18 Jul 2017

Is Your Company Digitally Mature?

3 Questions to Ask at Your Next Meeting

Does your organization have a single blueprint for its digital business strategy?

Does that strategy both align with and support the overarching business goals of your company?

In the modern context of providing digital services, it’s not particularly useful to think of your “digital business strategy” as autonomous or separate from your actual business strategy. When you start to think of the two as a part of the same process — as mutually informative elements of one initiative — you can start to rethink everything about how to reach your customers.

That, of course, is easier said than done. There are conceptual questions at hand.  Having a digitally mature workplace means reversing or replacing cumbersome business practices with the new breed of digital best practices.  But what are those new best practices? That’s a question we’ve spent a lot of time answering. To make it simple, here are 3 key questions your organization should ask at its next meeting to determine its digital maturity.

1. “Are we taking advantage of our data?”

It’s likely that your organization has data in abundance. Most organizations, though, aren’t aware of how best to harness the true potential of that data. Does your organization use both internal and external data to inform analytics that can predict what consumers are more likely to purchase? If not, it certainly should.

As we’ve noted before, regular systems simply gather data. Digital business systems recommend ways to execute on that data with customization.

If used properly, predictive analytics can help your business lower operating costs and improve performance. Generating new business insights in a CSP is an intricate enterprise; that’s why making your data work for you is so critical to success.

Customer data doesn’t have to be scary. When properly orchestrated, it becomes a remarkably powerful way to expedite and simplify the consumer’s journey – all while gathering more data on it for future improvements.

2. “Are we providing real-time customer service?”

Providing “excellent customer service” seems to be a default claim of any modern CSP.  In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a single on that doesn’t claim to “pride itself” or be “defined by a commitment” to giving their customers the best-in-class services. But the prevalence of the claim is such that it should raise some suspicion. Every CSP claims to offer a streamlined customer journey, but that’s far from the case.

Can every single organization making that claim actually be said to be making use of all the correct processes and tools to simplify the customer experience and to streamline its efficiency?

Probably not.

What are the right questions to ask with regard to an organization’s efficiency in terms of its provision of service?

If you use laborious, legacy processes that heavily rely on manual tasks, your organization isn’t providing “excellent customer service”.

The truly digital service provider has exceptionally automated customer service capabilities that draw upon a highly-orchestrated resource of quality information with an ability to analyze customer interactions in real-time.

It’s also something we know a thing or two about. Business agility means knowing how to sell seamlessly through every sales channel so you can reach customers at precisely the time and place they want.

3. “Are we agile?”

Being agile doesn’t just mean delivering products or services quickly.

In its modern definition – and especially in the context of providing digital services – being agile is about much more than the tempo of your work. Broadly speaking, agility includes a set of practices that branch towards the interrelated goals of lowering operational costs, cutting down time to market, and improving the customer journey.

The “digital natives” are the latest cohort of consumers, and as their title implies, they demand digital service.  Forcing your customers to call your 1-800 number before transferring them from department to department isn’t just unpleasant for the customer, it’s pretty obsolete.

Because digital natives expect goods and services that are sold within a simple and completely upfront process, it’s up to you to improve that process.   Many employees of CSPs spend their workdays so focused on their business performance or processes that they forget to ask what should be a fundamental question: Do our customers understand what we sell and are we making it easy for our customers to buy from us?

If so much as a hint of confusion emerges as you try to answer these questions, it’s time to think about how embracing an agile approach to providing service can change the way your organization approaches everything.

Start looking into defined processes that will help you foster innovation and agile development.  When innovation in agile digital services is well-defined and measurable, you’re already ahead of half the companies in your field.

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