March 13, 2018
With more and more organisations opting for Business Process Management (BPM) strategies these days, the whole world of business is seeing gradual, yet powerful changes. Enterprises are making serious efforts to become process-centric, rather than people centric. This is to streamline their business processes in order to come up with better operational structures and achieve their long-term goals.
However, making these efforts effective is dependent on how customer-centric your business is. Most organisations are still not aware of how BPM can be channelized to augment customer satisfaction.
According to a recent study by PEX (Process Excellence) Network, only 35% companies took customer-centric process management into consideration in 2017.
BPM is a systematic way of making the workflow of an organization effective, efficient and adaptive to changes through better operational transparency. It offers end-to-end process optimisation for attaining operational excellence and accomplishing definite functional needs.
Consequently, if practiced strategically, BPM aids immensely in building a happy customer base. It entails effective process management for improved customer satisfaction to complement all stages of a typical customer engagement model, i.e.:
a) Customer Acquisition
b) Customer Servicing and
c) Customer Relationship Management.
Furthermore, let’s dig deeper:
1. Customer Acquisition
Acquisition of right customers includes spotting potential prospects, qualifying them and eventually converting them into actual customers. Being the revenue-generating foundation of every business, this phase needs a thoughtful and well-defined approach. However, it is the customer acquisition phase that’s often the most inefficient because it is hardly ever process-driven. Hence, there is high occurrence of duplicities, redundancies, gaps, lack of transparency etc. in the process. These lead to inefficiencies in the function and the enterprise ends up losing business.
Hence, incorporating BPM makes the process simpler, easier and automated. It helps in:
- Defining the customer acquisition process flow so that it is followed and transparent
- Removing non-value added tasks (e.g.; overproduction, process delays, defective production, unutilised employee potential, etc., which add value to neither the customers nor the business itself)
- Introducing information technology to automate the customer acquisition process
Therefore, these actions can assist in:
- Identifying prospects by observing their patterns and behaviour
- Devising processes that can trigger perfect lead-generating campaigns
- Qualifying leads as per the organizational strategy
2. Customer Servicing
For many organisations, revenue from repeat customers is as high as 60% to 70% of the total revenue. So, how does one ensure new business from repeat customers?
It’s all about winning the customers’ trust, which comes with not only a brilliant product/service that you intend to sell but also the servicing associated with it. However, every customer has distinct requirements and this makes it even more crucial for the function to be highly methodical; to understand the concerns of customers, prioritise the issues, address them the best possible way, and doing all these in the best possible turnaround time.
BPM enables the business to follow a proactive approach by assisting in:
- Managing Service Level Agreement (SLA), by:
- Prioritising service requests
- Providing faster and more flexible responses to customer needs and queries
- Ensuring accurate results
- Ensuring shorter delivery timelines
- Planning and Forecasting
- Initiating future processes based on past patterns and latest trends
- Eliminating pain points that have the maximum impact on the customers
3. Customer Relationship Management
The better you can manage your relationship with your customers, the stronger and longer your association will be. Different phases of a well-managed customer relationship includes listening to the customers, providing satisfactory responses to their needs and queries and engaging with them continuously. Channelling your BPM efforts to deliver highest level of customer satisfaction requires the following considerations:
- Keeping a customer tracking system in place to make the customer relationship management process automated and easier
- Following the ‘KYSS’ (Keep Your Systems Simple) approach in maintaining the tracking system (enlisting only the vital information like personal data, preferences, previous missteps, addressable issues, and so on)
- Interacting with customers periodically and updating the tracking system accordingly
These are helpful for:
- Making all customer information ‘just a click away’ – essential for proper management of relationship with a customer
- Monitoring the performances of already improved processes
- Taking corrective measures to make sure that those are adherent and able to deliver successful customer outcomes
- Enhancing the precision and quality of services
- Providing timely responses to customer queries
In conclusion, with an effective BPM strategy, optimization of processes makes the organisation more sensitive to its customers’ needs thereby helping the business strike a perfect balance. Focusing on the company’s bottom-lines to sustain profits is vital, but it is equally important to remain customer-focused. The latter will facilitate the former.