Recent Posts

Stuck in the “Now” can Hold Back the Future of Oil and Gas

Oil & Gas

Several Oil & Gas capital project leaders I met with in Amsterdam recently have had me thinking – are we forward-looking enough in our industry? I’ve blogged before about what I believe is an opportune moment, amidst the changing price of a barrel of oil, as a chance to reinvent. On the technology side, ideas we dreamed about just a few short years ago have already taken off. When I say taken off, I mean literally. Drones are having a big impact in solving accessibility issues. On a current major offshore build, for example, I know a construction team using drones to access difficult locations and photograph construction work, enabling engineers to remotely verify construction quality and completion. In the past, this would have would have required a team of engineers on the rig, could have been dangerous to accomplish, time consuming and expensive. Bu, on the business side, there seems to be less creativity in introducing changes. Very few companies I know have a plan to transform to lighter weight, faster-moving types of companies. In the automotive industry, for example, we can see a significant shift to using hired expertise for various car components. The network of suppliers is well understood, and it is routine business to combine different talents together until the car is cost-effectively delivered. Technology companies do this as well, such as Cisco and their “liquid” workforce. It gives them flexibility, or in cloud language, elasticity, to contract and expand more rapidly. In the Oil & Gas industry, we may be focused too much on today. While it’s understandable that to ensure survival, cost cutting and personnel reduction may be needed, where is the strategic thinking to rebuild once the market rebounds? How will each level of the industry, from upstream to downstream, create a new future? The only reason we have drones checking remote pipelines now is because visionaries dreamed up better ways of doing things yesterday. I have heard from executives in our industry that there is a willingness to restart, including interest in contracted engineers to perform more work across the value chain. Certainly, there are technologies already in place to support a more dispersed, virtual team, from WhatsApp to telepresence. Our challenge now is to envision that new energy entity, and the innovative forms and operating models it may use to pull apart from the pack. What are your ideas for changing how our businesses are run? Comment below.

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Discover the Latest Customer Experience Management Trends and Innovations at Enterprise World in July

Is there anything good happening in Toronto in July this year? Sure there is. How about joining us for the biggest and best OpenText Enterprise World event yet? There will be a lot of different activities and events to choose from for anyone involved in planning and delivering exceptional connected customer experiences at this year’s event, with a strong focus on delivering exceptional, valued content for customer experience management professionals; be they strategists, practitioners, or solution developers. Enterprise World will be your chance to get a first look at product roadmaps, innovations, and new features in: Digital Asset Management Customer Communications Management Web Content Management Work Force Optimization As well as associated technologies such as analytics, web site optimization and for capturing the voice of the customer, business, and employees. Topics under discussion will range from industry trends, to product roadmaps, to deep dive technical sessions, and everything in between. As an example, just a few of the CEM topics already scheduled include: Ten Customer Experience Management Trends for 2017 OpenText CEM Strategy and Roadmaps for the Experience Suite products Build the Right Foundation for Future Digital Experiences Migrating and Upgrading to the latest Experience Suite products Adding to the mix will be customer panels, access to special product demo areas, as well as the Innovation and Developer Labs where you’ll have access to a wide range of CEM experts. This is your chance to provide direct feedback and ask for those product enhancements you’ve always wanted. Enterprise World will also give you the ideal opportunity to network with your industry peers and hear their stories. Share your story too, and learn from each other. If this all sounds like a great reason to spend July 10th to the 13th in Toronto, then make sure to register and we’ll see you there.

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Thoughts From AIIM 2017 – and the Heart of ECM

ECM

Social media has changed almost every way that we interact. Even volunteering for extra work in your own company. Not three minutes after I tweeted that I was not going to attend AIIM this year, I received an email asking if I was serious about wanting to attend. It was a sly way of getting me to volunteer for three days in the booth with OpenText, but to be honest, I was glad to have the chance to do it. The AIIM conference is a great place to reconnect with industry leaders and customers to take the pulse of the ECM business. With all due respect to those who title blogs to the contrary, the heart of ECM is still beating In technology we cling to acronyms the way a shipwrecked sailor holds on to driftwood. ECM is no different. It has defenders and no small number of detractors who argue for its replacement. I am of the opinion however that we spend far too much time debating what to call it than actually doing something productive with it. Fortunately there were many very productive conversations at AIIM 2017. This year, AIIM was especially important because it was one of the first opportunities to talk to free range customers about the acquisition of Documentum by OpenText. For Documentum customers, the message is clear – your investments are safe and these are not products that will simply sit on the sidelines. To do otherwise  simply does not make good business sense. Similarly AIIM was an opportunity to give some OpenText customers a first look at what new toys are in the box for them to explore like LEAP and InfoArchive. After attending this conference I can see no value in replacing, retiring, or even updating the acronym ECM. It is good for what it is in the right context. That said, OpenText is not just about content. Look at the home page and you will find we talk about Enterprise Information Management. It is not an either EIM or ECM situation but rather one is inclusive of the other. In the keynote John Mancini suggested moving away from Enterprise to Intelligent Information Management as a way to describe what we do. I like the use of the Information but I do not know anyone who would want Unintelligent Information Management so the message may not be as clear as it seems. More semantics. Going beyond semantics – Content Services What does change the conversation is the idea of Content Services and it was a frequent topic in my discussions. At some level it is really the same thing, but I do believe this is a shift in thinking. As you define your business challenges and understand how content is part of them, a services design mindset is fundamentally different from the past approaches. Content services suggests a repository agnostic, API defined transactional model rather than the enterprise platforms driven by traditional ECM. You can obviously solve many of the same problems with both approaches but the model suggest CS would be more nimble, responsive, and dare I say, a less expensive option over time. The balance we must strike moving forward is how to thoughtfully migrate content workload into this model without sacrificing past investments in content systems and the information they contain. Decomposition of a problem into meaningful segments that can be solved with discrete solutions made up of common services is new in ECM. The monolithic systems of the past were driven (by customer demand in many cases) to solve every conceivable problem in a single offering. We can eventually provide all these services in the cloud in products like LEAP, but it is important to note that this does not need to be a rip and replace strategy. Many existing systems can also be engines behind some of these services for those not ready to make that jump, while keeping their existing systems up to date. Content services is not just another term for cloud delivered ECM or EFSS. In building cloud ECM, some have confused user influence over the buying decision and adoption with ownership of the information assets themselves. The “E” in ECM seems to move from “Enterprise-managed” to “Employee-managed.” While this design focus has had obvious benefits in experience, it sacrifices a critical point. Ownership of the content. Ultimately, does a user or a process own the asset. The last time I spoke at this conference was in 2011 and pointed out even then that we needed to “appify” our existing ECM solutions. The context then was part of a mobile content management experience. This is, in fact, what products like LEAP are doing at the layer above content services. Regardless of your acronym of choice, it is an interesting time to be a part of the AIIM community and the OpenText ecosystem.

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Digital Transformation Just Can’t be Doing More of the Same

digital transformation

Einstein famously described insanity as repeatedly doing the same thing and expecting different results. Recent research from Gartner found that the Digital Transformation efforts of many Financial Services firms were, in effect, hoping that “doing ‘more of the same’ will equate to improved performance”. While this isn’t insanity, it’s not exactly transformational either. There has been a great deal of investment throughout the Financial Services industry to provide an omnichannel digital customer experience. But this  has yet to reap the expected benefits of Digital Transformation. Gallup has noted: “Although banks are offering more channels, they are not realizing desired outcomes such as reduced costs and higher customer engagement.” The principle reason for this is that, in many cases, banks have simply used digital technologies to underpin the business processes that were already in place. They have been able to make small efficiency improvements but nothing that is transformative. Recently, finews.com noted that digitization efforts had not really altered the core products and services offered by traditional banks. This is a statement that’s equally true in other areas of Financial Services such as Insurance – if not more so. Insurance remains 50-year-old business processes, information siloes and legacy systems that no longer meet business needs. Any organization will struggle to build the extensible, collaborative and agile business structures in those circumstances. They inhibit financial services firms fully benefiting from Digital Transformation and from delivering excellent customer experience. McKinsey suggests that this requires a two-pronged approach – Digital and operational – with the first step being to move beyond the product and service departmental silos that have so long underpinned the Financial Services model. The consultancy recommends that the business should be aligned to the key customer journeys for the firm. This recognizes that a customer journey – such as opening an account or making a claim – encompasses a number of business functions, processes and IT systems. Customer-facing journeys for a bank according to McKinsey, can typically be divided into seven categories: signing up for a new account; setting up the account and getting it running; adding a new product or account; using the account; receiving and managing statements; making changes to accounts, and resolving problems. Similar journeys can be easily mapped for Insurance firms or Investment brokers. Digitization – both of customer experience and day-to-day operations – is one of the five ‘levers’ necessary to achieve the Digital Transformation required to a customer-centric model, according to McKinsey. It sits alongside lean process design, intelligent process automation, advanced analytics and business process outsourcing. While it’s undoubtedly true that all are necessary to maximize investment in Digital Transformation, trying to do everything at once is extremely risky. An early focus on digitization is my preferred approach for a number of reasons. First, it offers a number of operational and cost ‘quick wins’. Just replacing paper-based processes with digital ones increases productivity and efficiency while reducing the cost associated with manual processing and paper storage and management. Making content digital – especially when you can bring structured and unstructured data together – can significantly reduce risk and facilitate effective compliance. This may sound very much like ‘doing more of the same’ but it isn’t. I believe that digitization is the foundation upon which other McKinsey levels are built. It is difficult to imagine how you can apply advanced analytics and intelligent process automation unless you have full control of the data within your organization. Gartner suggests that digital maturity for Financial Services companies requires that CIOs focus their firm’s participation in an expanded ecosystem that includes customers, competitors, suppliers, regulators and stakeholders from other industries. This allows for better customer connection and engagement – as well as driving innovation – within the dynamic digital markets that all Financial Services firms are facing. It also requires a sound digital platform upon which to build these new connections and services. Let me give you an example. OpenText, SAP and Delaware Consulting have recently been working with an insurance company in Asia. The firm had over 800 different types of correspondence – which totaled over 50,000 separate documents that were all printed and mailed each day. The company realized that it could make huge cost and productivity improvements if it could replace its paper-based correspondence. That was only the start. The company set about using its digitization program to radically alter how it engaged with customers. It built a completely new level of experience for its customers based around a self-service portal that went much further than simply automating the exchange of document types. Customers can receive information, ask questions, upload documents and administer their accounts. Each customer now has a personalized portal that they can access any time, anywhere and through any device. Digitization has been a foundation for this insurance company to deliver true Digital Transformation. The firm implemented the OpenText™ Extended ECM (xECM) solution to create a centralized repository of all customer information. Its agents now have a single source of truth on every individual. They now have up-to-date, real-time information when dealing with customers. The program has given the firm the ability to take an enterprise-wide view of the systems and services it needs that can help target its operations towards the specific journey of each of the customers. Digital Transformation has to be built from the ground up. It starts with replacing paper-based processes but it must gone much further. Digitization is the platform to create the business innovation and customer engagement for success. In its 2017 CIO Agenda, Gartner found the banking CIOs lagged behind other industry leaders when it came to investing in Digitization. The company recommended that Financial Services firms should dedicate as much as 40% of their IT budgets to Digitization by 2018. We can be certain that consumer demand will continue to grow and competition will continue to accelerate through digital-only financial service providers. Perhaps Gartner’s estimate will yet prove to be too conservative.

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Revolutions. Industrial or Otherwise

The Fourth Industrial Revolution changes everything. Although it has many names—Industry 4.0, Digitalization, the Singularity, the Internet of Things (IoT), Connected World, Smart Home, Cognitive, etc.—it will be known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, or 4IR. It is being driven by vast technology advancements and will change the nature of wealth, health and happiness, how we live, work, relate to one another, as well as how governments engage, regulate, serve, and protect. By 2025, 50% of the world’s GDP will be derived from digital (a process that is completely automated by machines, which does not require human intervention). This will have profound implications. The First Industrial Revolution (1750 – 1840) was powered by water and steam to mechanize production. Inventions such as the steam engine, iron working, textiles, cement, and railroads terraformed our landscape as humans migrated from rural (agrarian) to urban (city) settings in massive population shifts. Language and reading skills increased with the printing press and so our civilization advanced. Great libraries of the world were built and opened to the public. Revolutions ensued and Napoleon conquered most of Europe. The very fabric of society changed and great thinkers like Voltaire, Paine, and Rousseau agreed that society should be organized according to rules based on rational thought rather than religious ideology. Indeed, most western advances are based on rational thought, behavior, and market dynamics. This is changing in our time. The Second Industrial Revolution (1840 – 1969) was driven by electronic power to create mass production and predicated inventions such as cars, airplanes, the television, the telephone, and even the hydrogen bomb. It was the great age of iron, steel, rail, electrification, petroleum, chemicals, engines, telecommunications, and modern business management. It demonstrated the greatest increase in economic growth in the shortest period ever, introduced by mass production and modern manufacturing. The foundations of globalization were laid and great western populations rose up out of poverty while many deadly commonplace diseases were eradicated. Civil war defined America, Germany rose to power, and two world wars were fought. The Third Industrial Revolution (1969 – 2000) was enabled by Information Technology to automate production. Inventions included the integrated circuit, the personal computer, smartphones, the Internet, space exploration technologies, and the laser. In 1988, Kodak had 170,000 employees and sold 85% of the world’s paper. Within a few years, their business model disappeared and they went bankrupt. Yes, digital technologies replaced film, but what Kodak failed to realize was the disruptive force around them, its opportunities, and the appropriate investment in them (thus, the defining “Kodak Moment”). The Fourth Industrial Revolution (2000 – present) not only digitizes production, but also “intelligence-based tasks,” which previously could only be handled by the human mind. This revolution is of a scope, scale, velocity, and complexity unlike anything else we have faced. Its effects will impact all of humankind, all industries, all countries, every facet of every glorious element of our society—revolutionizing business models, reshaping the world, and even redefining our very existence. The technological opportunities presented by this revolution will be unlimited and challenging, having the power to create and the power to destroy; and as we say in Vermont, any fool can burn down a barn. Extinction events happen. The Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event (i.e., the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs) decimated some 75% of the plant and animal species on Earth. Some add sentient machines and the Singularity—or the point at which a machine can think and act at or beyond human capability (thereby rendering us redundant)—to this list of possible present-day extinction events. This blog series highlights the power to create inherent in the 4IR as the Golden Age of Innovation, but it is important to note the perils that are equally present. In my next blog in this series, I’ll explore what makes the 4IR difference from the 3IR in more detail. To read more, download The Golden Age of Innovation. I’ll be taking this message on the road for the Innovation Tour and Enterprise World. Learn more. I’d love to hear your thoughts. To provide feedback, or if you would like to see additional topics covered in future publications, please add your comment below.  

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The GDPR and Why Digital Marketing Will Never be the Same

We know that the General Data Protection Regulation is giving Compliance and IT some heartburn as these teams work to understand the GDPR’s new requirements and how it will affect their organizations. But perhaps the biggest impact will be to Marketing; specifically digital marketing, which will require a cultural shift that presents challenges, but for smart organizations, opportunities to succeed as well. Consent is king The days of implied, sneaky, and bundled consent are gone. Starting in May 2018, brands have to collect active consent that is “freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous” to be compliant with GDPR. Someone provided their email address to download a whitepaper? If they didn’t actively agree that it is okay to use their data to send marketing messages, it won’t be legal to add those email addresses to your mailing list. Also, because there is no “grandfather clause” for data captured before the GDPR, we expect to see lots of re-permissioning campaigns to establish clear consent to use the personal data they already hold. The GDPR will change how gated assets are used, how leads are collected, and how referral programs work. In other words, the method of “collect it now and figure out what to do with it later” will become a high-risk strategy. The challenge for marketers will be providing “granular choice” for consent in a way that is minimally intrusive and not detrimental to the customer experience. Legitimate interest is not a get-out-of-jail-free card The GDPR states that “legitimate interest” of a controller can provide legal basis for using personal information without obtaining consent (GDPR Article 6.1(f)). However marketers should use this clause with caution. Legitimate interest can only be invoked provided that there is “no undue impact” on data subjects. In other words, a business that intends to use personal information must balance its legitimate interest against the rights and interests of the individual and bears the onus for demonstrating such. Personalization…and privacy – consumers want it all A recent study found that 90 percent of consumers have privacy concerns, but also seek highly personalized and tailored customer service. Personalization is key to modern customer experiences and customers make purchase and loyalty decisions based on the level of individualized service they receive. This introduces a challenge for many businesses and marketers – in order to provide highly personalized offerings they need to have a better understanding of their customers’ needs, purchasing histories and attitudes. That means collecting, analyzing and managing customer data related to these preferences and behaviours. However, it has also been found that consumers have growing concern over their privacy and the use of their data. Marketers will have to find ways to comply with the GDPR while continuing to deliver the personalized products, services and customer experiences that their consumers demand. Pseudonymization – Marketing’s new hope? The EU has been explicit that the GDPR should facilitate – not inhibit – innovation within business. In fact the regulation calls out “freedom to conduct a business” as one of the fundamental rights it respects. The tracking and analyzing of consumer behaviors and preferences are valuable tools that marketers and sales functions rely on to be successful. The process of pseudonymization may provide a way for regulators and businesses to meet in the middle. The GDPR defines pseudonymization as “the processing of personal data in such a way that the data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without the use of additional information.” It is a privacy-enhancing technique where directly identifying data is held separately and securely from processed data to ensure non-attribution of that data to an individual. As it turns out, controllers don’t need to provide data subjects with access, rectification, erasure or data portability if they can no longer identify a data subject. Organizations should look to technology tools as means of pseudonymizing or masking consumer data and encrypting personally identifiable data, in combination with organizational process changes, to ensure compliance. It’s May 2018. Do you know where your personal data is? A majority of businesses have stated that they are not ready for the GDPR. A big reason for this is the potentially onerous requirement for organizations to be able to quickly assemble a data subject’s personal data upon request for purposes of erasure, rectification or export. According to a recent GRPR Readiness survey, only 26% of respondents currently keep an up-to-date register of the personal data they hold and the purposes for which they are used. If there was a time to get one’s arms around all the personal data they hold, what type of permission was obtained, and a governance structure to manage it, that time is now. Information classification schemes, data storage methods and records retention programs need to be reviewed to ensure that data portability, removal, or correction is not only feasible but efficient, if and when needed. How OpenText can help The GDPR is a game-changer for digital marketers and there will be challenges to overcome, however the game can change in their favor too. Yes the days of “data maximization” and blanket consent appear over. But it’s for those very reasons that the GDPR will lead to new marketing opportunities. The GDPR forces businesses to develop more thoughtful approaches to targeting and lead acquisition. Prospects who opt in are better qualified, more engaged and want to be marketed to. Because consumers have more control over how their data is used we’ll see better quality relationships between businesses and prospects. OpenText™ Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions help organizations meet regulatory requirements and should be central to your overall GDPR compliance and data protection strategy. According to Forrester, “77% of consumers have chosen, recommended, or paid more for a brand that provides a personalized service or experience.” Utilizing Workforce Optimization solutions within our Customer Experience Management portfolio, we can provide sentiment analysis to help measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns; provide guidance on appropriate promotions to communicate based on whether or not the consumer has given consent. Learn more about our solution here. Stay tuned for our next blog post in April on “Disrupt Yourself – Personalized Marketing in the Age of GDPR”. You can also read some of our previous blogs on this topic: Five 2017 Compliance Challenges GDPR and EIM GDPR – Opportunity or Threat for B2B Discovery Analytics and GDPR

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Are we in Danger of Confusing Digital Transformation With Digitization?

digital transformation

Digital Transformation has been at the top of the priority lists of Public Sector CIOs for some time now. Yet, Deloitte research has shown only 41 percent of Public Sector leaders are satisfied with their organization’s current reaction to digital trends. Perhaps, part of the reason for this under-achievement can be found in Gartner’s study of public and private CIOs that put digitization as top of their priority list. With a focus on digitization, we may be in danger of missing the truly transformative potential of digital technology. Let’s not understate the importance of digitization though. There are great cost and efficiency benefits from converting paper-based to digital-based processes. Deloitte report into the Digital Transformation efforts in Australia found that a paper-based transaction was over 3000 times the cost of an online transaction. But, when the OECD countries signed its recommendation in July 2104 that ‘government’s develop and implement digital government strategies’, the organization made explicit that digitization was only a first step. An OECD report states: For me, the danger in digitization lies in an over-emphasis on the citizen experience to the detriment of the operational and process improvements inherent in Digital Transformation. I agree with Rick Howard, Research VP at Gartner when he says: “digital government is currently being deployed as an extension of earlier e-government initiatives, which largely preserved existing operational or service models”. Famous examples of Digital Transformation in the Public Sector – like gov.uk in the UK and census.gov in the US – demonstrate just some of the benefits of digital service provision. The more that e-government moves beyond digital information provision to end-to-end digital process the more benefits Public Sector organizations will achieve through customer engagement, targeted service provision and efficient business operations. The UK – currently the world’s leader in e-government according to the UN – has put in place a policy of ‘digital by default’ for all new services. The UK government sees success as multi-dimensional. It stated: Perhaps some early Digital Transformation programmes have been framed from the citizen to the government agency rather than from the agency out. So, we have looked at the interfaces and channels for good citizen engagements and not spent enough time on the back-end stuff. However, there is evidence that Public Sector organizations are increasingly turning their attention to the systems and processes needed to support Digital Transformation. The 2017 NASCIO survey of the technology priorities of US state CIO’s place system consolidation/optimization and legacy modernization in second and fifth places respectively. To fully reap the benefits of Digital Transformation, Public Sector organizations have to move beyond a closed business system model to introduce a platform that extends across and beyond the organization. Gartner’s Howard neatly sums it up by saying: : “In government, the system business model’s function is to deliver value isolated to the citizens within allocated jurisdictions, budgets and risk tolerance. In contrast, a platform provides the business with a foundation where resources can come together — sometimes very quickly and temporarily, sometimes in a relatively fixed way — to create value that may extend beyond budget and jurisdictional boundaries”. Implementing an Enterprise Information Management platform provides such a foundation for government agencies to re-engineer their business processes while creating the secure citizen engagement across channels that characterises effective digital government services.

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OpenText WFO Video Series: How can the Contact Center Align with the top Priorities of Executive Leadership?

Contact Center WFO Asurion

Competing in any market based on delivering an outstanding customer experience is ranked by many CEO’s as a top priority in the coming years. Yet, as indicated by KPMG  in the 2016 report Now Or Never: CEOs Mobilize For The Fourth Industrial Revolution, “customer loyalty is a concern for 90 percent of CEOs [and just] over half believe they are not keeping pace with customer expectations.” This reality represents an important opportunity for every contact center because customer service agents work in the front lines where customer expectations either fall short, are met, or are exceeded. Recognizing this opportunity and actually seizing it, however, are two very different things. But there’s good news: Our 2017 Video Series – Driving Contact Center Awareness Within Your Organization offers advice from industry analysts and experts about how the contact center can align with the top priorities of executive leadership – in relation not only to customer experience but to other critical KPIs as well. One of our favorite customers, Kate Drea from Asurion, participated in this year’s interview series. We love working with Kate because when it comes to partnership she walks the talk. Kate is both demanding and understanding. She knows her business and relies on close collaboration with her team and ours to keep up to speed on the latest technology. Kate listens intently and speaks with authority. You should listen to what Kate has to say about the importance of partnership at every level within her organization – all the way up to the executive suite. In the World According to Kate, partnership is the “secret sauce.” We certainly agree. This partnership with the C-suite and aligning contact center goals with those of the broader business is a really important part of being a leader, so you should take a moment to hear how the other Video Series speakers approach this topic. In all, our speakers answer eight important questions about driving awareness of the contact center within your organization and explain why this should be of interest to every contact center agent, supervisor, manager and executive: What defines a positive customer experience? Why should customer experience be a top enterprise goal? How can the contact center be positioned as a leader in customer experience? How can the contact center align with the top priorities of executive leadership? What’s the best way to coordinate contact center goals with other business units? What performance goals resonate most with executive leadership? What other tools demonstrate contact center impact to the executive team? What are some lessons learned about reporting to the executive team? And continue the conversation by using the “Get in Touch with a WFO Expert” form on the Video Series pages, or by commenting on our Video Series blog posts: We have already posted blogs related to Question 1 (authored by Steve Graff), Question 2 (from Alan Porter) and Question 3 (by Roger Lee, aka Dr. WFO). We’re excited to get all these great ideas out there in front of you. Take a moment when you can to let us know how it’s going.

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Is the Microphone Working?

Testing, one, two, three. Testing, one, two three. Can you hear me? Is the microphone working? Testing (tapping on the mic a few times). As I stated in the intro blog for this series, we are in the midst of the Golden Age of Innovation that many are calling the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Over the last decade, the top 20 U.S. technology firms have created over $1 trillion USD in value. U.S. venture investment topped $60 billion USD in 2016. Software is now contributing over $1 trillion USD in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to the global economy. And there are 4.5 million professional software developers in North America alone—more than ever before. Innovation drives progress. Software and hardware innovation accounts for nearly 15% of all R&D, pharmaceuticals for almost 10%. In 2015, U.S. patent applications hit a record high, topping over 600,000. Half of the world’s best-known brands are now platform companies. In this golden age of innovation, we all need to be software companies. The ability to innovate at scale needs to transcend nations, cultures, and people. Many cultures find it difficult to innovate. My experience suggests there are three key ingredients to innovation: access to talent, access to capital, and an entrepreneurial spirit. The Fourth Industrial Revolution describes an era marked by digital innovation, exponential thinking, and unlimited potential. This will be a revolution of scope, scale, velocity, and complexity unlike any other in human history. But what will be the ultimate measure of this transformation: is it profit, peace, quality of life, or a new form of conscious capitalism? The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Better Life Index ranks Norway, Australia, Denmark, Switzerland, Canada, Sweden, New Zealand, Finland, United States, and Iceland as the top 10 countries for wellbeing. The United States would rank in the top three if not for: community, civic engagement, and work-life balance. I am not one to lecture on work-life balance. But democracy is not easy, and the great American experiment has invested deeply in a government of, by, and for the people, yet only 50% of eligible American citizens vote or experience civic engagement. This is shameful. In regards to community, despite progress over the last 100 years, 15% of Americans still live in poverty, which is completely unacceptable. My grandfather was born before planes, cars, televisions, telephones, and electricity were commonplace. He lived for 98 years (smoked for 60 of those and ate bacon and eggs every morning). He also worked on his farm every day until he passed, and left America only once to sail across the Atlantic to France to join the Allied Liberation Forces in WWI. There were many phenomenal aspects to my grandfather, but let me highlight the incredible human spirit of adaptability that led him to transition from horses to planes, from whale oil to electricity, from dirt roads to a nationwide transportation network. He also lived to see the first personal computer, and his grandson earn a computer science degree. As a software engineer, I have never seen a more gilded time to positively impact society and humanity through technology. This is the Golden Age of Innovation: And so begins the Fourth Industrial Revolution and our individual responsibilities for creating a better future. …Testing, one, two, three. Is the microphone loud enough? In my next post in this series, I will discuss each of the four industrial revolutions, highlighting their innovations and impact on business, society, and culture. To read more, download The Golden Age of Innovation. I’ll be taking this message on the road for the Innovation Tour and Enterprise World. Learn more. I’d love to hear your thoughts. To provide feedback, or if you would like to see additional topics covered in future publications, please add your comment below.

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For Usable Insights, You Need Both Information and the Right Analytical Engine

Data

“It’s all about the information!” Chances are you’ve heard this before. If you are a Ben Kingsley or Robert Redford fan you may recognize the line from Sneakers (released in 1992). Yes, 1992. Before the World Wide Web!  (Remember, Netscape didn’t launch the first commercially successful Web browser until 1993). Actually it’s always been about the information, or at least the right information – what’s needed to make an informed decision, not just an intuitive one. In many ways the information, the data, has always been there; it’s just that until recently, it wasn’t readily accessible in a timely manner. Today we may not realize how much data is available to us through technology, like the mobile device in your pocket – at 12GB an iPhone 6S is 2,000 times bigger than the 6MB programs IBM developed to monitor the Apollo spacecrafts’ environmental data. (Which demonstrates the reality of Moore’s Law, but that’s another story).  Yet because it’s so easy to create and store large amounts of data today, far too often we’re drowning in data and experiencing information overload. Drowning in Data Chances are you’re reading this in between deleting that last email, before your next Tweet, because the conference call you are on has someone repeating the information you provided yesterday. Bernard Marr, a contributor to Forbes, notes “that more data has been created in the past two years than in the entire previous history of the human race”.  Marr’s piece has at least 19 other eye-opening facts about how much data is becoming available to us, but the one that struck me the most was this one: 0.5%! Imagine the opportunities missed. Just within the financial industry, the possibilities are limitless. For example, what if the transaction patterns of a customer indicated they were buying more and more auto parts as well as making more payments to their local garage (or mechanic). Combined with a recent increase in automatic payroll deposits, might that indicate this customer would be a good prospect for a 0.9% new car financing offer? Or imagine the crises which could be avoided. Think back to February 2016 and the Bangladesh Bank heist where thieves managed to arrange the transfer of $81 million to the Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation in the Philippines. While it’s reasonable to expect existing controls might have detected the theft, it turns out that a “printer error” alerted bank staff in time to forestall an even larger theft, up to $1 billion. The SWIFT interface at the bank is configured to print out a record each time a funds transfer is executed, but on the morning of February 5 the print tray was empty. It took until the next day to get the printer restarted. The New York Federal Reserve Bank had sent queries to the Bank questioning the transfer. What alerted them? A typo. Funds to be sent to the Shalika Foundation were addressed to the “Shalika fandation.” The full implications of this are covered in WIRED Magazine. Analytics, Spotting Problems Before They Become Problems Consider the difference if the bank had the toolset able to flag the anomaly of a misspelled beneficiary in time to generate alerts and hold up the transfers for additional verification. The system was programmed to generate alerts as print-outs. It’s only a small step to have alerts like this sent as an SMS text, or email to the bank’s compliance team, which may have attracted notice sooner. To best extract value from the business data available to you requires two things: An engine and a network. The engine should be like the one in OpenText™ Analytics, designed to perform the data-driven analysis needed. With the OpenText™ Analytics Suite, financial institutions can not only derive data-driven insights to offer value-added solutions to clients, they can also better manage the risk of fraudulent payment instructions, based on insights derived from a client’s payment behavior. For example, with the Bangladesh Bank, analytics might have flagged some of the fraudulent transfers, to Rizal Bank in the Philippines,by correlating the fact that the Rizal accounts were only opened in May 2015, contained only $500 each, and had not been previous beneficiaries. Business Network: Delivering Data to Analytical Engines But the other equally important tool is the network. As trains need tracks, an analytical tools engine needs data (as well as the network to deliver it).   Today more and more of this data needed to extract value comes from outside the enterprise. The Open Text™ Business Network is one way thousands of organizations exchange the data needed to manage their business, and provide the fuel for their analytical engines. For example, suppose a bank wanted to offer their customers the ability to generate ad-hoc reporting through their banking portal. With payment, collection, and reporting data flows delivered through the Open Text Business Network Managed Services, the underlying data would be available for the bank’s analytical engine. Obviously much of the data involved in the examples I’ve provided would be sensitive, confidential, and in need of robust information security controls to keep it safe. That will be the subject of my next post.

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Time-Based Digital Assets are now Mission Critical

video

How much video are you watching online? I’m pretty confident it’s more than last year, or the year before. It seems that every website now features video in some form or other. Video is also becoming increasingly prevalent across the various social media platforms too. There’s a good reason, studies have shown that video is more engaging than text or still imagery. A video with a well told story that provides value or entertainment (or better yet, both) is often commented on and shared. Video is everywhere in the digital world. In fact a report by Cisco suggests that this year (2017) video will account for 69% of all consumer driven traffic on the web. Having video assets has also become important for findability with YouTube now ranked as the second largest search engine, processing three billion searches a month. Video has become mission critical The rise in voice-activated applications and devices means audio is not far behind as voice driven search is rapidly growing with some estimates suggesting that 50% of search queries will be done by voice by 2020. Audio is becoming mission critical Both Video and audio can be considered as time-based digital assets, and need to be managed, tagged, and produced in a controlled workflow just like more traditional media assets such as photography. The OpenText™ Media Management (OTMM) platform is perfectly positioned to handle traditional media and provide the functionality needed to manage and deliver the growing demand for time-based media. OpenText™ Media Management now offers an optional Advanced Video Workflow that extends OTMM functionality into the editing suite specifically to meet the needs of dealing with time-based media assets in three specific areas: more detailed metadata, more control over the asset, and improved integration with preferred editing suites and workflow. OTMM now automatically pulls additional metadata from time-based assets to improve search results and asset handling. New Logging functionality means you can now add annotations and metadata over single scenes, or even single frames, or sound-bites. The meta-data selection buttons are totally configurable and can be driven by controlled language, domain knowledge terminology, or other defined terminology sets to provide intuitive tagging. Ranges of frames can also be tagged to create defined sub-clips. The editing tool integration allows frame-by-frame broadcast quality interactions, frame search, and the support of multiple audio channels all within a browser environment. One-button toggling between low-res editing streams and a hi-res preview makes the editing workflow more efficient. Once the tagging and editing work is complete, the finalized assets are sent back to OTMM for storage and retrieval from a single digital asset platform that provides the single source for all your brand-approved assets. The Advanced Video Workflow option for OpenText™ Media Management provides key video tools so your teams can provide compelling and attention-getting content.

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OpenText WFO Video Series: How can the contact center be positioned as a leader in customer experience?

“Do or do not. There is no try.” —Yoda If you are a Star Wars fan as I am, then Yoda’s quote should resonate with you. So why do I quote Yoda when thinking about this third question posed to our distinguished panel of WFO (workforce optimization) analysts and practitioners for the OpenText™ WFO 2017 Video Series? Well, let me explain with a real-world example. I recently spoke with an executive from a 100-plus-year-old product- and services-based organization that has transformed itself from being an inbound, order taking, issue resolution company to one that now thrives with an outbound contact center which generates over 95% of the company’s total revenues. Think about this for a moment and imagine that your primary product is declining in usage due competition from other more cost-effective options. Consumers still use your product but at a much reduced rate. To reverse this trend, your overall go to market strategy must change. Yes, your consumers know you have other offerings that could be of value to them, but your business model needs to radically change to leverage the feedback and promote an end-to-end supply and service model. Yet cultural and infrastructure transformations of this magnitude are not easily undertaken. In the case I mention above, this transformation was accomplished because one executive sponsor, the vice president of customer experience, had the vision and determination to advocate within the C-suite for leveraging his organization’s contact center as a strategic weapon. Donna Fluss, President of DMG Consulting and offering advice in the first of two short commentaries on this topic, fully understands that “If you want to consistently deliver an outstanding customer experience, most organizations are going to need to change their culture.” Easier said than done, of course, but in a second clip Donna offers seven critical steps that contact center leaders and business executives should undertake to seriously pursue the goal of delivering a truly outstanding customer experience. After listening to her first commentary, you’ll find it easy to view this second clip, so I will let Donna speak for herself. However, let me offer up one other well-known quote: “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” It took time for the company I mentioned above to achieve the desired outcomes. Many conversations and interactions with consumers had to take place in order to better understand their expectations, and then, as they changes were made based on customer feedback, success stories from the contact centers were communicated throughout the organization. New opportunities were identified. A continuous effort was made to promote and celebrate the value of the contact center accomplishments. Significantly, while the transformation initiative was taking place, the customer service representatives, supervisors, managers and site leaders all continued to provide the best possible customer experience as they worked to reach their ultimate goal of exceeding customer expectations. There are more inspiring examples and words of wisdom to hear about from the other expert speakers on this year’s Video Series. In all, our speakers answer eight important questions about driving awareness of the contact center within your organization and explain why this should be of interest to every contact center agent, supervisor, manager and executive: What defines a positive customer experience? Why should customer experience be a top enterprise goal? How can the contact center be positioned as a leader in customer experience? How can the contact center align with the top priorities of executive leadership? What’s the best way to coordinate contact center goals with other business units? What performance goals resonate most with executive leadership? What other tools demonstrate contact center impact to the executive team? What are some lessons learned about reporting to the executive team? And continue the conversation by using the “Get in Touch with a WFO Expert” form on the Video Series pages, or by commenting on our Video Series blog posts below. Steve Graff’s blog provides his perspective on what defines a positive customer experience. And Alan Porter’s blog offers an overview of the commentary about why customer experience should be a top enterprise goal. Enjoy. Roger Lee, aka Dr. WFO

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Putting the X Factor Into Customer Experience

content

For many years now we have heard that organizations must look to improve their customer experience to stand a chance of retaining their existing customer base. This, we have been told, is the cornerstone of customer engagement – but what exactly is customer experience and why is it here now? How did we ever manage without it? The fact is our propensity to always be connected means we are bombarded with information and what feels like a vast array of choices to buy the same product with the only real variations being factors like price and delivery time. What fundamental difference is there in the myriad of offers we are exposed to that leads us to choose one supplier from another? There is one ingredient behind customer experience and customer engagement that has preceded the Internet and still makes a big impact on our behavior and brand loyalty today. Walk through a modern airport or drive through the suburbs of a city and you will be exposed to advertising hoardings, walk into a dentist surgery or add yourself to mailing lists and you will encounter lifestyle magazines. These are all forms of customer experience and engagement that rely on one characteristic – they grab our attention. Often they do not lead with product data such as price or specification, they cannot measure and analyse how successful they are (unless you take into account passing traffic volume, print circulation), they simply grab our attention through something that appeals to us as humans beings – stimulus. Most often it’s visual, in the case of lifestyle magazines they might even try to appeal to our olfactory senses to advertise a scent – indeed some magazines even just smell good! But if we go back to the advertising hoardings and the lifestyle magazines examples for one moment it is easy to see that visual stimulus provides the X factor that excites us, it grabs our attention and leads us to follow up. The common name for this stimulus is content. We have all heard the phrase “every company is a media company1” and of course this is true to varying degrees – every company produces content to grab customer attention and this has transformed from a rather small set of content to what can only be described as a tidal wave of diverse material. Some talk about a “content shock2” where we are overwhelmed to the extent that we are unable to consume more, but the real issue here is that the valuable content that grabs the attention is buried amongst the volume of mediocre material. Every company faces this challenge. We have also seen that CMO’s are starting to recognize the value of content but do not prioritize its management3. Content has intrinsic value – it is expensive to produce so like any valuable material it should be collected, curated and put to use where it can have maximum impact. Could it be that we are so focused on the customer experience where we measure, analyse and try to predict our customer’s next step that we are forgetting the one factor that defines what we are? Content provides stimulus and grabs our attention. Getting our attention is the first step in becoming a customer. Lets start looking after that content. 1 – “Every company is a media company” by Tom Foremski 2 – “Content Shock: Why Content Marketing is Not a Sustainable Strategy” by Mark Schaefer 3 – “CMOs believe in value of visual assets but don’t prioritize their management” by Lisa Hoover McGreevy – Fierce Content Management

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Documentum and OpenText for Life Sciences – Moving Beyond FUD

documentum

Now that a couple of months have passed since the ink dried on the OpenText deal for Dell EMC’s Enterprise Content Division (ECD), I thought it was good time to offer my viewpoint on what this acquisition means specifically for Life Sciences. Some have questioned OpenText’s commitment to Documentum and future investment in the platform. Some have questioned the amount of investment that will be made to product/solution enhancements and innovation. However, only OpenText has the depth and breadth of Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions that can deliver the future that Documentum customers deserve – while offering a whole series of synergies for existing OpenText customers. Sir, step away from the FUD… I don’t want to dwell too much on the past but I’d be sharing no great insight to say that Documentum was never a perfect strategic fit for Dell or EMC. EMC had made it explicit that continued investment in the platform might be limited. It was an open secret that the company would look to divest itself of ECD. The only question was to whom. Many industry experts had suggested that the venture capital route was most likely, but this would always have left the shadow of future disintegration and sell-offs of the Documentum solution set. OpenText offered a completely different approach. Our solution sets are complementary and together offer a path to further develop and innovate in the ECM space. Our competitors – even those that have tried to spread some FUD (fear, uncertainty, doubt) – would struggle to suggest that we are not a perfect fit. More importantly, the OpenText deal ensures the investment that the Documentum platform requires to fulfill customer needs. In technology solutions, as we are all acutely aware, if you’re standing still then you’re going backwards. It would have been unthinkable to let that happen to Documentum. In reality, this deal marks the end (not the continuation) of the uncertainty about Documentum’s future. Where do we go from here? The Documentum Life Sciences Solutions Suite was the pinnacle of EMC’s approach to take a solutions-based approach to delivering on customers’ pain points. I’m afraid the first thing we’ve done you may find fiendish. We’ve put the word ‘OpenText’ in front of it! The next thing we’re doing is setting out a roadmap to ensure the platform meets your needs today and into the future. We’re doing exactly the same thing with other ECD product sets – such as LEAP – so that existing Documentum customers can be reassured that our solutions will always remain a strategic investment. But, as I said, standing still is going backwards. Our belief in the Documentum platform was only part of the reason that OpenText was interested in this deal. Our strategic direction has long been to assist our customers to access the full potential of EIM. This means bringing ECM together with enhanced records management, analytics, and BPM into a single, coherent, end-to-end platform. We believe that this approach is the only way to fully release the value of information held within an enterprise and provides the foundation for Digital Transformation. Life Sciences companies can select (or maintain) either the OpenText or Documentum ECM platforms and expect to receive the same level of native integration into OpenText’s Discovery, Case Management and Customer Experience portfolios, as well as industry-specific solutions, reflecting our combined decades of experience and best practice. Bringing immediate value to customers Beneath this strategic direction, there are a number of actionable synergies that can immediately benefit both OpenText and Documentum Life Sciences customers: Extended solution portfolios – In areas such as analytics and B2B integration, existing Documentum customers can build out the capabilities of the Documentum for Life Sciences Solution Suite and leverage best-in-class OpenText solutions, such as Marketing Content Management for Life Sciences. Existing OpenText customers can benefit from ECD solutions such InfoArchive. Enterprise Application Integration – OpenText’s close relationships within its partner network introduce seamless integration with enterprise applications such as SAP, Oracle, Salesforce, and Microsoft for Documentum customers. Cloud and IaaS – The OpenText Cloud delivers the ideal platform as Life Sciences companies to transition from on-premise to Cloud-based solutions. You have the confidence that you are with one of the world leaders in Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). I know it is natural to be cautious when large deals like this happen – and only time will show that what I’m saying will happen – but I’d like to think that you are as excited as I am about what this means for current and future customers. To summarize, the OpenText Documentum for Life Science Solution Suite has the investment it needs and a talented team to drive its functionality forward. Additionally, we’ll continue to help Life Sciences organizations realize the potential of EIM to deliver the real benefits of Digital Transformation. If you’d like to find out more about how this new union will affect your organization, please contact your Account Executive or click here and someone (maybe even me!) will call you. In addition, OpenText will be unveiling its strategic plans in more detail at this year’s Enterprise World, in Toronto, Canada, where we will have a full Life Sciences program designed to help maximize your investments in OpenText (including Documentum) platforms.

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European Energy CIOs Reap Benefit of Digital Transformation – and That’s Just the Start

Energy

According to new research from IDG and OpenText, over 90% of Energy companies in the UK and Nordic region have Digital Transformation programs in place. These companies are beginning to realize significant benefits from their digitization effort. But, Energy CIOs say, there’s much more to come. Pricing instability places focus on operational efficiency Our research showed that pricing affects energy businesses in two ways. First, the volatility in oil prices makes it difficult to properly manage supply and demand. As one UK Energy CIO put it: “Much of the sector’s focus has been on the oil price dynamics of supply and demand, and the implications for capital efficiency.” A Finnish CIO explained the flip side of pricing: “To thrive in the market amid increasing competition, we are forced to decrease our prices regularly … To add to our worries about pricing, as we are a customer-centric company we need to invest heavily on customer satisfaction measures. We also have to provide a fair price to customers along with transparent customer services.” The results of pricing pressures were neatly summed up by another UK Energy CIO: “Profit maximization is the top business concern of energy producers as they work to change the cost and process efficiency of their operations.” Digitization advanced in operations The responses to our survey from Energy CIOs suggest that early Digital Transformation efforts have focused on operations and customer experience. Managing supply and demand is a huge issue for the Energy companies surveyed, with them placing load balancing as both one of the largest industry challenges and the second biggest opportunity for digitization. It appears that many companies have made good progress in this direction. One Nordic CIO expressed a feeling common to many of the CIOs questioned: “With the help of digitization, we have connected our physical assets with the virtual environment, which helps to provide efficient output and can be monitored from different locations. Demand and supply can easily be handled, and all operations can be controlled from one location with the help of centralization of data.” The results of these efforts can be impressive. One CIO reported: “Digitization has helped us to improve operations and increase flexibility available throughout the value chain. Digital Transformation has boosted profitability by 20 to 30 percent.” Big Data ties operations to customer experience Without a doubt, one of the main benefits of Digital Transformation lies in the ability to effectively exploit Big Data. It was seen as the largest opportunity for digitization and a staggered 98% of companies surveyed said they already drew on data analytics and predictive data to make decisions. One Swedish CIO said: “We have noticed the positive outcomes of digitization through increases in productivity and can easily monitor the supply and demand processes of our organization. With the help of digitization, we can easily interact with our customers and understand their needs and receive feedback on a regular basis.” An UK CIO put a figure on this ability: “We are using advanced analytics to enhance service quality, lower costs, and preserve and deepen customer relationships. By digitizing a single core process, we can cut process costs by 20 percent in the first year while also improving customer satisfaction.” Analytics drives customer experience It’s clear from our research that all CIOs understand the power of data analytics and most are already applying the insight to improve customer services. The drive is towards delivering a highly personalized, highly individual service to boost customer loyalty and retention. “We have been adopting integrated customer services and this has helped us move from being ‘energy-centric’ to ‘customer-centric’. We have been using increasing volumes of customer data to better understand consumer behavior. A tremendous opportunity exists to develop innovative, digitally-enabled products and services, bundled to provide an integrated customer service,” said one UK CIO. Another spoke for most others when they commented: “We have been offering consumers the ability to view, monitor and purchase electricity online, on mobile and via social media. From this we have been able to offer a differentiated, modern service by providing convenient, cost-effective and personalized access to Energy packages at a range of price points.” In fact, personalized product and service development allied to personalized pricing was a common theme in this research. As a Swedish CIO stated: “In our organization we already provide various options for customers to choose from. These rates can be modified according to customers’ needs and usage. We continually work on launching new packages for customers’ requirements.” Smart Grids will make customers into partners Continually improving the experience delivered to customers will be a focus for investment for European CIOs, according to our research. A major part of this will be down to the effects of Smart Grid implementations. An UK CIO commented: “The electrical grid will underpin the future Energy network. It will enable bi-directional flows of electricity, transmit information and price signals, and ensure the optimal balance of supply and demand. This will enhance grid reliability, reduce losses, and integrate distributed resources that can help decarbonize the system. The digital grid will generate a continuous flow of data on consumption behaviors, load variations, revisions to price signals and supply response data that will help raise the efficiency of the entire system. Another CIO explained the benefits to customers and suppliers: “Power grid helps customers to make it possible to monitor and adjust their energy use through smart meters and home energy management systems that offer 24/7 usage readings. Power grid allows direct communication with end-user equipment to reduce consumption during these peak periods, lowering the need for costly standby power plants.” In effect, Energy CIOs expected that Smart Grids will help form a partnership-like relationship with customers where customers take more control of the demand side – encouraged by personalized incentive pricing – enabling the Energy company to more efficiently and cost-effectively manage supply. This may still be a few years away and the environment will be further complicated by the decentralization of power production and distributed energy resources but it seems like the direction of travel for the CIOs surveyed is already fixed. Want to find out more about how Digital Transformation is affecting UK and Nordic Energy companies? Attend the OpenText Innovation Tour taking place in London (March 21) and Stockholm (March 29). Book your place today.

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Next-Generation CCM: Blending Customer Communications With Digital Enablement

CCM

Guest blog from Omer Minkara, VP & Principal Analyst, Contact Center & Customer Experience Management, Aberdeen Group. Digital has become table stakes for companies to survive and thrive in today’s market. Specifically, the term refers to the continuous increase in the adoption and use of digital technologies by both B2B and B2C buyers. It also refers to organizations adapting their activities to address changes in modern buyer / seller dynamics. To this point, findings from Aberdeen’s February 2017 CEM Executive’s Agenda 2017 study shows that 55% of businesses use at least ten channels (e.g. web, email, print and social media) to interact with customers. While the use of channels varies across businesses, the common thread is ensuring that communications taking place through these channels are personalized and yield intended results. Enter Customer Communications Management (CCM). This refers to companies using a technology platform that enables the automation of activities involved in creating and delivering personalized customer communications across all channels. These communications can include marketing materials, account statements and self-service website content. Recent findings from our 2017 CEM studies reveal that companies making effective use of CCM achieve 63% greater year-over-year growth in annual company revenue, compared to those that don’t use it (21.5% vs. 13.2%). Similarly, CCM users also achieve 5.2 times greater annual increase in customer retention rates (11.0% vs. 2.1%), and more than three times greater annual increase in return on marketing investments (18.0% vs. 5.6%) than All Others. Savvy users of CCM succeed because they exploit the opportunities digital channels and tools provide them to better interact with their customers. Figure 1 shows several examples of these capabilities. Figure 1:Use Content to Deliver Consistent & Personalized Conversations As depicted in Figure 1, CCM users are 15% more likely deliver consistent messages to customers (71% vs. 62%). This is vital for minimizing the risk of confusing buyers through different messages via multiple channels or delivered through multiple stakeholders. Additionally, CCM users grow their revenue by adjusting content delivery to become more proactive. This means that instead of sending customers content to respond to a request, clients are automatically provided with certain content without prompting the company. Proactive communications are invaluable in demonstrating to customers that the business is tuned in to regularly address client needs. In fact, by catering to customer needs through proactive (and relevant) communications, CCM users also maximize their success in cross-selling and up-selling. Specifically, they analyze content consumption patterns through service interactions such as self-service history, and use it to deliver targeted offers to drive additional spend. To this point, Figure 2 shows that CCM users are 96% more likely to regularly analyze how content consumption influences customer behavior across numerous digital channels (45% vs. 23%). Companies are able to better personalize customer conversations by using analytics to determine how each buyer reacts to different content. For example, marketers can analyze how buyers across different customer segments interact with content used across different campaigns to determine the types of content that are most likely to convert a prospect into a paying customer. Figure 2: Regularly Monitor Your Performance to Make Optimal Use of Content Analyzing customer behavior in relation to content also reveals process inefficiencies companies must address. Figure 2 shows that CCM users are 31% more likely to have this capability than All Others (68% vs. 52%).Analysis of customer experience data doesn’t just point out inefficiencies. It also helps organizations determine correlations between content and customer advocacy. Companies do this by identifying clients sharing positive word-of-mouth about their products and services, segmenting them, and determining the content used in interacting with these buyers. This ultimately helps companies use personalize conversations across each channel through the right content that is most likely to convert each buyer into a brand advocate. The Bottom-Line Digital technologies have brought fundamental changes to almost all industries. Companies using this as an opportunity to improve internal processes and external customer communications are uniquely positioned to succeed in today’s market. We recommend adopting the key capabilities listed in this article to maximize your performance results through digital enablement. View Aberdeen’s February 2017 CEM Executive’s Agenda 2017

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Celebrating Our Customers, Celebrating Your Success

We pride ourselves on many things here at OpenText: we are the undisputed leader in EIM, we are one of Canada’s top 100 employers and hands down; we work with the absolute best customers in the industry. As we mark the one year anniversary of our OpenText Elite™ Customer and Partner loyalty program, it’s important that we take time to say “thank you.” Technology is changing the world and we’re so proud of our customers and the amazing things that are being done with OpenText software: Together we enable doctors to access crucial patient data, pharmaceutical companies to bring lifesaving drugs to market, and keep planes safely maintained and on time, to name a few. Better Together I travel quite often to meet OpenText customers and one thing that always sticks out is the overwhelming number of customers who share their digital journey with us and I can tell you; we deeply value that feedback. I’m continually blown away by our customers’ dedication and excitement. Our customers make us who we are and drive our continued innovation to support their digital transformation. Nothing excites me more than learning how a customer is leveraging OpenText solutions to gain business efficiencies, lead in their markets or transform the world. Here is just one example from our customer, Solenis, a leading global manufacturing company: “…Implementing OpenText has increased our efficiency and helped drive down costs. And we have met our number one goal of helping key staff focus on the business, so we continue to grow, innovate and get our sales teams what they need in the field.” Charles Wallace, Chief Information Officer, Solenis …and here is just a small sampling of our amazing customers from around the world: OpenText Elite™ Celebrates a Big Milestone Thanks to our OpenText Elite™ program, we have a fantastic way to reward our customers for their willingness to share their success with others. Over the last year we have had over 500 members join – a truly incredible testament to our customers’ commitment and support. For those of you who have not joined OpenText Elite™ yet, it’s never too late. Here’s why you should join the OpenText Elite™ Program: 1. Recognition as an industry leader: It brings us great joy as a team to acknowledge the amazing things our customers do with OpenText as they lead the way the technology world changes. “It is a truly humbling experience to be recognized as an OpenText Elite™ winner by an industry leader, OpenText. HEINEKEN has always strived for improvement through innovation in the F&B sector and being acknowledged for our hard work is rewarding.”                                    Sofia Sergeenko                   Functional Consultant at Global Solutions, HEINEKEN 2. Connecting with future customers so they can learn from your success: We want to provide an opportunity for our customers to showcase how we’re changing the software landscape together. “I feel that my contribution makes a big difference when engaging with future customers of OpenText. Regardless of the time it takes out of my busy schedule, sharing how we use OpenText products brings value not only to them but to our organization as an OpenText Elite™ member.” Sonia Diaz-Sotomayor Senior Consultant, IT/IS, Bell Canada 3. Obtaining early access to insight and roadmaps: We value our customers’ input and relish the opportunity to have them help shape our roadmap and the future of OpenText. “By being part of the OpenText Elite™ Customer Loyalty Program, our organization obtains early insight into OpenText roadmaps and has the opportunity to influence the execution of those roadmaps.” Wouter Van Der Heever Enterprise Information and Performance Systems Management, DISTELL 4. Forming connections with like-minded industry leaders: Our customers are thought leaders who are shaping the industry through their innovative and transformative use of OpenText technology. “OpenText Enterprise World allows us to make connections with people in our industry and we help each other by advising on the best ways to implement. It is very valuable.” Clint Wentworth Manager IS Project, NuStar   5. Gain rewards and recognition: We put our money where our mouth is – our customers are the lifeblood of our business and we want to ensure that they know how important they are to us. #LoyaltyRewarded “Abu Dhabi Airports is excited to share how our efforts are recognized and rewarded as an OpenText Elite™ Award winner. This motivates the whole team to develop ways to utilize the features OpenText applications provide us.” Hamed Al Hashemi VP Information Technology, Abu Dhabi Airport   We are thrilled with the progress we’ve made in our first year and look forward to the continued growth of our OpenText Elite™ Loyalty Program. Thank you for your support and partnership, and happy anniversary, Elite! If you’d like to learn more about the program, please reach out to elite@opentext.com.

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Introducing The Golden Age of Innovation

By all accounts, we are entering the Golden Age of Innovation, which many are calling the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Some of the early innovations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution are visible in consumer and personal use cases, such as gaming, shopping, and entertainment. But the vast majority of these innovations—like software, Artificial Intelligence (AI), medicine, robotics, and transportation—have yet to impact society or productivity. When they do, their effects will be exponential and staggering. All industries will be transformed over the next 10 to 20 years by technology. These transformations will affect us as individuals, as a society, as businesses and governments, and will change how we live, work, govern, keep the peace, and wage wars. My recent book, The Golden Age of Innovation, describes the impact of this technology-driven revolution, exploring the opportunities it presents and the risks we face as it unfolds. I’m pleased to kick off a new blog series based on this book. In this series, I will continue my exploration of digital transformation with a collection of topics addressing the radical impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution—from disintermediation to the subscription economy, automation, and the “Digital Self.” I invite you to follow the series, and together, we’ll discuss these topics in more detail: Is the Microphone Working? Revolutions. Industrial or Otherwise The Fourth Industrial Revolution The Impact on Business New Business Models Emerge Industries are Transformed New Skills are Required The Rise of the Machine The Impact on the Person The Digital Self The Impact on Government How Will We Measure the Golden Age? To read more, download The Golden Age of Innovation. I’ll be taking this message on the road for the Innovation Tour and Enterprise World. Learn more. I’d love to hear your thoughts. To provide feedback, or if you would like to see additional topics covered in future publications, please add your comment below.

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Challenges & Opportunities In Energy’s Digital Transformation

Innovation Tour

In this post we introduce guest blogger Martin Veitch, Editorial Director at IDG Connect UK, who will present at the Innovation Tour in London on March 21, 2017. The energy sector’s focus has historically been on the oil price dynamics of supply and demand. The implications for capital efficiency, business intelligence, data management, and enterprise information management technologies are now changing the once physical nature of energy. Globally both companies and business leaders are now grappling with a world that is more volatile and more complex, yet demands greater agility, more speed, and more digital competence. It’s a topic we’ve studied in depth, surveying senior executives in energy companies across the UK, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden. I’ll be presenting the research findings in greater depth and explaining why digital transformation is so crucial for the energy sector in my upcoming presentation at the OpenText Innovation Tour London on 21 March. Obviously I don’t have space to cover all of the main findings and implications from our research in this blog, so I’d like to touch on just some of the industry-wide challenges and degree of digitisation we are seeing. The biggest challenges the research discovered are around maintaining service levels, and avoiding down-time, which are both crucial for the energy industry as every down-time second impacts the bottom line. The second biggest challenge cited by our respondents involves customer retention and meeting industry regulations. New industry disruptors are more agile and able to adapt to new regulations faster, giving them a competitive edge in winning market share. And of course, just about every company is concerned about making enough money to maintain, repair and replace infrastructure and assets – especially the capital investments required in both digital technology as well as physical plants. Which leads to another issue – the current lack of digital skills and what to do about. (I’ll be touching on how some companies are addressing these challenges in my presentation). Respondents say the best opportunities for digitalisation lie in the ability to store and search media rich content effectively and gain insight to make better decisions. The three obvious areas of digitisation – keeping up with supply and demand and load balancing, administrative workflows, and customer contact – still have a long way to go in many energy companies. Most are focused on the front end looking at digital interaction with customers for workable and attractive solutions, but successful digital transformation requires a holistic, end-to-end view. But lack of budget, management buy-in, and being able to point to a hard ROI remain big barriers to digitalisation. There’s still time to get your house in order – most respondents in our research expect full digitisation to become a reality in the next 5-10 years. But the runway is getting shorter. As technology disrupts business models, adoption accelerates and competition increases, digital readiness will become one of the deciding key factors in long term success. If you look at every other industry that has gone through disruption, history shows that technology powers the winners – period. If you’d like to hear how the leading energy companies are getting their house in order, join me on the 21st March at the Innovation Tour.

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Analytics is Key to Digital Transformation in UK Manufacturing

digital transformation

When TS Elliot famously wrote ‘Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?’ he could easily have been speaking about the vast amounts of data produced by every manufacturing organization today. It’s the new lifeblood of business, but only if it can be properly harnessed. Recently research from OpenText and Sapio Research suggests that knowledge of data analytics is still in its infancy and is holding back Digital Transformation efforts within UK manufacturing companies. Manufacturing is one sector where Digital Transformation will have the biggest impact. It goes far beyond the process of digitization to improve productivity and efficiency. It provides the opportunity to embrace product and market innovation in a way that drives completely new revenue streams. Little surprise then that 80% of respondents to our ‘Digital Transformation in Manufacturing’ survey placed it as a key priority for their business. Change is accelerating While the transition to digital processes is disrupting the sector, it has taken companies some time to put in place the plans to respond. In fact, a full 90% of respondents who had plans admitted that they have begun implementing them within the last 24 months. Worryingly, almost one fifth of respondents didn’t have a plan. It’s very clear from our research that companies understand the value in the data created with any Digital Transformation program. When asked what they considered the key benefit of Digital Transformation, the ability to improve decision-making based on big data analytics came top of the list. Strategies are becoming actions Companies have started work on creating the environment where big data analytics can be fully exploited. Our survey showed that over 50% of respondents has already begun digitizing unstructured information into a contextual framework with a further 34% planning to do so within the next 18 months. In addition, almost half had introduced processes that filter and analyze internal data to help optimize business insight, with 47% planning to do so within the next 18 months. In terms of business operations, the ability to organize and analyze data is already producing benefits for manufacturing companies. When asked, almost two thirds of respondents said they were already using analytics to improve productivity. Over half the companies surveyed were using analytics to achieve supply chain efficiencies. Yet, more business oriented objectives are still lagging behind with only 40% of respondents said they were using analytics to enhance their levels of customer engagement. Analytics skills is still a barrier While our research report shows that real progress has been made in both Digital Transformation and the implementation of data analytics, it remains a barrier. In fact, handling and analyzing the vast volumes of data create ranks as the second and third most significant hurdle to the adoption of Digital Transformation. Manufacturing companies are struggling to gain visibility of all data held in various silos within the business. It is very interesting to note the affect that survey respondents see these legacy, non-integrated systems spread throughout the organization having on their business. Over 70% said that disparate and legacy systems had a negative impact on scalability, 60% said it impeded business agility and 70% felt it held back business innovation. There is an urgent need for organizations to consider implementing a robust infrastructure that supports data analytics as an enterprise-wide capability. With investment a major challenge for Digital Transformation programs, manufacturing companies need a centralized system that can provide complete control and visibility across all its information – both structured and unstructured – and allow advanced analytics to be applied for real-time business and operational decision-making. OpenText™ Content Suite is a Enterprise Information Management (EIM) system that provides the building blocks to underpin an organization’s Digital Transformation while connecting with legacy systems and information silos to maximise investment and speed the transformation and implementation processes. It includes the powerful OpenText™ Analytics Suite, including OpenText™ Big Data Analytics (BDA),  whose advanced approach to business intelligence lets it easily access, blend, explore, analyze and display data. Want to find out more about how Digital Transformation is affecting UK and Nordic manufacturers? We are presenting the results of our Digital Transformation in Manufacturing Survey at the OpenText Innovation Tour in London (March 21) and Stockholm (March 29).   Join us at either event and find out more.

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General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – How can Customers use OpenText and SAP for Timely Deletion

GDPR

In part 1 of this blog, we discussed what the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) means for enterprises and how data and content, which is generated and stored in the course of day-to-day business processes in SAP is subject to this regulation. Our example was the incoming vendor invoice on paper, which is scanned, attached to the SAP transaction via ArchiveLink and then securely stored on the OpenText™ Archive Center. This paper invoice may contain a contact name of the supplier, a phone number, an email address, all data that when combined together could identify an individual, such as an employee of the supplier. This personal data is protected by GDPR. Let’s recap: Collecting and processing data is legitimate as long as it serves a justified purpose, as defined by GDPR, “if data processing is needed for a contract, for example, for billing, a job application or a loan request; or if processing is required by a legal obligation …” Justfied purposes for storing and retaining personal data include laws that govern retention of content, such as tax relevant data and documents, where retaining the scanned vendor invoice or a customer bill is not only justified but an obligation. BUT: When the legitimate reason for the procession has expired, the transactional data and the attached ArchiveLink document need to be deleted. In our example above, the scanned vendor invoice needs to be retained as long as taxation laws require, but be deleted just after this retention period, which is 10 years in Germany for example. This means that enterprises are advised to set up retention rules to govern the necessary retention AND put processes in place that will delete data and attached content in a timely fashion, when it is no longer needed, or when the justified purpose for retention has expired. Retention Management for SAP® Data and Related Content Neither OpenText nor SAP can provide legal advice or guidance in this matter, but they do offer software capabilities that help customers set up policies and procedures for retention and deletion of transactional data and attached content. The products that play together here are SAP® Information Lifecycle Management (SAP ILM) and OpenText™ Enterprise Content Management solutions for SAP: OpenText™ Archiving, Document Access and Extended ECM for SAP Solutions (see OpenText Suite for SAP). SAP ILM provides records management for SAP data and can also be configured to apply the same retention schedule to the attached SAP ArchiveLink documents. However SAP ILM itself does not provide the storage for data and documents but relies on ILM aware platforms for this purpose. OpenText Archiving, Document Access and Extended ECM provide the compliant ILM aware platform for ILM data files and ArchiveLink documents. These solutions store the content, enforce the retention and holds from ILM and pass it up to the hardware level, and, at the end of the lifecycle, execute the deletion request coming from SAP ILM. SAP ILM acts here as leading application for the retention management of SAP data and attached ArchiveLink documents. So far so good, if you only look at SAP data and attached ArchiveLink documents. Enterprise Wide Records Management However, personal information in business documents does not stop at the boundaries of the SAP applications. You will also have content outside SAP, which you want to retain and manage, put under records management and execute timely deletion when the reason for retention has expired. This is where Extended ECM for SAP Solutions comes into play. Extended ECM provides DoD certified records management for SAP ArchiveLink documents as well as NON-SAP content, which can be related to SAP business objects via the ECMLink module. A customer that wants to benefit from the DoD certified records management for documents can use Extended ECM for all unstructured content inside and outside SAP, whereas SAP ILM provides the records management for SAP data. If SAP ILM is to delete data which relates to Extended ECM content that has not yet expired, both solutions can synchronize, so that business documents in Extended ECM will not be orphaned by SAP ILM. At the same time, Extended ECM represents the ILM aware storage platform for SAP data and documents. So SAP ILM together with Extended ECM for SAP Solutions can manage the retention of data and unstructured content inside and outside SAP. Where to Find More Information Learn more about OpenText’s capabilities to support GDPR requirement by reading our other blogs here and here. You can also visit our main web site and learn how OpenText EIM offers capabilities that support customers to prepare for GDPR.

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Digitalisation: Hits and Misses in the Energy Industry

energy

In this post we welcome guest blogger Dario Nazemson, Business Unit Manager, IDG Connect Nordics who will present at the Innovation Tour in Stockholm on 29 March. The speed and scale of the digital transformation is impacting multiple industries, including energy. Whilst much of the sector’s focus has historically been on the oil price dynamics of supply and demand and the implications for capital efficiency, the speed and scale of advancing digital technologies like business intelligence, and data and enterprise information management are now digitally transforming the once physical nature of the energy industry. Companies and business leaders are now grappling with a world that is more volatile and more complex, yet demands greater agility, more speed, and more digital competence. It’s a topic we’ve studied in-depth, surveying senior executives in energy companies across the UK, Denmark, Finland, and Sweden. I’ll be presenting the research findings in greater depth and explaining why digital transformation is so crucial for the energy sector in my upcoming presentation at the OpenText™ Innovation Tour Stockholm on 29 March. As I don’t have space to cover all of the main findings and implications from our research in this blog, I’d like to touch on just some of the industry-wide challenges and degree of digitisation we are seeing. The biggest challenges the research discovered are around maintaining service levels, and avoiding down-time, which are both crucial for the energy industry as every down-time second impacts the bottom line. The second biggest challenge cited by our respondents involves customer retention and meeting industry regulations. New industry disruptors are more agile and able to adapt to new regulations faster, giving them a competitive edge in winning market share. And of course, just about every company is concerned about making enough money to maintain, repair and replace infrastructure and assets – especially the capital investments required in both digital technology as well as physical plants.  Which leads to another issue – the current lack of digital skills and what to do about. (I’ll be touching on how some companies are addressing these challenges in my presentation). Respondents say the best opportunities for digitalisation lie in the ability to store and search media rich content effectively and gain insight to make better decisions. The three obvious areas of digitisation – keeping up with supply and demand and load balancing, administrative workflows, and customer contact – still have a long way to go in many energy companies.  Most are focused on the front end looking at digital interaction with customers for workable and attractive solutions, but successful digital transformation requires a holistic, end-to-end view. But lack of budget, management buy-in, and being able to point to a hard ROI remain big barriers to digitalization. There’s still time to get your house in order – most respondents in our research expect full digitisation to become a reality in the next 5-10 years. But the runway is getting shorter. As technology disrupts business models, adoption accelerates and competition increases, digital readiness will become one of the deciding key factors in long term success. If you look at every other industry that has gone through disruption, history shows that technology powers the winners – period. If you’d like to hear how the leading energy companies are getting their house in order, join me on the 29th March at the Innovation Tour. You can register here.

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Digital Plants and Conveyor Belts – a Different Approach to DAM

DAM

The world’s largest museum complex is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think about who are the natural users of a leading edge Digital Asset Management (DAM) system. After all isn’t Digital Asset Management all about managing your online brand assets like photography and videos so that your website and apps look consistent and only use approved imagery? Not really. As I wrote recently DAM isn’t just for pretty pictures any more, as many companies are finding new uses for the technology. However most of those new uses are still centered on managing current content. Some companies have begun to use DAM technology to leverage the value of corporate archives, but these tend to be limited to the reuse of old photographs and documents. But the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC is using the OpenText™ Media Management (OTMM) DAM platform in a whole new way; to catalog millions of plant specimens, some of which are over 300 years old. The Washington Post recently reported on this fascinating project, and the innovative conveyer belt process that has been developed to enable the team to handle the sheer volume of data they are digitizing. The specimens are pulled out of the cabinets and placed in the moving conveyor belt that automatically clicks high resolution photos at the rate of roughly one every 4 seconds. The image files are created, automatically cropped via a tool and then ingested into OTMM after a metadata tagging process. Prior to the OTMM-based digital transformation project the museum faced two major challenges: New specimens were arriving in the collection at a rate of 20,000 to 30,000 a year, and as a result the collection was growing quicker than they could catalog it. At the start of the new project it was estimated that the overall collection numbered around 5 million specimens. The traditional digitization process was too slow. It had taken 40 years to catalog the first 1.5 million specimens. The new OTMM-based project initiated by the Smithsonian’s Digital Program Office is on track to have cataloged the next 1 million objects in just eighteen months. The Natural History Museum project isn’t the only part of the Smithsonian that is using OTMM. They have 12 museums that are contributing content to the DAM and currently have millions of assets in their OTMM system and that number is increasing rapidly each day. Most or all of these images are made available to public & researchers free of cost online at the Collections Search Center site.

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OpenText WFO Video Series: Why Should Customer Experience be a top Enterprise Goal?

WFO Video Series

When faced with a choice of products, or suppliers, how to decide which one to use? Is it simply price, or like most people does your previous experience with the company or product factor into your decision? In today’s fast-paced world no one really has the marketplace to themselves anymore. New innovations quickly give rise to competitors. As a result everything is a commodity, making it ever more difficult to achieve market share based on product alone. Customer experience has become the key business differentiator. Management consultant and author Peter Drucker once wrote that “the purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer.” This may seem to be an obvious statement, but many companies traditionally focus on the first half of the statement to the detriment of the latter part. It can be argued that keeping a customer is more important than finding a new one – for a repeat customer is often an engaged customer. According to a 2015 article from McKinsey & Company, developing a customer experience strategy is now one of the top 3 initiatives for 90% of CEOs.  And as stated by analyst Brian Solis in “The 2016 State of Digital Transformation,” of 500 participating digital strategists who were responsible for digital transformation, 55% cited “evolving customer behaviors and preferences” as the primary catalyst for change. In today’s digital world the customer is not only driving the decision on when and how interactions are made, they are also demanding a more personalized experience. But simply improving individual transactions with the customer at specific points in the process is not enough: to make a real difference the customer experience should be a continuous connected journey that allows data to flow across every step of the customer lifecycle, leaving the customer with a “they really know me” feeling. One of the most commonly overlooked areas of the customer journey is post sales when the greatest value is to be obtained. A well-defined post sales process aligned with a foundational customer experience strategy can increase the customer’s lifecycle value and often deliver overall revenue multiple times that of an initial product order. The companies that are focused on delivering exceptional customer service are demonstrably winning more business and are on faster growth paths. Customer-centric brands generate more loyalty and find that their customers become their strongest brand advocates. Think about the brands and companies that you like to deal with. Shouldn’t you be delivering a similar, or even better, experience to your customers at every interaction? For a real life example of why customer experience should be a top enterprise goal, Aflac’s Jason Goodroe discusses how customer experience has been defined as one of the four key pillars of the business. Listen to Jason explain why customers, irrespective of technology or process, want to build loyal relationships with companies that provide value and trust. And don’t forget to hear how the other Video Series speakers explain why customer experience is a top enterprise goal in 2017. In all, our speakers answer eight important questions about driving awareness of the contact center within your organization and explain why this should be of interest to every contact center agent, supervisor, manager and executive. So when you have a few moments be sure to hear how our panel of experts answered all of these questions: What defines a positive customer experience? Why should customer experience be a top enterprise goal? How can the contact center be positioned as a leader in customer experience? How can the contact center align with the top priorities of executive leadership? What’s the best way to coordinate contact center goals with other business units? What performance goals resonate most with executive leadership? What other tools demonstrate contact center impact to the executive team? What are some lessons learned about reporting to the executive team? Continue the conversation by commenting on our blog posts, check out Steve Graff’s blog to read his take on the first question in the series, What defines a positive customer experience?

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