3 things we learned at Sapphire 2019: Part 3 of 3

This is the last article in a series of three summarizing the most important lessons we took from this year’s SAPPHIRE NOW + ASUG Annual Conference in Orlando. See here for blog 1 and blog 2 of the series.

Lesson 3: Creating a great experience matters
Several keynotes were focusing on “experience”, looking at how important the topic is for retaining customers and shaping the future of an enterprise. These are the three key takeaways:

#1: The “experience economy” is taking shape
The concept of the experience economy defines that the experience actually is the product. Digital technologies like apps, websites, and social media offer new possibilities for creating a valuable customer experience. Today, users are not merely looking for high-quality goods and services, but they also expect a unique experience and select brands that fulfil these requests. 

Understanding the customers’ needs and their feelings about a product or a company can make or break an enterprise. This is as true today as it was in the past. The only difference is that, technological innovation has opened up new possibilities for learning, measuring and analyzing customer sentiments on a larger scale. 

#2: It’s all about bringing together the X’s and O’s
Traditionally, companies collect tons of operational data (O-data) about transactions with customers. They know, for example, what customers buy, how much and how often, and whether they pay on time or late. So, the O-data shows what customers do. But how do they feel about the product and the company? Are they happy with the product quality, with the delivery process and the communication with the company in general? Such important experience information (X-data) is not always collected and evaluated. However, according to a recent survey by NewVoiceMedia “poor experience” causes almost 70% of customers to switch companies. This is why measuring and analyzing X-data will be essential for companies if they want to retain their customers and keep them happy. 

Combining X- and O-data will enable enterprises to tap into a whole new world of experience management. They can close information gaps and benefit from a 360° picture of their customer relationships – a solid foundation for creating better experiences.  

#3: Organizations should let the chatbots speak 
As digital transformation creates new possibilities for measuring customer experience; artificial intelligence and cognitive computing are fueling the acceleration of enterprise processes at the same time. For finance and treasury processes, this technology enables the analysis of masses of data. Consequently, systems are learning how processes are run, how rules are set and how to formulate strategies for achieving intelligent automation. By combining this information with customer experience data, systems are able to power chatbots to communicate with customers digitally using artificial intelligence. 

According to Gartner, by 2020, over 50% of medium to large enterprises will have deployed product chatbots. These will simplify communications in the context of customer-facing finance functions such as credit management and collections. Chatbots will also enhance the user experience within an organization. Finding documents or creating a report are classical examples where chatbots will be a major relief for busy users, reduce process times and enhance the user experience: Imagine if you could simply ask your bot to “compile a sales report for EMEA in Q1 for product A and send it to the VP Global Sales”.