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Hertz: How big data is delivering big advantages

Read about how Hertz, the world's largest car rental company, used big data to address its customer satisfaction challenges.

The case study was sourced from IBM.

At a Glance

Hertz: The World’s Largest Car Rental Company
•    8300 locations
•    146 countries
•    Customer sentiment data generated at every location
•    Previously data processed at every location
•    Big data tooling from IBM/Mindshare centralized data gathering
•    Tooling processed data consistently
•    Data processed in half of the time previously processed
•    Identified real opportunities

When your company relies upon customer satisfaction to differentiate it from other competitors, what opportunities might big data provide to enhance that satisfaction? That's the question Hertz had for IBM when jStart™ and Mindshare, an IBM Partner, first approached them about using IBM data analytics tooling. The result? Insights Hertz never had be-fore, in a time frame that gave them a competitive advantage.


With over 8300 locations worldwide in 146 countries, Hertz has traditionally kept its finger on the pulse of itss customers with customer satisfaction surveys. The problem? How to collate that information and understand what customers were trying to tell them through these surveys?


The Challenge


“Hertz gathers an amazing amount of customer insight daily, including thousands of comments from web surveys, emails and text messages. We wanted to leverage this insight at both the strategic level and the local level to drive operational improvements,” said Joe Eckroth, Chief Information Officer at the Hertz Corporation. Mindshare, along with jStart, realised there was an opportunity for Hertz: not only could the company address its need to understand its customers better, but also how it could take efforts to enhance its relationship with its customers.


Interested in how Hertz addressed its customer satisfaction challenges while simultaneously enhancing its customer engagement activities? Here's how they did it:

“Working closely with the IBM-Mindshare team, we are able to better focus on improvements that our customers care about while removing a time-consuming burden from our location managers. This has greatly improved the effectiveness of our “Voice of the Customer” program and has helped build on our reputation for delivering superior customer service.”
Joe Eckroth, CIO, Hertz Corporation

•    Enhanced the manner in which Hertz gathered customer sentiment surveys by centralising the process.
•    Enabled Hertz to consistently analyse free-form unstructured feedback from its premier #1 Club Gold members.
•    Allowed Hertz's analysis to occur in half the previous time, giving the company the ability to respond quickly to changing feedback
•    Provided Hertz insights which allowed it to take immediate action on problem areas


Business Value Created


Prior to engaging Mindshare and IBM's jStart team, Hertz handled customer satisfaction surveys locally at each of its 8600 locations. Using IBM and Mindshare technology, Hertz was able to centralize the processing of this information and apply consistent metrics for the data. In addition, by applying IBM advanced analytics solutions, the company was able to process the information much more quickly in half the time it previously took, while at the same time providing a level of insight previously unavailable to the company.


An example? While evaluating the solution, Hertz was able to identify a potential area for improvement in Philadelphia: surveys indicated that delays were occurring for returns during specific times of the day. By investigating this anomaly, Hertz was able to quickly adjust their staffing levels at the Philadelphia office during those peak times, ensuring a manager was present to resolve any is-sues. This enhanced Hertz's performance, and increased customer satisfaction...all by parsing the volumes of data being generated from multiple sources. This tangible example of big data providing real returns convinced Hertz to move forward with the IBM/Mindshare big data solution.

Who is jStart? jStart is a highly skilled team focussed on providing fast, smart, and valuable business solutions leveraging the latest technologies. The team focuses on emerging technologies which have commercial potential within 12-18 months. This allows the team to keep ahead of the adoption curve, while being prepared for client engagements and partnerships. The team’s focus currently includes: big data, text analytics, business events processing, mo-bile platforms, and mash-ups/widgets.