Friday, March 30, 2018

Field Force Automation

Field Automation:

     Essentially, field force automation software involves taking in sales or service data in real time, and transmitting it to a mobile interface. Through the interface, field workers can communicate in real-time with the home office.

One of the first things to understand about field force automation is that there are two distinct types of software and interfaces — some related to sales data, and some directed toward customer service. While there might be some tools that combine the two, other stand-alone solutions focus exclusively on either a sales process or mobile customer service functions.

Tracking is a must for a FIELD-FORCE intensive company. The tracking can be for personal, vehicle or any value. There are two always to faces of the tracking.
·         The input of data which is from the field person’s mobile/GPS device? Here the field person can have shift times, allocated routes, tasks list, etc.

·         The output of data which is the manager dashboard? There the manager can see all the field force details of tracking, allocation, etc.

Field force automation is capturing the field sales or information in real-time. This is done with the help of communication technology typically cell phones, PDAs and other hi-tech devices. This captured data is then moved instantly to the back-end systems like CRM or ERP. Since the data is captured and moved instantly,  a lot of time can be saved and the manual data entry errors can also be done away with.

On one hand, where the tasks of those on the field are eased and get accurate, the availability of all the field information in real-time, puts managers in a win-win situation. They can plan the delivery schedules, monitor, manage and reduce inventory. Calling and chasing team on the field for updates is redundant these days, thanks to field-force automation.

Field Force Automation and its benefits:

Field Force Automation is so effective because it allows you to distribute your team tactically across a territory, allocating leads swiftly, fairly and strategically – without employees treading on each other’s toes.

It speeds up the sales process itself, helping agents to strike while the iron’s hot - closing the deal without the hassles and delays that can so often lead to lost opportunities.

It means that reps in the field can access vital information in real time, run credit checks and tap into customer order histories while they’re still out there with the customer, making sure payments have gone through an SMS or email confirmations have been received – all of which helps to make clients feel well-looked after and satisfied with their experience.

It means that your team can hit lead after lead, sale after sale, without getting bogged down by paperwork on the way.

And it helps to eliminate the omissions, inaccuracies,and losses that so often crop up when data is manually re-entered at several points along the chain, or copied from paperwork at a later date when it’s no longer fresh in the mind.

Plus, getting much of the process out of the way on the spot has added benefits for your cash flow.
That’s because, in many cases, Field Force Automation includes options or modules that allow invoices to be automatically generated and emailed to the client on the spot, streamlining the billing process and helping to cut down debtor days in the process.

And, of course, because your team aren’t worrying about duplicating admin or following up with invoices when they get back to the office, you can get through a greater workload in a smaller time-frame, with fewer staff and resources - helping you to cut costs, boost efficiency and keep your team lean, agile, productive and compliant to regulations.

Field force automation sales tools are much more like a customer relationship management platform or sales automation portal. They predominantly have sales information on hand to help with deal-making at every stage of the game. The automation tools needed for sales are often identity-driven: they can identify past track records, touch points and interactions while showing sales workers a clear path forward.

Field force Automation helps you out:

  •        Big decisions in Data Entry
 Companies will have to do some thorough research and brainstorming to figure out which types of sales data will be most useful in the field, or which kind of information gathering will be effective in customer service.
  •      Building an interface- Routing and scheduling
One of the most common setups is a Wi-Fi or LTE set of connections to tablet PCs and/or smartphones that workers carry with them in the field. In some ways, the typical field force automation interface is like an intranet, with every remote worker signed on to give and receive information through the platform.
  •      Real-Time –Data
“Transactional data—data related to business transactions such as customer orders, payments, shipments, and service requests—and business applications that rely on processing, reporting, and analyzing that transactional data are critical for day-to-day operations.”

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Service Automation

     Service Automation is the process that works as a supporting system for the service staff and managers to achieve their work-related objectives. Infrastructure, Data, Devices, and Software are the key components of service automation.

The automation of everyday life is not an unusual occurrence: from grocery shopping to the management of our very social life, we smoothly automate a great many tasks. Customer service automation is no exception.

There are 5 major domains of Service Automation −

Contact Centres − they are the main basis of the customer relationship. They address customer queries via Email, telephone, instant messaging, SMS, or fax. They have databases, Automatic Call Diversion (ACD) system, and voice recording system. The staffs respond to Emails and chats with customers regarding problem and solution.

Call Centres − they are a part of contact centres which majorly handle inbound and outbound calls. They perform typically more generic duties, deal with people and calls which are outside the business, and at times can make outgoing calls. The staffs need to have excellent patience, and reading and listening skills.

Help Desks − they are internal to the business. They are oriented towards supporting the business staff. Helpdesks generally provides diagnostic and troubleshooting help.

Field Service − the service engineers or technicians visit customer’s workplace or home to install, repair, or maintain the products. They visit factories, workshops, warehouses, and offices to provide service. They also help the customer to specify the product, test and demonstrate it after installation.

Web-based Self Service − some businesses offer solutions to the customers’ problems on the web itself. The customers can buy products online, track installation and service issues, and conduct online diagnostics.

Benefits of service automation:
Automation removes or minimizes the human element in a given area of service. This removes the potential for redundancy, wasted effort, and human error.

Streamline your process:

Automate workflows by prioritizing and attributing tasks. These include responding to customers and following up on ongoing support situations. These small reductions in the effort expended daily by your team can add up to hours, even days, of time saved over the course of a year.

Decrease friction for the customer:

When a customer gets in touch with customer service, long wait times are a giant pain point. To shorten them, you have several options: automating support channels or hiring more agents.
Customer service automation can allow you to pre-emptively do away with customer’s friction points, thanks to predictive analytics. Call recording, voice recognition, and usage monitoring can help you keep tabs on how customers interact with your product, sales team, and support funnel.

Lower your costs:

Customer service automation lets you operate convincingly and efficiently with a more compact team.

While some automation services are costly to implement, many are available on a subscription basis. This means your support desk, your CRM software, your phone system, etc. You won’t pay for more than you use, and you’ll be able to easily scale your subscription to suit your needs.

Enhanced productivity − since an optimal number of customers are scheduled, the service time taken is used at its best thus increasing productivity.

Disadvantages of service automation:

·         No human connection:

Customers can resent having to deal with a machine. Indeed, empathy, a quintessentially human ability, is an essential part of exemplary customer service. In one example, one brand found that emotionally engaging with customers reduced attrition and increased advocacy.

·         Improper configuration:

Poor system design can really hurt your customer service automation system. If your IVR makes your customers go round in circles, if your chatbots can’t understand a customer’s issue, if call routing causes redundant conversations, then automation is more trouble than it’s worth.

·         A damaged reputation

Customers will amalgamate your customer service and your brand. If your automated customer service leaves them frustrated of feeling taken advantage of, they’ll disengage from your brand altogether. This can be the result of the poor configuration, a lack of human presence, or both.

·         Maximize your brainpower.

Your organization is made up of many highly skilled individuals. By leveraging automation, the menial tasks will be handled by technology, allowing staff to further develop their skill sets and focus their expertise on more complex and strategic business matters. You also have the added benefit of reducing payroll expenses by not requiring additional staff to handle increasing workloads. Automation provides a greater amount of work utilizing the same capacity.

·         Goodbye inefficiency.

 Improve the customer experience and create efficiency in operations by automating process tasks that are repetitive and time-consuming. Think how more efficient Human Resources could be by automating their processes, like onboarding and offboarding, and decreasing the need for the vast amounts of paperwork.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Complaint Automation

     Complaint Management is a management technique for assessing, analyzing and responding to customer complaints. Complaints management software is used to record resolve and respond to customer complaints, requests as well as facilitate any other feedback. These software solutions are utilized to handle complaints through three main business protocols when implemented:

·         Establishing and agreeing on the complaint
·         Quality management during the process
·         Compensation or reimbursement

Smart companies are serious about successful complaint management and realize the benefits of consistently providing superior customer service as it costs five times more to acquire new customers than to retain existing ones. In today's ever-changing business environment, customer service requests are more complex and, at the same time, the demands for instant gratification are higher. Geographically distributed offices, a myriad of compliance rules, the pressure to reduce costs and the ease of customer defection all contribute to the critical need to maintain great customer interactions. Moreover, a systematic approach towards customer complaint management also generates ideas for product enhancements and new products, ensuring ongoing success.

The idea of providing good customer service and having a robust complaint handling process is easy to embrace but can be tricky to implement. Most companies already have a few practices in place to handle complaints; however few run smoothly due to some common issues:

·         Provides an easy and strategic method of online recording and tracking customer concerns and complaints.

·         Each complaint’s history is easily accessible and provides a completely updated status of how a complaint is progressing through the organization and what actions have been taken if any.

·         Complaints can be recorded by any user, but are reviewed by a Complaints Administrator, before being accepted into the complaints workflow.

·         Links into Document Control and allows one to attach key documents to the complaint.
One part of the complaint process may be handled by a receptionist while another is handled by an investigator who may not have all details of the case. Working with a desktop cluttered with open applications greatly slows down case resolution and leads to inconsistent customer service across various communication channels.

Work base complaint management:

In the global economy, our customers, partners, and colleagues are geographically distributed, while the need for collaboration remains. The lack of common integrated systems creates information flow bWorkflow Based Complaint Management
Implement Systematic and Workflow driven Customer Complaint Management Process to bring visibility and control. This helps in significantly increasing the efficiency, bringing transparency.Barriers and makes complaint investigations difficult.

Inconsistent Complaint Handling:

The lack of interaction from complaint handling departments to management or other parts of the business makes learning from customers nearly impossible. Poorly staffed call centres, usually due to budget cuts, make it difficult and frustrating for customers to register a complaint.

Multiple Channels for Complaint Registration:

Provide multiple channels for registering of customer complaints; Front office executive, sales or manufacturing person coordinator etc. with roles definition for each channel.

Changing Business Environment:

Continuous changes in political, economic, and social factors require organizations to adapt rapidly. Without a strong complaint management solution, companies have difficulty implementing changes quickly in order to stay competitive.

Advantages of Our Customer Complaint Automation

  •         Workflow-Driven Customer Complaint Management Processes.
  •         Switch to 100% paperless based Complaint Management Process right from the day one.
  •         Roles-based access provides better control and efficiency in handling customer complaints.
  •         Mobile interface for anytime and anywhere access, reducing cost and speeding up the process.
  •         Provide complete transparency with 100% visibility into to the managers and also to the customer on their complaint.
  •         Improve Customer Services and their satisfaction many folds.
  •         Drill down reports into every customer tickets.
  •         Events based Alerts and Notifications.
  •         Automatic escalation of tickets based on threshold time limit in case of no action.
  • .      Conduct efficient Customer Surveys and Feedbacks.
  • .      Complete History trails for each ticket identifying bottlenecks if any.
  • .       Implement Single Sign on with Active Directory Integration.

Complaints management software allows for notifications and reports to be facilitated and printed.The software pre-saves email templates for every workflow stage in a complaint's process.
This assists to quickly inform customers of progress at each stage by using the relevant pre-saved template, which can easily be modified with relevant information.

The Complaint management software has a messaging system that uses inbuilt task notifications to sends emails to employees when they have tasks that need to be accomplished. The system extracts historical complaints, spot trends and common origins of complaints in order to ensure timely precautionary actions.

The system also reports on and analyzes the complaint resolution process, including CAPA, and identifies areas for improvement. The system also caters for maintaining customers after the first sale.
Reduces costs of attracting new customers as efficiently handled complaints will build greater customer loyalty and a sustainable client base, which can grow. Gain more customers through word of mouth advertising from satisfied customers due to the efficient customer service.

The software also enhances and increases operational efficiencies.

Complaints may reveal underlying business problems that otherwise would have remained hidden and were allowed to grow in severity.Fewer mistakes mean less time and money spent fixing them, which leads to an improved bottom line.