When Actuate decided to develop a solution for Customer Communications Management (CCM), we didn’t want to stay stuck in the past. Historically, problems have existed in CCM, and we wanted to create something that would address them. But first we had to identify what those problems were.
The main issue, of course, has always been that each step in the CCM process has been supported by a different toolset from a different technology vendor. That equals up to five or six applications, all cobbled together to try to construct a cohesive system. But we all know that technologies that weren’t designed to work together can never truly be cohesive. So issues emerged:
- The system couldn’t keep up with new business needs and new demands. Today, most organizations need solutions that can scale dynamically and work within any cloud configuration (public, private or hybrid). Also, the output format for statements is changing: consumers expect to access their information online or through mobile devices, and to interact with it once they do. In order to keep up with changes like these, all components of a CCM system must be scalable. However, when relying on multiple technology providers, you’re always likely to get one that falls behind or prioritizes different upgrades and features from the ones you require.
- The CCM system doesn’t work in unison. By using components that come from separate vendors, organizations are forced to learn, work with and maintain the varying capacities of different technologies, piecing them together as best as possible. Hand-offs break, data gets lost in translation and IT scrambles to create custom code in order to process content seamlessly. Nothing is in synch, because nothing was designed to work in unison.
- Accountability is difficult to determine. If a problem emerges, it’s challenging to find out where blame falls: is it with the Data solution or the Document Composition tool, for example? Each may work fine independently, but fail when used together. Too much time and effort is spent running diagnostics and troubleshooting instead of optimizing the system’s features and performance to stay competitive.
- It’s impossible to audit data as it moves through the process. As data moves from processing to content storage and delivery, organizations want, and are often required, to keep track for auditing purposes. However, today’s systems aren’t integrated, which makes an end-to-end audit trail virtually impossible. All of these issues make it difficult for companies to make effective use of their CCM solution or to rely on it completely.
As a holistic solution, Actuate’s CCM solution moves past all of those problems, since it was designed to be a single system that encompasses the whole CCM process. The historic problems of CCM become just that: history.