Innovating for our customers: how ‘Think Possible’ culture benefits them

If there is one thing that sets Proximus apart, it’s our commitment to continuous innovation. This isn't just about staying ahead in a market that is both highly competitive and constantly changing; it's the foundation of our 'Think Possible' culture — a culture I'm deeply proud to be a part of. Within this mindset, every one of my colleagues aspires to offer our customers the best networks and the best products, supported by the best user experience. And to be honest, there is one factor that is even more important to us than Product & Innovation: the customer. Discover now how this commitment to innovation and customer focus shapes everything we do at Proximus.

Customer-centric innovation is at the heart of @Proximus's success and it's what helps us grow and stay energized. But what matters most to us is bringing solutions that our customers really care about. They're the ones who drive us to do better and who feed our innovation ambitions. By listening to them and understanding what they need, we're able to come up with great products and services that make a difference in their lives.

Together towards innovation

I have always been a firm believer that delivering a high-standard, innovative product extends beyond its technicalities. In my opinion, innovation is not the objective to be achieved but a necessary mean to meet our customers’ current and future needs. That’s why at Proximus, we prioritize innovations that bring solutions that are not just relevant to us, but even more so to our customers. In the end, even the most exceptional products may encounter setbacks if their go-to-market strategy is overlooked. Therefore, in addition to creating qualitative products, we also focus on packaging them in a strong, understandable value proposition for our customers.

Innovation, however, is not something we accomplish just by ourselves. In fact, we firmly believe that innovation thrives on collective insights and shared experiences. That's why we actively engage in ecosystems with local and global partners, as well as with suppliers who regard Proximus as a pioneer, often presenting their cutting-edge technology to us first. Take, for instance, @Doktr, which enables timely medical appointments when you're ill and struggling to secure one elsewhere, or our Proximus+ ecosystem app, designed to support your daily activities. Nevertheless, the cornerstone of innovation at Proximus once again lies in collaboration with our customers. Their feedback guides us in creating better experiences, ensuring that our innovations resonate deeply with their needs and aspirations.

As someone like me who has always been fascinated by innovation, being part of a company like Proximus with such a ‘Think Possible’ culture and the necessary means to innovate is truly a blessing. It’s important to note that innovation at Proximus is not the responsibility of a dedicated team, but something that we encourage with every member of our organization, for instance through innovation events such as the Innovation Accelerator and hackathons, organized with partners like @Google and @Molengeek. Did you miss it? Check out this post

Still, as much as I’m an innovation enthusiast, I do recognize the importance of responsible innovation. As a company, you should always consider the customer who will experience your innovation first-hand. After all, innovation, and especially change, can be perceived as a threat by someone who struggles to see the benefit of it all. Helping both our employees and our customer in this aspect is therefore another important part of our ‘Think Possible’ culture. A great example of this inclusive approach, in my opinion, is the implementation of #GenerativeAI in our organization. To get everyone on board (even the more sceptical), we set up small test cases to show them how beneficial this new technology can be for them personally and ensured that they can learn to use it in a secure environment, as well as in compliance with GDPR regulations.

Innovating customer operations: the impact of #GenAI

As illustrated by my example, it’s virtually impossible to speak of innovation nowadays without mentioning Artificial Intelligence. That’s why, as technological pioneers, we aspire to break ground in Generative AI in Belgium with Proximus. Gen AI is mostly known for its ability to generate new content, yet I believe its most significant feature lies in the fact that these large, complex models are so easily accessible. Whereas #AI knowledge was previously only shared amongst experts, anyone can now test and understand the potential benefits of Gen AI through tools such as #ChatGPT.

While we have continuously developed expertise since the launch of a first AI use case about 6 years ago, Generative AI has without doubt been the most incredible game changer for us in the past 6 months, especially for customer operations. I am strongly convinced that it will soon disrupt the way we support our customer and our people at Proximus. In fact, we’re already in the midst of experimenting with #GenAI in more than 10 different use cases in a variety of customer experience domains in collaboration with @Proximus ADA.

By embracing Generative AI at Proximus, we're not just advancing our internal capabilities; we're elevating the quality of the service we provide to our esteemed customers. This journey towards innovation enables me and my teams to stay true to our core mission: delivering our customers an unrivalled customer experience, meticulously crafted around their needs. As we move forward, I'm personally committed to ensuring that every innovation, every advancement, brings us closer to making their life easier, more connected, and more enjoyable.

Exploring Gen AI innovation into your organization or for your customers, too? Share your insights!

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Renaud Tilmans, member of the Proximus Leadership Squad, brings over 30 years of hands-on experience in various innovation projects. With his expertise in both residential and enterprise innovation, he offers valuable insights into Proximus’ customer-centric approach and the promising potential of Generative AI.