A Quote about the CCO Council from Curtis Bingham
Join Your Peers and Share Your Insight. Become a Member
Already a member? Click here to sign in

The Role of the CCO

The first CCO was hired in 1999 at Texas Power and Light. In 2003 there were fewer than 20 people in the world with the obscure title of Chief Customer Officer. There are now more than 500 officially titled Chief Customer Officers in the world and perhaps hundreds more serving the same role but without the formal title. Fewer than 35 of the Fortune 500 companies have a CCO The CCO is responsible for profitably aligning the company's deliverables with strategic customer needs and values. It is far easier to install a CCO in a smaller company of perhaps less than $100M in revenue, often because the CCO can directly influence all the employees. The CCO role is the most fragile in the C-suite, with an average tenure of 29.4 months, with some notable exceptions on either side of the average. It takes at least two years for the CCO's activities to flow through the company and make a significant impact on top and bottom-line results. Approximately 60% of CCOs are promoted from within and the remainder is hired from the outside. The CCO has a three-fold mission: 1) increase profitable behavior, 2) increase customer centricity, and 3) drive sustainable growth. Jasmine Green, Chief Customer Advocate, Nationwide, named 2012 Chief Customer Officer of the Year, Read More The hallmark of the CCO is the ability to create and drive customer strategy across the company. The technology sector alone accounts for 26.7% of all CCO employment.

The role of the CCO is still very new, poorly defined, and often poorly understood by executives and customers alike. Consequently, it is very important to clearly understand what the Chief Customer Officer is and learn from the evolution of the CCO role. As well, it is valuable to understand the critical goals and challenges that all CCOs face so as to learn best practices in addressing each. Learn more about the definition of the CCO.

In the early days CCOs were classified according to their accountability—they were either accountable for contributing to revenue through either customer acquisition or retention. As the role has changed, an added dimension has arisen, that of their authority to act on the customers behalf. CCOs are more heavily concentrated in technology companies, particularly in small and medium-sized companies. The CCO role is the most fragile in the C-suite, with an average tenure of 26 months. Learn more about classifying Chief Customer Officers.

The Chief Customer Officer is a powerful asset that can help resolve chronic customer issues, create sustainable competitive advantage, help retain profitable customers, and drive profitable customer behavior through the effective customer strategy. The CCO is also the most well suited to create customer-centric culture. Creating the role is a serious undertaking and executives must be firmly committed to supporting the role vocally and visibly to ensure the CCO has the authority and credibility that is necessary for success. May we all enjoy greater customer success that results in pronounced business growth.


"At SAVO, we are dedicated to our customers' success. We have organized our teams around it, developed programs to promote it, and we measure ourselves based on their success. I look forward to working with other members of the council to explore innovative ways to drive the imperative
of customer success to
the forefront of an
strategic initiatives."

Brian Study
SAVO Group

Conversations with a CCO

CCO Council 2017 Spring Meeting

CCO: To be determined
April 11, 2017  |  8:00 am ET
Employee Engagement: The Key to Customer Engagement.