Focus Your Back Office on the Customer vs. the Transaction
By Mary Lou Joseph
Posted in Customer Engagement
Many back-office operational areas process customer service and product requests over and over again. In this type of environment, it’s easy for employees and managers to focus on the individual transaction—and lose sight of the end customer.
At Verint’s Engage Global Customer Conference on May 15, a UK Business Process Outsourcer (BPO) will share how his organization is moving from a transaction-based to customer-oriented work environment, improving efficiencies and the customer experience. Here’s a sneak peek at their story.
The customer, let’s call him Tom, is head of operations supporting 6,000 employees across 12 accounts in four countries. Like many organizations, when Tom started there, the BPO had a host of legacy systems with limited visibility into the work performed or service goal achievement. Processes lacked standardization, and there was no measurement of end-to-end process resolution and customer experience.
Perhaps most significantly, the inability to capture, measure and effectively plan resources put the BPO at risk of penalties should they not meet their contractual service goals.
As Tom stated, “Sustainable improvements cannot be achieved without a base level of operational control.” So he set out to create a centralized “mission control” that provided real-time intelligence on work processing, employee effectiveness and service goal achievement.
He began by implementing Verint Work Manager, part of the Verint Back-Office Workforce Engagement suite of solutions, to capture the operational data, metrics, work volumes and types managed by the organization. Using Work Manager as the underlying reporting structure, Tom was then able to tie activities to end-to-end customer processes and build planning models that optimized resource utilization and increased their ability to embrace fast-track processing.
By taking this approach, the BPO was able to reduce costs by 10 percent, as well as reduce customer “chaser calls” (requests for status updates, complaints for inaccurate orders, etc.) in excess of 20 percent.
Once Tom and team were able to baseline the current operations, they could then turn their attention to identify process bottlenecks, streamline and rationalize processes. The organization went from 2,663 ‘functional’ processes to 220 customer-oriented, end-to-end processes. As a result, the organizational focus gradually changed from transactions (one and done) to service and quality (the customer outcome).
Being able to share the operational intelligence created by the Work Manager solution with their customers, showing the improvements they’d made in fast-track processing, and meeting end-customer expectations have positioned the BPO as a true partner in their customers’ efforts to create a differentiated customer experience—while managing costs and improving efficiencies. Interested in what Back-Office Workforce Optimization might do for your operations? View the Infographic, What Would Back-Office WFO Do For Me?
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