Customer Experience Management

Data-Driven Experiences ARE the Future

digital disrupt webinar

The Digital Experience market space today is being driven by Marketing and the CMO, however, the pendulum is likely to swing back toward the CIO and technology teams to help provide better insight into the success of digital transformation projects. Age of the Customer We have entered a digital world of consumer-centric business. Customers expect experiences that are personalized, contextual, mobile. In two words; Everywhere they need to be and Anytime they desire. There is no time or place that a Customer, Partner, Knowledge Worker, Employee, does not need to have efficient access to the information and services that they need or want. Role of Marketing and Data The essence of Marketing is to differentiate the value of products and services in the mind of the customer (buyer). Since every Customer is a unique person, each Customer is a micro-market of one. This means that organizations must be able to differentiate their products at a 1:1 level with customers at all times and in every context. Marketers have always been data-driven, but Big Data tools are enabling marketers to segment and predict behavior at a finer level of detail. As a result, there is no aspect of a customer experience that cannot be differentiated to achieve better results. For this reason, Marketing’s role is responsible for carrying out the mission to differentiate an organization’s value and in turn, this means that they will be responsible for influencing and messaging into every customer touchpoint. Data as Critical Ingredient to Digital Experiences Data tools are becoming more sophisticated and real-time, which enables reliable, high-quality data to be applied dynamically in any experience. From mobile devices coupled with geofencing technology to kiosks and wearable internet-connected devices, it is now possible to combine real-time knowledge of customer information (identity, history, preferences) and customer context (presence, local conditions, bio-feedback) with predictive analysis to deliver the highest value experience to a customer. For example, it is now entirely possible, data privacy aside, to know that Customer X has entered the NYC Macy’s department store from the 34th Street entrance and is standing in the Men’s Shoes section. Customer X has an elevated heart rate and it is raining outside. They just made a purchase in the store that included a rain jacket and have now re-entered the store. Therefore, something is probably wrong and the first objective should be to send an associate to meet Customer X at the entrance and ask how we can help rather than push promotions to this customer’s mobile device. In order to accomplish this, technology must provide the necessary services, including: Collection of any available/allowable data that may be needed as context Analysis tools to process the data into synthesized actionable outcomes Real-time Integration with experience delivery systems to create the dynamic experience for the customer, on any channel/touchpoint Decision support tools (data visualization/BI) giving business users the ability to find customer patterns, extract insight and optimize the experience The end goal of data-driven Marketing is to optimize the differentiated customer experience. Leading the Organization to a Data-Driven Enterprise The Enterprise is made up of individuals, who are each Customers in the global marketplace. The expectations and norms of Enterprise are heavily influenced by the Services they expect as consumers. Therefore, there is an unavoidable link between Marketing and IT as the service-provider to the Enterprise. The work of the Chief Marketer is to understand the needs of customers and how to optimize a differentiated experience for the most efficient commercial results. As a result, Marketing is leading the way to using data to optimize experience, and is training the same people who work in the Enterprise what to expect from their Enterprise systems. Because Marketing is directly linked to creating top-line revenue, the CMO will have the greatest mandate to operationalize data-driven, personalized experiences. As a result, the solutions created for Marketing and the Customer Experience will increasingly, and for the foreseeable future, act as the model for optimizing the Enterprise Experience. The CIO has the opportunity to connect, not only the marketing activities of the customer at the early stages of the relationship, but also offer the customer a connected experience across the sales and customer service departments as well. The CMO can deliver Data-Driven Customer Experiences and the CIO can enable a Data-Driven Enterprise. Data-Driven Experience as a Strategic Objective With the acquisition of Actuate, OpenText has identified the Data-Driven Digital Experience as the next evolution of the Customer Experience originally driven from the marketer’s initiative. Smarter experiences will be driven by analytical insight and tailored recommendations. B2B, Government and non-profit groups will also begin to adopt similar initiatives to improve the user experience and refactor their technology platforms to address the expectations of a digital native culture.

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Insight to Action: Chicken or Egg Conundrum in Customer Experience

customer experience

A few weeks ago, I attended the Forrester Customer Experience (CX) Conference in NYC. The event revealed an amazing turnout and energy for customer experiences that differentiate. Established brands like Virgin and newcomers like Dollar Shave Club are looking to be different. These brands also rely on insight and experiential testing to find their CX sweet spots. In one instance, Virgin spent months designing a hotel room until they realized they overlooked the importance of a well-lighted and functional vanity for female guests. After we presented to over 100 people on how Marketing Optimization drives revenue and retention through engaging customer experiences, the post presentation Q&A made it clear that firms were lacking tangible insights to drive the experience. It seemed to be a conundrum much like the chicken and the egg: How can I get insights if I am not confident in what I am testing in the first place? How can I get insights if I am stuck in a one channel world? How can I get insights if I am not confident of what I should even be testing? They lacked knowledge as to what to present, and that lack of knowledge clearly wasn’t able to overcome experience inertia. I asked the group what insights they had gleaned from one channel to help inform another channel. Crickets. Even with a specific example such as, What have you been able to learn from your contact center teams to better inform your online experience?, it quickly became clear that many attendees were thinking only about one channel at a time. And I was talking to companies that you would assume would be in the forefront of multichannel analytics. Was it their culture or their technology holding them back? I asked. More crickets. Being able to share the capabilities of OpenText™ Qfiniti workforce optimization (WFO) with its companion product, OpenText™ Explore, with these companies was thrilling. I was able to explain how these Marketing Optimization solutions enable companies to look across channeles to find insights to use in other channels, such as web, call center, mobile, and storefront. Qfiniti and Explore accelerates the path from information to insight, paving the way for action. It is not good enough to be “good enough” in one channel any longer. In conclusion of our speaking engagement, we left the audience with three things to think about: 1 – Can you get to your data 2 – Can you mine it for insight 3 – Can you act on the insight What about you? How do you go from insight to action? Do you do it manually or with the help of a platform? And are you able to look across channels for actionable insights?

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Hey, Coach! Getting Started With Contact Center Coaching

contact center

During my visits with various contact centers, the word “coaching” is often used in conversations with management. However, it isn’t always clear what coaching actually means. A good operational definition of coaching is: Taking the time to develop a person’s skills by teaching, communicating, and measuring their success To begin applying any definition of coaching, you have to approach it with discipline and have an appreciation for the value it brings to your employees and the company. That said, you must make the time to prepare for coaching, set aside time for regularly scheduled coaching sessions, and develop ways to track individual performance improvements. On the surface, this sounds simple, but in the dynamic, real-time environment of a contact center, this can prove to be a daunting endeavor. And, if you’’re like most contact center leaders, your plate is already full, so any new addition will come at the expense of an existing activity.  The key? It starts with an investment commitment  Whether you are an experienced coach and simply looking for new ways to improve, or in the beginning stages of establishing a formal program, you have to be honest with yourself, your company and your employees with regard to the amount of time you’’ll actually have to dedicate to coaching. If you have 10 direct reports and are spending less than 10 hours of every week on coaching activities, you’’re not investing the time needed to do it effectively and in ways that will provide real returns for your organization. There are several reasons why people say they can’’t dedicate 10 hours every week to coaching, and some are very creative, but in many cases, the reason they can’’t spend time coaching is simply because they haven’t become accustomed to doing so. And, when you’’re not successful, you end up spending a lot more time explaining why you’’re not successful, thus taking time away from the activity that makes you successful -– growing your people through coaching. Applied to the real time contact center world – when the metrics aren’’t there, we spend a lot of time trying to fix the metrics at the expense of spending time with agents. Thus begins a cycle that is hard to break. Get the buy-in from senior management for a coaching program and the time that is needed.  A professional basketball coach needs his front office to back him up; the same applies in the contact center. This is no simple task, and it starts with looking to your own team of peers, – getting them all on board and spending some time together talking about different approaches to coaching, the benefits of spending time with the frontline, the potential return on the time investment and the impact on the enterprise’s bottom line, and what things would need to change to make more time for coaching. You’’ll most likely find that just about every leader could make time for coaching if there were fewer administrative type activities… and what you’’ll also find is that if these activities were “pooled” (similar to the what you do with the inbound contact center workload), tremendous efficiencies could be gained. Next, turn your attention to the other results, and document all of the wins for the company by moving the administrative tasks from leaders and providing them with time to develop their “teams.” Starting a contact center coaching progam starts with investment. It’s as simple as that. Stay tuned the second and third installments in this series for more coaching tips.

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If a Customer Falls in the Forest, We’ll Know

A few weeks ago, I had to take my car in to be serviced. After a busy day at work, I rushed to the dealership only to discover that the service desk closed at 5:00pm. It was 5:09pm when I arrived. Frustrated after a long day, I stood there with a hopeful expression on my face. The man behind the service desk looked from me to the clock on the wall as I braced myself for the “Come back tomorrow” that I was certain was coming. But then, to my happy surprise, it didn’t. Instead, the man asked me what I needed fixed on my car, and told me he’d do it for me right away. Although the repair was minor and only took about five minutes, the result of this simple act was monumental: it turned my day around and left me as a happy customer. It also made it more likely that I would return to this dealership for future maintenance—and to purchase my next car. Turning Negatives into Positives We all know that it only takes one negative experience to change your perception of a company, but did you know that it can take up to 12 positive experiences to make up for one bad one? Based on my personal experience, the car dealership started their relationship with me on a positive note, and that’s something I’m not likely to forget. At OpenText, we know that our customers are our most valuable asset and we work hard every day to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your OpenText solutions. The OpenText Experience One of our favourite sayings is, “If a customer falls in the forest, we’ll know”. On a basic level, this means that we’ll always be there to lend a helping hand or listen to your concerns. But on a deeper level, this idea has infiltrated our entire organization. From Human Resources to IT to Customer Support, each and every OpenText employee has a role to play in helping to create an exceptional customer experience. To help us keep all of our customer experiences positive, we follow these four simple tips from Vision Critical: Listen to our customers: Listening is one of the most importantcomponents of creating a great customer experience. By listening to our customers, we’re better able to understand where they’re coming from and are better equipped to help them succeed. Take their ideas seriously: When a customer has an idea on how to fix an issue, or how to do something to best fit their needs, it’s important to consider them. By working together with our customers, we try to ensure we arrive at the best solution to fit their unique set of needs. Engage with your customers on an ongoing basis: As a Communication major and an avid social media enthusiast, this one is particularly important to me. Having open, two-way communication with our customers on an ongoing basis is critical to developing and maintaining a positive relationship. Whether you’re contacting us by telephone, email, social media, or in a one-on-one meeting, we’re always available to chat. Act on changes: Once we have identified changes that need to be made, it’s important that we execute on them. Talking about issues with our customers is important, but unless we act on those changes, nothing improves. We know that sometimes it can be difficult to turn a negative experience around. But by listening to our customers, investigating the best possible solution, and working diligently until the issue is resolved, we turn a potential negative experience into one that will be remembered—for the right reasons.

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Happy Canada Day 2015!

On Wednesday, July 1, 2015, Canadians from coast to coast and around the world will gather to celebrate the birth of our nation 148 years ago. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Canadian flag, which was raised for the first time on Parliament Hill on February 15, 1965. Officially called the National Flag of Canada, the flag features a red maple leaf and was chosen to symbolize the many times throughout history that the maple leaf has been used as an emblem of Canada. This year also marks the bicentennial of Sir John A. Macdonald’s birth, and the 100th anniversary of the Second Battle of Ypres, where Canadian soldiers first established their reputation as a formidable fighting force. It’s also the 100th anniversary of the writing of the First World War poem “In Flanders Fields”. The poem was written by John McCrae, a Canadian Field Artillery surgeon, and continues to be one of the most iconic war poems ever written. On June 25, 2015, a bronze statue of John McCrae was unveiled in his home city of Guelph, Ontario, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the poem. Canada Day at OpenText At OpenText, we’re proud to be a part of such an amazing country. Whether we’re developing a new product, creating innovative new features for existing products, or helping to make a customer’s day better, we’re always excited to help shape the future of Canadian business. After all, we’re Canada’s largest software company. Video not working? Click here instead. Here in the Waterloo office, we celebrated Canada Day early by coming together for a Canada-themed potluck. Gathering in our Customer Experience Center, members of Global Technical Services shared a number of dishes well-known to Canadians across the country. We enjoyed smoked meat and rye sandwiches, tourtière, ginger beef (a popular dish among Albertans), Canadian-style pizza, pancakes with maple syrup, pancake-dipped maple bacon, poutine, maple pecan tarts, ketchup chips, Joe Louis’, Tim Horton’s donuts, and red velvet, maple-leaf-topped cupcakes. Among the Canada-inspired dishes were some other fan-favourites such as chick-pea curry, bacon-topped devilled eggs, fresh salad, and a cheese and meat platter. It was certainly a wonderful way to celebrate Canada Day! What are you doing to celebrate Canada Day? Tweet us your photos to @OTCC and use the hashtag #CanadaDay2015 to join in the celebration with Canadians across the globe!

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Egyptian Repairman Briefly Outranks Google for Search Term “”Google”

Google search friendly

It has been recently reported by the BBC and elsewhere that an Egyptian repairman, Saber El-Toony, briefly outranked Google for the search term “”Google”” on their own site. This was uncovered by an Egyptian digital marketer, Eyad Nour, Founder of BlogStart – you can read his detailed blog on it here.  The cause was most likely an unintended result of Mr. El-Toony entering the URL of Google search results for his own Twitter handle in the website URL field of his own Google Plus page. Google has since corrected this. Image courtesy of Eyad Nour. While this might give most of us a chuckle, search is, of course, an important part of many businesses marketing initiatives, and digital marketers prefer that their successes are by design, rather than by accident. In fact, it’’s debatable as to whether this can be called a “success” for Mr. El-Toony; reportedly the gentleman has received so many calls, he has to turn off his phone so he could get some sleep. Driving the wrong type of traffic can be worse than driving none, particularly in the PPC world, where clicks that bounce can drain your advertising budget in no time. According to a report by eConsultancy, the digital advertising industry wasted over $9 billion in 2013 advertising to bots and 68% of consumers find online ads “annoying.” Building a search-friendly site that delivers ROI on SEO and PPC So, how can you drive the right sort of traffic to your site, reduce bounce rates, and increase the chance to convert visitors? Here’’s a few tips: Use a CMS that produces SEO-friendly URLs. You can see examples of these on good ecommerce sites where– the URLs are relatively short, and include details like product name Use a CMS that generates automatic suggestions for meta-tags to pages. This will help drive more relevant traffic to your site Use dynamically-built landing pages using a robust run-time environment. By tagging specific types of content to particular customer segments, search results and keywords, your run-time environment can generate pages that feature content that is specific to the search result the visitor entered. Whether it’s products, FAQs, third-party content or special offers, you can capture visitor’ interest with compelling personalized and targeted information Make sure your site is mobile-friendly. Use approaches such as mobile first, and technologies such as server-side responsive design, to make sure you are compliant with Google’’s new policies on mobile-friendliness. For more information see my post “Sleeping through Mobilegeddon Double-down with robust site-search technology. According to Jupiter Media Matrix, 80% of visitors will abandon a site if the search experience is poor. Invest in a great search experience on your site to help visitors find what they are looking for OpentText™ TeamSite, our market-leading, enterprise-grade web content management solution, can help you with these points. Also take a look at Optimost to increase conversions.   

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Empowering Government with a Digital Agenda

Like private businesses, governments are driven by information. Consider the amount of information associated with a single citizen: a birth certificate, passport, driver’s license, student loans, social security, health-related services, etc. Now multiply that across an entire population. If information is the new currency, then many government organizations are rich—so rich, in fact, that some don’t know what to do with this wealth (of information). The rate at which governments can effectively use their information as an asset is impacted by departmental or application silos. As illustrated below, information that should flow securely and effortlessly across departments, partners, and citizens is often disconnected and processes are fragmented. When this happens, governments don’t have a consolidated view of their information, which means they don’t have an accurate view of their resources, projects, or citizens. The result? Agencies work harder, not smarter. A digital agenda helps government organizations optimize their performance, without compromising governance and security. As part of implementing a digital agenda, digitizing information and processes is a critical first step. It lays the groundwork for collaboration and agility by removing silos that can hamper access and productivity—allowing information to flow freely across departments. Digital transformation requires coordination and collaboration across departments, sectors, jurisdictions, and policy domains; a host of changing relations and communication patterns; and a shift to citizen-centric service delivery. Implementing a digital agenda is critical. Broadly speaking, a digital agenda consists of three phases: Overhauling operations to improve efficiency and profitability. Agencies must reduce costs and increase competitiveness by digitizing their information and processes. Bringing agility into business processes to quickly adapt services and operations. Information processes and platforms need to be relevant for digital citizens, a new workforce, and emerging technologies. Delivering new services to citizens with continuous collaboration and innovation. Efficiency hinges on increasing the speed of information delivery through integrated systems and across projects. Many governments are making great strides in mandating the adoption of a digital strategy. Here are some examples of digital transformation at the federal level in government agencies in the U.S., Canada, and Europe: The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ), Office of the Federal Detention Trustee (OFDT) has the typical mandate to do more with less. Their average daily population exceeds 55,000 prisoners in federal custody with an annual budget of more than $1 billion. Improving time and cost savings across the organization is paramount. By automating administrative activities like prisoner designation, OFDT has eliminated manual, paper-based processes and the use of outdated file-sharing methods (fax, postal mail and FedEx), at a projected cost-savings of $38.8 million. A Security Enterprise in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) relies on an e-government process automation solution to improve its performance. The automated, collaborative nature of this solution enables the agency to efficiently manage 4,000 Foreign Military Sales (valued at $49 billion) while effectively fulfilling its mission and characterizing its motto: “Strength in Cooperation”. CIZ (Centrum Indicatiestelling Zorg) oversees the Dutch Ministry of Health, handling over one million cases a year and supporting over 18,000 users. Challenged by a lack of business process control around the handling of cases combined with siloed data (spread across 17 databases), CIZ implemented an integrated case management solution so they can adapt more quickly to changes in legislation. By digitizing key processes, CIZ has been able to meet their target of processing 100 percent of their cases, reducing costs and increasing citizen satisfaction. Transport Canada works with over 50 partners (including Crown corporations, port authorities, and airport authorities) to ensure a safe, secure, efficient, and environmentally responsible transportation system. Fulfillment of their mission is based on timely and informed decision-making. Transport Canada relies on a combined information and records management solution to enable collaboration with all stakeholders, including citizens. Through digitization they have consolidated more than four million records in a single library, bringing together 5,200 users across 117 sites—the largest single library deployment in the Canadian Public Sector. In a Digital-First World, governments will have to support digital business models with new processes. Whether by design or by decree, government organizations will be required to build an e-government infrastructure that digitizes information-based processes. In doing so, they will unlock the potential of information to empower both public servants and citizens, and improve their ability to govern in the process. Agencies around the world are already reaping the benefits of an integrated digital agenda—such as increases in productivity and revenue that amount to cost savings in the millions of dollars; easier access to information through complaint, standardized IT infrastructures; decreases in costs and inefficiencies with automated processes; and improvements in citizen relationships and satisfaction through innovative services. It’s evident that the rewards far outweigh the effort. And the technology is available. You can read all about how governments around the world are implementing digital agendas in my book e-Government or Out of Government. 1. Paul Tellier and David Emerson, “Seventh Report of the Prime Minister’s Advisory Committee on the Public Service,” Clerk of the Privy Council, March, 2013: http://www.clerk.gc.ca/eng/feature.asp?pageId=314 (accessed December 2013).

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How Important is Good Site Search? Let’’s do the Numbers

web site search

Customer experience is the new battleground for competitive advantage. According to one analyst, 89% of businesses plan to compete primarily on customer experience. How can online customer experience get better than visiting a site, and finding exactly what you’’re looking for? Despite the fact that many people’’s first port of call for anything is Google, site search remains a neglected part of the customer journey. Search provides an easy way to connect the user’s intent with the right content. Search queries, results clicks, and user feedback are used to drive a more personalized experience in the future. According to Jupiter Media Matrix, 80% of visitors will abandon a site if the search experience is poor. Yet despite this, search often remains a neglected, misunderstood, and under-invested part of the customer journey. Let’’s do a little thought experiment to try to work out the cost that poor search might incur on a business. First, here’’s a few figures: According to market research firm Harris Interactive, when customers make online purchases, 90% of them report using site search to access self-service content IDC tells us that 22% of site searches return no results whatsoever Average global website conversion rates fall into the 2-3% range – let’’s say 2.5% for the sake of argument? So let’’s imagine we have a website that gets 1,000 visitors a day, with a conversion rate of 2.5% and an average order value of $100. The site would make 25 sales. That leaves 975 visitors who didn’’t buy. We can assume from the above that 90% of those are the types of people who are influenced by search when making a purchase. That’’s 878 people. Of those, 22% of them would have received no result for their search –- that’’s 193. So, if we could take the simple step of eliminating those zero-results searches, we could expect them to convert at the normal rate -– 2.5% or 5 additional sales a day, and $182,500 in incremental revenue annually. That’’s a 20% uplift in sales. Frankly, even half that improvement would be impressive. Of course, we could make lots of other improvements to search, beyond simply eliminating the “zero results” issue that should drive conversion up even further. The numbers speak for themselves – you need to invest in good site search technology. Discover more here.

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What the UK General Election Teaches us About Digital Customer Experience

digital customer experience

Yesterday I voted in my first UK General Election since I became a British citizen. It was a dramatic election, with many senior political figures losing their seats in Parliament and/or resigning from leadership of their parties. For someone whose professional focus is on Digital Customer Experience, the act of voting was an interesting event. I walked to my polling station, the local war memorial hall, and there were two lovely old ladies behind a folding table. One of them scrutinized my polling card, asked me my address (which was printed on the polling card), and then they called out a few numbers back and forth to each other, while filling in some paperwork, before handing me my ballot papers. I took them to a very temporary-looking piece of furniture, which looked like it might have dated back to Margaret Thatcher’s day, and, partially screened, made a “X” in the appropriate boxes using a stubby pencil attached to a bit of string. I then folded the ballot and slipped it into a big tamper-resistant plastic tub. It was a good feeling to vote, and to know that across the UK millions of my fellow citizens were doing the same thing. One thing that stood out about it, however was the low-tech nature of it -– the stubby pencils, manual lists, folded bits of paper and plastic tubs. It occurred to me how unusual it has become to have a significant transaction which is wholly non-digital. The other thing I realised is that, for me, it somehow made the whole experience more special. So, how do I reconcile this with my normal role as a digital evangelist? The answer is this -– digital for its own sake is pointless. When formulating a digital customer experience strategy, organisations need to start with the “customer experience” rather than the “digital,” which is ultimately a means to an end. A deep understanding of customer behaviours, combined with a data-driven approach, enables organisations to make intelligent decisions about where to invest in new digital technologies to drive the maximum benefit. From my perspective, the government no doubt invested heavily in IT behind the scenes in order to deliver the enjoyably low-tech experience I had on the day. Or perhaps I’’m just an electoral Luddite? I’’m interested in hearing your thoughts. Do you think the voting experience could have been enhanced with technology? Has your business consciously kept some aspects of the customer experience conspicuously low-tech, while investing in technology in other areas?

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Big News From Optimost in 2015!

Optimost

The Optimost team is focused on making 2015 the most successful year yet for our customers. Today I wanted to share an update on these efforts. Product innovation We’ve announced the next generation of the Optimost platform. The platform which is focused on helping you more easily deliver engaging and profitable websites and digital marketing campaigns through testing, analytics and personalization. The new capabilities announced today accelerate and simplify your insight-action-results optimization cycle. Here are some of the key enhancements and features now available today: Self-Service Testing 2.0 Easy Personalization New Analytics-as-a-Service Dashboard Advanced Segmentation & Tracking Capabilities Multichannel Testing Expanded Strategic Services  Reclaiming our place as thought leaders Optimost pioneered website optimization over a decade ago, and has the most experience available in the market. We’ may have underplayed this recently, but we’’re reclaiming our place now. Take a look at our blog posts, the new interactive tools and our new whitepapers: The case for a hybrid web optimization strategy Enhancing the value of optimization investments Five steps to a better web optimization program The road to strategic website design  

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Sleeping Through Mobilegeddon (or What to do After the Apocalypse)

Mobilegeddon

Yesterday, April 21st, Google updated its search ranking to give preference to mobile-friendly sites for smartphone and tablet queries -– a move that has been dubbed “”Mobilegeddon”” in the media. As a result, according to Google, if your site’ pages aren’’t mobile-friendly, there may be a significant decrease in mobile traffic from Google Search.” The knock-on effect of this, of course, is a higher cost of customer acquisition as businesses use paid search to make up for lost traffic. The impact could potentially be quite severe as, depending on industry, location, and whose statistics you believe, 30%-60% of traffic is via a mobile device these days. Of course, if your site is not mobile friendly, and you’’re not seeing a negative impact, it could be that potential customers have been avoiding your site all along, because it is mobile-unfriendly. Having had a play with Google’’s Mobile Friendly Test, a surprising number of brands seem to have slept through Mobilegeddon and still possess sites that, at least according to Google’’s tool, are not mobile-friendly. Am I affected? What can I do? Adhere to best practices. Again, according to Google, a mobile friendly site, for their purposes: – Avoids software that doesn’t display well on common mobile devices (e.g. Flash) – Uses text that is readable without zooming – Sizes content to the screen appropriately, so that readers don’’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom – Spaces links far enough apart so that the desired link can be easily tapped Check your site using Google’’s Mobile Friendly Test Start fixing the problem Be warned though, this is not a quick fix. Ideally, a mobile site should be part of a considered digital customer experience strategy, so don’’t be tempted to rush into a quick-fix solution that ends up causing more problems than it solves. In all likelihood, your approach will involve mobile-first and responsive design. Mobile-first is an approach that assumes mobile devices will be the primary points of access for your site and uses a methodology of progressive enhancement to expand functionality from smartphone, to tablet, to pc. Responsive design, in essence, is a way of coding a website so that it dynamically renders itself in an appropriate way to display optimally on different sized screens or browser windows. Extending this approach to server-side responsive design can add additional benefits, as the code downloaded to the device is optimized for that specific device (using device detection) which can enhance page load speeds dramatically. I hope you found this useful, and welcome your comments. Have you been impacted by Mobilegeddon? Is making your site more mobile-friendly top of mind right now? #Mobilegeddon

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Introducing TeamSite Optimost Audience Builder

Optimost Audience Builder

We’’re very excited to release TeamSite Optimost Audience Builder, our latest self-service feature – available now! What is Audience Builder? Audience Builder is a key part of our strategy to put the power of OpenText™ Optimost at your fingertips to: Easily create complex audiences with the intuitive interface Maintain incredible precision using a long list of attributes and grouping logic with only a few clicks Fit targeting easily into your workflow– in advance or on the fly Can I see it? Here’’s a short video that shows how easily you can discover and target tests using Optimost analytics and Audience Builder. What conditions can I use to create audiences? • Device • Platform • OS • Browsers • Cookies (first or third party) • Date/time • URL • Geo-targeting • IP address • Referrers • Javascript expressions How do I get started? If you’’ve enabled the self-service interface: From VisualTest you’ll find it under target experiment: Or go to Audience Builder directly in the Optimost Dashboard. If you haven’’t enabled self-service, speak to your Client Success Manager or Account Executive today. Once enabled, you can get started right away. We’’d love to hear your questions and feedback. Happy testing!

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NAB SHOWTIME

This year at NAB, OpenText is demonstrating an example of how integrated and interconnected technologies working together are able to support the Digital Media Supply Chain. OpenText Media Management is an enterprise Digital Asset Management, DAM, system that is an integral part of the core infrastructure for digital media in organizations whether video, publishing, branding, or global marketing campaigns. What is this “Digital Media Supply Chain”? For many of the largest companies it is a transformation from linear processes to a non-linear, dynamic, real-time delivery supply chain across multiple channels and outlets. Media companies have many projects across multiple production areas – video, graphics, photography – plus contributions from agencies, stock houses and contractors. Delivery is not just for a single channel, but an amalgamation of many delivery and consumption points, each with its own requirements. Media Management is interconnected with technologies from OpenText and others, managing digital media as it is created, stored and delivered. It supports the Digital Media Supply Chain from project initiation and production to delivery and analytics. Unlike traditional DAM systems, Media Management has engineered a platform allowing customers to connect people, processes, and content with a sophisticated yet simple HTML5 UI. Media Management supports enterprise-wide ecosystems and digital media supply chains for global delivery of rich media across multiple channels and platforms. What this means for our customers is a “media-enabled” infrastructure to streamline content and data flows throughout the organization. At NAB, our story demonstrates a complex ecosystem from media creation to consumption with Media Management providing a “single source of truth” and a consolidated asset repository for video, marketing, branding, commerce and global distribution. This sophisticated ecosystem has many interdependent and interrelated technologies. It is not just gluing the technologies together; it is orchestrating the flow of data, collaboration and synchronization, then automating the processes for streamlined input and output. Media Management has an open platform with REST APIs, and web services to integrate and even embed DAM functionality with the many different systems and technologies. This centralized repository for media content, with browser-based, user-friendly search and easy (yet secure) sharing helps eliminate all those multiple islands of unmanaged digital assets throughout an organization. Our story starts as an idea that gets a green light, initiating a new project. OpenText Process Suite orchestrates the people, resources, schedule and budget, triggering a flexible project structure in OTMM for all the content deliverables – such as video promos, DVD covers, one-sheets, web graphics, ecommerce, catalogs, artwork for merchandising, billboards, and cross-channel ad and social campaigns. These deliverables and their dependencies are produced in parallel using, reusing and repurposing content and designs for multiple channels and campaigns, allowing producers to select teams, assign and monitor tasks. It is connected to rights and talent contracts to provide detailed usage and contract information as the project progresses. Creative teams use their native tools integrated with Media Management for work-in-progress, versioning, metadata tagging and storage. Collaboration, annotation, reviews and approval for video and images are done in real-time for single assets or collections with a complete audit trail. Media Management has secure, encrypted file acceleration embedded in the platform guaranteeing fast delivery of large files. All of this supports multiple production centers with Media Management as the central repository to search, collect, manage and share digital content. OpenText Media Management bridges the creative production processes and Omni-channel delivery, enabling a faster and more dynamic media supply chain. It automates transformation of digital media to the proper format, aspect ratio and bit-rate based on the delivery channel allowing automated publishing to Web Content Management Systems, such as OpenText Web Experience Management System, CDN file delivery, integration with ecommerce platforms, CRM, and interactive communications. As marketing and commerce shift to high gear, it provides usage metrics as part of the larger analytics and data to allow better performance insight and the ability to make adjustments. Media Management is a core technology within the OpenText Customer Experience Management (CEM) Suite, which includes Web Experience Management, Interactive Customer Communication. OpenText delivers the integrated environments to support the many different teams involved in the creation, management and delivery of rich media. Digital Media Supply Chains enabled with OpenText technology provide a platform for today and a foundation for the future. Discover more about OpenText Media Management here.

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Managing your Digital Media Assets

In the expanding world of digital creation, the ability to effectively manage digital media assets is becoming increasingly important to organizations. Gone are the days of filing digital assets on personal computers. From creation to consumption, companies are increasingly looking for ways to centrally manage their digital media assets, all while maximizing value and minimizing the cost of running a media management system. According to Michael Scott, Vice President of Engineering for OpenText Media Management (OTMM), one of the most important aspects of effective digital media management is the ability to quickly access the content you need, when and where you need it. OpenText Media Management Recently Adam Howatson, OpenText CMO, sat down with Scott to discuss digital media management. For Scott, OpenText Media Management (OTMM) offers “a way to manage (an asset), to be able to find it again, to be able to reuse it, to be able to distribute it in different formats, whether that’s a high-resolution video file for broadcast or whether it’s something that can be streamable over the web to a mobile device”. But what makes OTMM better, faster, stronger than its competition? With a redesigned user experience, the newest release of OTMM makes it easier than ever for users to access the digital content they need, anywhere and on any device. Built for large enterprise deployments, Media Management 10.5 is a powerful yet easy-to-use platform that will help you to simplify, accelerate, and transform your business. Watch the Tech Talk video here to listen to Scott as he gives insight and advice on the changes in the industry and discusses how to best manage your organization’s media assets.

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Apple Watch Validates the Power of Analytics

  The Apple Watch is not only the company’s foray into the smartwatch and wearable technology space, but it also validates the importance of digital disruption, cloud delivery and embedded analytics. Even before the company’s smartwatch made its formal debut this week, application developers representing companies that provide sports-related, entertainment, and productivity software were called by Apple to create innovative app designs that highlighted the device as a customized timepiece, instant communications device and health and fitness companion. The result: Apple executives announced 50 new apps that will all work immediately with its upcoming Apple Watch including Instagram, MLB.com At Bat, Nike+ Running, OpenTable, Shazam, Twitter, WeChat, Uber, Salesforce, American Airlines and Honeywell Lyric thermostat. What these applications have in common is that they all disrupt our notion of how content is delivered as well as how and where information is analyzed and provided. For example, Apple demonstrated with the help of supermodel Christy Turlington Burns how apps might access data such as weight, blood pressure, glucose levels and asthma inhaler use. Third-party devices and apps can measure the data through a cloud delivery system and then notify the user to take appropriate actions. Other data that can be measured and analyzed include the watch’s accelerometer, taptic engine, haptic feedback, microphone, gyroscope and GPS sensors in your iPhone to gain insight into the wearer’s gait, motor impairment, fitness, speech and even memory. Apple Watch and Digital Disruption In reviewing the potential of the Apple Watch, it is apparent that businesses will be able to capitalize on these digital disruptions in several areas. From a paperwork reduction initiative, Apple said its Watch can make it easier to recruit participants for large-scale research studies. Instead of sending out reams of survey packets, participants can complete tasks or submit surveys right from an app on their wrist, so researchers spend less time on paperwork and more time analyzing data. Using cloud-delivered analytics, researchers might then present an interactive informed consent process. Here are some other ways Apple’s Watch creates opportunities for businesses to take advantage of a cloud-delivered embedded analytics engine: Business Process Management (BPM): The most common process interaction is an approve/reject function. The Apple Watch is likely to raise the bar on how mobile devices handle BPM on the go. Status updates, alerts, reports and approval steps involved in a business process can be conducted on the watch. Enterprise Content Management (ECM): Collaboration will be the likely use case here. Commenting and following comments from co-workers, trending topics, volume of interactions, as well as simple sharing of documents and folders are tasks that may move to a watch. Customer Experience Management (CEM): All content that you see on a watch represents the brand identity of the application provider and defines the essence of the customer experience. Watches will become a digital experience channel that needs to be treated as part of a consistent omni-channel strategy, while delivering the best possible experience given the capabilities a limitations of the device. Information Exchange (IX): The Near field communication (NFC) sensor in Apple Watch will enable a new class of applications that can interact with the physical world. In a factory or warehouse, this may include actions such as retrieving information about a box of parts,  ordering new parts when supplies are low, retrieving status update on current shipments, or delivering supplier alerts. Another Demo to Watch While Apple put on an impressive show of its design strength, the company is by no means the first smartwatch maker to demonstrate applications that tap into Big Data and deliver analytics via the cloud. In November 2014, Actuate (now OpenText) combined the power of integrated Big Data access along multiple devices (including a smartwatch) with visualizations, open APIs and embedded analytics. Check out that demonstration in this video. Any thoughts on the Apple Watch, digital disruption or the future of analytics? Leave your comments below.

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From the Desk of Dr. WFO: Who Exactly IS Dr. WFO (aka Roger Lee)?

Dr WFO

When the opportunity to create a blog under a pseudonym came up, I jumped at the chance. Dr. WFO is the perfect name for the wealth of knowledge and experience behind me. My first blog post left me fielding the question, “Who exactly is Dr. WFO?”  And, no, this isn’t me in the photo here! Here’’s my response: In December of 2014, I rejoined the WFO Software team as Senior Director of Product Marketing. This move was something of a homecoming for me, as I’’d worked with the Qfiniti and Explore product lines in the past as an employee of etalk and then Autonomy for five years back in 2004. After spending six years honing my customer experience craft, I couldn’’t stand being away for any longer! Throughout my career, I’’ve managed call centers and consulted for many more. I bring extensive knowledge and experience to my new role in workforce optimization (WFO), call recording, performance management, and voice of the customer (VoC). Despite the moniker, I take my role as the customer experience leader seriously. I directly influence the overall strategic direction and product management for our Qfiniti product suite. In this capacity, I collaborate closely with customers, industry analysts, research and development, sales, and the senior management team to plan and implement a product roadmap that ensures smooth integration into the larger, overall portfolio of customer experience management products. With more than 20 years combined experience in finance, call center operations, information management systems, restaurant operations, payroll services and quality, I have developed and implemented a quality monitoring program and formalized and implemented Lean and Six Sigma in the call centers, resulting in approximately $10 million in cost savings. I have held several leadership positions and have been characterized as an “other-centered leader” who fosters a transparent environment with an emphasis on engaging and actively listening to all staff and customers. I am also a sought-after keynote speaker at tradeshows and conferences. As part of my global travels, I have given several high-energy, thought-leadership presentations and written articles on various topics, including: impacting the contact center including workforce optimization; optimizing your quality monitoring program; Six Sigma in a service environment; leadership skills; and the importance of developing frontline employees. I have also been featured in global industry publications including Contact Center World, Customer Interaction Solutions, Call Center Network Group (CCNG), and Call Center Magazine. I received my bachelor’s degree in accounting at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota and am based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. I am a certified generational trainer and have served as a team leader for the Minnesota Council for Quality, assessing local companies using the Malcolm Baldrige criteria. I was also a member of the American Society of Quality (ASQ) who served as Vice Chair of the Education & Advancement section of the Minnesota chapter. I’’m always looking for ways to improve the customer experience. I welcome any feedback, questions, and discussion on how you are improving the customer experience in your organizations. Roger Lee @dr_wfo

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OpenText Celebrates Media Launch in Hollywood Style

The latest release of OpenText’s industry-leading Digital Asset Management Platform was celebrated in style at the W Hollywood Hotel in January. The event was attended by more than 100 people from the Media Industry as well as other OpenText customers. Nearly all of the major media companies were there, including 20th Century Fox, Disney, Paramount, Technicolor, Hasbro, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and many more. The celebration was kicked off with some special Hollywood luminaries as guest speakers – Kristin Kennedy, founder of Createasphere; Flint Dille, a technologist, transmediologist, writer, gamer and more; and Jonathan Taplin, Producer, Documentary Maker and Professor from Annenberg School for Communications at USC. The crowd was engaged with the speaker’s insights on some the trends as well as threats in the media industry, and how the value of IP and digital assets plays across different generations. The event capped a tremendous effort by the Media Management engineering and product teams to develop the latest release in an accelerated timeframe. Their efforts to redesign the User Interface, REST API extensions and numerous added features validates the market leading position Media Management has in the DAM industry. And a special thanks to our sponsors for helping to the make the event a huge success. Thanks to Accenture, Deloitte, OnPrem Solutions and Optima Consulting. What a perfect way to start out the year. Thanks to everyone for making this such a stellar kick-off and we are looking forward to an exceptionally bright future for OpenText Media Management.

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Today’s Media Management

The average 14-year-old kid will probably create more media by the time I finish this post than I will this year. It’s so simple to create and so necessary to communicate with these days. And therein lies the problem: The technology to create, contribute, and consume rich media has outpaced our ability to manage it. In today’s hyper-digital environment, where time is of the essence and the experience is what sells, your customers, partners, and buyers want video, pictures, and information in real-time—synchronized and delivered consistently to users on the platforms and devices they choose. So business , marketing, and competitive demands are pushing Digital Asset Management (DAM) and the digital supply chain beyond traditional approaches. We just can’t keep up using traditional methods! With multiple systems and applications trying to manage and control all these assets, things are falling through the cracks. Missing content. Missed opportunities. Lost productivity. Sigh… A Platform for Digital Asset Management OpenText Media Management is a DAM pioneer . (That’s funny every time!) From creation to consumption, we help you manage all your video, images, and rich media for the entire enterprise in one place. With a powerful yet simple-to-use interface, our solutions help people find what they need, share, collaborate, and use digital assets anywhere for richer, more effective communication in marketing, sales, and throughout the organization. Media Management makes it so easy to get the right content and rich experiences to users on the platforms and devices they choose. What’s new in Media Management? A completely redesigned user experience replaces the Flash UI with a simple yet powerful HTML5 user interface. This is much more than just a DAM—now you have unparalleled control and access to all your digital media content. The redesigned user experience in Media Management puts the digital content you want at your fingertips. Whether your typing or swiping, the simple and intuitive user interface makes your job easier. In Media Management, the HTML5 interface and responsive design reduces complexity and unnecessary clutter to find what you need, share data, collaborate on projects, and use digital assets anywhere, on any screen, including mobile and touch-enabled. There! Now how much rich media do you think that kid created?

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Join Santa Claus on his Journey to the Digital First World!

When OpenText acquired GXS in January 2014, little did the company know that they would also be acquiring a customer widely regarded as having one of the most secretive businesses in the world. Over the years, many companies have decided to outsource the management of their B2B environment and in 2008, GXS signed a Managed Services contract with its most high profile customer, Santa Claus Enterprises in the North Pole. Over the years I have kept in close contact with this particular customer as they have been a shining example of how to deploy the full portfolio of B2B solutions from OpenText. Each year, just before Santa’s busiest period, I have provided a summary of the enhancements to their B2B environment. The evolution of Santa’s B2B environment is documented via the blogs below, feel free to take a look through as they will also provide some interesting insights into what it takes to deliver millions of Christmas presents on just one night of the year. 2013 – Santa deploys the Internet of Things across his North Pole Operations 2012 – Santa begins to evaluate the information flowing across SantaNet and implements a Big Data strategy 2011 – OpenText Active Community gets rolled out across Santa’s trading partner community to improve day to day collaboration across his Present Delivery Network and he also gets nominated for B2B Heroes award 2010 – Santa evaluates how cloud computing and mobile devices could improve North Pole operations 2009 – Santa completes deployment of OpenText Managed Services and begins to embrace social media tools 2008 – OpenText Managed Services chosen to support Santa’s new B2B hub, OpenText Intelligent Web Forms deployed to create SantaNet Santa’s little helpers, namely his army of elves, were asked by Santa to review the portfolio of Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions from OpenText to see where further benefits could be made by automating manual business processes and digitising the remainder of his business operations. Many companies are embarking on a digital journey to improve the way in which different departments manage and get access to their corporate information. In fact ‘Digital Transformation’ projects are high on the agenda of many CIOs around the world at the moment and OpenText is in a unique position to provide a one stop shop to transform companies into a digital business. In August I received an email from Sonja Lundström, Santa’s trusted advisor and executive assistant, inviting me to go up to the North Pole to provide a digital business briefing for Santa and his executive board. Santa’s board members comprise of senior executives from some of the world’s leading toy manufacturers including Mattel, Hasbro and Lego. As with previous trips up to the North Pole, I was asked to check in at the Elf Air desk at a secret terminal at Schipol Airport just outside Amsterdam. This year I had the privilege of travelling on one of Santa’s new Airbus A380’s, a converted passenger plane that allows Santa, when required, to expedite the shipment of thousands of parcels to any one of his Present Distribution Hubs located in strategic locations around the world. The plane I travelled on, call sign ELF020, was one of a fleet of ten aircraft that Santa had chartered for the 2014 holiday season. 16 hours after leaving the UK I was checking into the North Pole Ice Hotel, a stone’s throw from the entrance to Santa’s primary toy manufacturing and distribution facility. I decided to get an early night as I knew the following day would be quite busy! The next day I walked across to Santa’s factory and I was whisked up to the executive briefing centre where I was introduced to Santa’s board members. Five minutes later and the main man himself walked through the frosted glass doors to the board room. Following introductions, Santa’s Chief Elf Information Officer provided an update on their current IT and B2B related projects. I have documented many of these projects quite extensively in the earlier articles which I listed at the beginning of this blog. Needless to say I was very impressed by the ROI that Santa had obtained by deploying OpenText Managed Services. Santa’s core B2B platform, the Present Delivery Network (shown above), processes billions of transactions each year and over the last five years, Santa had seen a 40% growth in new present orders through SantaNet, a web form based toy ordering environment that our company setup in 2008. The growth in new orders had come from the so called omni-channel effect with children placing toy orders through PCs, mobiles and tablet based devices. In addition to deploying a world leading B2B platform, Santa’s team rolled out their ‘Internet of Santa’s Things’ infrastructure, a high profile initiative to provide improved visibility across Santa’s Present Delivery Network. The Internet of Things has become one of the most talked about disruptive digital technologies of 2014, and Santa had no concerns about deploying his IoST environment and he certainly proved to be a digital trail blazer in this particular area. In addition, Santa had embraced a number of other disruptive technologies during 2014. Last year I discussed how Santa’s elves were using Google Glass in their warehouses to improve their toy pick rates. In addition to Glass, Santa had tested some other high profile disruptive technologies. A few years ago Santa invited Steve Jobs to his factory and following lengthy discussions Santa Claus Enterprises became a leading member of Apple’s beta test program. As soon as the early iWatch wearable devices were revealed to the world’s media in 2014, Apple despatched a shipment of iWatches for every elf in the factory. These came pre-loaded with a number of festive mobile apps to help improve the day to day efficiency of Santa’s team of elves. 3D printing was rolled out across Santa’s production department, not just for manufacturing proof of concept toy designs but to build scale models of new sleigh designs that would then be refined in Santa’s onsite wind tunnel. Sleigh research budgets have increased significantly over the years and 3D printing was helping to develop the most aerodynamically refined sleigh in the world. The final area of digital disruption that Santa embraced in 2014 was advanced robotics. Santa had heard that Foxconn, a leading contract manufacturer to Apple, was deploying up to a million ‘Foxbots’ across their manufacturing operations. Santa decided that he wanted to deploy ‘Elfbots’ to bring similar efficiencies to his own production operations. Santa is now working with Andy Rubin, head of Google’s newly formed robotics division, to define a development plan for his network of 2,000 Elfbots. Santa has done a great job of ensuring that he can seamlessly connect with the little children around the world. So in many ways Santa’s operations were already significantly digitally enabled but now that GXS had been acquired by OpenText there was scope for the deployment of further digital information tools. After all, many of the new disruptive technologies such as connected IoST devices were producing high volumes of unstructured data that would need to be archived, analysed and acted upon as required. After the CEIO had provided his updates it was time for me to take to the floor. I provided Santa and the board with a high level introduction to OpenText and they were very impressed with the joint customer base and the opportunities available to embrace new Enterprise Information Management solutions. Even though Santa had consolidated many back end business systems, such as his Elf Resources Platform (ERP), there were still many different information silos located within the various departments of his operations. Just finding the right information at the right time proved to be a challenge on occasions. To gain further efficiencies across Santa’s operations it would be important to ensure that all departments could feed off of a centralised digital information hub. This hub would be accessible any time, any place or anywhere, useful considering the global nature and complexity of Santa’s operations. OpenText solutions are divided across five key ‘pillars’, shown by way of the chart below, Santa’s B2B solutions are under the Information Exchange pillar. Before I had even explained each of the five solution pillars, Santa could immediately see that there was a significant opportunity to increase the footprint of OpenText solutions across his business. Santa said that he would like OpenText to become his trusted guide during his journey into the digital first world. But first he wanted me to highlight how OpenText could manage different types of information from the key stages of a toy’s lifecycle. I created the chart below to help illustrate some of the key process stages across Santa’s manufacturing operations. I have also overlaid, where appropriate the five key solution pillars as they apply to each stage of the lifecycle of a toy (which in reality could represent any manufactured product). Now I could go into detail around how OpenText can help manage information across each of these twelve process steps, but for the purposes of this article, let me just expand on five of these. Toy Design & Engineering – At this phase of a toy’s lifecycle, any information associated with the design of a toy will need to be centrally managed and archived in an Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution. Typical files managed at this stage include 3D CADCAM models, 3D printer files, 2D drawings, production related information and high quality rendered images and 3D animations. A Digital Asset Management solution from OpenText would allow Santa’s marketing elves and outside PR agencies to review and download high quality rendered images and videos for use in promotional materials. Information Exchange (IX), solutions such as Managed File Transfer, allows Santa’s design elves to send large file size design information anywhere across the external enterprise, including contract manufacturers. Procurement / Supplier Onboarding – This is part of the toy’s lifecycle that GXS, now Information Exchange, has been supporting over the past few years, from on-boarding suppliers and ensuring they can exchange B2B transactions electronically to providing back end integration to Santa’s ERP platform. In addition, it is important for a procurement team to work collaboratively with their suppliers and all proposal, contract and contact information will need to be centrally managed. The procurement elves may need to undertake some form of Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) assessments across their trading partner community. The area of GRC is becoming an increasingly important area for many companies and new regulations such as conflict minerals compliance needs to be adhered to and managed in an effective way. Just as an aside, Santa takes Corporate Social Responsibility really seriously, so much so that he would like to setup an Elf Information Management System (EIMS) to help with the day to day management of his elves and ensure the quality of their welfare whilst working in the toy factory. Plant Maintenance and Asset Management – Santa has an army of elves conducting proactive maintenance on shop floor related manufacturing and assembly equipment. Given the tight production schedule that Santa has each year, his elves ideally need quick access to maintenance and machine test procedures, 2D maintenance drawings and equipment test and compliance certificates. Even ensuring that Santa’s elves adhere to the latest Elf and Safety procedures has become a challenge over the years. The elves already have access to ruggedized tablet devices for use on the shop floor. Using Appworks, OpenText’s mobile app development platform, Santa’s elves would be able to get remote access to any information archived in the central content management system. In addition, the elves need to follow a standard process for maintaining each piece of equipment and OpenText’s Business Process Management (BPM) solution would be able to more effectively manage all the process steps involved with maintaining Santa’s production equipment. Can you imagine what would happen on the 24th December each year if the toy production lines are halted due to a malfunctioning assembly robot? Online Customer Experience – The SantaNet portal had worked well over the years and allowed the little children of the world to login to a portal and submit their present wish lists! At this stage of the toy’s lifecycle, various web related assets will need to be created and managed, eg product brochures, toy promotion videos and animations will need to be accessed by different elves across the extended enterprise and outside video production agencies. OpenText Customer Experience Management (CEM) solutions are ideal for this purpose. Given the connected nature of today’s children, Santa would be able to setup a best in class ‘Young Person Experience Management’ offering that would leverage OpenText’s Web Experience Management offering. In addition, all other internal websites used by his elves could be upgraded with the latest portal technologies offered by OpenText. Recalls and Warranty Repair – The final stage of a toy’s lifecycle relates to the potential recall or repair of toys. Unfortunately not every toy delivered via the chimney makes it safely down to the fireplace and breakages can occur. Santa established a toy repair and recall centre ten years ago however many of the processes used to recover broken toys from the world’s children are quite lengthy and prone to delays due to the amount of manual paperwork that needs to be processed. In addition to repairs, sometimes toys have to be recalled, perhaps due to poor quality workmanship by Santa’s elves. Whether repairing broken toys or recalling faulty toys, Santa’s elves could significantly improve operational efficiencies by deploying OpenText’s Business Process Management (BPM) solution. BPM will ensure that every toy that needs to be repaired or recalled follows a strict series of process steps. This ensures that a consistent and repeatable repair/recall process can be established and this helps to improve Child Satisfaction Levels, a key metric used by Santa to keep the world’s children happy with their toys. In addition to providing an overview of these five solution areas, I explained to Santa that OpenText was looking at how the different pillar solutions could be integrated together. I also showed a new fast moving video which helps to describe the OpenText Cloud. To wrap up my presentation to Santa and the board I also discussed new development areas and highlighted a recent announcement concerning OpenText’s intention to acquire the business intelligence company, Actuate. Last year when I visited Santa Claus Enterprises HQ, I was shown the latest beta version of SantaPad, a Big Data analytics engine for processing toy consumption trends across the little boys and girls of the world. Actuate could potentially provide the business intelligence platform to significantly improve the big data analytics capabilities across Santa’s operations. Santa was so excited by this news that he requested a briefing of Actuate’s capabilities, as and when it was convenient for OpenText to do so. We had just gone over our two hour presentation slot with Santa and I decided to summarise how OpenText helps businesses move to a 100% digital business. Firstly OpenText can help to Simplify Santa’s back end platforms to manage enterprise wide business information, irrespective of which application the information was originally created in. Secondly, OpenText can help to Transform information from literally any format to another and ensure that digital information can be exchanged both internally across the elf community and externally across third party contract manufacturers and logistics providers. Thirdly, OpenText can help to Accelerate the adoption of digital technologies, which would allow faster business decisions to be made. Santa’s operations would ultimately become more responsive to changing consumer demand and increased competition from new emerging toy markets. This brought our meeting to a close and I had a number of actions to follow up on with my colleagues back at OpenText! In closing, Santa wished OpenText and our global customers Season’s Greetings and Happy New Year and he said he was looking forward to working closely with OpenText during 2015 and beyond. So it just leaves me to say season’s greetings and best of luck for 2015!  

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Experience Matters in Omni-Channel Commerce

smart process applications

[This article was also published in CMS Wire.] Experience matters in Omni-Channel Commerce, both the Customer Experience and the software ecosystem that supports a buyer’s journey from initial discovery to customer advocate. Just as shoppers see products on display in physical stores, digital experiences have to provide relevant content and compelling interactions to convert browsing to buying. Connected consumers expect convenience and flexibility across channels whether brick and mortar, catalog, print, in-store kiosks, web, mobile and social platforms. Nothing frustrates customers more than dead-end, can’t get there from here experiences. And second chances are rare. Omni-channel commerce is a complex ecosystem. It involves many interrelated platforms, components and capabilities such as Web Content Management, eCommerce, Digital Asset Management, product catalog, product information, merchandising, inventory, pricing, promotion, order, fulfillment, reporting, analytics and more. Unfortunately, many organizations have disconnected, legacy silos and struggle to bridge the customer engagement, customer experience side with back office and transaction management. Digital Asset Management is one of the key platforms in the ecosystem, along with eCommerce and WCM. In planning for a successful Omni-Channel Commerce initiative do not assume that DAM will be taken care of within these other platforms. DAM Infrastructure DAM serves as a core infrastructure underlying eCommerce, WCM, PIM and product catalogs. With an ever-growing pool of images, photos, audio and video to support commerce, digital assets should be synchronized with back office transaction management and the customer experience presentation. Mature and extensible DAM platforms provide integration with eCommerce and WCM to automate delivery of rich media in the proper format and size, across multiple channels driven by either the WCM or an eCommerce system. Whether serving up digital assets for the eCommerce site, public or partner catalogs, internal or external users, assets should all be sourced from a common repository – providing collaboration and brand consistency. Other important capabilities include automated synchronization and search capabilities within other platforms, localization and security. DAM capabilities increase productivity by reducing time spent searching for assets and automating repetitive tasks to “media-enable” eCommerce and the entire organization. Omni-Channel vs. Multi-Channel Rather than managing separate customer experiences through various channels as in a multi-channel strategy, Omni-channel strategy is customer-centric. It is an immersive, uninterrupted and device agnostic experience across channels that drives engagement, loyalty and transactions. The customer is at the center. It’s about the brand, product or service not the channel. DAM provides the core enterprise infrastructure, key platform components and capabilities supporting and enhancing the omni-channel ecosystem with the efficiencies of create once, publish everywhere, to repurpose, re-express, reuse, and re-create digital content for compelling customer experiences. Product owners and brand managers can collaborate, easily find and manage assets from a single library, synchronized and integrated with the other native platforms. You can find out more about DAM in this recent CMS Wire article. Go Omni-Channel Omni-channel Commerce meets customer expectations with consistent and connected experiences across all channels. This means consistency in experience as well as context and connected to information as well as continuity across channels and customer insight. Competition for customers is fierce and omni-channel commerce can be a major differentiator. As you plan your strategy, remember that experience matters.

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