The unfortunate reality of digital transformation is that the commercial implications of driving change can be vast but only if the right drivers and architectural cornerstones are identified.
Why is it that IT Departments ignore the biggest source of systems ROI and customer engagement right under their noses? It’s partially because the costs of the constituent systems are fragmented, not measured end-to-end and often not held by IT, with increasing use of cloud services by user departments. What can be done?
With significant costs attached to some IT systems, it is essential that any solutions deployed operationally are right for the business. This is particularly important in document management and customer communications as solutions from different vendors are not inter-operable with other systems, and often aren’t compatible even with older versions of the same software. As one software solution ages and becomes unsupported, the replacement doesn’t always mirror the original. Some functions of the original system are often still required (sometimes due to archive access to data) and organisations will begin to operate two distinct systems. Over time, two becomes three, three becomes four, another division of the company introduces a fifth…and so on.
Typically, organisations have 6-9 different text based creation and output systems, covering Contact Centres, Web services, Mobile uses and Structured documents with both individual local print and bulk batch production. Then there is an increasingly wide variety of output media, channels and formats, including paper (blank and pre-printed), email, PDF, SMS, Social Media, xml web feeds, etc. And for organisations having experienced any M&A activity in the past decade, over 20 separate systems are frequently seen in the largest organisations.
Additional issues present themselves, including maintaining compliance with corporate and regulatory policy across a vast suite of documentation. This is coupled with the difficulty in ensuring all systems are configured to use the latest layouts, logos, terms and conditions and other assets. Consistency in output is compromised by a significant maintenance overhead and the inability to react quickly to market and regulator demands. The ideal of ‘digitally agile systems’ slowly but surely becomes the nightmare of ‘digitally fragile systems’!
This software ecosystem expansion over time presents many problems for the enterprise today in terms of data management (particularly duplication and currency issues), inefficient processes, incompatibilities between systems and, ultimately, a lack of vendor support where systems reach the end of their life.
The plethora of systems left behind creates a significant wave of sometimes unexpected, but predominantly unseen costs. Such costs are usually spread across the budgets of various departments making it harder to understand and appreciate the true costs. IT service teams grow with the number of systems that require support, as the costs of maintenance grows in tandem with the increased number of systems. The process efficiency and information sharing for the frontline users of such document management systems is also significantly reduced across their respective silos.
Customer Communications Management to the Rescue!
With our Customer Communications Management (CCM) software solution, the Icon Suite, we are able to produce significant savings for our enterprise customers through the replacement of existing, outdated CCM solutions and the integration of multiple, legacy data sources to streamline workflows and create real efficiencies of process.
We know that the costs of IT systems at the enterprise level, particularly in the scenarios described above, have the potential to be astronomical (a scary though, of course, but on the flipside, this leaves room for over 70% potential savings). That’s why our focus is on providing a solution which is robust and efficient, generates real competitive advantage and creates significant cost savings over incumbent or alternative solutions.
We have successfully transformed customer communications management for our clients. We have moved them away from mainframe systems where basic management and administrative tasks are heavily reliant on experienced IT professionals to distributed systems which can be administered by front-line users (with minimal IT support and within permissions contexts).
Our customers have made incredible savings, with time and effort reduced by a factor of 10 in some cases! But how to start?
The key for our clients, and the Icon Suite’s success to date, has been down to offering a solution which offers the maximum possible compatibility and integration with existing document and data sources as well as critical systems, whilst allowing more flexible use and modern management functionality. It starts with the recognition of the true costs and impacts of the current portfolio, often hidden until analysed (Icon consultants can assist with this). Then planning to establish options both strategically (a new corporate system) and tactically (with piecemeal replacement). The modular nature of Icon Suite suits both.
Icon UK delivers effective Customer Communications Management solutions into enterprise organisations, revolutionising the way their customer-facing teams work, transforming workflows and processes and enabling modern, personalised and contextual communications that clients not just receive, but can engage with.
If you run legacy document creation, production or distribution systems, our integrated suite of comprehensive modular functionality should be on your list of options – email Steve Reynolds, Icon UK’s Sales Director, to find out more: .