The emergence of multiple customer interaction channels over the past decade has led every B2C company to ensure they have a presence in each new and exciting channel. But in the race to be present, have we forgotten about the customer experience?
Putting the “customer at the heart of everything we do” is the usual rhetoric from CEOs in consumer businesses. Given the accessibility of information and the rise of comparison websites, the consumer now holds all the chips. Therefore, ensuring a customer has the right experience with your organization is imperative; and because each consumer will have their preference as to which channel they interact with you on, you must be consistent across each of them.
Justifying New Channels
This isn’t easy, especially given that each channel has grown in isolation and is supported by different technology platforms. Additionally, this isn’t just a technology challenge; it is very difficult to justify a business case to rip and replace channel-centric technology that has received a large amount of investment and is actually very good at its job. On top of this, most organizations already have a legacy IT estate that restricts innovation around the customer; Gartner is suggesting that 75% of IT spend be dedicated to the upkeep of that estate.
Journey Across Multiple Channels
Take a typical insurance provider for example. The rise of the aggregation channel and new mobile applications, alongside more traditional web and direct channels, injects complexity that makes it hard to keep the customer experience central. Legacy policy administration systems do not integrate well with new mobile applications that make claims processing easier, and there are often silos of information held within contact centers that could be used very effectively across the rest of the business.
The customer may want to start their journey on the mobile app, seek more information via the website, and then eventually transact via the contact center, but will always expect that their previous interactions are known as they move from one to another. Ensuring information is shared between those channels in real time, is consistent across those channels, and actually adds value to the customer experience is the real challenge, and one that is solved with great integration, great data, and a real-time architecture.
TIBCO is named as a leader in The Forrester Wave™: Hybrid2 Integration, Q1 2014 report. Download the full report to learn more.