Digital Experience Disillusion


There is an illusion, in the world of business, that makes companies believe that they’re innovating or ahead of the curve, in terms of delivering digital experiences, just because they’re investing in new digital platforms or channels – be it websites, kiosks, or mobile apps. I come across this almost on a daily basis. The truth is that those things alone won’t put your company at the forefront, or perform the so-called “digital transformation” in isolation.

If you want to deliver outstanding digital experiences, you need to understand that to engage customers digitally, you must do it in a way that is meaningful and personalised. And for that, it is absolutely crucial that you understand the human being on the other side of the screen. The values, principles, aspirations, preferences, and behaviours of the person that is interacting with your company.

Furthermore, you must do it in a way that is contextual, from two perspectives. Not only from a device or site perspective – because there is significant differences when it comes to deliver experiences on a website or a mobile app; on a laptop or a smartphone – but also from a cultural perspective – because people around the world have very distinct lifestyles, habits, customs and beliefs.

No company was able to get it right first time. Nor able to get it right at some point, and keep it unchangeable. And neither will you. It just doesn’t work that way. The world and the societies we live in, are mutable, constantly changing and developing. So it is extremely important that you put in place a program that allows you to continuously gather, research, monitor and improve your knowledge of your customers and their expectations.

That is precisely why it is key that you collect Experience Data (e.g. Voice-of-Customer, Voice-of-Employee). And then blend it with Operational Data (e.g. Orders, Transactions, Tickets). Analyse, make sense of the data, find trends/drivers, and deliver actionable insights. Which will allow you to design new and improved experiences, that you can then enable with digital platforms, and deliver via digital channels.

Good design leads to outstanding CX

The Comcast-gate is still very much fresh in our memories. Thousands of opinions have been written about it, and shared (I did to – “Aggressive CC agents deliver outrageous CX”). The ones who nailed it are those who didn’t blame the employee, but the way the service model was built by the company.

In one of my latest posts (“You don’t buy customer loyalty… You earn it”) I point out that the delivery of a great Customer Experience is first and foremost dependent on the design of a good model. One that will allow, even the most junior or less apt / capable employee, to deliver an outstanding service.

We all had many bad experiences with contact centre agents. And we obviously got angry with them. The thing is we were calling because we had a problem, and the way we were (mis)treated by the contact centre agent made it even worse. Naturally we blamed it on him, because he is the one dealing with us.

But this is what is happening in the other side of the line: the contact centre agent is looking at three screens and flicking through tens of applications (KB, CRM, ERP, OMS, etc…) trying to find the solution or the answer for our enquiry/issue, regarding that one particular product/service (out of the hundreds his company provides).

When an employee is delivering a poor Customer Experience it is probably not his fault. It is more likely to be because the company set him up to fail. The service model was poorly designed. Sometimes it might have even started well, but the addition of new services, products or channels led to more policies, processes, procedures, systems… which increased the complexity of the job.

Believe me, I have been in many contact centres, and this is what I have seen in most of them. A few years ago I also had the opportunity to be part of a project in a telecom company, where we were building a CRM system for the sales force. The system was so complex that many times I thought “how can an average contact centre agent get his head around this system?

These cases are prolific in Telecom companies, as they provide hundreds of products, services, bundles, etc. There is one American telecom company (not the same I mentioned above) whose system is so complex that it took 12 months for a new employee to be completely proficient. But the truth was most of them left the company after 9 months (one can wonder why!).

The service model design must be good, in order to simplify the job, so that employees focus on the customer and his issue. The design of good IT systems is obviously part of that. A system that is user-friendly and easy-to-use can be swimmingly operated and free employees to focus on the customer and the service they are providing.

A good and well-designed IT system reduces the complexity of the job, and can even eliminate the need for long, intensive and costly training – consequently reducing costs for on-boarding and change management. An intuitive IT system can be operated with almost no experience and enables employees to do their job almost from day one.

Most companies tend to hold off great spending in the implementation of IT systems, dismissing the early design phase and jumping directly into the configuration of the software. They have not yet realised that a good design is exactly what will make the IT system simplify their employees’ job, and hence enable them to deliver an outstanding Customer Experience.

Oracle RightNow CX – Contact Center Experience

The Contact Center Experience delivers end-to-end management of the customer journey through unified records, interfaces, and knowledge.

Even junior agents are able to deliver exceptional experiences consistently across every channel for operational efficiency and service excellence.

Contact Center Experience services

  • Dynamic Agent Desktop
  • Knowledge Foundation

Oracle RightNow CX – Web Experience

The Web Experience provides a rich online customer experience solution so consumers can research, purchase, or resolve issues from any device.

It sets a standard for best-in-class service by allowing customers to interact on their own terms while companies increase conversions and lower service costs.

Web Experience services:

  • Intent Guide
  • Web Self Service
  • Mobile
  • Chat
  • Co-browse
  • Email Management

A brief description on RightNow CX

Oracle RightNow CX is an industry leading Cloud solution. It combines Web, Social and Contact Center experiences for a unified, cross-channel service solution in the Cloud, enabling organizations to increase sales and adoption, build trust and strengthen relationships, and reduce costs and effort.

RightNow was founded in 1997 and acquired by Oracle in 2011. It started as a cloud service software focused on Customer Service with an integrated knowledge base. Currently RightNow CX is an industry leading that combines Web, Social and Contact Center experiences.

RightNow CX turned into a suite with marketing and sales functionality, voice automation, customer feedback management, analytics and a social platform. It delivers exceptional customer experiences that create loyalty, advocacy and repeat business, and hence grow revenue.

RightNow CX delivers seamless customer service across all channels (web, store, phone, mobile device), enables personalized interactions with the customer, maximizing customer satisfaction/retention and delivers a unified view of the customer improving operational efficiency by the agents.