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5 Business Processes Where Automation Empowers Customer Experience

Customer experience is a top priority in your organization and you’ve been investigating how technology can help. You’re not prepared to take down all your existing systems to create something new, and you don’t want to implement a heavy complex iBPMS solution, nor do you want to buy a bunch of RPA solutions. You’ve heard that business process automation can help. And you’re right, it can.

Let’s look at five types of business processes where business process automation drives better customer experience:

Routing Processes

So, your customers and suppliers are communicating with you, but to facilitate and complete these communications, they must access numerous systems that each have unique roles and data. Heck, just to simply become a customer for most companies requires access to 10 or more systems! And if you’re team is going to help, they too have to delve into these various systems–which equates to time, money, and ultimately lost business.

The answer is to leverage routing processes and decision rules that will provide a single point of interaction for the customer – a web application, mobile app or customer portal – and route the request to and between the appropriate systems using defined business rules.

Facade Processes

Facade processes provide a layer of abstraction over the top of a number of systems to present a unified experience to the customer. The best example here is a customer portal. The portal is the customer’s go-to connection to everything they want to do with your company.

The customer has one log in to the portal and can get direct access to all the systems and data they need to work with you. The portal provides a consistent user experience and a familiar look and feel across systems that are under the portal, even though these systems don’t look the same, share the same security, or even have similar data structures. Oh, and by the way, your employees would appreciate something like this too!

Simplification Processes

Simplification processes are exactly that – processes that hide the complexity necessary to provide a service to customers. These processes integrate multiple systems in a middle layer that abstracts data and decisions from these systems, processes it, and provides results to customers in a simplified interface.

Coordination Processes

A coordination process helps ensure a business transaction that involves multiple systems is initiated and completed in either a sequential or parallel pattern. Essentially, you define the process, indicate what systems are contacted in what order, what information is passed into each system and what information is received (and decisions are made) from each system when an activity is performed. These are often processes that take place over an extended period of time and involve regular updates to customers.

Augmentation Processes

Often, customer facing process requires an employee to watch or react to data or queues from one or more business system when certain conditions are met. They will then, based on that output or condition, perform a process in one system, and then based on the output of that system, may need to perform another process in one or more additional systems.

Augmentation processes enable an overarching process to initiate a process in the first system and then using that output, trigger additional actions in other systems. In this case, the augmentation process automates the additional work required across other systems when necessary.

What Processes Support Your BPA Needs?

You may recognize one or more of these processes as critical to employ for your organization. The good news is Everteam can support all of these types of business process automation.

Interested in learning more about our BPA solution? Feel free to reach out and chat.

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What Lies Beneath: Empowering Customer Experience with Your Portal and Apps

By Dan Griffith,Sales Director, US and Canada

Every day we read blog after blog and ebook after ebook on how to create the best customer experience. It’s clear we need to engage and build strong relationships with our customers to ensure they stay with us for the long haul and customer portals and mobile apps enable us to do just that.

But creating the front-end of portals and mobile applications is only part of the story that drives great customer experience. I almost dread bringing up the iceberg comparison because it’s so overused, but in this case, it’s true.

There’s a lot of work that goes into creating great customer experiences. But just like an iceberg, you only see part of the work – the interfaces.

Almost all the focus on portal and mobile app design has been on creating modern interfaces that are consistent, visually engaging and easy to use.

And sometimes that’s all that happens. Like the company that developed a customer loyalty program, with a beautiful mobile app and portal but had nothing underneath of it. No way to analyze, leverage and action the data and no way to communicate with their systems and people.  Essentially, a shiny new car with no engine!

To create a genuinely useful customer portal something needs to happen. You need to bring together all the underlying business systems that work to provide the information, business rules and processing necessary to ensure the customer has the right information in the right context at the right time to make a decision. And that information is often spread across departments and business systems.

This is where 90% of the work happens (that portion of the iceberg above that’s hidden under the water) to create a seamless, consistent customer experience. It involves the integration of business systems, the aggregation of data, the processing of business rules and the exposing of the resulting information to the portal.

This underlying work is what digital transformation is all about. Customers demand better experiences. New technologies enable you to create those experiences – like a mobile app or a new customer portal (like the loyalty portal mentioned above). But to truly take advantage of these new customer-focused technologies and give customers what they need, you also have to transformation your business from the inside, including your underlying business processes.

Business process automation solutions can help you move quickly to adopt new processes and improve existing processes so you can take advantage of new disruptive technology.

For example, you may not be able to get rid of a legacy business application, but you can wrap that legacy system to expose the data to processes that are then exposed to a customer portal. Or you can leverage business process automation to create new processes that integrate data from multiple systems and automatically apply business rules and then expose these new processes to innovative experiences that support the needs of the customer.

The point I’m trying to make is this. You can create all the mobile applications and beautiful customer portals you want, but if you don’t transform the underlying the processes and systems that support that portal, then your portal truly is a shiny new car with no engine. And you won’t improve the customer experience; you’ll just create more silo experiences that frustrate your customers and your employees.

Pay attention to that 90%, and you’ll see customer experiences improve a hundred times faster. Oh, and Everteam can help you do that.

Let’s talk!

Dan Griffith
Sales Director, US and Canada
Everteam

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I’ve Got My IoT Data. Now What?

By: Dan Griffith, Sales Director – US and Canada

Business process automation can be a critical part of leveraging the IoT (Internet of Things) data you capture.

The Connected Age with IoT Data

As we run full tilt into the connected age, what seemed like the impossible only a few years ago is now quickly becoming a reality: we can connect “everything.” The Internet of Things (IoT) has enabled us to connect so many different devices – your refrigerator, home security system, medical bracelet, Fitbit device, your car, entire buildings and so much more. We can now take any physical device and embed sensors, software and network connectivity and stream data to and from that device.

There will be over 20.8 billion connected things by 2020, according to research firm Gartner. In 2016 alone, 5.5 million things are connected every day.

“‘IoT services are the real driver of value in IoT, and increasing attention is being focused on new services by end-user organizations and vendors,’ said Jim Tully, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.”

When most of us think about IoT, we think of simple sensors that send data to inform something or someone about the state of a device. This view of IoT alone is streaming massive amounts of data into Big Data repositories across the globe.

But streaming that data into the repositories is only the beginning. That data must be managed on an ongoing basis and for it to be worth anything, you have to do something with it.

Automating Process Using Smart Devices

If you really take a minute to think about this, it’s pretty simple. Intelligent business process management isn’t just about automating routine repeatable processes; it’s about connecting people, applications and activities (automated and non-automated) to perform a process.

If business process automation can help modernize your legacy applications, then it can also connect your smart devices. In other words, the data your smart device streams have to go somewhere. That somewhere is a business process application that consumes the data and actions it. Surrounding your IoT data with a process automation framework allows you to quickly leverage IoT data to manage, automate and track activities; and ultimately improve business.

For example, a cooler at a national grocery chain “re-calibrated” itself after a thunderstorm and the company lost everything in it. If they had surrounded the data by a process that notified the appropriate people and took action the contents of that cooler would have been saved.

Business process automation enables you to not only take data from devices and action it,  it also enables you to push data back to that device (if the device supports this capability) telling that device to do something.

Take the cooler example above. If the cooler included not only the ability to stream data to the company to indicate its current status, but also the ability to reset itself properly based on data sent back by the processing application, then the contents would not have been lost.

The process of remotely viewing, managing and maintaining connected devices is also a perfect fit for BAM (Business Analytics Monitoring) a hallmark of process automation.

Creating Better Services with IoT Data

Business process automation is an integral component of digital transformation. It enables organizations to create applications and services that improve customer experiences by combining the people, activities, applications and data needed to solve a customer’s problem.

Data from IoT devices fits perfectly into this centralized approach, by ensuring employees or automated services can see at a glance the data from devices that support a customer experience. These devices can trigger alerts, like with the cooler above, or like a medical alert bracelet connected to a hospital monitoring system.

They can kick off a process that corrects some problem. When a critical part of the cooler breaks, a new part can be automatically ordered and a service call scheduled. When the oil in your car is getting low, a notification is sent to the car owner and an appointment is booked with the owner’s preferred dealership based on the owner’s schedule.

These types of business process automation-enabled services ensure your IoT data is actionable and valuable and not just taking up space in your data lake. It enables you to add a layer of tracking and reporting on that data and demonstrate its value to the organization and its customers.

Maybe it’s time to not ask what to do with your IoT data, but to ask how can you use it to improve your customer’s experience.

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Learn how to transform your customer experience with BPM process automation here.