Customer expectations are at an all-time high, placing added pressure on organizations everywhere. In turn, organizations have high expectations of their employees—to do their jobs quickly, accurately, and with smiles on their faces (and in their voices)—to make the customers’ experience one that will keep them coming back for more.
A great product or service will only take you so far. In today’s ultra-competitive landscape, customer experience (CX) is king. Your offering might be better than anything available, but if you can’t deliver a stellar customer experience, you’re at a serious disadvantage. Your employees are key to making customers feel valued and appreciated. Whether on the front lines or behind the scenes, it’s imperative that all employees work toward the universal goal of meeting or, better yet, exceeding, customer expectations.
Deploy worker bees
The deployment of robotic process automation (RPA) can put an organization on the fast track to digital transformation (DX) by getting all the busy work out of the way, freeing up employees to tackle more fulfilling work. According to the Institute for Robotic Process Automation, RPA is “the application of technology that allows employees in a company to configure computer software or a "robot" to capture and interpret existing applications for processing a transaction, manipulating data, triggering responses, and communicating with other digital systems.”
Today’s software robots are intelligent and easy to design and deploy. They can be readily programmed to mimic specific actions people take when interacting with applications, websites, portals, and really any source of information, which makes them ideal for repetitive, manual, and often mind-numbing tasks. The results? Work is completed in minutes or seconds rather than days or weeks. Limited human involvement means significantly less human error for more accurate results. Personnel can be redeployed to more important roles that impact the customer directly.
With business process management (BPM) platforms, organizations can digitize and automate highly variable business processes that can be unpredictable, loosely structured, and subject to change. These might include resolving inconsistencies, capturing missing or trailing information, sending proposals, obtaining approvals, capturing electronic signatures, or sending information to the appropriate system of record.
Dynamic case management (DCM) is essential to DX, as it augments BPM to allow the dynamic creation and tracking of workflows required to address rapidly changing, incident-specific requirements. This capability can pinpoint exactly where in the process and with whom a case sits at any given moment. Typical “cases” might include new student onboarding or customer support inquiries and responses, new healthcare patient encounters, all types of insurance claims, and virtually any form of legal agreement, each of which inevitably involves unique processes, tasks, decisions, and approvals. Case “folders” include all the documents, data, collaboration artifacts, policies, rules, analytics, and other information needed to process and manage the case.
By delivering relevant data in context while orchestrating multiple business applications, DCM combines the best of process automation with the flexibility for employees to use their own judgment to solve a customer’s problem. Process automation ensures that a customer’s requests will be handled quickly and efficiently when all goes well. DCM interjects if and when something goes awry. With DCM, organizations can improve the speed and quality of their business processes by providing the information needed for enhanced decision-making, exception handling, and case resolution by its employees.
Have some PI
Any organization worth its weight in data certainly knows business analytics and business intelligence (BI) are important, but what about PI? PI refers to “process intelligence.” Business analytics explore and investigate why past business events occurred and provides information for future business planning, while BI captures and analyzes business data and transforms it into what actions to take. Process intelligence goes beyond both analytics and BI to provide the level of detail that shows the business process performance, where gaps exist in each business process, and how to address them.
In any end-to-end digital process, employees need data to understand interactions—how many applications are in the queue, how long it takes to respond, which interactions are leading to exceptions, etc. When combined with the tracking capabilities of DCM, process intelligence allows the data analyst to identify and understand interactions between the customer and the business from a process perspective and, in turn, make meaningful decisions about that process in real time if needed. With this much insight into the process, staff can quickly and accurately discover and address critical issues that, if left unchecked, would lead to operational problems or missed opportunities. By monitoring the operational aspects of processes, organizations are in the driver’s seat for ensuring compliance, eliminating risk, and providing a consistent and positive customer experience.
Time to transform
RPA, BPM, DCM, and PI may sound like alphabet soup, but when combined with capabilities like customer communications management (CCM), e-signature, mobile, and enterprise file sync and share (EFSS), they represent a comprehensive DX strategy in which the whole is definitely greater than the sum of its parts.
Every organization needs to gain a better understanding of DX, its elements, and how it can lead to true business transformation. Even dipping a toe with one or two DX components can meet the early success metrics that feed a broader digital transformation strategy. Whether you’re all in or you take a piecemeal approach, it’s time to move forward with DX to reduce internal and external friction, improve CX, and boost the bottom line.
Jeroen Huinink is Vice President of Product Marketing at Lexmark Enterprise Software. He has global responsibility for the customer communications and electronic signature product lines. With 18-plus years of industry experience, he has a deep understanding of the space and currently focuses on helping organizations make the digital transformation. Visit www.lexmark.com or follow him on Twitter @jeroenhuinink.