One other observation I'd make is that today's digital leaders are hypothesis-driven, focused on continuous improvement and willing to take risks. They break initiatives down into smaller parts to accelerate progress, gather quick market feedback and, if necessary, fail fast. This more "agile" approach lets companies avoid making large, multi-year investments, only to discover that business or market requirements have changed and their investments are wasted.
How should a company provide a seamless experience if they have in place different channels to engage their customers but the channels are not yet connected?
What we are seeing today is that every business is becoming a digital business, from pure online entities to traditional companies embracing mobile, social and cloud platforms. Despite concerted efforts, companies across all industries struggle to harness the data explosion produced by the pervasive use of those digital platforms. And both employees and customers often complain they cannot get the information they need.
Part of the problem lies in data access. Data must be made available to all areas of the business and can no longer be limited to an elite few. That is because business success or failure increasingly rests on the right people having easy access to relevant data, whether internal or external, at the right time-even if the data is siloed in disparate systems, that makes it difficult to reconcile and combine.
Creating a digital, data-driven enterprise may demand significant operational changes, including the modernisation or replacement of existing systems. None of these changes are easy, but the businesses that will excel and compete most effectively will be those that put the voluminous data produced by digital platforms to smartest use.
Any other tips for deploying an omni-channel strategy?
Avanade's vision is to help transform and enable every touch point with customers into digitally-empowered experiences that reinvent customer engagement, respond faster to customer needs and unlock value. From automating digital marketing, sales and service, to competing effectively through data driven insights, there are six steps in the digital customer journey we help our clients embrace:
- Engage across channels
- Enable self-service
- Align sales and marketing programs
- Connect customer data systems
- Mobilise relevant analysis
- Personalise customer interactions
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