The value of delivering enhanced customer experience (CX) is well quantified1. A strong correlation between customer experience and financial returns is driving organizations to build a long-term CX strategy that spans not just across individual teams and business groups but the entire organization. This involves a systematic redesign of the basic building blocks – people, process and technology.
Redesigning the tech stack starts with a clear understanding of customer experience needs, the types of systems that power CX and the integration and exchange of data across these systems.
Customer experience data resides in many forms – profile data, engagement data, transaction data, billing data, order management data, survey data and many more. It resides across multiple disparate home grown and COTS systems – CRM, customer service systems, eCommerce, Order management, Contact center, VoC systems and many more. Bringing these systems and data together, and aligning them is the first step to delivering enhanced customer experience.
Customers are in various stages of maturity in delivering the right customer experience and have their own unique tech stacks. Here are some fundamental approaches to building a simple integrated stack with Contact Center, CRM and eCommerce systems. These approaches need to be further enhanced to support a larger CX strategy.
Scenario 1: The Clean Split
Contact Center systems handle routing (within the automatic call distributor (ACD)) and interactions for all channels – both digital and voice and bring in the engagement data. eCommerce and CRM systems bring transaction data and profile/customer journey data respectively.
This model works well for larger enterprises with sophisticated routing logic. They deliver true Omnichannel capabilities with a completely integrated WFO and analytics, providing a single view of customer interactions and insights. This enables universal agents to engage customers in any channel of interaction with seamless channel escalations. Though sophisticated, this might not be a great option for smaller centers that need only digital channels.
Scenario 2: The Digital Divide
Contact Center systems and CRM bring in engagement data – Contact Center handles all voice interactions and CRM handles digital interactions, such as email and live chat. eCommerce brings in transaction data.
This approach provides a flexible approach to quickly add agents with newer digital skills onto a CRM platform. But achieving seamless customer journey might be challenging given fragmented agent and customer experiences. It may be difficult to define universal queues or universal agents, due to the use of distinct routing engines and agent interfaces.
Scenario 3: The Pragmatic Beginning
CRM is the only system of engagement for limited digital channels, such as email and chat while eCommerce brings in transaction data.
This scenario suits well for small businesses with lesser channels and lower interaction volumes. CRM would typically suffice for the initial investment. But, as companies scale and add voice and other channels there will be a need to build much more sophisticated systems.
The above are some first step approaches to delivering customer experience. Designing a tech stack for an organization wide CX strategy is a much complex process – It is neither a big bang nor a one-size fits all approach.
Success lies in clearly understanding your customer experience objectives and building your unique tech stack to deliver the right experience to your customers.
For more on this topic, view our webinar, "Aligning Your Tech Stack for Omnichannel Excellence," and download our whitepaper “Powerful Enablers of Omnichannel Customer Loyalty.”
1A London School of Economics study on “Advocacy Drives Growth” shows an NPS increase of 7% driving 1% growth in revenue and Forrester CX study shows CX Leaders with CAGR revenues 6X more than the laggards