She outlines the following problems occurring in many service organizations:
- Siloed communications which lead to fragmented and sub-par customer communications.
- “One-size-fits-all” service.
- Disconnected applications which lead to frustrated employees, “rework,” and wasted time and resources.
- Non-compliance with established policies.
Applying BPM practices, Leggett writes, can increase efficiency and add a level of consistency to customer interactions. Business rules and process can help a service organization deliver not only consistent communications to their customers–but also personalized ones. It’s all about empowering the right agent with the right information about the customer at the right step in the business flow.
Leggett offers up the following steps for marrying BPM with CRM:
- Audit the customer service ecosystem: Look at the organization’s various customer service channels and look for differences and places where processes could be standardized.
- Create a knowledge program: Creating such a program can help an organization maintain feedback and give consistent knowledge to agents and customers.
- Unify the agent desktop: Make life easy on the service rep so she doesn’t have to navigate through various sites, portals, and applications to retrieve answers for the customer.
- Add a foundation of business rules and decision support: Best-in-class vendors have integrated customer service and interaction channels to provide common underlying workﬂows, business rules, and decision support, as well as seamless transition between contact interaction channels, Leggett notes.
- Incorporate feedback loops. Measure the success of customer service interactions against cost and satisfaction goals, Leggett writes.
She names Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, KANA Software, Pegasystems, and Sword Ciboodle as process-centric vendors yielding “impressive improvements in customer responsiveness and cost metrics” for their customers.
“This report is exactly in-line with the experiences of our clients – they had Service-Channel spaghetti, wasteful processes and work-leakage between front and back office,” says Paul White, CEO of Americas for Sword Ciboodle. “For some, new channels had brought short term customer satisfaction spikes that quickly receded and added more burden to the increasing cost of service for the VP of Operations.”
White adds one cautionary note from the Ciboodle experience: “Process disciplines need to marry up with the human element to service. Always consistent is not Always good, and the last thing the consumer needs is systemization of corporate ‘procedure’ at every turn.”
In speaking with Gartner Analyst Michael Maoz a few weeks back, he pointed out there’s tremendous potential to add process management to applications beyond IT. The challenge, he says, is convincing business management why they need to be process-centric in the first place.