Think Beyond Document Management
Build Exceptional Customer Experiences with Dynamic Case Management
I love reading books. I grew up on the Berenstain Bears series. I think I might have had all of them. My favorite book was “No Girls Allowed”—not because of the misogynistic theme, but because Brother Bear had a cool tree house and at the end, everyone made nice and enjoyed a nice grilled fish and honeycomb barbeque.
I don’t read too much of Berenstain Bears anymore—only when I read to my young daughter. Nowadays, my bookshelf is deep in books on history, business, and technology. I’ve accumulated many of them throughout the years by perusing bookstores like Waldenbooks, Borders, and Barnes & Noble. However, over the last decade I’ve bought books—physical and electronic—almost exclusively from Amazon.
It’s just so easy for me to give Amazon my money (and my wife can attest to that). Amazon knows what I want before I even know it. My wish lists on Amazon are filled with books and movies that looked interesting when it was suggested to me. Amazon is a case study on customer intimacy.
Why do I have such a great relationship with Amazon as a consumer? Why do I prefer going to Amazon as opposed to Barnes & Noble, even when I want a physical book, *tomorrow*?
Amazon is able to craft an excellent customer experience because it pays attention to all interactions I have with the business, not just records or transactions. It tracks not only what I purchase, but it tracks what I’ve searched for and what I’ve put in my wish list. Based on this, Amazon is able to recommend other products based on what it thinks is relevant.
For instance, here are a bunch of books by or about Michael Porter which show up on my suggested list:
These will likely make it into my book collection, once I can find space for them.
How strong are your relationships with your customers?
Regardless of the type of business, customer intimacy is an ideal for which all of us in business strive. In order to remain competitive, we need to ensure we’re serving our customers so well, not only do we retain them as customers, but they recommend our products and services openly. We want our customers to be our spokesmen.
In order to build stronger relationships with your customers, your business needs to focus on capturing and managing interactions, not just documents. Implementing this is pretty straightforward if all interactions are happening online, as is the case with E-Commerce. This is also pretty straightforward when you have highly automated processes. But what do you do if you have processes that are highly unstructured (like complaints management or dispute resolution) or have a high level of human touch?
In the Eccentex view of the world, we use dynamic case management as a tool to give our customers the ability to capture and manage interactions between the business and all relevant stakeholders for a given business process. This type of application works particularly well for processes that are unstructured or have high human touch. Document management is certainly part of this process, but it is not an end onto itself.
With dynamic case management, you manage documents, interactions with stakeholders and constituents (customers included), and any relevant data gathered under the goal of making a business decision. This pattern of work allows for knowledge workers to quickly and effectively move toward a positive business outcome. Let’s use customer care as an example.
Building a Relationship through Customer Care
Presume you manage a full-service, resort-style apartment or condominium community. The community hosts events like wine tasting, cooking classes, and martini mixers. The community also has excellent amenities, including two basketball courts, two swimming pools, two tennis courts, and several play areas for children. In addition, residents are able to borrow basketballs, tennis equipment, and movies from the Resident Services department. Your community is priced at a premium and differentiates with its amenities and total customer experience.
You implement a case management system that tracks not only critical documents (lease agreement, insurance information, etc.), but also tracks interactions that residents have with the staff. Throughout the course of residency for a family with kids, we might have the following interactions:
- The husband and wife attend the wine tasting event.
- One of the parents visits Resident Services with one of the kids to borrow a basketball.
- Both parents visit Resident Services with all of the kids to borrow tennis equipment.
- A maintenance request is filed to fix a leaky faucet.
- The husband and wife attend the cooking class event.
- A complaint is filed because one of their neighbors had a loud party that lasted until 3am.
- A maintenance request is filed to fix the same leaky faucet that was previously reported.
- A complaint is filed because the noisy neighbor was playing loud music at midnight, which woke up one of the kids.
As the manager, the last three interactions might bother you. Three negative interactions in a row, especially if they are within a short time of each other, may suggest that the resident may start to become dissatisfied with the community in general. In a proactive move, you buy the couple a bottle of wine and a gift certificate to a sporting goods store in an attempt to swing the relationship back in your favor. The resident is very appreciative of the gesture and is impressed with the staff’s attention to detail.
Imagine the Possibilities
Imagine if you can craft a customer experience that is tailored to the customer. Imagine if you can build a relationship with a customer that not only establishes loyalty to your business, but creates someone who actively promotes your business. You can do this today, as long as you look past the document and focus on interactions and the total experience your business provides.
What are your thoughts on managing interactions not just document management? Let us know!
Rapidly build and deploy Dynamic Case Management Applications in the Cloud with AppBase, Eccentex's Platform-as-a-Service. Visit www.eccentex.com to learn how to increase business agility, improve productivity, optimize case outcomes, and reduce risk with a cloud platform.