Scott joined the industry in 1997, after earning a B.A. from University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He started as a document designer using several VDP technologies, before moving to the software side of the industry. He has more than 17 years of experience in the document composition software industry as both a transactional document designer and a software vendor. He earned his EDP and M-EDP certification from Xplor and his MBA in 2007 from the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management.
Today most companies realize that if customer communications fail to live up to their clients’ expectations it can be detrimental to the overall customer experience and lead to customer defections.
Knowing this, many companies have good intentions, but they still fail to deliver.
Because they are handcuffed by a tangle of legacy technology and complicated infrastructures that consistently result in clunky processes and inconsistent messaging, no matter how good their intentions are.
But there is a solution, if you’re willing to admit there is a problem.
If companies truly want to provide their customers with personalized, consistent, omni-channel communications they must consolidate their customer communications management (CCM) platforms into one united system.
Sounds like a wise decision, but even so, many companies still haven’t taken the plunge. What’s holding them back? What’s preventing them from going full steam ahead with CCM consolidation when the end result is so positive and promising?
There are a few factors.
The complexity of legacy applications can be a major stumbling block to CCM consolidation. Individuals assigned to the task of consolidating will have to inventory thousands of document templates and locate, decode and understand all of the business rules that drive the content within each document.
In addition, the consolidation team will have to understand each data source and locate every piece of content being used throughout the company in order to eliminate duplication, reduce version control issues and ensure compliance with regulation.
All of this can take months and in some extreme cases, years.
2. Lack of Senior-level Buy-in
Like it or not, a successful CCM platform consolidation will involve every department of a company. It takes, without question, an enterprise-wide commitment and it starts at the top. It has to. If senior management doesn’t support the consolidation, buy-in from the organization’s various lines of business is very unlikely to follow.
3. Concerns About Compliance
The extensive nature of embarking on a CCM consolidation leads many companies to consider hiring outside resources to handle some of the tasks. In order to conduct an accurate assessment as part of the initial analysis for migration, access to live data files is necessary. Naturally this instantly raises concerns with legal and compliance departments. If those concerns are not alleviated, the consolidation process most likely doesn’t get the green light.
4. Job Risk
A platform consolidation can be perceived as risky, almost too risky for an IT executive who fears jeopardizing his or her career. The price of failure is steep. The chances of mistakes are high with many approaches. If they are not alone in this assessment and others feel the same way, the only support rallied could be for postponing or shelving the CCM consolidation altogether.
Despite the challenges, CCM consolidation can’t be ignored.
Customer experience has become a significant differentiator that sets businesses apart. Today’s consumer expects a personalized, consistent, omnichannel experience. Companies that fail to consolidate their customer communications management will not be able to achieve this.
With this in mind, CCM consolidation isn’t a question of if, it’s a question of when. Those companies that make that commitment sooner than later will be giving themselves a competitive edge—one that will allow them to delight their existing customers even more and attract new customers from their competitors.
To learn more, download "Platform Consolidation Made Easy" by Madison Advisors.