Thursday May 01, 2014

Want to offer personalized service but have concerns about compliance? We can help. by Heike Lorenz

A personalized customer experience is already beginning to overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. Going forward, one-size-fits all customer service won't suffice, as consumers grow increasingly impatient with inconsistencies and inefficiencies that don't serve their individual needs.1

However, only 25%2 of organizations can provide highly personalized service. Even fewer can ensure that service complies with policy rules and regulations. Compliance is critical in highly regulated industries like financial services, telecommunications, utilities, higher education, etc.

So how can you achieve personalized, compliant service that differentiates your brand?

By using a policy automation platform to automate and deploy policies across all touchpoints. Policies take the form of dynamic interviews, which ask questions relevant to individual customers, and automatically tailor service and offers based on customers’ real-time responses. The interviews document how each decision is made, and can automatically generate a report.

So what does this mean for your customers and you?! It means that if you are a bank and your customer doesn’t qualify for a loan, he can see how much he needs to raise his credit score in order to be eligible. Offering a personalized explanation eliminates the need to call the contact center and builds trust through transparency. And it gives your organization a comprehensive report of all customer interactions detailing policy compliance to ensure audit readiness.

Companies using this approach can provide highly personalized service—increasing loyalty and satisfaction—while being 100% confident they are compliant. 

1. http://www.smartcustomerservice.com/Columns/Vendor-Views/3-Top-Customer-Experience-Trends-in-2014-95016.aspx

2. http://www.retailtouchpoints.com/resource-center/51-white-papers/1219-top-5-trends-in-retail-for-improving-customer-service-and-advocacy-management

Thursday Apr 10, 2014

Part 3 of 6: The Art Of Easy: Easy Decisions For Complex Problems by Heike Lorenz

Making complex decisions EASY, by automating your service policies allows your organization to efficiently ensure the correct decisions are being applied to the right people.

Like the hit British TV Series Little Britain suggests, when “Computer Says No”, you can be left wondering why?

It's not easy to automate your Customer Service polices, let alone do it a way that is transparent, consistent and cost effective. Especially if you are working within environments where markets conditions and regulations change frequently. Get it wrong and you are left with compliance problems and customer complaints – and that's a costly outcome!

So while you may not be striving to change the decision from a “NO” to a “YES” for your customer, you should be looking to get to that answer quicker for them, with a complete explanation as to why it's a “NO”, have the traceability of what answer was given at that time, have the peace of mind that the answer is accurate, AND do it all at the lowest cost to your business – Simple right?!

So how do you achieve this? There are three core areas of consideration:

1. Centralize & Automate

2. Personalize & Optimize

3. Analyze & Adapt

#1 Centralize & Automate

One method is to grab all of your policy documents, throw them at a team of costly developers to move into a database, code the logic around them, and hope what comes out is maintainable, accurate and accessible to the right audiences. Or, maybe not.

A simpler method is to take your original policy documents and import them into a policy automation tool that will help a business user through a step-by-step process to model the rules. Once developed, they can be tested, modified, published and updated within a few clicks. A solution that can empower your agents with dynamic interviewing tools, and your customers with a self-service approach, across channels, in any language, and on any device.

But that is only part of the whole picture.

#2 Personalize & Optimize

A simple decision process could be easily managed by one or two published FAQs, whereas a complex decision process requires you to take into account many personal attributes about that specific customer – and by definition those attributes can't be applied through static views. Getting a customer to repeat information, or worse not even taking into consideration critical information that is provided within the interaction and personalizes the response, is a fast way to get them to abandon the process, or worse leave you!

You must ensure that your automated policies can be optimized to dynamically adapt to every customer’s unique situation and attributes – be that channel, device, location, language, or other more personal characteristics that are shared prior and during the interaction. After all, each answer should be uniquely theirs, explaining in detail why the decision was reached, with everything taken into consideration.

#3 Analyze & Adapt

The saying “data rich and insight poor” is one that often fits with the word “Compliance” – businesses can easily be more focused on capturing volumes of data for compliance, and less on making the data actionable. The flip side of that is “data poor”, when businesses must scramble to get the data needed to ensure compliance, as an afterthought! And we all know that having insight without ability for timely action, is a missed opportunity to improve, avoid, or sustain compliance.

As your policies change, or you introduce new policies, often the requirements to capture data can change too. Adapting to environmental or organizational changes requires you to gather the right data to deliver the right insight for action. The right tools are required in order to apply that insight in a timely, measurable, and effective manner. The right volume of accessible data is also needed to remain compliant with regulatory business or industry Customer Service standards during periodic audits. So you must have a solution that can adapt with scale, demand, change, and archive. A solution that can actually automate your service policies for insight, compliance, and agility – making it easy.

Putting all these pieces together lets you truly automate the nurturing of trusted relationships with your customers during complex decision-making processes, through transparent and personalized interactions. Giving your business confidence that in even the most demanding markets, you are remaining compliant, in a cost-effective and efficient way.

The Oracle Service Cloud empowers your business to care, take action and succeed in your Web Customer Service initiatives and become a Modern Customer Service organization.

Tuesday Oct 01, 2013

To Code or Not to Code? by Davin Fifield

A typical problem in an organization is how to automate complex and ever-changing policies while also ensuring those deployed policies are in compliance and consistent across all channels. 

In a recent IDC Link  Oracle offers Change “On the Fly” for Human Services Policies”,  (August 2013) Adelaide O’Brien, Research Director mentions “Health and Human Services organizations are currently looking for ways to redesign their programs, focusing on making the programs as efficient as possible while providing the greatest value to the recipient and provide better service for less money.”  If organizations think the best way is to code their policy rules, they should think again. Hard coding rules in a backend system causes organizations to lose the ability to respond to policy changes with ease and agility. And opens the door to non-compliance.

O’Brien adds, “By streamlining the automation of benefits by empowering users to develop and manage rules in natural language Word and Excel documents…government organizations will be able to decrease errors and training cost, improve the speed and quality of the process, provide timely decisions, eliminate benefit backlogs and prevent recurrence.”

So is there such a solution?  Yes, there is!

Oracle Policy Automation enables the organization’s policy owners, subject matter experts, even business users to easily capture, model, deploy and manage even the most complex policies.  Oracle Policy Automation goes even further by sharing policy rules across key stakeholders ensuring accurate interpretation, while also deploying them consistently across all communication channels!  This capability enables customers to choose their communicate channel and a time that is convenient for them.

Please visit Oracle Policy Automation for more information, including details of the new cloud edition.
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