Digital Transformation

GenX or Millennials: Which Generation Truly Leads the Digital Transformation?

Even though we know millennials are connected non-stop to their smartphones, laptops, and social media accounts, it’s Generation X that makes up the main influencers, architects, and drivers of digital transformation in the enterprise. With all the focus on Millennials, it’s actually Generation X—those born between the ‘60s and early ‘80s—that paved the way for their younger colleagues to reap the longer-term rewards of digital business. Here’s how we know. OpenText recently commissioned a study [1] by Forrester Consulting that reveals how businesses can make the most of their digital transformation efforts by tapping certain generational groups for leadership positions. Creating a one-size-fits-all management culture no longer suits today’s workforce, given its diversity. Gen-X Has Greater Clarity on What Drives Transformation To learn how different generations affect digital transformation, Forrester surveyed 240 Baby Boomers, Gen-Xers, and Millennials. Here are some of those findings: When asked about key drivers behind digital transformation, Baby Boomers were most likely to name growing revenue as a motivator, while Gen-Xers put greater emphasis on how digital change can improve the way business itself works. Regarding what drives change, 51% of Gen-Xers said improving time to market is a change driver, compared to 42% of Baby Boomers and just 30% of Millennials. Gen-Xers were also far more likely to believe transformation is driven by a desire to improve innovation and bring new offerings to market at 47%, compared to 32% for Baby Boomers and 37% for Millennials. Regarding the belief that transformation is driven by the need to create a seamless, harmonized customer experience across channels, 49% of Gen-Xers felt this is true, compared to 32% for Baby Boomers and 34% for Millennials. The Takeaway Understanding the workforce can help drive your company’s vision. By moving Gen-Xers with “digital savvy” into more senior leadership positions, while making sure Millennials are involved in decisions affecting the future, enterprises can foster transformational success. But, overall, having a better understanding of different groups’ unique strengths is the first step. It can help boost the chances of a smooth digital transformation to compete today and in the future. And while every part of an organization needs to take part for a digital transformation program to succeed, armed with this research, you can leverage your resources for the biggest impact and position your own business for success. To explore how to move forward with your digital transformation, take a look at how OpenText Release 16 enables companies to manage the flow of information in the digital enterprise, from engagement to insight. [1] It’s Not What You Think: Gen X-ers, Not Millennials, Are Driving Digital Transformation

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Brace Yourself: Change, Pain & Opportunities

financial services live debate

In this blog we welcome guest blogger Laurence Leyden, General Manager for Financial Services in EMEA at SAP. “The last thing I want to do is hurt you, but it’s still on the list.” If the banking industry had its own memes for the state of the market, this would be one of them. There’s so much change coming. Some of it will be painful. Some of it will create new winners and losers. All of it will result in a seismic shift in business models. Cash is disappearing, revenue models are shifting, mobile is everywhere (including your wallet), brand advocacy has replaced marketing strategy, multi-channel friction is alienating impatient, cynical customers, de-banked consumers are on the rise, crowdfunding has reached 8 billion, and Google now has a banking license. We shouldn’t be surprised. Just about every other industry has been transformed through tech innovation and machine intelligence – from medical science to self-driving cars to the music industry – yet most banks continue to operate with 1960s style production lines. It’s opened a gap that’s getting wider as new competitors step in, and render banks irrelevant, targeting one service at a time.  We’re already seeing the first casualties – branches (viewed by some as a nuisance in the digital age), disruptive, cheaper payment services, and innovative third party funding options. These issues, and more, will be discussed at the Financial Services Live Debate session at the OpenText Innovation Tour London on 21 March. You can register to attend here. Of course, technology does have a huge role to play, and banks have an opportunity to redefine and reinvent themselves, but first you must realise that we are witnessing the end of an era in banking as we know it. No one is really sure of the timescale. The death of banks has been predicted for some time, but typically things take three times longer to disappear than most people think. That means in the next ten to fifteen years, your bank will be vastly different. Do you know what ‘different’ looks like for you and how you’re going to get there? Start with the obvious. No bank can expect to survive the next few years without ridding itself of manual processes and back office inefficiencies. And speaking of inefficiencies, why would you continue to run old style production methods by writing code, when you should be assembling it? And why wouldn’t you have 100 per cent real time online systems that engage with customers, rather than putting a human teller behind a pane of glass telling customers what they can and can’t do? One of the best examples of true innovation I’ve seen is from the insurance industry. Discovery of South Africa recently announced a collaboration with Apple to create its Vitality Active Rewards program, giving consumers a new Apple Watch for joining. If all weekly fitness targets are met over 24 months, then the watch is free. Members also enjoy other rewards when they hit their fitness targets, ranging from a free drink, free domestic flights, to a waiver of monthly fees for gym memberships. Should the member miss some or all of the targets in any month, then depending on the number of targets missed they pay a monthly penalty of the cost of the watch. It’s a clever move. Discovery can also see which members are most active – and presumably lower health risk – as well as gather all sorts of insights into consumer behaviours. My point is that there are opportunities everywhere in data. The sands may be shifting underneath your feet and new market entrants may be using agility against you, but you can fight back. Find areas of value by engraining yourself in the customer value chain of requirements and provide consumers with a simple, cohesive digital experience. Traditional methods simply won’t cut it. The level of disruption, behavioral shifts and changes are unparalleled. The digital age has forced financial institutions to rethink how the entire customer experience works. It’s time to reimagine and rebuild your bank into a modern, tech savvy useful alternative to the stale, status quo experiences that exist today. Just about every other industry has been through this transformation. You may not like it, and may not want it, but if history proves anything, you don’t have much of a choice. I’ll be discussing these issues as a guest panellist at the Financial Services Live Debate session at the OpenText Innovation Tour London on 21 March. You can register here. Laurence Leyden, General Manager for Financial Services in EMEA at SAP. Laurence is responsible for all elements of Banking, Insurance and Capital Markets. A veteran of 15 years at SAP he previously headed the global transformation team, ran the global pre-sales organisation, and lead the EMEA Value Engineering and Core Banking teams. Laurence specialises in understanding real customer needs and how SAP and partners help drive transformation across organisations. Increasingly this involves reviewing business models and aligning to the benefits that true digitisation enables. He is heavily engaged in looking at the changes facing banks and promoting the role of innovation and looking at how SAP views ‘the bank of the future’. He is regularly quoted in the financial press and speaks on behalf of SAP at various industry summits and events as well as with the analyst community.

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The Best Way To Enable Your Digital World

Innovation Tour London

The Innovation Tour, London, Returns In March For Another Successful Year As data continues to reinvent our economy, just about every organisation in every sector must transform to a Digital Enterprise if they are to remain competitive and relevant. My favourite conversations involve hearing how our customers are succeeding in navigating this digital change. While digitisation is having disruptive effects on people, companies and markets globally, it’s also full of opportunities; particularly here in the UK. I am always impressed at the level of innovation and collaboration our customers achieve; particularly the new ways they are benefitting from greater agility, better insights and the transformative effects of responding at digital speeds. That’s why I am looking forward to one of the highlights of our calendar year at the annual 2017 Digital Innovation Tour, London on 21 March. More than 350 people will be attending this year’s flagship event and I will be aiming to speak to as many of them as I can and I would encourage you to attend and do the same. If you attended last year, you will know the value that bringing so much collective insight, experience and expertise together for one just day delivers for the rest of the year and beyond. Our customers tell us that it’s the quality of the networking and face-to-face conversations that spark new ideas, facilitate first-hand insights on pertinent trends and deliver fresh thinking around common information management issues, that sets it apart from other industry events. It’s a reputation we’re rightly proud of and are committed to continue. It’s also a great opportunity to hear from some of the industry’s leading experts who know how to drive benefits for your business, as well as learn about all of the exciting new innovation from OpenText as we continue to deliver against our product roadmap and vision. Along with an agenda packed full of real life case studies, we will also be hosting solution-specific breakout sessions and demonstrations. Customers tell us how beneficial they find these, as they can see first-hand how others have transformed their Enterprise Information Systems (EIM) to truly become Digital Enterprises and ask practical questions about how they’ve addressed specific scenarios. It’s our intention to make the 2017 Innovation Tour even more valuable and engaging than last year’s event. That’s why we’ve decided to hold this year’s conference at County Hall in Westminster to accommodate the growing demand. Whether you have attended in previous years or are new to the Innovation Tour, we are looking forward to helping you deliver the best digital experiences for your company, your wider ecosystem partners, and of course your own customers. Our objective is to ensure your business is empowered to explore the boundless opportunities that EIM delivers, which makes an ideal format for our conference. You can register for the 2017 OpenText Innovation Tour here. I look forward to meeting you there.

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Lower the Drawbridge and let the Data Flow

customer experience

It’s not often that Game of Thrones provides a moment of insight into data exchange, but that’s what happened this week. I am just catching up with season six of the top rated HBO series; and when the “Kingslayer” Jamie Lannister walked back across a drawbridge, having failed to persuade the leader of the forces under siege in the castle to surrender, it made me think about permeable data. In my last blog post I presented the idea that rather than trying to break down and remove the invisible walls that keep core customer data siloed and isolated in different parts and layers of the organization, we should let each group keep the keys to their (data) kingdoms, and benevolently grant access to the data to other groups and departments. In the world of Game of Thrones, with its ever shifting alliances and loyalties, the one thing that remains constant is the need for information. That information is often delivered via messenger ravens, and occasionally through personal contact as the various characters meet and interact. On the face of it, Jamie Lannister’s interaction on the drawbridge may have been seen as a failure. Yet, the more I thought about it, the lowering of the drawbridge allowed some significant “permeable data” to flow between the two systems in play. Each commander shared a little about their intentions and reacted to information that the other one shared. While Lannister may not have persuaded the besieged commander to surrender, he walked away with enough information to develop a way to later end the siege with relatively minimal casualties. And the commander of the castle knew more about his opponent, his strengths, and his thinking – even if he chose not to act on that information. Once that drawbridge came down, it was inevitable that data would be exchanged. We need to lower our system drawbridges. By making the data silo walls permeable, allowing the data to flow freely to and from the different repositories, a company can make the most out of its investment in the technology being used to garner that information, and keep the kingdom’s (data) monarchs happy at the same time. Data bridges allow the flow of information. Once enabled, the company can collect a piece of data once and share between systems, in a way that respects system ownership and allows each repository to use the data in the best possible way to fulfill its own line of business needs and tasks. OpenText™ Experience Suite builds on this concept. It lets data flow between the various products in the Customer Experience Management portfolio, so vital information and assets can be connected from Digital Asset Management tools through to the Web Content Management and Optimization tools and on to Customer Communications and even the Call Center, where data around sentiment analysis can be fed back to the Web Content design team. Each product can stand alone and address the needs of a particular line of business, or be an Enterprise content single source of truth. Yet by passing data between them, with other OpenText tools, or existing enterprise business systems etc., they can be the foundation of a fully connected continuous customer experience.

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Mastering Partner Marketing: The Do’s, Don’ts and The Reasons Why

partner marketing

Some things in life just naturally go together – fish and chips, tea and cake, sausage and mash. But it’s not just foods that combine well. Any good marketer will tell you about the benefits of joint marketing with partners – particularly if you align with a large complementary brand. Whilst the logic of working together may be a no brainer, it’s often the execution where things go awry. Take Financial Services for example. There’s certainly no shortage of opportunities for education, engagement and conversion as digital transformation continues to disrupt markets and business models, but creating a targeted, well executed partner marketing proposition is easier said than done for some companies. That’s why I decided to write this blog and share some of the do’s and don’ts when it comes to mastering the partner marketing model. The Don’ts of Partner Marketing Activities Don’t Assume It’s An Equal Relationship – Once you’ve found a symbiotic reason to partner with another organisation, don’t assume your counterpart shares your view of how the relationship is defined. Marketers often assume partner companies will want a 50/50 marketing relationship. The cost of co-branding with certain organisations may involve doing things their way, not yours. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but don’t say yes to things if it pushes you further away from your objectives. Don’t Get Eclipsed – Don’t assume you can rely on the strength of just one brand to push your partnership. The smaller brand needs a very clear value proposition or it risks being eclipsed. Show why your respective offerings are of strength, both collectively and individually in their own right. Don’t Try It Without A Compelling Proposition – I’ve seen companies spend a lot of time and money on joint marketing campaigns for all the wrong reasons. If you’re not solving a common problem or addressing a related business pain, don’t bother. Competing for attention and then fragmenting it, is not a good approach. The Do’s of Partner Marketing Activities Do Have A Clear Understanding of Your Target Audience – And by clear understanding, I mean down to the name, job title, division and specific company where possible. Your partner may have an existing relationship in a target account that you can leverage so do your homework. Pick Your Channels – If you know your target audience, chances are you know their preferred channels. In Financial Services, for example, a consultative-based, informative face-to-face networking event aimed at specific individuals will generate greater interest than a standalone email campaign. Deliver An Integrated Experience – Make sure each element of your partner marketing campaign is integrated to drive traffic to your digital assets. That could be a dedicated, co-branded landing page, online registration, or joint solution. Make sure you connect the dots. A Good Example By way of an example, we recently partnered with SAP on a joint Financial Services marketing campaign, choosing a topic (common business pain) that’s affecting almost every financial services organisation: A digital ready workforce. Next we delivered a live debate for insight and networking (the preferred channel of our targets) – “Re-wiring Financial Services: Embedding A Digital Culture” . The debate comprised peer level, consultative speakers from banks, and digital disruptors, as well as our own respective industry experts. And of course, the event was broadcast for remote live viewing, as well as recorded for later viewing as a webinar – with these digital assets in mind from the outset. Because we focused on our joint target accounts with a compelling proposition, and used the expertise and relationships of both SAP and OpenText, we attracted 222 target prospects to attend and engaged them for 40 minutes. No mean feat for the type of people we targeted. The purpose of this blog post isn’t to try to impress you, but rather to impress upon you the benefits – and potential profitable rewards – of following a few simple, yet often overlooked, rules for successful partner marketing. You can view the webinar and other assets I mentioned here on the campaign microsite.

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Innovation Tour: Sydney

Innovation Tour

On Monday, the OpenText Innovation Tour kicked off in Sydney, Australia with an on-stage presentation from CEO and CTO Mark Barrenechea. In addition to a look at new and upcoming product innovations, Mark provided an overview of recent OpenText acquisitions and OpenText’s position as the leading provider of Enterprise Information Management (EIM) technologies and services. OpenText EIM enables the flow of information from Engagement to Insight, allowing customers to extract value from information throughout the flow. Our newest project, Magellan, will use open standards, open algorithms and machine learning to enable customers to make sense of massive pools of data and harness the power of their information. Building on Mark’s presentation, OpenText CMO Adam Howatson (always one of my favorite presenters) provided an update on OpenText™ Suite 16 EP1 and an overview of our plans for EP2, due in mid-2017. Unstructured data continues to increase at a phenomenal pace and these Enhancement Packs are designed so OpenText can respond quickly to customer recommendations. For example, EP1 extends ECM to SalesForce and SuccessFactors, enabling our customers to successfully manage and gain insight from their CRM and Human Resources systems. We’re not the only people listening to customers. Special guest Michael Barnes of Forrester later took the stage to provide insight into what he calls the “Customer-obsessed operating model”. It is imperative that we look at the experience we create for customers from their point of view, and understand how every interaction affects that experience. In the age of the customer, it is important that we take what we learn from our customers’ journey and translate that insight into an improved experience. Using our EIM technology, we can coordinate and technically optimize the experience to better serve, delight and engage customers. What I enjoy most about the Innovation Tour is how it brings together OpenText customers, partners and staff from many geographies and allows us to discuss opportunities and solutions. In Sydney, we are speaking with customers from all across Australia, and New Zealand, a distance of almost 5,300 km. Tracy Parsons of the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) joined OpenText President Steve Murphy on stage to discuss the NZTA’s EIM implementation. Steve and Tracy discussed how the NZTA are using a cloud-based EIM implementation that includes both Content and Process Suites to digitalize business process, provide access to mobile workers and offer regulatory compliance. I’ve heard plenty of interesting success stories from customers during the event. The Sydney Innovation Tour is the first of eight stops, with Singapore on December 1st, followed by Tokyo on December 8th. I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible at the events. Please email me with any feedback or questions.

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User Adoption: Avoiding Public Sector Digital Transformation Pitfalls

Digital transformation

Amidst the media noise around digital transformation for the cloud-based, ‘Digital-First’ world, it’s easy to overlook a simple, yet critical component: will your colleagues actually use it? User adoption is one of the biggest concerns when it comes to investing in new technology in the public sector. It’s human nature not to like change, so unless it’s easier than whatever people were doing before, most won’t use it – no matter how many bells and whistles it has. Easy beats cool. Every time. Of course, that’s not to say simple to use systems can’t be sophisticated. But when it comes to dealing with millions of pieces of unstructured content, the fundamental principal of usability can often get lost in the size, complexity and context of the problem. One of the best examples in successfully tackling this issue is the approach the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust took, with OpenText’s help, to store, manage and digitise their patient medical care records. Rather than just looking at how to solve the problem of 900,000 unstructured clinical records, they took a more holistic approach around information management. They knew clinicians need to refer to previous medical histories, so before their system even went live, Royal Free back scanned huge volumes of data in the OpenText solution, making everything accessible, and easy to find in a user-friendly system that was designed to behave the way the staff would naturally work from day one. This not only gave their medical staff the content they needed, but also delivered it to them in the context of the patient’s medical history. Compare this to the old method of having to manually flip through paper records that were physically pushed around the hospital on 100 trolleys, and it’s easy to see why user adoption was so high. You can read more about how the Royal Free is driving value from its data, reducing costs, and simplifying its patient record access here. In all the work we’ve done with the public sector over the past twenty years, I’m always amazed when I see vendors lose sight of the user’s perspective. It’s one of the reasons we deliberately hire former practitioners directly from the public sector, as they’ve worked at the coal face on both sides of the fence. They understand the importance of making things easier than they were before, and the need of putting content into the context of how will be used. As MIT professor and serial entrepreneur, Alan Kay, once said, “Context is worth 80 IQ points”. It’s a subtle yet often overlooked aspect when it comes to digitising content and putting data in the cloud. And speaking of the cloud, we’re pleased to announce that we’ve now put our first offering on G-Cloud – OpenText™ Core – which makes sharing the right information with the right people easy and instinctive. You can find us on the Digital Marketplace here. If you’d like to know more about the latest developments in our public sector offerings in Health Care, you can read more.

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Removing the Data Barriers to get the Bigger Picture

Data barriers

Doing something over and over again and expecting a different result is EITHER practice, or insanity.  The difference is simply in how long you’re willing to wait until things start to change. Similarly, treating all customers the same and simply doing the same things over again in new channels, is equally unproductive. To successfully meet the experience expectations of today’s customer demands removing data barriers and agility in how companies leverage their customers’ data in order to deliver individualized experiences in preferred channels. This kind of agility requires connectivity and fluidity within an organization. Customer Experience takes a village It takes a collection of divisions and departments within an organization to deliver goods, services, and the desired brand experience, to customers. Similarly, customers interact with organizations via multiple touchpoints spread across multiple departments. So why would any company think a single source of data from any one department or division could provide the multi-faceted, let alone complete, picture of the customer it needs? To develop and implement a truly omnichannel and customer-centric customer experience strategy, companies need to gather insights from multiple data points to connect those experiences together. But even that is not enough. That data, all that data, also needs to be accessible by the myriad teams that contribute to delivering the customer experience for their own analysis and interpretation. Limited by data fiefdoms We’ve all heard the rhetoric of “breaking down the silos”. Many gasp and shudder at the thought of having to share the proverbial access code to the vault that contains THEIR data. Over the span of their careers employees develop areas of knowledge expertise, and maybe even fiefdoms, around particular systems and associated data. They develop a sense of ownership. The angst of now having to share their domain is brought on by many fears; What if they (the other departments) mess up my data? What if their findings contradict my own? What if …? What if …? What if …? This individual apprehension is compounded by the larger picture of company priorities and culture. Companies invest large amounts of money in existing systems, and with those systems adoption come established, good or bad, procedures and policies. Once these become intrinsic to the way a company does business they are difficult to adjust. Nobody likes change, and it isn’t realistic to expect these things to change, or as some cases may deem, disappear, overnight. But who says they have to? Permeable data silos Rather than trying to break down and remove the invisible walls that keep core customer data siloed and isolated in different parts and layers of the organization, let each group keep the keys to their (data) kingdoms, and benevolently grant access to the data to other groups and departments. By making the data silo walls permeable, allowing the data to flow freely to, and from, the different repositories, the company can make the most out of its investment in the technology being used to garner that information, and keep the kingdom’s (data) monarchs happy at the same time. By building these data bridges the flow of information from one system to the other is enabled, and subsequently encouraged. And instead of collecting the same data over and over again – a better experience for the customer already – companies can collect it once and share between systems, in a way that respects system ownership and allows each repository to use the data in the best possible way to fulfill its own line of business needs and tasks. Internal systems shouldn’t drive the Customer Experience; it should be the other way around Some might think that to solve this problem companies have to first look at the systems in place for collecting and storing the data. At some point, yes, there are likely redundant repositories that can be sunsetted once the data landscape is better understood. For a bigger, transformational impact, companies should turn to their teams and data-related activities. Understanding by whom, and how the data is used, agreeing to what it means across the organization, as well as in different teams and departments, is how the true value of data is extracted. By creating a customer-centric perspective internally around customer-related data, organizations enable the different parts of their business to consume and analyze data in a way that makes most sense for them, thus allowing them to have more insight into the customer, and therefore are better able to contribute to delivering a more customer-centric experience. Data driven companies that take a holistic view of their data, develop “data journeys” that transcend internal company borders and boundaries, and mirror their customers’ journeys, are winning the customer experience race. (This blog post was co-authored with Cathy McKnight of the Digital Clarity Group).

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OpenText Named a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for ECM Again!

enterprise content management

The more things change…” OpenText has been recognized as a leader in the Gartner™ 2016 Magic Quadrant for ECM—for the 13th year in a row. Now, being recognized as an industry leader every year for over a decade is no easy feat in the rapidly changing software sector. Trends come and go, new technology replaces existing benchmarks, business models evolve, even the attitudes and approaches of end users morph over time. Researching and developing Enterprise Content Management solutions that keep you ahead of the curve for that amount of time is a huge achievement. But that’s just part of the reason we here at OpenText are thrilled to once again be recognized by the highly respected analysts at Gartner. This year’s Gartner 2016 Magic Quadrant for ECM accolades are especially rewarding for us, given that the rigorous evaluation process centered on the ability to execute and completeness of vision found in our new OpenText™ Content Suite 16. In our opinion, OpenText is on target in offering a new generation of ECM solutions that meet the needs of digital organizations. It’s Time to Rethink ECM–and what Success with ECM means Our belief that the very concept of ECM has to change is central in this. Yesterday’s definition of ECM is no longer sufficient to meet the needs of tomorrow’s enterprise. Simply viewing an ECM platform as a one-way repository for information storage and compliance doesn’t cut it anymore. Digital enterprises, and the knowledge workers that drive them, need so much more from technology in today’s digital environment: Effortless, light-touch collaboration is now critical, and increasingly decentralized business functions have created siloes of hidden-gem data that need to be bridged for information to flow freely to those that need it. A new generation of ECM technologies must facilitate this. They have the sharing and social capabilities to be the enterprise standard for collaboration. They have the integration capabilities to act as a central information hub, using metadata to push information in the right context at the right time to those who need it to enhance productivity. They have the ability to automate governance for security and risk management. This new approach to ECM is so pivotal, we believe Gartner amended their internal definition of what comprises an effective ECM platform in today’s digital environment. As a result, the 2016 MQ had two fewer leaders compared to the previous year resulting in a decrease from six to four. So, yes, the ECM landscape is definitely changing. And OpenText is proud to be recognized as a leader in this new era of information management. Regardless of your current ECM position, analyst reports provide excellent insight into the evolving state of the industry as well as in-depth analysis of the major vendors. They’re pretty much required reading for anyone involved in ECM. Take some time to download them here, here, and here. Then, start your own journey to ECM success by exploring the OpenText™ Content Suite. This graphic was published by Gartner, Inc. as part of a larger research document and should be evaluated in the context of the entire document. This Gartner document is available to download here.

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OpenText Live Webinar Series – Upcoming Schedule

OpenText Live Webinar Series

We are fast approaching the holiday season with the New Year peeking just around the corner, but before you get swept up into the hustle and bustle of this “most wonderful time of the year,” we at OpenText™ Live invite you to check out a few webinars that we have lined up for November and December. With the latest release of OpenText™ Release 16 Enhancement Pack 1 (EP1), our Experience Suite has undergone major changes with the additions of powerful Customer Communications and Experience Management solutions such as TeamSite, Exstream, MediaBin, Qfiniti, Explore and more! These enhancements mark the revolution of customer communications in the digital world, and we want to give you an exclusive first hand look into what these solutions can offer your business. November 15: OpenText™ ECM Content Migration (11:00AM EDT) Need help migrating ECM content? OpenText partner FME demonstrates best practices in this webinar. We’ll show you: – Migration and upgrade best practice pathways to OpenText™ Content Suite 16 – Cost savings with migration-center for your content migration – A short live demo Register here November 29: Convert Correspondence into Engagements with OpenText™ Communications Center (11:00AM EDT) Learn more about OpenText Communications Center and its enhanced interactivity with other OpenText product suites including Content Suite, Process Suite, Business Network and Analytics. Turn engagement into insight. Register here December 1: What’s New in OpenText™ Digital Asset Management? (11:00AM EDT) What’s new for OpenText Digital Asset Management (DAM) and the Enhancement Pack 1 (EP1) release? If you’re using Media Management or MediaBin, you’ll want to check out this session to find out what our Product Management team has in store. Learn about the latest features and product strategy. Register here December 6: The Latest Innovations in Exstream 9.5 and Delivery Manager 3.0 (11:00AM EDT) Join us for an overview of Exstream 9.5 which was announced late September and Delivery Manager announced in October. Product experts will be showing live demonstrations. Register here December 8: Syntergy Content Sentry: The Next Generation of Data Loss Prevention (11:00AM EDT) OpenText partner Syntergy will demonstrate a new Data Loss Prevention (DLP) solution for OpenText™ Content Server. The capabilities of this powerful solution allow it to learn what constitutes normal activity for users and what alerts or triggers automated policy reactions when suspicious activity is detected. Register here  December 13: How the Contact Center is Driving the Customer Experience (11:00AM EDT) Attend this session to learn more about OpenText™ Qfiniti and how Workforce Optimization (WFO) solutions are monitoring the customer experience through call recording, coaching employees, measuring the Voice of the Customer (VoC), and leveraging powerful analytics to make every interaction the best it can be. Register here December 15: OpenText™ CEM Strategy Update for WCM Products (11:00AM EDT) We’re creating a powerful new Website Content Management platform, and we want you to learn all about it. With the release of Enhancement Pack 1 (EP1), the WCM platform welcomes OpenText™ TeamSite to the mix, rounding out an effective customer communications program that surpasses the industry standard. Register here The OpenText Live team is committed to delivering content that keeps you updated on the latest OpenText product releases, trends and demands within the digital world as well as demos that exemplify the best solutions features for your business. Communicate directly with the experts and receive the technological know-how for implementing and managing your OpenText products. All of our webinars are recorded and available to registered customers at My Support. Visit our website for more information or sign up to receive weekly invitations to our webinars.

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It Takes a Team to Win it all

OpenText Support

Last week, the Chicago Cubs ended a 108-year MLB championship drought by winning one of the most exciting games in the long history of baseball. Both teams put on an inspiring display of perseverance, skill and clutch opportunism. I—along with many of you, I’m sure—was happy to stay up late to catch the whole thing. After the game, Cubs catcher David Ross—who had just played his final professional baseball game—described his teammates as “a group of resilient winners” who “never quit”, and expressed sincere pride in the fact that his team had utilized every member of their team to win it all. We have the same drive for greatness at OpenText. Over the past 25 years, we have grown our business through the acquisition of winning ideas, talent and solutions, and through the development of innovative technologies. Born as a university start-up, we are now a world-leader in Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions with no intention of slowing down. As Mr. Ross explained, it takes a team to succeed. That’s why earlier this week we invited many of you—our customers—to complete a short survey and let us know how we can better help you meet and exceed your business goals. In my last blog I wrote about the importance of knowing customers on an individual level in order to serve them better. Our annual survey helps us better understand you and your needs. It gives you the opportunity to tell us what we’re doing well—and what we can do better—as your EIM solution provider, technical leader and trusted partner. Roughly half of you received the survey this week; the other half were given the opportunity to provide feedback in the spring. From the feedback, we have already identified five primary objectives that we will obsess over in the coming months: Improve product quality by better understanding customer expectations, beta-testing products and focusing development resources on high-impact features and functionality Shorten Customer Support ticket resolution times and improve technician communication while continuing to value complete, successful outcomes over quick, short-term fixes Build a stronger partnership with customers by allowing you greater visibility into product development, helping the business better understand your needs Make the Sales process easier and more efficient by improving customer communication and ensuring large or complex accounts have the resources and visibility they need to be successful Deliver Professional Services engagements on time and on budget by setting firm expectations upfront, holding regular update meetings, and collecting/evaluating feedback following each engagement to determine what went well and what needs to be improved Additionally, we have begun to make significant improvements to OpenText My Support thanks to our recent upgrade of the Knowledge Center (KC) to OpenText™ Content Server 16. This upgrade allows us to utilize API widgets and HTML5 wizardry to present a far more personalized online support experience to you. You will already see some of this functionality reflected on the KC homepage, in product search menus and in the redesigned Knowledge Base. You can also learn more about Release 16 here. At OpenText, we’re never satisfied. We’re constantly looking for new ways to help you succeed—it’s up to you to decide the direction we take our EIM solutions, and to help us develop a phenomenal customer experience. Check your inbox to see if you’ve received our survey. If you have, we would greatly appreciate you taking 3-5 minutes to provide your feedback. If you didn’t get the survey but have feedback you want to share, our Customer Experience team is always listening. Email them at cx@opentext.com.

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OpenText Experience Suite Adds Functionality to Support the Customer Lifecycle

Experience Suite

The latest release of OpenText™ Experience Suite tackles the challenges of digital transformation to deliver a continuous real and effective digital customer lifecycle. OpenText is helping organizations to orchestrate data, media, interactions and transactions across a digital enterprise. The complexity of managing a consistent brand presence across media, languages, cultural expectations and governmental regulations requires a platform built for pervasive connectivity and new ways of interacting that go beyond a simple point and click. Experience Suite helps business leaders harmonize customer-centric technology applications across every department in the organization, whether the organization’s first priority is to get a handle on all of the rich media (video, audio, print, imagery, etc.) or to streamline its communications, invoices, or web presence. Experience Suite serves as a single platform of choice for delivering Continuous Customer Engagement. This market-leading set of capabilities addresses critical digital transformation initiatives within the realm of the customer experience and is comprised of leading applications from market categories in Customer Communications Management, Digital Asset Management, Marketing Optimization, Voice of the Customer, Web Content Management, and Workforce Optimization along with architecture to deeply integrate into the larger OpenText Enterprise Information Management (EIM) platform. Consider the need for a company to launch and manage a campaign across multiple markets and different customer personas. With Experience Suite you can connect our industry leading Digital Asset Management platform to the Web Content Management and Optimization capabilities to design, test, optimize, and deliver the right content with the right message – all with brand approved imagery that ensures that the right message is being delivered to the right customers in a way that resonates with their needs and results in higher rates of engagement. Once a customer has executed the call to action from a campaign (such as clicking a link to request more information) their data can be passed to the Customer Communications Management system where responses and on-going communications can be delivered in a way that suits the customers’ needs from print, to text, email, etc. The communications can be designed to add value to the ongoing exchange, or even be interactive to promote further engagement through to purchase and beyond. As customers continue their ownership, use of product call center optimization and voice of the customer tools within the Experience Suite portfolio can track customer sentiment, and feedback to various parts of the company any need for changes in the overall customer experience. OpenText Experience Suite includes: Digital Asset Management with OpenText™ Media Management Web Content Management with OpenText™ TeamSite Customer Communications Management with OpenText™ Exstream + Communications Center Enterprise Call Center Workforce Optimization with OpenText™ Qfiniti Voice of the Customer analysis with OpenText™ Explore With the Experience Suite portfolio of tools it is possible to deliver a fully connected continuous customer experience that drives increased engagement and additional revenue.

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EP1: Enhancing OpenText Release 16—from Engagement to Insight

Today, we announced the availability of Release 16 Enhancement Pack 1 (EP1)—the first in a series of enhancements to the most comprehensive digital Enterprise Information Management (EIM) platform on the market today, OpenText Release 16. As the enterprise shifts from investments in systems of record and engagement systems of insight, OpenText will continue to develop solutions that fully automate the complete EIM flow from customer engagement to business insight. This latest enhancement package does just that, with additional capabilities in our Experience, Content, and Discovery suites to complete the flow of information across the enterprise. The Complete EIM Flow – From Engagement to Insight Engagement: Digital is introducing new formats and channels of communication with customers. Organizations must be able to meet customer expectations, creating communications that are personalized, timely, and accessible using preferred channels. EP1 delivers highly personalized content orchestration across different processes for a connected customer experience. The enhancements we’ve made to our Experience Suite offer a breadth and depth of capabilities never before available from a single Customer Experience Management (CEM) platform. Offered via flexible on-premises, cloud, or hybrid deployments, Experience Suite addresses key capabilities required for true digital transformation. From marketing optimization to customer contact programs, OpenText is connecting the customer journey for better customer engagement and insight. Existing OpenText CEM solutions have raised the bar for dynamic and personal customer engagement with industry-led Customer Communications Management (CCM), Digital Asset Management (DAM), Web Content Management (WCM), and Customer Care and Support solutions designed to make it easier to engage with customers using multiple channels and devices. This next generation of CEM will present new opportunities in content targeting and conversion rate optimization for our customers. With EP1 we are executing on our vision of interdependent applications working together in the OpenText Experience Suite to create the best possible user experiences. “The investment and focus OpenText is putting on its Customer Experience Management solutions is very exciting,” said Mark Fassbender, global head of Web Optimization at Lexis Nexis. “Marketers today invest a lot of time and effort in trying to understand the customer journey from first contact through to renewal and retention. By connecting reporting and insights from each key stage of the customer journey together in an integrated solution, OpenText allows for a better understanding of what content works best for each channel and customer group across the whole customer lifecycle, which is pretty awesome.” Content: To help organizations manage the flow of information across the enterprise, OpenText Extended ECM (xECM) Platform improves process productivity, integrating Enterprise Content Management (ECM) functionality with lead applications to bridge silos and enhance information flows. EP1 strengthens these capabilities with targeted solutions, such as xECM for Salesforce® and xECM for SuccessFactors®, as well as xECM integration for Process Suite to further connect the processes that generate enterprise information and ensure compliance and control across all systems. Extended ECM for Salesforce improves customer insight and streamlines sales by connecting Salesforce cloud services to the OpenText xECM Platform for easy access to ECM capabilities and content inside the Salesforce user interface. Extended ECM for SuccessFactors manages all aspects of the digital employee file within SAP SuccessFactors. With centralized digitized document storage and collaboration, this solution accelerates the efficiencies of operations and minimizes compliance risk for the hire-to-retire HR process. Process Suite for xECM extends the reach of ECM to all parts of the enterprise, providing processes with the context that improves insight, efficiency, and throughput. Discover: As digital consumers drive—or overhaul—supply chains across borders, the enterprise will be increasingly required to comply with external regulations and internal governance policies. In order to make enterprise information ‘discoverable’ and ‘actionable,’ EP1 introduces Discovery Suite to complement Content Suite. Discovery Suite brings analytics to enterprise content, providing a single, integrated platform for self-service business intelligence, data preparation, and advanced analytics on both structured and unstructured information. Customers can now leverage data analytics, machine learning, and interactive visualizations for litigation, investigations, due diligence, compliance, and better decision making.   Functional Enhancements and Integration across the Suites Across all of our suites, we remain committed to giving our customers the most scalable, secure, flexible, and well-architected products. We will consistently leverage the Cloud for our suites to make OpenText the number one EIM cloud. With increased availability in the Cloud, EP1 helps to automate the complete the EIM flow, from Engagement to Insight, with deep functional enhancements and a focus on integration. OpenText Release 16 is the EIM platform of the future and key to our customers’ success, which is why we will continue to release enhancements as part of the EP series. EP1 is the first of many exciting innovations in a series planned for Release 16 over the coming months. Stay tuned for more information. Read the press release.

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The Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing

InfoArchive

Did you know Hollywood legend Hedy Lamarr played a key role in the invention of spread-spectrum technology? Like many women before and after her, Hedy helped set the stage for today’s digital transformation. As the digital landscape has changed over the years, so has its makeup (no pun intended!) From Marissa Mayer to Sheryl Sandberg to Canada’s own Grace Hopper women have been making their mark and have become front and center in the technology field. At OpenText, we recognize the importance of women in the field of technology. It is why we designed our own Women in Technology (WIT) and continue to grow and expand the initiative year over year. This week we have sent a delegation of women to the 2016 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. The conference brings together more than 15,000 women technologists from all over the world. Research, career interests, collaboration, and networking are at the forefront of this important event and it all happens this week in Houston, Texas. Amazing keynote speakers and sessions will inspire and educate all attendees. Last year, we sent a delegation of 10 incredible women who are born leaders that have made incredible impacts throughout their careers at OpenText. Through their experience, they determined that the delegation would benefit with two different groups: Emerging Tech Leaders and Trailblazers. Our Emerging Tech Leaders are early in their technical careers, while our Trailblazers have established themselves as leaders and people of influence in their positions. All 10 delegates were nominated by their Executive Leadership Team in their respective functions and needed to meet specific criteria. A delegate is wicked smart and has made meaningful contributions to the organization. She may not have high visibility in the organization, but has taken initiative and is driven by speed and vision, not fear. She demonstrates a passion for learning, technology excellence and the sharing of knowledge and ideas. Most importantly, she advocates for others and is an active participant in advancing WIT. These are this year’s delegates. Our Trailblazers: (Left to Right) Rackel Correa, Director, Global Support Services – São Paulo, Brazil Sandra Tiskens, Sales Director, Key Accounts – Düsseldorf, Germany Dee Gentile, VP Sales, Eastern Region – Scottsdale, USA Rana Aluraibi, Director, Customer Marketing – Richmond Hill, Canada Lynne Smith, Senior Director, Finance Strategic Initiatives – Waterloo, Canada Noelle Aubert, Systems Administrator – Bellevue, USA Our Emerging Tech Leaders: (Left to Right) Divyani Parsa Ravi, Software Engineer – Hyderabad, India Belle McGee, User Experience Visual Designer – Ottawa, Canada Valeria Kalteis, Software Engineer – Munich, Germany Lahiru Peiris, Senior QA Engineer – Waterloo, Canada Congratulations to our 2016 delegation! These women are now on their way and we’re excited to see what they’ll come back with. Their journey starts tomorrow and Houston won’t know what hit ‘em!

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The Redefined Customer Journey – Remove System Friction

redefined customer journey

The customer journey is being redefined in the digital age from a linear process to an ongoing loop of BUY then OWN with the companies you choose to deal with becoming more and more engaged in every part of the cycle. So far in previous posts I’ve discussed what that on-going loop looks like from a customer perspective and how the loop model aligns the customer’s activities to those of the organization, and which departments need to work together to deliver the continuous connected experience. As we continue to dig deeper into the journey map the fourth layer (above) connects the departmental level activity to the typical enterprise systems that record, drive, and promote the various aspects of the customer’s journey. These processes and systems have to interact. Technology bridges need to be established to allow data to flow between them to ensure a consistent experience and to maintain a relevant, valued engagement. The platforms in use must promote a sufficient degree of interoperability that allows the multiple interactions to work together. But unfortunately the truth is that they rarely do. How many times have you transitioned from trying to do something on a website, had to call a help desk to get your goal completed and they already know your account details and what you want to accomplish? Rarely, if ever. It shouldn’t be that way. I recently moved house and needed to change my address on various accounts. Simple I thought; just go on the various companies’ websites, open my profile, and edit the details. In most cases that worked, but in a few cases I had additional questions and needed to make a call. With one credit card company I had a question about why my statements had stopped being delivered. The call went something like this: Automated System: Please state your name. Automated System: Say or input your account number. Automated system: What’s your account safeword?  (Note not the account password, but a separate “safeword” I set up when I opened the account years ago and have never needed to use since – of course I had no idea what it was). Me: I have no idea. The Automated System passed me on to a Call Center employee. Call center: How can I help you? Me: I need to change my address and I have a question about my statements. Call center: What’s your account safeword? Me: I have no idea. Call center: I have to pass you on to our security team. Wait while call is transferred. Security team: How can I help you? Me: I need to change my address and I have a question about my statements. Security team: What’s your account safeword? Me: I have no idea, that’s why I was passed to you. Security: OK I can help you with that. What’s your name and account number? (Information I had keyed in the automated system at the start of the call and which the first call center person had). After some back and forth we eventually got the “safeword” thing sorted out. Security: I’ll hand you back to the customer service so they can set up your payment plan? Me: Sorry? What payment plan? I just need to change my address and I have a question about my statements. Security: Oh. Hang on. Wait while call is transferred. – Get a different customer service rep. Customer service: How can I help you? Me: I need to change my address and I have a question about my statements. Call center: What’s your account safeword? Me: You have got to be kidding me! To cut a very long story short I eventually got my address changed and asked about my statements not getting delivered. You guessed it, I got transferred yet again to a different department and went through the same run around. It turned out that when the account hit zero balance they stop sending statements. When I pointed out that it might be nice if they sent the account holder an email to let them know about that policy, or put something on the statements themselves, or even their website; I received a “oh that’s a good idea” response. An idea I doubt will get passed on as I’m sure billing and the website content are yet two more siloed operations. Ideally silos between systems such as the ones I encountered need to be broken down, but as a minimum they should be bridged by data sets that can be easily transferred. Such data sets should reflect the information to support the customer at any given point in their journey and grow incrementally in detail as the customer progresses through their series of interactions with the company. Ideally at no point should a customer have to provide information that they have already supplied earlier in the process. It’s all about removing the friction from the process. The processes and systems you employ shouldn’t define the customer experience, they should support it.

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Do You Know What You Don’t Know About Your Content?

content management

How can you read 174 Newspapers a day? Seems like an impossible task, yet according to one study that is the print equivalent of how much information we are exposed to each day across all media, both traditional and digital. So how can the actual news and information publishers compete and make their content stand out among such a data overload?  In previous posts I discussed the driving forces behind the changes in the publishing industry and how taking a content first hub based approach is the best strategy for underpinning the digital transformation needed to address the changing market. But what about the content itself? Placing content at the center of the new business model, it becomes possible to move towards an iterative workflow across the organization, providing a way to address the challenges of digital transformation by controlling, enhancing, tracking, and leveraging assets that can be delivered across multiple channels and platforms. However any content-centric architecture also raises several issues that must be addressed when considering what approach to take and what technology solutions to adopt. You need to know what you don’t know about your content so you can produce, manage, and distribute the most informative content via the right channels where it can deliver the most value. The following represents the most common content-related issue statements: Don’t know where all the content has come from: With today’s proliferation of information sources that lead to assets being copied and used without attached attribution, it is often difficult to track where an asset originated. Don’t know what content we have: It is not unusual for organizations to have digital asset management systems with as many as one million assets stored. In the news and information industry, this may be tens of millions, with daily uploads in the hundreds of thousands. Don’t know where all the content has gone: With a large number of assets, it is difficult to track what content has been used where, and what content assets are related to each other. When an asset is updated, it can also be costly and time consuming to ensure that out of date assets are replaced if needed. Don’t know what we have the rights to use or the cost of using it: With licensed imagery, and image and news wire subscription services, an organization needs to keep track of what it has already purchased the rights for, where they can be used, and how that relates to the costs of those subscriptions. Don’t know how to best leverage our content assets across platforms: In today’s multi-channel model, assets can be used multiple times across different delivery platforms. Often, they can be reused as-is, but sometimes they need editing, resizing, or combining to meet the needs of particular audiences and devices. It is essential to be able to track such reuse and the relationship between original and edited assets. The use of assets in external platforms could also be considered a potential additional revenue stream and as such, need to be tracked. Don’t know if we are allowed to use it or who we owe money to: Where assets are obtained from external services not covered by existing licensing or subscription services, it is essential that news and information services ensure that they have the rights to use those assets, and if a usage payment is due, be able to identify who owns that asset and the costs of using it. All of these “don’t knows” can be addressed with the OpenText™ Content Hub for Publishers platform. OpenText™ Content Hub for Publishers Content Hub for Publishers (CHP) is the platform for the receipt, enrichment, creation, packaging, delivery, archiving and syndication of all forms of publishable content. The platform is designed to handle the large volumes of content that newsrooms across the world are exposed to on a daily basis, and efficiently manages the repackaging and distribution of that content to multiple publishing channels, such as web, print, mobile and tablet.

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Customer Success, One Job at a Time

CX

Happy Customer Experience Day! Did you get an Outlook reminder? Maybe a Facebook notification? Probably not. But it’s an important day all the same. Today, organizations around the world are investing time to recognize quality work that has been accomplished in the name of their customers. At OpenText, we treat every day like Customer Experience (CX) Day. That’s because everything we work towards is built on our foundational drive to make our customers successful. Whether it’s with our products, Customer Support, Professional Services or Sales teams, we are committed to helping our customers achieve their goals. This means developing robust, innovative solutions that not only check off the boxes on RFPs, but perfectly fit each individual customer’s business from a personnel, technological—even cultural and philosophical perspective. How is this possible? By getting to know our customers on an individual level. In the September 2016 issue of the Harvard Business Review, there is an article that explores strategies used by businesses to better understand customers and help drive innovation. According to the authors of this article, businesses around the world are enjoying the benefits of Big Data and the information that can be gathered from analyzing customer demographics, spending habits and high-level trends. No one can doubt that this information is incredible. But it’s just a piece of the puzzle. To get a complete picture of what we need to work towards, we need to understand the jobs our customers are trying to get done. “’Job’ is shorthand for what an individual really seeks to accomplish in a given circumstance,” say the HBR contributors. “A deep understanding of a job allows you to innovate without guessing what trade-offs your customers are willing to make. It’s a kind of job spec.” For B2B companies like OpenText, the jobs that customers toil away on are often complex and nuanced. In the article, it’s explained that through focus groups, Hershey’s discovered that customers were put off by the guilt-inducing trail of paper left after a session of snacking on peanut butter cups. That’s pretty fascinating. But the challenges faced by our customers require more investigation. Along each step of our customers’ journey with OpenText—from their experience browsing our website, to customizing and upgrading products—we are listening to our customers. Our dedicated Customer Experience team gathers feedback collected from regular surveys, customer advisory boards, events and individual interactions shared by employees. Every single piece of feedback is read by a member of our team. The information gathered from that feedback is then categorized accordingly, and shared within the organization. Listening to—and working with—our customers is just part of who we are. In this recent podcast, you can hear how we helped AmerisourceBergen better serve their customers by working directly with their IT department to understand their unique needs and challenges. It’s just one of many successful customer relationships we’ve been able to grow over the years, and just one of the examples in which knowing our customer’s “jobs to be done” resulted in success for everyone involved. Take some time today to think about what your organization has been doing well and what you could do better to help your customers succeed. Recognize achievements and work to understand what your customers are really trying to accomplish. If you can help get them there, they’ll keep coming back to you. Learn more about CX Day.

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Hidden in the Information: Success with Advanced Analytics

In today’s world, information is all around us. And, hidden in that Information is the key to both understanding your customers and predicting their behavior. Pretty nice, huh? Well, here comes the tricky part. With so much information how do you find the useful insights? A new OpenTextVoice article on Forbes.com explores how to uncover the information and apply it to your business. How can companies use that data to advance its business process or turn an industry on its head? As the article points out “Data is the foundation that allows transformative, digital change to happen.” Analytics are the key to unlocking the potential of data and turning it into something greater. Check out the full article on Forbes to find out to use advanced analytics to take charge of an industry and launch the next Netflix, AirBnB or Uber.  

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With Cognitive Computing, Johnny Five is Alive… or at Least he Will be!

Have you ever wanted your own robot advisor? Well according to a new OpenTextVoice article on Forbes.com, your very own Lieutenant Commander Data, KITT or C3PO may be closer than you think. The article explains how unstructured data is filling the void in traditional computer systems to create cognitive computing systems which can mimic human thinking. Cognitive computing combines structured and unstructured data to enable organizations to make better decisions with intelligent systems that go beyond numbers and rows. The systems can “make predictions and recommendations that offer profound, actionable insights into a host of common business challenges.” Adding Natural Language Processing to the mix, you get a system that can think, “feel” and interact like any other human. Check out the full article on Forbes to find out how cognitive computing is bringing the automated trusted advisor to life.

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OpenText and AmerisourceBergen Develop Superior B2B Customer Experience

B2B customer experience

For your convenience, you can either listen to the Podcast below, or read the transcription in this blog. Complex Processes Simplified Every now and then, I find myself drawn to the Discovery Channel’s “How It’s Made” program. You probably know the one—it’s a TV show that gives a behind-the-scenes look at how some of our most well-known consumer items are put together, packaged and sold. There’s something strangely hypnotic and satisfying about watching thousands of bottles roll through a giant machine to be filled with soda, or a seasoned professional hand-weave a basket. Apart from providing therapeutic stress relief, the program has given me a deeper appreciation for the effort and detail that goes into a product long before it finds its way to a store shelf. The role of behind-the-scenes business-to-business (B2B) vendors in providing an excellent experience for the end customer is huge. The challenge for B2B organizations is to discover who the end customers are and what they need, without having direct contact with those customers. To overcome this challenge, B2B organizations need to develop effective communication and collaboration practices with their business customers and partners. OpenText has had a strong business relationship with leading healthcare solution provider AmerisourceBergen for a number of years.  Among the many things AmerisourceBergen does well is provide B2B distribution of pharmaceuticals to healthcare institutions around the world—and they do that very well. In fact, they handle approximately 20 percent of all the United States’ pharmaceutical distribution. While the process of labeling bottles as seen on How It’s Made is impressive enough, each of those labels is the same—it’s just a matter of sticking them on each bottle. AmerisourceBergen’s customers have more… challenging requirements. Here’s what Scott Marshall, Director of Application Development at AmerisourceBergen said about those requirements: “One of the core components of our business is a complete drug distribution system… When customers receive their product, they also need to have documentation included with the products they receive. We call these packages ‘Driver Ready Packs.’ They’re packs of information that are kind of contained together by delivery location and customer. And they have invoices, price stickers and other documents that customers need.” Thanks to a deal struck with major US retailer Walgreens a few years back, AmerisourceBergen had to triple their production and delivery of those Driver Ready Packs. In fact, AmerisourceBergen now processes 275,000 documents and prints 20,000 bundles of Driver Ready Packs every day. And remember, they distribute products of the most vital nature to be delivered to waiting patients, doctors and families. The room for error in these thousands of custom-packaged and addressed bundles is virtually nil, and time is always a factor. “Back in 2007,” Scott says, “AmerisourceBergen realized that they had been spending a lot of time and effort, and they were not putting that documentation together very efficiently. So they partnered with OpenText and took a look at [OpenText™ Customer Communications Management (CCM)], which back then was referred to as StreamServe, to help automate the collection of this documentation, centralize it, and help make our printing more efficient.” “It automated the assembly of the documentation and sorting,” Scott continues, “and kind of gave an easy way to format content for the delivery person. It improved integrations with more modern technology. We actually had a much faster throughput and printing process, and a lot more accuracy. Overall it reduced our processing steps by about 80 percent and reduced the time it takes to generate our documentation by two thirds.” Catering to Customer Needs AmerisourceBergen generates documentation with CCM in a variety of ways, depending on how their customers prefer to receive it. By working closely with customers, OpenText continuously adjusts and enhances the capabilities of their solutions to meet the changing and evolving needs of their customers. Scott says that “One of the things [they] really liked about CCM is that you can take the same information and make it available in multiple channels such as faxing, emailing.” “What we see a lot now,” says Scott, “is that customers tell us how they want to be communicated with, and you have a mix where you might have someone who is a little more traditional, who likes having paper in their hand that they can feel, where others want to receive things electronically. So we have been trying to keep up or ahead of what our customers’ wants are, and use tools such as CCM that really provide cutting-edge technologies that are able to meet customer needs and communicate in different digital manners.” Certainly, the flexibility, convenience and environmental consciousness of digital documentation is a great benefit for customers, and AmerisourceBergen is poised to help their customers make that transition with support from OpenText and CCM. They are also prepared to make other agile adjustments. I’ll let Hiren Patel, Director of Application Delivery explain: “The business has ever-changing needs in terms of legal disclosures on documents that have been printed, on any text, updates, or in any new document. Now things of that nature, any changes for the application or a solution per se, are very easy to make. They are less stressful in terms of impact to our production.” “There was an incident where a year ago,” Hiren goes on to say, “when we had come across a business requirement to comply with the new DQSA Act passed by the government. It was critical to meet the timeline. To comply, we had to create advanced ship notice documents on very short notice. But we were able to make the required changes and deliver that on time. I think that was one of the key pieces where we identified how easily we can build documents and deliver them with the CCM solution that we have in place.” Stronger Together AmerisourceBergen has done a great job at keeping up with changing customer requirements and industry regulations, but they’re not left alone to manage their IT implementations. Thanks to their strong relationship with OpenText, they always have the support and technical expertise they need to provide an excellent experience for their customers. “We keep OpenText support on hand for whenever we might need them and reach out to them to understand how, or if, there is a better way to resolve something,” says Hiren. “Because for any successful project, you want to create a proper foundation so you have a stable and scalable solution. We highly value [OpenText Support] because they are experts, properly trained. They know the ability of the platform and features that it can provide. They can guide you in terms of how to architect it and properly manage your business and how you can solve their issues. So, again, we definitely value them.” For B2B organizations, an excellent customer experience is often built upon the service that customers are able to provide their customers. AmerisourceBergen has found a reliable, scalable solution in OpenText Customer Communications Management that gives Amerisource customers like Walgreens the information they need to deliver important pharmaceutical products in a timely and responsible manner. Together, B2B alliances like the one developed between OpenText and AmerisourceBergen can accomplish much more, and provide customers with a far superior experience than they’d be able to achieve alone. Learn more about OpenText™ Customer Communications Management, and the AmerisourceBergen success story.

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