James Branson

Interest

Professional interest include process innovation and improvement, web strategy and execution, creating exceptional customer experiences and leveraging that experience to generate long term customer loyalty.

Personal interests include golf, tennis, hiking, music, reading, movies and attending college football games.

Summary

James L. Branson is a versatile executive with a strong track record of achievements in eBusiness, eCommerce, online marketing, and customer lifecycle management. Most significantly, he has created and executed integrated web strategies resulting in high-volume, low-transaction cost, customer friendly online sales/services business channels, and in turning exceptional customer experience into long-term customer loyalty. By instilling a "customer-first" culture with emphasis on customer success and the user experience, James ensures that every customer touch point delivers a consistent, branded, exceptional experience while improving the company bottom line. The results are measured by multimillion-dollar savings, reductions in operating expenses, and customer satisfaction improvements.Progressing through the ranks with Alltel Communications (recently acquired by Verizon) and Nextel Communications, James leads daily operations of an E-Business web channel providing dedicated services and support to more than 3 million registered users. He identified the need for the channel to increase online presence, improve consumer capabilities and customer satisfaction, reduce operational costs, and ultimately to produce enhanced business value. Spearheading all functions from initial concept through launch, James articulated the channel’s vision, communicated a compelling business case to Alltel senior leadership to achieve executive buy in, and led cross-functional teams in the development and implementation of B2C and B2B self-service web sites. This strategic cornerstone customer self-service web business channel produced a bottom-line value of $21M+ bottom-line value in 2008. The B2C web site in particular has been cited by a third party as having the highest relative utilization among similar websites of major wireless carriers.James is acknowledged for having a combination of technical aptitude and business acumen coupled with a proactive approach to problem solving and an infectious drive for success. He orchestrates activities at the program level, evolves a strategic vision into an actionable strategy, and maintains a big picture view while managing the details. A motivating leader, he inspires people to overcome challenges and exceed expectations.

Work History

Work History
Jan 2009 - Present

Associate Director

Verizon Wireless

Associate Director responsible for managing the seamless transition of applicable Alltel web site customers to their respective Verizon Wireless web sites. Manages the maintenance and enhancement of the Alltel web sites (Consumer and Business) in order to continue to serve those customers in the Divested market areas.

Recently completed an intensive 2 day training workshop on implementing Customer Experience Differentiation as a strategic initiative for an organization. This approach is based on a 5 level Experienced Based Differentiation maturity model and has demonstrated success that drives significant revenue directly to the company's bottom line.

Mar 2004 - Jan 2009

Director, E-Business

Alltel
Created, from the ground up, the Alltel account management and sales web channel. Authored the vision and multi-year strategy for the web channel. Provided leadership and direction to a cross functional organizational team effort in the design, development and the implementation. Responsibilities continued in post implementation with annual updates to the strategy, web data analysis, competitive market research, and the prioritization of a continuous string of enhancements and usability improvements. These efforts led to very successful B2C and B2B websites, cited by an independent party as having the highest utilization of the major wireless carrier web sites and one of the highest in customer satisfaction. Focus on continuous improvements, and a focus on the customer experience have resulted in Consumer and Business web sties that provided over $21M annually in business value in 2008.
Sep 1999 - Feb 2004

Senior Manager - Web Site Testing and Infrastructure

Nextel

Directed the efforts of a 50 person outsourced test teams located both in the US and India. Responsible for all facets of the test program including budgeting, test planning, and review of results, approval for releases, test process improvements and maintaining appropriate statistics.Also, responsible for, in coordination with IT, the day- to- day web site operation, and the improvements in the infrastructure supporting the customer facing web site.

May 1996 - Feb 1999

Senior Manager, Software Development

Bell Atlantic

Senior Manager for a 10 person software development team. Managed the full software cycle from concept and requirements through testing, delivery and post implementation support. Increased the customer base by 30%.

Education

Education

BS

Masters

Naval Postgraduate School

Skills

Skills

Customer Experience

Maintained a customer experience focus throughout the past 9 years of working with external customer facing web sites. In the position of developing and directing the web testing efforts of a major wireless service provider, ensured that the use cases and testing were centered on the customer experience and how to ensure that the customer was successful in their tasks.   In creating, from the ground up, web based self-service sales and a account management E-Commerce sites for consumer and business customers, personally incorporated formal usability testing as part of design, expanded the browser suite being tested to broaden the customer base that would be covered, implemented on line surveys on the web sites in order to get direct customer feedback, and instituted face-to-face visits with some of the B2B customers.     Well versed in the Experience-Based Differentiation maturity model developed by Forrester.  Recently completed an intensive 2 day training workshop on an approach for implementing Customer Experience Differentiation as a strategic initiative for an organization. This approach is based on a 5 level Expeienced Based Differentiation maturity model and has demonstrated success in driving significant revenue to the comapny's bottom line.     

E-Commerce

Developed the initial E-Commerce testing program for a major wireless service provider, including the establishment of associated processes, procedures, and reporting. Directed the implementation of several significant process improvements and introduced automation that resulted in cost savings and/or dramatic reductions in the test cycle time.   Implemented a global component to the E-Commerce testing program for a major wireless service provider. Authoring of the strategy and the selection criteria, and was the principle reviewer to evaluate all contenders. Determined the finalist and participated as a member of the selection committee. Once a vendor was selected, directed the integration of the vendor's efforts and processes into a seamless, around the clock, successful global testing effort.   For a second major wireless service provider, created a vision and multi-year strategy, including a functionality roadmap, for a sales and account management self-service business channel. Directed the overall efforts of a large cross functional team in the design, development and implementation of both a B2C and a B2B web site. Also, led the efforts in the creation of associated processes, procedures, and executive level reporting. After implementation, continued to drive annual updates to the strategy, increased Voice of the Customer inputs, and targeted enhancements to the sites. The web sites served almost 60% of the customer base and delivered more that $21M in annual business value.  

Program/Product Management

Experienced in running a Project Management Office; Implemented a successful global testing program; Created a web based business channel that achieved both a high ROI and sustained customer loyalty.

Organizational Change

Active in driving change across organizations from implementing new software development methodologies to instilling Voice of the Customer aspects into the design and enhancements of customer facing web sites.   Also trained in the Malcolm Baldrige criteria and the organizational process alignment view it drives.

Process Improvment

Performed process improvements at all levels from directing overall programs to participating in individual process improvement teams.