By Michael Snow on Jul 02, 2013
Within the WebCenter group here at Oracle, discussions about people, process and engagement cross over many vertical industries and products. Amidst our growing partner ecosystem, the community provides us insight into great customer use cases every day. Such is the case with our partner, Keste, who provides us a guest post on our blog today with an overview of their innovative solution for a customer in the transportation industry.
Keste is an Oracle software solutions and development company headquartered in Dallas, Texas. As a Platinum member of the Oracle® PartnerNetwork, Keste designs, develops and deploys custom solutions that automate complex business processes.
Seamless Customer Self-Service Experience in the Trucking Industry with Oracle WebCenter Portal
Omnitracs, Inc., a Qualcomm company provides mobility solutions for trucking fleets to companies in the transportation industry. Omnitracs’ mobility services include basic communications such as text as well as advanced monitoring services such as GPS tracking, temperature tracking of perishable goods, load tracking and weighting distribution, and many others.
Customer Business Needs
Already the leading provider of mobility solutions for large trucking fleets, they chose to target smaller trucking fleets as new customers. However their existing high-touch customer support method would not be a cost effective or scalable method to manage and service these smaller customers. Omnitracs needed to provide several self-service features to make customer support more scalable while keeping customer satisfaction levels high and the costs manageable. The solution also had to be very intuitive and easy to use.
The systems that Omnitracs sells to these trucking customers require professional installation and smaller customers need to track and schedule the installation. Information captured in Oracle eBusiness Suite needed to be readily available for new customers to track these purchases and delivery details.
Omnitracs wanted a high impact User Interface to significantly improve customer experience with the ability to integrate with EBS, provisioning systems as well as CRM systems that were already implemented. Omnitracs also wanted to build an architecture platform that could potentially be extended to other Portals.
Omnitracs’ stated goal was to deliver an “eBay-like” or “Amazon-like” experience for all of their customers so that they could reach a much broader market beyond their large company customer base.
In order to manage the increased complexity, the growing support needs of global customers and improve overall product time-to-market in a cost-effective manner, IT began to deliver a self-service model. This self service model not only transformed numerous business processes but is also allowing the business to keep up with the growing demands of the (internal and external) customers.
This solution was a customer service Portal that provided self service capabilities for large and small customers alike for Activation of mobility products, managing add-on applications for the devices (much like the Apple App Store), transferring services when trucks are sold to other companies as well as deactivation all without the involvement of a call service agent or sending multiple emails to different Omnitracs contacts.
This is a conceptual view of the Customer Portal showing the details of the components that make up the solution.
The portal application for transactions was entirely built using ADF 11g R2. Omnitracs’ business had a pressing requirement to have a portal available 24/7 for its customers. Since there were interactions with EBS in the back-end, the downtimes on the EBS would negate this availability. Omnitracs devised a decoupling strategy at the database side for the EBS data. The decoupling of the database was done using Oracle Data Guard and completely insulated the solution from any eBusiness Suite down time. The customer has no knowledge whether eBS is running or not.
Here are two sample screenshots of the portal application built in Oracle ADF.
The Customer Portal not only provided the scalability to grow the business but also provided the seamless integration with other disparate applications. Some of the key benefits are:
- Improved Customer Experience: With a modern look and feel and a Portal that has the aspects of an App Store, the customer experience was significantly improved. Page response times went from several seconds to sub-second for all of the pages.
- Enabled new product launches: After successfully dominating the large fleet market, Omnitracs now has a scalable solution to sell and manage smaller fleet customers giving them a huge advantage over their nearest competitors. Dozens of new customers have been acquired via this portal through an onboarding process that now takes minutes
- Seamless Integrations Improves Customer Support: ADF 11gR2 allowed Omnitracs to bring a diverse list of applications into one integrated solution. This provided a seamless experience for customers to route them from Marketing focused application to a customer-oriented portal. Internally, it also allowed Sales Representatives to have an integrated flow for taking a prospect through the various steps to onboard them as a customer. Key integrations included:
- Unity Core
- Merchant e-Solution for credit card
- Custom Omnitracs Applications like CUPS and AUTO
- Security utilizing OID and OVD
- Back end integration with EBS (Data Guard) and iQ Database
Significant business impacts were realized through the launch of customer portal. It not only allows the business to push through in underserved segments, but also reduces the time it needs to spend on customer support—allowing the business to focus more on sales and identifying the market for new products.
Some of the Immediate Benefits are
- The entire onboarding process is now completely automated and now completes in minutes. This represents an 85% productivity improvement over their previous processes. And it was 160 times faster!
- With the success of this self-service solution, the business is now targeting about 3X customer growth in the next five years. This represents a tripling of their overall customer base and significant downstream revenue for the ongoing services.
- 90%+ improvement of customer onboarding and management process by utilizing, single sign on integration using OID/OAM solution, performance improvements and new self-service functionality
- Unified login for all Customers, Partners and Internal Users enables login to a common portal and seamless access to all other integrated applications targeted at the respective audience
- Significantly improved customer experience with a better look and feel with a more user experience focused Portal screens.
- Helped sales of the new product by having an easy way of ordering and activating the product.
- Data Guard helped increase availability of the Portal to 99%+ and make it independent of EBS downtime. This gave customers the feel of high availability of the portal application.
the anticipated longer term Benefits are:
- Platform that can be leveraged to launch any new product introduction and enable all product teams to reach new customers and new markets
- Easy integration with content management to allow business owners more control of the product catalog
- Overall reduced TCO with standardization of the Oracle platform
- Managed IT support cost savings through optimization of technology skills needed to support and modify this solution