When it comes to Experience, Technology is a box-to-box

Technology has been an enabler for great customers and employee experiences for a long time, making it possible for companies to deliver fantastic messages, good services and personalised experiences.

But as Experience is now the biggest differentiator between companies (surpassing Product and Price), Technology is starting to become the biggest differentiator between experiences (many times surpassing Strategy and Delivery).

Truth is, Technology is the number 8 in your football team. In England they call it “box-to-box“. In other countries they call it the “one who carries the piano“. It’s not often the one that stands out, despite being the one that works the hardest for others to shine.

This blog was triggered by a conversation with a friend: “Well, to be honest it’s hard to believe it when you actually don’t see it. So, could you give me an example of how technology works in the background to enable great experiences?

I had just been on a call with a colleague and a customer a few days earlier, talking about a handful of ways they could use the technology stack they have to deliver great experiences. One of them related to the delivery of multi-language support.

Here is a scenario: You are a global company, selling all over the world. You have customers contacting and expecting you to support them in their own language. But your contact centre is in the UK, and your agents can only support in English language.

The easier solution usually requires the agent to perform 9 steps. Copy message; go to Google Translate; paste message; read translation; pray that it makes sense; draft response; copy from Google translate; go to original system; paste message.

To deliver a better customer experience, adding convenience of multi-language support, you end up hurting the employee experience, adding a huge effort to the agent. Alternative? Hire agents with language skills, which will bring additional cost.

Well, this is a very good example where Technology can help. Here is an easy solution – interface your contact centre technology platform with AWS and leverage the power of Amazon Web Services.

  1. Send customer’s message to AWS, via AWS EventBridge
  2. AWS EventBridge will send the message to AWS Lambda
  3. AWS Lambda will in turn send the message to AWS Translate
  4. AWS Translate will translate the message and send it back to AWS Lambda
  5. AWS Lambda will interface and send translated message to your agent

This all happens in real-time, meaning it would only take fractions of a second for your agent to have the translated message available to read, and respond to the customer. Do you have other use cases or want more?

Simple, in step 3 replace AWS Translate for AWS Comprehend and offer agents the sentiment of the customer’s message. Or replace AWS Translate for AWS Lex to read customer’s intent and respond accordingly.

These are just a few examples of how Technology can do some magic in the background. Allowing you to deliver convenient, personalised and outstanding customer experiences. Avoiding impact on agents will also make them feel empowered and offer a much better employee experience.

And you do all that, while managing your operation’s costs, as well as leveraging the power of your technology investments.


Note: Below is an example of one of the solutions, using Zendesk and AWS

Integration: Connect Web Services and .NET API

One of the best, and most challenging, implementation projects I had the opportunity to be involved with as a Lead Consultant and Project Manager was in a company with 50 offices, 700,000 customers, a global sales & marketing organisation and 2 contact centres (Europe and Asia).

Oracle Service Cloud was chosen as the platform at the centre of this key strategic project which aimed to achieve transformation in Sales, Marketing, Customer Service, and back-office Operations.

As the main Customer platform, and to provide the users with a full 360-degree view of the customer, Oracle Service Cloud had to be integrated with legacy Oracle eBusiness Suite (on-premise), as well as a bespoke system (Amazon Cloud). Oracle Fusion Middleware was already in place to be the glue that would join up all systems.

To deliver the full 360-degree view of the customer, Oracle Service Cloud would have to allow staff members to see key customer information (demographics, contacts, etc.), customer details (roles, relationships, interactions), finance and other information, stored in Oracle eBusiness Suite.

Furthermore, the full 360-degree view of the customer in Oracle Service Cloud would also have to display company-specific information, associated with each customer, stored in a bespoke system, hosted in the Amazon Cloud.

The challenge was not only to have a synchronisation of key customer information, and service requests (created by legacy processes in Oracle eBusiness Suite), but also display the additional data (from Oracle eBusiness Suite and bespoke system) without holding it in the Oracle Service Cloud database.

Two types of integrations were developed:

  • Near Real-Time type integration (in grey) to synchronise key customer information and service requests, between Oracle eBusiness Suite and Oracle Service Cloud databases;
  • Surfacing type integration (in red) to get customer details, finance and other information from Oracle eBusiness Suite and the bespoke system, and display it in a custom screen embedded in the Contact workspace.

Below is a brief overview of the architecture:

20170122-project-architecture

These two integrations were developed, leveraging the Oracle Service Cloud Connect Web Services for SOAP (CWS SOAP), and the .NET API that allowed our team to build the integration and the custom .NET components, controls, and applications needed for the custom screen.

The project go-live was a few months ago. After a period of stabilization this post is not only to share the experience, and show the power and art of the possible with Oracle Service Cloud, but also to celebrate the effort of a fantastic team (made of Capventis and Client resources).