The Potential of AI to Improve Customer Service With Office Depot's Kevin Moffitt

Learn how Office Depot stays on top of evolving consumer trends

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In the past 18 months, the use of artificial intelligence has become increasingly commonplace, with businesses across all industries beginning to integrate it into their processes.

While we have already seen some potential revolutions come about, there are endless options for what it could unlock. AI really is the new internet.

In today’s episode of The Speed of Culture, Matt Britton speaks with Kevin Moffitt, president of Office Depot and OfficeMax. Moffitt digs into how Office Depot stays on top of evolving consumer trends and maintains a balance between attracting new customers and nurturing existing relationships. He also explores the impact of AI on the retail industry, and advises young professionals on how to prepare themselves for the future opportunities that these technological evolutions could bring.

The technology landscape is constantly changing, and you never know what new opportunities it will bring. Explore the future of retail with Kevin Moffitt on The Speed of Culture podcast.

Key takeaways:

  • 03:10 – 13:19 — Observe trends to build your brand. Office Depot divides its customer base into three core segments: small business customers, education customer groups and home office groups. With Imagine Success as its brand pillar, Office Depot supports all segments of its consumer base in the process of envisioning what success looks like for them. The brand is constantly observing trends in media consumption, looking for new ways to show potential customers its unique offerings and hone its marketing strategies.
  • 16:48 – 20:23 — Your career probably doesn’t exist yet. In his early career, Moffitt spent seven years as a web designer and developer in the infant stages of the internet. He built his first website while in grad school and was hooked by the new technologies available to him. Following that initial foray into the tech sphere, he spent the majority of his career optimizing the capabilities of the internet to help people find information about products, interact with others and provide feedback across multiple sectors. It’s all been centered on empowering interactions through an interactive medium. After two decades in similar roles, it’s difficult to imagine this type of work did not exist when he was an undergraduate. Thus, he advises anyone at the start of their career not to worry. With the advancements of AI, and new industries like biotechnology popping up every day, there will be opportunities in the future that nobody could even imagine today.
  • 20:23 – 26:42 — Leverage AI to enhance your physical environments. With AI constantly changing and advancing, the landscapes of most industries are likely to completely shift in the coming years. In retail, AI has the potential to completely overhaul customer service, with low-value interactions becoming automated, allowing for more human-to-human interactions for high-value situations. Other important pieces include the power of personalization and the ability to draw on historic user data to create unique experiences for every customer. For Office Depot, Moffitt is excited to use these capabilities to empower in-store associates to further personalize their interactions with consumers. Using AI capabilities to support in-person experiences creates holistic, positive experiences for customers accessing your brand through all channels.
  • 28:50 – 30:54 — Always be curious. If there’s one thing Moffitt has learned across his career, it’s to always be curious. Curiosity is the common denominator between the people he works with who are successful, but also those he just likes to be around. Being inquisitive draws you to new opportunities and new ideas, and it helps you to challenge yourself to meet your goals. By continuing to learn and stay diverse, you can prepare yourself for the future unknown opportunities that will come your way.