and throughout the Untied States. Ford’s President of Global Operations, Joe Hinrichs stated that Elena Ford is the ideal leader who can take on the challenge of bringing the company to world-class levels when it comes to customer experience.