Information Management

Miami Dade Achieves CJIS Compliance for Evidence Management

One of the many challenges that state, city, and county IT departments face is how to manage public safety digital evidence. This is the data from the police and sheriff, video surveillance, 911 recordings, and includes crime scene pictures and videos as well as police reports and other crime and investigation information. The FBI has established guidelines for how this digital evidence must be protected and managed and documented these policies in the Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) Security Policy for evidence management. This set of standards can be perceived as daunting for a city or county IT department when confronted with the question from their police IT leadership.  “Is the county content repository CJIS compliant?” I was pleased to discover that one county IT department has taken the lead in establishing a CJIS compliant evidence repository for their public safety data. Miami Dade County has achieved CJIS compliance for their new Enterprise Content Management (ECM) system which was purchased several years ago to replace their legacy ECM environment. The legacy system used for content and evidence management at the county was older and outdated. The new ECM environment has been implemented and the County’s IT staff was challenged by the department of public safety to make this new environment CJIS compliant. The County’s Enterprise Applications ECM team reviewed the CJIS documentation and attended CJIS compliance training. They learned about the key requirements for evidence data protection which includes encryption for data in flight and data at rest.  CJIS compliance also extends to the policies and procedures used by the IT staff for systems containing digital evidence. They learned that simple things like data center access must be strictly controlled in order to achieve compliance. Systems administrators must not be able to see digital evidence even with administrator access to the system, as well as other data security requirements defined by the CJIS policy. The County chose to use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to protect data in flight over the network and an encrypted Storage Area Network (SAN) for data at rest. They also used an ECM repository with powerful access controls and security model, and specific components for additional encryption and data security. They reviewed and revised data center access policies and procedures and now have a CJIS compliant ECM repository, ready to protect and manage the most crucial digital evidence gathered by the department of public safety. Miami Dade is leading the way in using advanced technologies for the benefit and safety of the public. They have achieved CJIS compliance success where others have only started and have become an example for others to follow. How do you manage digital evidence in a CJIS compliant system?

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New Approaches to Cancer Care at the Nexus of Integrated and Personalized Care

Cancer care

We’re excited to have Silvia Piai, IDC Health Insights Analyst, join us today as our guest blogger, sharing insights on cancer care to highlight healthcare transformation. In the last few years, as an analyst at IDC Health Insights I have focused most of my research on integrated care delivery models and their impact in overcoming challenges related to access, quality and sustainability of care systems. More recently, I’ve become fascinated by the opportunities offered by personalized medicine: tailoring prevention, treatments and disease management to individual biological characteristics of patients, recognizing and valuing their diversity to provide care in a more targeted and effective way. What really fascinates me in researching these two approaches is that in terms of benefits delivered, the combination is greater than the sum of its parts. Together, they can deliver paradigm-shifting scenarios, making health systems truly patient centric, higher quality of care and more financially viable. The combination of integrated and personalized care relies upon an increasing interdependency of processes and blurring of boundaries between healthcare stakeholders. In this converged scenario, healthcare stakeholders are required to act on the whole spectrum of biological, clinical and social determinants of health, and therefore they depend on a 360-degree view of the patient. Cancer care is an area where the adoption of integrated and personalized care — enabling collaboration and evidence-based decisions through the support of appropriate information management — yields huge potential. Accounting for 20% of deaths, cancer is the second highest mortality and morbidity cause in Europe, after cardiovascular diseases. Advances in clinical research have disclosed a significant number of causes, potentially allowing the prevention of at least one third of all cancers. Also, early detection and targeted therapies, could increase the chances to cure some of the most common types. To translate this potential into reality, cancer care needs to improve the quality and efficiency of diagnosis and treatments, as well as the overall patient experience, moving beyond the current symptom-based approach. The decisions related to health plans and their implementations require collaborative networks including acute, primary and community health providers, as well as a close interaction with social services and research. There are many similarities and connections with the provision of care for chronic disease patients. Cancer may not be a one-time event and can even become an ongoing (chronic) illness that never goes away completely. Ongoing cancer therapies, today, can include chemotherapy, hormone and immune therapy regimens, requiring patients to take responsibility for their disease management and physicians to control and ensure high adherence to treatment plans. Moreover, with more than 60% of cancer patients diagnosed at age 65 or older, many patients have or develop long-term comorbidities that complicate the decision-making process, affecting cancer detection, treatment, and outcome. Comorbidity requires specific adjustments to patient survivorship care plans, considering patient conditions from a holistic perspective. These aspects further the need to empower cancer care networks with a strategic information management framework that connects clinical and organizational objectives with information governance and information systems architecture. The right framework will help in building evidence driven services based on longitudinal patient records, which include all relevant information (structured and unstructured), and that can be securely shared among healthcare providers. Relying on siloed architectures, most of current electronic patient record systems do not capture all the complex information management requirements for oncology care, including, semantic and technical interoperability necessary for secure exchange of health data across platforms, and use of clinical decision support tools at the point of care. For example, panomic (genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic, and metabolomic) data is becoming a critical class of cancer data for informing treatments, but they are far more complex than other types of laboratory data, and generally, lack well-established standards for reporting. This poses a major new challenge for representation of cancer data in EHR, in such a manner that allows the data to be readily identified, extracted, and placed into a data transmission format that works between different clinical information systems. Comprehensive interoperability principles and standards should be at the base of the new approach to information management for cancer care, allowing data independence from the different applications, thus: Providing the agility to repurpose data in different care/administrative/research settings. Maximizing the benefits coming from cloud, mobile, social, big data and analytics, technologies, as well as those coming from the next wave of innovation accelerators such as robotics, natural interfaces, 3D imaging and printing, the Internet of Things, cognitive systems, and next-generation security. The benefits of unlocking patient information value through an integrated information architecture span the whole care value chain. Having access to a complete and high quality view of information produced along the patient journey, and leveraging shared/connected infrastructures would allow: Clinicians to define and automate personalized care pathways, by using collaboration tools as oncology dashboards that will allow them to cooperate with multidisciplinary teams and patients, as well as to leverage clinical decision support tools in key areas as referral management, pharmacotherapy process. Patients to have a more active role and engage in their care plan, using personalized mobile apps and monitoring devices to control their progress and collaborate with caregivers for a better experience. Researchers to aggregate and analyze the diversity of real world evidence from the whole population of patients with cancer leveraging big data and analytics optimizing clinical outcomes and driving comparative effectiveness research to mainstream value based care models Embracing a new patient information management framework, and building upon it a clinical information system that moves beyond the reporting-only functionality in favor of proactive decision support and process alignment, is the necessary journey to make integrated and personalized care a reality. It is a long and complex transformation, however, many organizations have already embarked on this journey. If your organization is among them, I would like to hear your opinion and thoughts about this Copernican Revolution of healthcare. Share your feedback in the comments below.

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Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

ECM Industry Leader

It’s not surprising that an industry that has been around for more than 25 years would undergo dramatic changes at different points in time. What once was old is new again. What was once the best approach is re-examined and put to the test. As with many technologies, the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) industry has seen considerable activity in the marketplace with niche vendors offering exciting, interesting and unique approaches to many common content challenges. Many have taken advantage of maturing capabilities with SMAC (Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud) technologies, and raised considerable sums of venture capital in the process. Due to the speed of innovation, the suppliers of broader sets of solutions have perhaps unfairly been labeled as “Jacks of all trades, masters of none”. We now have an incredibly vibrant marketplace which, for many, is more confusing than ever. One of the themes that keeps popping up is whether customers should adopt point solutions (those that appeal to a really specific component of a broader ECM picture), or whether should they adopt a suite of products as a more comprehensive and integrated solution from a single vendor. This was a real struggle for me as a former customer, someone responsible for running an IT-based, ECM Shared Service within a large organization. From what I’ve learned, I argue that you can indeed have your cake and eat it too.   Let’s explore some of the tradeoffs: At one extreme, there are customers who deploy a patchwork of best-of-breed solutions from different vendors. This can provide excellent experiences within each of the component areas, and can be very successful under the right conditions. However, it can also ultimately result in a more complex solution in terms of implementation, use and management across the business. Even though the Content Management Interoperability Standard (CMIS) was proposed several years ago, we really haven’t seen the level of adoption that helps to realize the promise of ubiquitous interoperability. Much to my personal chagrin, beyond some of the larger vendors and open source niche players, the CMIS standard hasn’t really penetrated far into the new wave of content offerings. Therefore, additional effort is required to integrate the various product/content silos.  Increased integration during deployment translates into complexity for maintaining a broader solution later. This, in turn, translates into an increase in the total cost of ownership. While most vendors now support single-sign-on (SSO) as table stakes for enterprise customers, overall user experience can be difficult to integrate across components.  Ironically, while each product might be easier to use, this approach can cause confusion, leading to increased requirements for user training and support across the broader scope of the solution. In addition, content attributes can be difficult to standardize across the components because the requisite content models are rarely shared or inherited. These could include metadata, document behaviors, workflows, controls, retention, access privileges, audit logging, etc. The more silos of content across offerings, the more complex the relationship. This may not be as much of an issue for throw away content, but it sure is where the content is more critical to the operation of a department or where it requires elevated levels of control. Coordinating and standardizing service levels across the offerings can be thought of in a similar manner. “Suite vendors have created unified interfaces and single sign on to make integration between products more seamless so users are unaware that they are moving between products. Training requirements are reduced with a suite as users do not need to learn how to use products from a variety of vendors. There is a single point for all support, and there are no arguments over which vendor is responsible for a particular issue or problem. Security risks are reduced as vendors move to a single interface, which supports single sign on as users only need to remember a single password and are less likely to need to write it down.” Ovum For many years OpenText has maintained its pedigree as an ECM industry leader, noted for best of breed solutions in several of the domains of ECM: content repositories, capture, customer communications, archiving and information governance to name a few. These are all represented in our major product franchises like: Documentum, and InfoArchive. That’s where the cake comes in.

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DoJ Delays Accessibility Rules for Document Publishers

The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) announced in November that it’s holding off until the 2018 fiscal year on publishing the proposed rules to make commercial websites accessible under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This announcement, published in the department’s Statement of Regulatory Priorities for Fall 2015, comes roughly four years after the DoJ first said it would issue rules for how companies and other providers of “public accommodations” have to make their websites accessible to visitors with disabilities. Even though the DoJ is delaying requirements that apply to commercial websites, covered under Title III of the ADA, it will proceed with publishing Title II amendments (applying to state and local government websites) this month, January 2016. The DoJ believes the smaller Title II project will give it valuable insights and create the necessary infrastructure for broad commercial website accessibility under Title III. Whenever the Title III changes do go into effect, any company with a website will have to carefully review its content to make sure it’s accessible to the widest possible range of readers. What is the Americans with Disabilities Act and Title III Amendment? As a refresher, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life and in the activities of places of public accommodation, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. It became law in 1990. The ADA revisions are to establish requirements for making the goods, services, facilities, privileges, accommodations, or advantages offered by public accommodations via the Internet accessible to individuals with disabilities. Under the ADA Title III amendment, achieving website accessibility is defined as being compliant with Level AA guidelines of the WCAG 2.0 (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) standard. Title III applies to websites of commercial businesses and non-profit service providers – privately operated entities that own, operate, lease, or lease to places of public accommodation, such as large corporations, restaurants, movie theaters, schools, retail stores, doctor’s offices, recreation facilities, etc. as well as commercial facilities such as factories, warehouses or office buildings. The Federal Rulemaking Process To provide some context around the delay to the Title III amendment NPRM being published, let’s review the US Federal Government rulemaking process. The federal rulemaking process is a detailed, often multi-year endeavor that is used to establish new regulations or updates to regulations with the help of public participation. Following are the key stages of the process: Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM): Preliminary stages of rulemaking that publishes the agency’s initial analysis and provides the public with an opportunity to provide comments and participate in rule-making. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM): Publishes actual language of proposed rule in the Federal Register, addresses comments made during the NPRM stage and solicits further comments from the public. Final Rule: Usually the proposed rule becomes the final rule with some minor adjustments. Judicial Review: This is when the courts review the rule in greater detail to address any lawsuits filed by the public and to ensure the agency has not exceeded its rulemaking authority and has followed the proper process for public comments. Effective Date: The rule generally does not become effective for some time after its publication to allow affected parties to come into compliance. The ADA Title III amendment is currently at the “ANPRM published” stage, with the comment period for the ANPRM closed. The next step is to publish the NPRM after taking into account comments received for the ANPRM, which is now expected to occur sometime in 2018. History of the ADA Title III Amendment Timelines The Title III NPRM publication date has been extended 7 times since the ANPRM was published in 2011. Original Date of NPRM Publication Changed To Update Made In January 2012 December 2012  – December 2012 December 2013  – December 2013 March 2014 Spring 2013 March 2014 April 2014 Fall 2013 April 2014 March 2015 Spring 2014 March 2015 June 2015 Fall 2014 June 2015 2018 – month TBD Fall 2015 While the NPRM publication has been delayed, there is no indication that the DoJ will stop monitoring and addressing litigation against commercial organizations for website accessibility. In fact, the DoJ continues to formulate settlement agreements and issue penalties of up to $150,000 for web and web content accessibility violations and order compensation to complainants as required. Therefore, large commercial organizations must continue to plan for and execute on implementing accessibility for websites and web content. OpenText provides a software-based automated solution for generating accessible documents in high volumes, e.g. for statements, bills, notices and more. The OpenText Automated Output Accessibility solution enables companies to generate accessible PDFs in WCAG 2.0 Level AA compliant PDF/UA format, eliminating the need for traditional costly and time-consuming manual remediation processes. Learn more about the solution and contact us today to book a demo.  

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The key to Great CX? Investing in Human Capital

CX

From the desk of Dr. WFO: Following up on my 2016 Contact Center Industry Predictions blog, I want to share my thoughts on the continued need to invest in human capital. When I was a practitioner, there were constant reminders from the executive team do more with less. Unfortunately, I continue to hear this adage as I have conversations with contact centers today. Yet, the continued focus for 2016 is delivering a superior customer experience. There is a flaw with this logic. DO MORE WITH LESS ? SUPERIOR CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE A majority of the contact center interactions require a conversation with an agent. Your customers expect to connect with you using different channels of communication including the traditional phone, email, chat, social media and mobile. These frontline professionals and contact center leaders need to be continued to be developed, coached and appreciated. As your workforce continues to diversify, there is also an expectation from Gen Y and Gen C that you listen and invest in them. Training is an investment, not an expense. However, when it comes to tightening the belt and meeting budget, training gets the axe. Making customer experience a continued focus for 2016 is great, but without the appropriate plans and investments and executive support, providing lip service won’’t get the job done. Let me know what you think in the comments and if you haven’’t already, I encourage you to check out my blog series on starting a contact center coaching program.

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It’s Not Over! Genghis Khan’s Rules for Digital Government

Lots of new technology lies ahead in 2016 and the pressures for digitizing government will increase. My own iPhone6 Siri is actually recognizing what I say after years of horrifying responses—forget a better camera, a better Siri alone is worth the upgrade!  In our personal lives, we think little of changing technology every few months because of peer pressure or personal desire to optimize our lives. In our governments, however, we consistently hang on to aging, inefficient systems, processes, or software just because it’s too hard or too expensive to change. And, for sure, because the people interacting with those systems, processes, or applications are loathe to do things differently, we prefer not to fight those battles. Government organizations have been seriously talking about Digital Government, transformation, and digitization and many have taken steps to “digitize” beyond websites. However, our collective attention span is crying out for us to “get on to the next” before we’ve even begun to experience the benefits or, more likely, actually make the fundamental changes necessary to become truly digital. Both the international analyst firm IDC and Genghis Khan offer guidance for the year ahead. Here are a few of Khan’s leadership principles that can help all of us in government embrace true digitization over the coming decade. Communicate, communicate, communicate Genghis Khan conquered the world’s largest empire by improving communication on the battlefield—through a precursor of the Pony Express—and across his expanding empire to unite commerce along the Silk Road utilizing emissaries and the first passports. Breaking down organization silos is almost as challenging but the only way to build trust, collaboration, and unity is to have a shared enterprise vision and involve everyone in achieving it. Digitization brings with it fear of obsolescence, retraining/ relearning/rethinking the familiar. Further, IDC’s Top Technology Predictions for 2016 say: by 2018, 67% of developers will be focused on business innovation, up from less than 33% today. Hence, only by accurately providing employees and stakeholders information on new directions, goals, and the options available to employees moving forward, can we promote lasting transformation of our institutions in an environment, like Khan’s, of constant change. Be quick to acknowledge and adopt the positive aspects of other cultures For Genghis Khan, this involved synthesizing the best of those cultures his armies conquered. But, for all of us looking globally for ideas and incorporating the best of cultures in the organizations, provinces, states, or nations far away or right next door, enables us to optimize quickly as well as build flexibility into our own organization. Offer resisters the opportunity to get on board or suffer the consequences Today, the prospect of being fired from government for resisting change (or worse, as was the case in Genghis Khan’s time) is highly unlikely. Yet being left behind, not influencing the future while others do, or failing to find a fulfilling new role in a transformed organization are unwelcome prospects for anyone. As we all know, inertia and the other challenges of adoption—the people part of the equation—are the most difficult to overcome. Khan knew that essential human nature was to support an effort in which you played a role and he used that knowledge and the recognition of merit from any quarter to attract strong players to his team, regardless of their former allegiances. We should all recognize how open, transparent changes driven by good ideas from all sources as well as systematic efforts to enable everyone to be part of the new solution will greatly enhance the odds of success in moving to new, digital processes. Feign retreat to bring out the opposition Similarly, openness should not preclude craftiness. In the same vein as keeping enemies closer, even when you think the way forward may be obstructed, step back and take stock, then ask resisters to assess their options and/or the new process strengths and weaknesses. Meet with stakeholders to evaluate progress from multiple perspectives. For those who think that status quo is secure, I share IDC’s prediction that by 2018, over 50% of developer teams will embed “Cognitive Services” (i.e., data analytics) in their apps, up from 1% today, providing U.S. enterprises $60+ billion in annual savings by 2020. Some of those enterprises will inevitably be government agencies. Listen to what they all say and ,if necessary, retool, regroup, and move ahead, armed with what you’ve learned. Plan your long-term strategy for the best interests of all Just as Genghis Khan used these tools to institutionalize his empire’s legacy, your Digital Government strategy must look to a legacy of good government, continually improving, adapting to, and anticipating the world around it. Across the globe, IDC predicts sweeping changes in how we all will work—in less than five years (2020), 60% of the [top 2000 global companies]will double their productivity by digitally transforming any processes from human-based to software-based delivery.  Governments can no longer resist these changes—as dramatic as those during the reign of Genghis Khan. If we want to continue to thrive, government must look outside organization silos to fundamental changes to how we serve via digital means to deliver smarter, more productive, more agile government. Our agencies must know their citizens personally and deliver customized experiences, protection and services fast and transparently utilizing shared information and consolidated support services.

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How to Play Nice with Compliance

Compliance is a little like the big, scary kid at the playground. No one wants to make direct eye contact, no one wants to get too close, and no one thinks any good can come of the situation. Unfortunately, no one considers what that big kid can do for them. Oh, poor, lonely, ostracized compliance… sigh… It’s true that you don’t want to mess around with compliance. But that doesn’t mean you can’t roll with it. After all, it’s key to any enterprise: an organization cannot operate if it does not adhere to the laws, regulations, guidelines, and standards relevant to its business. So, how can you play nice with this big, scary kid? 1. Step back and take a good look. What do you need to be aware of? Content and process are at the heart of Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance (GRC), and there are many different regulations and standards around the world. Which ones affect you? Take a look at this Regulatory Compliance & EIM Matrix. It’s a convenient, at-a-glance table of key regulations and standards from across the globe, and it also lists the associated EIM requirements. Download it to keep for quick reference! 2. Listen to what the other kids are saying. What should you pay close attention to and what do you feel confident about? According to a recent white paper from AIIM® and OpenText, Managing GRC with ECM and BPM, the top driver of Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance (GRC) for organizations is avoiding reputational risk. In fact, we found that protecting the reputation was twice as big of a driver as avoiding fines and penalties. (It always comes back to the playground.) Other highlights from the survey include the following: The most common GRC complaints: Multiple, disparate systems to manage compliance documentation Manual, inefficient GRC processes Homegrown systems and tools 40% surveyed say policy management is their biggest challenge with regulatory compliance, and only 9% are confident their policies are up-to-date. 85% believe ECM would help them meet their compliance requirements. The top 5 ECM functionalities deemed most important for GRC: RM, DM, Email Management, Audit Trails, and BPM/Workflow. Get the highlights of the survey in this infographic. For those of you particularly interested in data privacy cloud compliance, another new paper, Data Privacy in the Cloud – Guidance for the IT Professional, from 451 Research®, delves into today’s five biggest issues: The Microsoft Dublin Warrant controversy International eDiscovery and eDisclosure The US-EU Safe Harbor framework The EU General Data Protection regulation Expansion of data privacy laws around the world 3. And play fair. As Former Deputy US Attorney General Paul McNulty said, “If you think compliance is expensive, try non-compliance.” Plus, once you are compliant, you’ll have a big advantage over your competitors—it’s not just a necessary evil. And, of course, you can’t be messed with. Not with Compliance behind you.  

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ON DIGITAL-First Fridays: Sold? But I Never Started the Sales Cycle!

smart process applications

Consumers expect highly personalized products and services, delivered in real time. Instant gratification means no more waiting in long lines, no more trudging through shopping malls, no more cash purchases. Even tangible goods are fading into services delivered in the Cloud. In the Subscription Economy, the customer is in control, sitting in the driver seat: creating ecosystems around products and services, driving distribution across networks (not chains), co-creating and crowdsourcing, and forcing product development and service availability to be “outside the box”. Forget the funnel. The sales funnel is being replaced by an orbital model, based on multiple interactions that create a lifetime of value. It’s no longer about quantity—or the more leads you feed into the funnel, the more deals you’ll close. It’s a more complex process based on multiple interactions taking place across multiple touchpoints and channels. The focus is on nurturing long-term relationships with loyal customers and community members rather than funneling leads through the buying cycle. In the digital world, purchasers are either 100% sold self-service or 90% sold by the time they contact a sales rep. Big Box retailers are attracting aisle browsers who look at goods in the store and immediately surf the web for a better price. Consumers of digital do not want a sales call, they want a compelling digital experience to take them from need to sold. No matter where customers are in their purchasing journey, it’s your job to support them by giving them what they need in a consistently branded experience. If customers leave the journey partway through, they have to be able to pick up where they left off when they return—it’s all part of a seamless experience. While the customer is in the driver seat, you are a passenger on the journey. But you can control the interactions that your customers experience. You can find out what platforms they’re using and reach out to them there. If they’re on Twitter, start tweeting. If they’re on Facebook, build a community. Communities of buyers are the people you can cross-sell and upsell to. To do this effectively, your programs must be adaptive and deft, sales and marketing tactics have to be constantly measured and refined. And your messaging has to speak to your customers. In a pull-model of communications, when customers ask for information, make sure you have it ready. Or anticipate their needs and send them recommendations preemptively. With digital consumers, you have a captive online audience that you can connect with directly. Digitalization is the most direct route to market. It has wiped out the traditional sales cycle and is redefining innovation. In my next post, I’ll look at how technology is accelerating the pace of innovation and how digitalization is allowing enterprises to experiment at massive scale—instantly. For more thoughts ON DIGITAL, download the book.

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2016 Contact Center Resolutions: Listen Less, Talk More

customer

Voice of the customer, active listening, customer feedback, customer focus… – you’’ve heard these terms before. They all basically mean the same thing. If you want to know how the customer feels, what they think, what they need or want, listen to them. Good advice. Excellent advice actually. Unfortunately, it’’s also a tremendously difficult thing to do on a regular basis. But having said that, I really do believe that your number one resolution for this year is to listen less and talk more…. But, just before you close this page and tag me as crazy (you wouldn’’t be the first), let me explain. I’’m not suggesting that you shouldn’’t listen to your customers; I am just suggesting that you just spend less time listening. Listen Less The call volume in your call center varies from day-to-day, hour-to-hour, and by circumstances. The end result is potentially tens of thousands of calls per day. Each of these calls has information that you likely need in order to run your business and meet your customer’s expectations. But let’’s be real, who has the time to listen to thousands of hours of recordings? The voice of the customer is a driving factor in today’’s contact center. #VOC programs are valuable in what they can provide, and the successful, proactive businesses are the one’s that pay attention. The problem isn’’t with getting the feedback, there’’s plenty of that to go around. The challenge is finding a cost-effective way of focusing on what the customers are saying in a variety of forums and making it actionable. It’’s just not feasible, and in most cases affordable, to spend hours and hours reading surveys, listening to calls and reviewing forum and reviews from your website. Wouldn’’t it be great if you could gather a lot more data and spend a lot less time doing it? You can, I promise. Make your resolution now to listen less, I mean, spend less time listening to your customers by listening smarter. Talk More In 2016 you really should resolve to talk more by spreading the word, sharing the news, telling the business what you hear. Contact centres are an asset, a vast repository of usable customer data – in a word, valuable!  So the rest of your New Year’s resolution should be to talk more. Talk to more leaders in your business: marketing, product development, sales, order fulfillment. Talk to everyone who has a need to know what you know. And now, when you are talking, you have targeted, succinct, accurate information to share. You are valuable to the business as a harvester of big data and provider of customer insight. Talk about it. Everyone needs to hear the voice of the customer, and you are that voice to the business. Your New Year Resolution Everyone knows that sometimes, in order to keep your resolution, you need support. Hide the cupcakes, work out with exercise buddies, you know the drill. So let us be your support in this one. How do you spend less time analyzing more data and reporting it out to your business in a targeted and usable way? With OpenText™ Explore. Explore’’s true multichannel analytics allows you to search for interactions that target a specific topic so you don’’t waste time looking for a needle in a stack of needles. By combining the results of call recordings, survey results, CRM data, emails, web reviews, and dozens of other channels into a single point of review, you will gather a tremendous amount of data in a fraction of the time. Through query guidance, topic mapping, and dynamic filtering you can extract specific data and share that information across the business, impact critical decisions, and provide a better customer experience almost immediately. So when someone asks about your New Year’’s Resolution, you can say “Listen Less, Talk More” and let the results speak for themselves. And don’’t worry if they tag you as crazy too, they will appreciate it later. Check out the New Year resolutions for contact center professionals blog that my colleague, Henry Eakland has posted – he also has some good advice about teaming up with a trusted partner in 2016. I want to wish everyone a happy and prosperous new year. And my resolution? To be here any time you need me. We all need support to keep our resolutions!

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2016 Resolutions for Contact Center Professionals

WFO

Just before the holidays Roger Lee, my colleague and our resident Doctor of All Things WFO, posted his professional 2016 resolutions with Dr. WFO. They are definitely worth a read and got me to thinking about resolutions that contact center professionals might be making in 2016. If I were managing some aspect of an enterprise contact center in today’’s customer-focused, multichannel, and resource challenged world, I might consider focusing my determined efforts on the following: Resolution #1: Prepare for omnichannel to go beyond hype to imperative Yes, big data was the buzzword in 2013, giving way to cloud in 2014. In the same way that these terms moved from hype to reality, omnichannel will do the same. You might think we’’re still in the phase where “everyone is talking about omnichannel, but nobody is doing anything about it,” yet the tipping point from hype to imperative is not far off. To be sure, it isn’’t easy to predict just when this will happen, but you know it’s being taken seriously by business decision makers when a search for “omnichannel” on the highly influential Forrester Research site pops up 243 related reports published in 2015 alone. Most likely, your competition is already implementing their omnichannel strategy. You need to be doing the same, if for no other reason than your customers’ increasing expectation is that you will provide a compelling and consistent experience across all the channels they want to use when interacting with you. The best way I know to move toward the quickly unfolding omnichannel world is to make sure you have a robust multichannel analytics platform in place. This is the one piece of technology that allows contact center managers to monitor, discover and address customer needs and complaints. To do so, your multichannel analytics solution must be able to connect easily to each and every communication channel supported in your contact center, which means that connections to both structured and unstructured data types must be supported. The solution must also be able to grow at big data scale and still provide real-time insight into all the rich information flowing through the contact center. No less important is the requirement that your multichannel analytics solution must be able to connect and gather information beyond the traditional data repositories in the contact center like voice recordings, screen captures and text verbatims from emails, chats and surveys. By extending the reach of analytics beyond your contact center, you have the opportunity to share the value of customer behavior insights with other business units. This in turn can convince others in marketing, sales and human resources to share technology budgets in order to implement your omnichannel strategies. With robust multichannel analytics in place, your contact center doesn’’t need to carry the entire program on its own resource and financial shoulders. Unapologetic Plug #1: The OpenText WFO Software product portfolio includes Explore, our advanced multichannel analytics solution that should be part of any contact center analytics RFP. Resolution #2: Team up with a trusted consulting partner One of my go-to personal mantras is no one of us is as smart as all of us. It’’s a mantra that keeps me honest when I think I have the one right answer to solve a problem and open to other ideas when I’’m struggling to come up with the best possible solution. You have plenty of colleagues to collaborate with, and you hopefully have an executive champion to support your contact center initiatives, as well as an evangelist to promote the value of those initiatives inside the broader organization. Maybe you are that champion or evangelist. No matter what your role is within the contact center team, I probably don’’t need to tell you that it’s essential to drive collaboration up and down the chain of command in order to achieve the best possible outcome for your projects. If you haven’t already done so, take this one step further in 2016: make a resolution to add a trusted consulting partner to your collaboration mix. A partner from outside your organization earns your trust by knowing your business and proves his or her value by bringing expertise from other similar engagements to bear on strategic discussions, best practice approaches, optimal training, and effective evangelism. When it comes to making your organization “as smart as all of us,” working with a trusted outside consultant is often a missing component. So resolve to make sure that’’s not the case for your contact center. Your team, your business leaders and your customers will thank you for it. Unapologetic Plug #2: WFO Software offers exactly the trusted consulting services that I’’m talking about here. Our consulting team’s mantra is to “turn our customer engagements into partnerships and our partnerships into relationships,” according to my colleague, Randy Morgan, one of our seasoned business consultants, and he’s very successful in doing just that. He offers up suggested resolutions for contact center professionals in in his own blog post.  And when you’’re ready to put this resolution into gear, contact your account executive to learn more. Resolution #3: Plan now to get out there and engage with industry experts and colleagues I see this all too often – and am guilty of it myself far more than I care to admit: the latter part of your fiscal year rolls around, that important conference you wanted to attend is right around the corner, and you haven’’t set aside the budget to register and book your travel. This falls into a missed opportunity to be “as smart as all of us” again, because industry events are gatherings where all those other smart people join one another to network and share insights earned after much effort and the ups and downs of mistakes that eventually lead to success. Now is the time to identify the conferences most relevant to your role in the contact center and to make room in your budget and your calendar in order to attend. Unapologetic Plug #3: Here at OpenText Qfiniti WFO Software, we’’re already committed to joining you at two of the most important industry events in 2016: ICMI Contact Center Expo & Conference, May 10-13, Long Beach, California As a Gold Sponsor we’’ll have a booth on the exhibit floor and hope that you’’ll stop by to see us. Roger Lee will be presenting a customer case study with Sandi Patel from HSN (The Home Shopping Network). Make a point of sitting in on the presentation to hear about HSN’’s success in implementing Explore as part of their multichannel analytics strategy. 17th Annual Call Center Week Conference & Expo, June 27-July 1, Las Vegas, Nevada Ditto for Call Center Week: we’’ll have a booth so that you can stop by and talk with us in person, and Roger will be back on stage presenting another compelling customer case study that is not to be missed. 2016 is sure to be a wild ride When it comes to customer engagement, it’’s going to be a wild ride in 2016, for sure, but with some planning and determination,– along with the resolutions you’’ll make and keep,– it can turn out to be a highly successful year. There’’s a lot riding on your efforts to deliver the best possible cross-channel experience to your customers. With the right analytics platform in place to understand their needs, behaviors and issues, with a commitment to team collaboration and the help of a trusted partner, and the knowledge gained from networking with industry colleagues and experts, you can figure out how to be “as smart as all of us.” Sure there are pounds to lose now that 2016 is here. But there isn’’t any time to lose. Get smart and make those New Year’’s resolutions now. Best wishes for a Happy and Successful 2016 from your Qfiniti WFO Software team!

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Direct Messaging: Better Health Outcomes

Healthcare

Recently, Direct messaging has surfaced as the new technology for the electronic exchange of patient information. Think of Direct messaging as “email” for healthcare, with a healthy dose of prescribed steroids. Direct is like regular email but with additional security measures for healthcare ensuring that messages and information are only accessible to the intended recipient, as specified by the protection regulations of HIPAA. Direct Messaging is a standards-based, secure method of exchanging patient information and transitioning patient care between care providers. Not only does Direct provide electronic exchange of patient information, it can provide rich data derived from the content – in other words, it’s not just a flat “picture” of the content but includes metadata that makes the content meaningful and actionable. The metadata of a Direct message can include elements such as patient name, DOB, gender and other identifying elements that make a Direct message a healthier communication method. There are many benefits to adopting Direct messaging, all of which lead back to improving the quality of care for patients. SAVES YOU TIME Less time spent with paper records, more time spent caring for patients Better transition of patient care, closing the care gap between providers Avoids delays waiting for delivery of patient information via other delivery methods SAVES YOU MONEY Replaces fax machines with a more efficient, more secure communication method Comprehensive information sharing eliminates unnecessary or duplicate testing Meaningful Use 2 offers incentives to those providers who can attest to electronically transmitting between providers and avoid penalties for non-attestation INCREASES YOUR EFFICIENCY Assures a more complete communication between providers Aligns all members of a patient’s care team, across all care providers Enables more efficient structured, standards-based communication Expansion of Direct messaging has been identified as one of the top trends for 2016:  “Reliance on Direct exchange for secure, interoperable transfers of patient health information between and among providers for the purposes of care coordination will continue to grow.” As healthcare organizations turn to Direct messaging to electronically exchange patient information, they will look to do so in the most efficient manner possible, with as little disruption to their organization as possible. What if there was a single solution that provided Direct messaging whenever possible and faxing only when you need it? RightFax Healthcare Direct is the first fax server to combine fax and Direct messaging in a single solution: Direct messaging whenever possible and faxing only when you need it. This innovative solution leverages integrations between RightFax and your EMR systems to send and receive Direct messages, making patient information exchange an electronic, secure part of the continuity of care. Watch the webinar to learn more about RightFax Healthcare Direct.

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ON DIGITAL-First Fridays: The Customer Journey

digital capability

Peter Drucker was right when he said, “The purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer”. This is the goal of every business: to create and keep customers. This principle survives Digital. Digital helps you keep this focus by giving you more ways to know your customer better. The best way to satisfy your customer is to truly understand them. You can do this by mapping every point of contact a customer has with your brand—known as their customer journey. Customers are leaving digital footprints. The transactions, videos, peer reviews on social media sites, blog posts, web forms, call center discussions, point-of-sale promotions, and devices people use on their purchasing journeys—these are your navigation points on the digital customer journey. Data accumulates (and becomes more valuable) at every intersection. This detritus is pure gold. It is key to differentiating products and services because it can be examined and analyzed to uncover insights into buyer behavior—to reveal wants, needs, and motives at each step in the journey. Your Digital Sherpa is your guide in making sure that the experience is targeted and consistent, no matter what channels your customers are using. Digital consumers are very transparent about their brand preferences, experiences, and sentiments. The more that people consume online, the more touchpoints they use and the more information they share, the more you can learn. Your Digital Sherpa will help you find moments of truth. Moments of truth can be tied back to actions that drive processes. When the journey is deconstructed and digitalized, the delivery of information or goods can be customized, automated, and real time. The journey has to be smooth and the experience consistently great. If you ignore your Digital Sherpa, the journey can be treacherous. One mistake, and you lose your way, or worse, you lose a customer. But chances are good the customer will come back, and when they resume their journey, you have to be ready for them. That’s why it’s important to map out and connect each navigation point, so you can anticipate your customer’s needs at each step along the way. Good maps are based on accurate data. Accurate data gives you a 360-degree view of each customer. Once you understand what motivates your customer at each step in a journey, you can more effectively satisfy their expectations, in their moment of need. Your Digital Sherpa helps you equip your customers with the right tools at the right time. You don’t give a climber a 50-foot rope on a 100-foot cliff. And you wouldn’t expect a Millennial to shop from a mailbox. Compelling, personalized digital experiences take customers from need to sold. In my next post, I’ll explore how digital engagement puts the customer in the driver’s seat, changing the sales cycle and doing away with the sales funnel. For more thoughts ON DIGITAL, download the book.  

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Breaking the Code

Who wants to code? If the thought alone gives you chills, don’t panic, you are not alone. Let’s face it coding is a bit scary for most of us. But, never fear, the Hour of Code is here to help us all, whether you are four or 104 years old! In case you are wondering, The Hour of Code is an introduction to computer science. A global movement reaching tens of millions of students in 180+ countries, the program consists of one hour tutorials in more than 40 languages. “The Hour of Code is designed to demystify code and show that computer science is not rocket-science, anybody can learn the basics,” said Hadi Partovi, founder and CEO of Code.org. “Over 100 million students worldwide have tried an Hour of Code. The demand for relevant 21st century computer science education crosses all borders and knows no boundaries.” Now, you are unlikely to be an expert coder at the end of the hour, but hopefully you will have a new appreciation for computer science. It’s a digital world today and computer science is at the heart of it. The Hour of Code movement makes that understanding accessible to all ages, all students, regardless of background. And, that is something we can get behind! We are already seeing the changes. Millennials are entering the workforce in full force and they are digital ready. With the swipe of their screen, they are running their lives. And, that is only going to get more apparent as the world continues its digital transformation. Companies are beginning to adjust for this new market. With the Hour of Code, not only will more people understand coding and computer science but companies also get a glimpse into the future. With so many benefits, it’s no wonder we felt this was a great fit for our company. Our offices around the world are setting up their own Hour of Code events – and people love it! From employees to children, these events are getting everyone involved. With events in Canada, Germany, North America, and more, our teams are meeting up and learning to code. So, how is it going? Just ask 10-year-old Ian Darroch in Waterloo,“I had a blast. I only wished it was ‘2 Hours of Code’!” How about our more senior students? Bill Combs from our Gaithersburg office says, “The Hour of Code was indeed fun and informative!  It has been a very, very long time since I’ve coded programs, and, I was interested to see what it was all about.” And, having personally participated, I can say the Hour of Code is a fantastic initiative that is both fun and informative. Click here for a recap of our Waterloo event! Anyone can host an Hour of Code event. If you are interested, check out the official website.

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5 Information Governance Budgeting Pitfalls to Avoid

Managing an organization’s digital assets is a growing priority that can cost even the savviest CIO their job.  Budgeting for information governance can be tricky when it comes to determining how and where to find the necessary resources. Below are some common budgeting pitfalls to avoid when deciding on an information governance solution. #1 Top-down planning Companies often view budgeting as a top-down process where one person owns the entire process.  The reality is that everyone needs to be involved so that the entire company’s resources are accounted for.  The management of information governance doesn’t just rely on IT or compliance departments; the entire organization is involved and benefits from the solution. To make an information governance budget a reality, make sure you involve key stakeholders from every department and have each entity take ownership for their parts of the budget.  Once each department identifies the resources they need to allocate, the project leader can roll it up into a single plan. #2 Difficulty budgeting When you don’t have reliable access to spending data, it can be challenging to actualize what has been invested in the information governance initiatives currently running.  This in turn makes it difficult to justify additional spending with executives.  It can also be difficult to know where to allocate the information governance budget if it’s unclear how much funds are available. Whether you’re using a spreadsheet or have advanced budgeting software to track your spend, it’s important to constantly be reviewing what’s working and what’s not and identify where the organization is seeing the most ROI. #3 Biting off more than you can chew Once an information governance roadmap is approved, obtaining sign off can be daunting.  While the solution may sound straightforward, this is rarely a reality.  Many organizations still struggle with implementing information governance and instead of seeking budget approval for the entire initiative, it’s often best to break it off into smaller projects and seek approval for each project at a time.  Some examples of smaller projects include: Selection and implementation of archiving tools Training program for employees Migration to a new email platform Information governance assessment The key is to align each individual project with your goals, and keep track of the investment so per-project ROI can be obtained. #4 Bowing to internal politics Internal politics exist at most companies, and discussions often get heated when valuable resources are involved.  With a number of different departments and budgets, it can be tempting to divide the resources evenly to avoid disagreements.  While this avoids conflict, it typically rewards those that are the loudest. If you’re considering individual information governance proposals, measure each based on their strategic return, economic value, and payback window.  This will better guide how resources are split. #5 Struggling to Prove ROI Proving ROI is critical to the success of any information governance initiative, and there is growing pressure to do so.  Similar to the efforts of public relations or corporate social responsibility departments, it can be difficult to prove the ROI of budget based on intangible initiatives. Consider demonstrating the ROI of information governance via more quantitative means such as: decreased overtime hours, quicker eDiscovery turnaround times, less spending on storage, or fewer litigation issues.

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Contact Center Industry Predictions for 2016

contact center

From the desk of Dr. WFO: 2015 is almost over! Can you believe it? Friends and colleagues are already talking about resolutions for 2016, (I shared one of my resolutions here). After attending and speaking at several industry events, participating in various roundtables, and talking to numerous analysts, customers and prospects, below are my thoughts on themes within contact centers for 2016. Emerging and/or continued investments in the following areas of technology: Multichannel analytics Desktop optimization (analytics) Managed services Cloud-based solutions where it makes sense Predictive analytics Mobile applications Emerging and/or continued focus on customer experience (CX): Need to establish multichannel strategy based on your customer demographics and expectations Determine if you are ready to deliver a seamless cross-channel strategy; if you do not have a solid multichannel foundation in place, don’’t get distracted by the term “omni-channel experience” Review current metrics to determine if these are appropriate based on your strategic and operational plans; are you measuring customer effort? If not, why? If so, how are you doing? Self-service options that are well executed Continued investment in human capital: With an ever evolving workforce, investments in training, succession planning, and overall development must continue to be a focus at all levels within the contact center Rewards and recognition programs improved (one size doesn’’t fit all) Using a multichannel analytics application can provide the necessary data to measure, take action, and laser focus in a few areas: agent productivity and customer experience. Agent Productivity With multichannel interactions, the opportunity for agents to handle multiple chat and email sessions can reduce the cost per contact compared to agent handling a voice call. The cost per contact is even less when work-at-home agent are handling chats and email interactions because there aren’’t brick and mortar costs to be factored. Customer Experience Keep in mind, changes to the demographic landscape are evolving as your customers are becoming younger and younger. Self-service will continue to become an expectation from consumers. Timely and accurate resolution to an issue/inquiry without the customer having to wait in a queue for an agent will often result in a better customer experience. For those consumers who take advantage of the self-service channel, they have communication expectations and requirements including – their inquiry has been received, a particular person is handling it and will get back to them, and when they can expect a response. Organizations who provide self-service channels must measure the effectiveness through post-chat surveys, Net Promoter scores, customer effort and even SMS or email surveys. What do you see as key themes for the contact center in 2016? Let me know in the comments below. Enjoy the holidays and I look forward to a great 2016!

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Getting Executives On Board: 4 CEO-Worthy Benefits of Information Governance

So you’re the champion of information governance in your organization. How do you get buy-in from C-level executives? How do you raise the importance of data preservation without a current crisis that demands resolution? Fear of compliance and litigation should not be a major consideration to kick-start your IG journey. Below is a list of CEO-worthy benefits that will help keep executives and the organization focused on business opportunity, rather than simply risk avoidance. #1 Increased productivity Research shows that the average employee spends 208 hours per year (26 working days or 5.2 weeks) looking for information. Employees lose work hours searching for documents, as well as recreating documents they are unable to find. Recouping those hours allows them to focus on their work, including such tasks as seeking new revenue opportunities. The potential cost savings from implementing an information governance solution for a company with 1,000 employees is $9.75 million. That’s a number to which most C-level executives will pay attention. #2 Reduction in storage costs This may not be at the top of the agenda for a CEO, but it’s a place where organizations can see immediate tangible results and ROI. Data volumes are growing exponentially and saving everything is complicated and costly. Information governance allows organizations to defensibly delete information, thereby substantially reducing storage needs and costs, and also decreasing the amount of data that needs to be managed. An Australian mining company reduced its mailbox storage by up to 75% for end users by implementing a solution to better manage its digital information assets. #3 Improved visibility The sheer volume of data organizations hold and the variety of content can make searching for data a daunting task. “Assuming a work force of 1000 employees…the total annual cost of searching is $7.5 million… a 50% increase in search productivity gives us an estimated $3.75 million savings from recovered employee productivity.” Giving the most relevant assets to employees, business intelligence tools, and departments can make the difference between making an ill-informed decision and a strategic business decision. A proper information governance initiative will not only improve the visibility of relevant and valuable information within an organization, but also drastically reduce lost time and money on these processes. #4 Improved top-line growth With information governance in place, organizations can quickly identify pertinent information about, and for, a customer. This information can be used for customer service or to find new cross selling opportunities. Sales and marketing can share information within the proper context, allowing them to draw meaning, shorten the sales cycle, and close more business with less effort. This can have an immediate impact on top-line growth for an organization. In conclusion C-level executives often respond best to tangible cost savings and productivity metrics when making decisions about organization-wide solutions. Information governance, with its many benefits and cost savings, certainly has more than its fair share of supporting data. When touting the benefits of digital asset management, be sure to know the pain points of your audience so you can speak their language and gain their support.

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ON DIGITAL-First Fridays: It Only Takes a Finger

My niece recently went up to my TV and said the “swipe” wasn’t working. When I read her a children’s book, she asked, “What’s a radio?” She’s five, which means touchscreen devices have been around longer than she’s been alive. New college graduates have been completely raised in the Internet Era. In ten years, college graduates will have been raised on “one finger”. Digital engagement isn’t optional, it’s required. And it has to go beyond easy, and be intuitive. When a five year old goes up to a TV to swipe it, that’s intuitive. Consumers have grown accustomed to sending messages, downloading music, opening a bank account, and even purchasing a house—all with just one finger. In the digital world, they have infinite choices at their fingertips. Customers can browse, compare, research, and purchase without setting foot into a physical location—at any time, from anywhere. The digital world is always on. Decisions are made quickly, but they are informed. Gratification is immediate. This means that you have mere seconds to captivate a customer. And you have to demonstrate that you “know” them in those few seconds. So that first impression (which can be your only and your last) is more important than ever. Customers are growing increasingly savvy and fickle, and their loyalty must be earned. Every unnecessary click or irrelevant message aggravates, pushing your customer into the welcoming arms of your competitor. The Digital Leaders know this. That’s why they’re already innovating and creating wildly compelling omni-channel experiences. But this requires digitalized customer journeys and consolidated information. This starts behind the firewall and extends outside the enterprise across the supply network. Only then will you be able to predict what content will positively influence your customers, respond in real time, and deliver highly curated and satisfying experiences. Remember, your customers have the world in the palm of their hand. If you don’t impress, it only takes a finger… to unlike, unsubscribe, post a bad review, or buy now—from your competitor. In the next post in this series I’ll look at how seamless, consistent, personal, and engaging experiences are they key to winning and keeping customers. For more thoughts ON DIGITAL, download the book.

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Why EIM Should be Central to Your Information Security Strategy

Every function in the organization — from human resources to operations to marketing — is creating, acquiring, processing, storing and sharing more information than ever before. Innovations in technology coupled with unprecedented data volumes are pushing the limits of privacy and security well beyond current regulatory standards and legal requirements, making it easier for data to get into the wrong hands. Security incidents are on the rise. The year 2014 will be bring to mind several high-profile breaches, such as Sony Pictures Entertainment, Home Depot and Target. While these attacks stole the headlines, thousands more took place around the world, resulting in the theft or loss of more than 1 billion data records, up 76% from 2013. The threat is coming from inside the house We know that organizations need to protect their most sensitive information from cyber criminals on the outside who are trying to get in, but there has been significant research indicating that it is the individuals operating inside the “trusted” network who are the biggest threat – whether with malicious intent or unintended, employees are the primary cause of data breaches. PWC Turnaround and transformation in cybersecurity: Key findings from The Global State of Information Survey 2016 (n=10,000 CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, CISOs, CSOs, VPs and directors of IT and security) Why are employees cited as the biggest risk to information security? • Inadequate access and permissions controls for shared repositories • Lack of secure file sharing and transfer practices So what can organizations do to prevent data loss and protect intellectual property while optimizing productivity and speed to market? Enterprise Information Management (EIM) are the strategies and tools that help organizations maximize the value of their information while minimizing its risks…and it should be a foundational component of your Information Security strategy. Here’s why: Access and permissions – control who’s allowed to do what Your first line of defense is to limit information access to only those employees whose job function requires it. The “wild west” of unfettered data access to shared repositories to the vast majority of your employees puts organizations at risk. Also, you must monitor those with permissions for proper information access behavior. Effective EIM systems have complex access and permission structures to ensure users only have access to what they need and what they are permitted to see and do. From intellectual property to client information and personnel matters, EIM systems help ensure that content is retrievable and usable for those who need it and protected against unauthorized access and alteration from those who don’t. Audit trails – know who did what and when When an incident does occur or a suspected incident is being investigated, it’s critical to be able to understand the full history of activity that has taken place and reconstruct the content’s forensic trail. EIM solutions offer customers the ability to view the full information lifecycle, all of the actions that have been performed on it, by whom and when, including: • When and by whom an asset is accessed or viewed • When it is downloaded or copied • When it is deleted or moved • When a version is added, viewed, edited • When administrative settings or access has changed Information audit capabilities are an additional layer designed to help you manage and assess threats around your information. Secure information exchange – preventing data loss Data leakage and loss from negligent file sharing and information collaboration practices is becoming just as significant a risk as data theft. • 84% of employees are using personal email accounts to send sensitive files, 51.5% at least daily • 52% expose company files or data by uploading to a non-secure, public cloud-based service • 30% of employees have lost a USB drive containing confidential information Comprehensive EIM solutions offer secure file sharing tools to safely exchange files and keep proprietary, confidential, and sensitive content safe. Capabilities you should be looking for include: • Data encryption during file transfer and information exchanges – both inside and outside the enterprise — ensuring superior protection of sensitive data • Notifications are date and time-stamped when messages are received and files are downloaded, allowing for easier tracking, auditing, and more efficient workflows • Full control over file and data download availability • Secure messaging that integrates directly with your existing email system to provide enhanced encryption, tracking, protection and control of email • Secure and efficient exchange of very large files inside and outside the organization • Compliance with privacy regulations and standards, such as HIPAA, HITECH Act and PCI-DSS Records disposition – keeping volumes manageable The more content you have, the more difficult it is to get your arms around it. Information security becomes more manageable and realistic when you reduce data volumes. If your organization stopped hoarding every piece of information it acquires or creates and adhered to compliant records disposition rules to archive or destroy records when retention schedules expire, this would make discovering, analyzing, and defending your sensitive information much easier. Perhaps the most important component of EIM is effective records management. These capabilities help organizations secure information through legal and records holds and sound information lifecycle management, ensuring that information can’t be accessed or destroyed when doing so would be contradictory to company needs or regulatory obligations. System of record – know where your information is and classify it The biggest mistake companies make when it comes to information security is the lack of understanding of where their sensitive data resides because they have not set policies to systematically and routinely classify their data. Consequently, they don’t have controls in place to ensure that all information types are handled appropriately. At the heart of EIM is a central secure repository for unstructured information. Here, content can have security classifications applied such as Top Secret, Secret, Confidential, Restricted, and Public. Without a formal data classification scheme, information that is considered highly valuable by third parties may not be viewed as such internally, thus may not be managed and secured accordingly. Without a tool to help identify where sensitive data is, an organization likely does not have a handle on it. If you don’t know what you have, where it is, and why you have it, you can’t expect to apply the appropriate policies and controls to protect it. EIM and information security – the balance between productivity and protection High-profile data breaches should be a wake-up call to enterprises everywhere. According to IDC, by 2016, security will be a top three business priority for 70 per cent of CEOs of global enterprises. Make EIM a core component of your Information Security Strategy. These solutions provide your employees with collaborative access to sensitive data and intellectual property within an approved access control model while preventing data loss and ensuring data privacy and client confidentiality to maintain regulatory compliance.

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Accessibility in Telecom: Thriving in a Customer-Centric World

engineering

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules under Section 255 of the Communications Act require telecommunications equipment manufacturers and service providers to make their products and services accessible to people with disabilities if such access is readily achievable. While this regulation has been around since 1996, telecom companies and device manufacturers are now starting to view accessibility as a competitive advantage vs. just a regulation that needs to be met. Take the example of Samsung, a telecommunications equipment manufacturer that has decided to place a greater strategic focus on creating an inclusionary environment for individuals with disabilities. The video below, “Hearing Hands,” from earlier this year is more than just a touching advertisement – it is an example of the proactive measures being taken in this industry to create superior and inclusive customer experiences as the next opportunity for retention and growth. As per a recent report on 2015 Telecommunications Trends by Strategy& (formerly Booz & Company) “Wired and wireless carriers confront a rapidly shifting technology landscape in which small steps toward digitization are no longer enough.” I would add to this by saying that digitization is also not going to be enough unless customers of all abilities are taken into account and included. With customer retention being a key challenge faced by telecoms and baby boomers retiring and aging, providing accessible services will be an important opportunity for telecoms to boost loyalty and overcome market challenges such as rate wars, the rise of the social customer and the constant inflow of new players in the market. There are many types of disabilities for which accessibility is implemented in different ways, and I’ll focus on accessibility for individuals with visual impairments in this blog post. Visually impaired individuals are very much a digital population. They have several types of assistive technologies at their disposal, such as desktop and mobile screen readers on Windows, Apple, Android, iOS and other operating systems to help them gain access to content. In fact, a recent 2014 study from Web AIM Screen Reader User Survey indicates that visually impaired individuals use advanced technology available to the sighted population, with the use of mobile on the rise from 61 percent in 2012 to 72 percent in 2014. With baby boomers aging and retiring, the demand for these technologies and information in formats compatible with them is growing, along with the expectation for a comparable user experience as provided to sighted users. No longer are these individuals willing to go through long-winded request processes for alternative formats – they want on-demand and real-time access to their information in digitally accessible formats, just as anyone else would. Telecommunication companies currently address requests for accessible monthly statements and communications for visually impaired individuals by providing these documents in braille, large print or audio formats. Requesting alternative formats is a laborious process in itself, and converting the documents is both expensive and time-consuming due to the manual effort involved. This approach requires individuals with visual impairments to self-identify, which defeats the very purpose of regulations like Section 255 that aim to create an inclusionary environment for people of all abilities. The OpenText Solution OpenText has an automated solution that enables organizations such as large telecommunications companies to automatically generate accessible PDF statements without requiring customers to self-identify. The solution can take existing high-volume documents such as statements stored in archives, or even bolt on to composition systems that generate statements and transform them to WCAG 2.0 Level AA compliant PDFs quickly and easily. This approach is fast, inexpensive and dramatically reduces the effort required in providing accessible formats to customers. Today over 20.6 million Americans over the age of 18 are reporting vision loss, and that number is growing. Prevent Blindness America estimates that the population of people experiencing blindness and visual impairment will double by 2030 unless corrective actions are taken. The traditional customer profile is changing, and so must organizations that wish to thrive in a customer-centric world. Learn more about the OpenText Automated Output Accessibility solution. Featured image courtesy of Joseph Morris.

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2016 Resolutions With Dr. WFO

WFO

From the desk of Dr. WFO: With the calendar year quickly coming to a close, I’’ve started reflecting back on 2015. Between the blogs, webcasts, events and everything else that makes up my job as Principal Evangelist,– it would be easy to say that 2015 was a success. I was able to use the insights and knowledge gained throughout my career to help the call center community understand that there are real options when it comes to workforce optimization software. That’’s not to say there aren’’t areas that I want to improve in. I was able to attend our user groups and some of the industry events this past year, which helped me to expand my understanding of trends and use of technologies – but I could have learned more. In 2016, my first resolution is to attend more industry events to continue learning from and developing networks with contact center software users from across the globe. Luckily for me, we will be sponsoring (and speaking at!) two of North America’s largest call center industry events in 2016. It would be great to meet you at one of these events -– check back for more information on our speaking sessions. ICMI Call Center Expo & Conference May 10-13, 2016 Long Beach, CA                                               IQPC Call Center Week                                                                                 June 27 – July 1, 2016 Las Vegas, NV Have you started thinking about your resolutions for 2016? I’’d love to hear about them!

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