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What do you do once you�ve selected a Predictive Dialer Manufacturer?

TMCnews Featured Article

May 30, 2006

What do you do once you�ve selected a Predictive Dialer Manufacturer?

By Special Guest
C. Sorensn, Marketing Manager, OPC-Marketing

Mapping Business Processes (MBP) and Re-engineering
Does your organization address an overall sound relationship management strategy?
Typically, various strategies are developed under various Groups--- None of which communicates at the very beginning, or until it’s too late.
"A camel is a horse designed by committee."
--Sir Alec Issigonis
Alec Issigonis was born in Smyrne, Turkey, in the year 1906. In 1922, he and his family were exiled to Malta by the British Navy. At the young age of 15 he arrived in London, began studying engineering and worked for Morris Motor Company. There he designed the Morris Minor-- Unless you're from England you don't know what an Icon it is.
At that time the small car was not well received, but when the Suez crisis brought about rationing, the BMC asked him to design an efficient small car. The new design was the ever-lovable Mini-- Made famous in the original movie: "The Italian Job". For those unfamiliar with the Suez Crisis, it was a war fought on Egyptian territory in 1956. The conflict pitted Egypt against an alliance of France, the United Kingdom and Israel.
This alliance largely took place as a result of the Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser's action of nationalizing the Suez Canal Company, which operated the Suez Canal, an important asset to French and British economies, particularly as a chokepoint in world oil shipments.
The Mini soon became the best selling car in Europe. To honor his success, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth in 1969. The Mini defines his design philosophy, “less is more”.
The unenlightened business process works like this: IT develops the platform and Web strategy, agents and customer service teams develop the call center policy--- nobody ever addresses the ever mounting role of e-mail. And what about good old-fashioned snail mail? Has anyone checked the mailbox recently? Do we still mail paper to people?
And while marketing is coming up with a totally new method to reach consumers--- have they pictured themselves in their customer’s shoes and thought about how the customer will reach you?
In order to meet business objectives that affect your bottom line, understanding how your business currently provides products and service is important. With this understanding you can determine how your technology can improve that process so that the cost/benefit analysis of installing technology weighs heavier on the benefit side of the equation.
Many times when new technology buzz words like ERP “Enterprise resource planning” or CRM “Customer Relationship Management” come out, there is a "jump on the band wagon” or get “left behind" mentality.
The knee jerk reaction to implementing technology may not be the best business decision unless the motivations for positioning technology are well thought out and documented.
Technology policy and planning is important. A team should spend time determining exactly what the company wants a CRM implementation to provide.
These clearly defined goals, thought out by executive teams, should then be integrated with a multi-faceted working party that has members from all departments-- giving their opinion based on user experience.
What happens when those goals are not planned properly?
When sales, marketing, business development, quality assurance, and customer service are not integrated into a team with Information Technology, the choices that are made may not help gain or keep long term repeat customers. It is less expensive to retain customers than to develop new ones.
Maybe there are no real visionaries in your company? What are you supposed to do without your DISTINGUISHED PROFESSOR of technology?
If spending money on technology for the sake of spending money is acceptable as a business practice in your company. Where can you find the experts to make sure spending meets your expectations? When creating an integrated, multi-disciplinary technology implementation team involving your call centers business process, have them contribute to this dream and vision, you may be surprised in what can be researched and found in your own little group.
The reason for this is very simple. First, your team will buy into the vision and business processes developed if they are creating it.
Second, if you understand what services you provide or want to provide, the "could be" “would be” state—in comparison to the "as it exists" state shows more improvements.
1.       Who’s providing the services (Your people or outside services)?
2.       How are the services being provided (Business process)?
3.       How are the services are being delivered (What technology)?
If your various expectations of your Call Center installation and campaign development goals are not clear, not planned or discussed properly, the technology execution map is bound to be second-rate.
Evaluate various Predictive Dialer solutions to determine if they will do what you envisioned, at times you will not only miss the big picture, but you'll also lack a clear understanding of all the details that go into making the big picture happen. Fit those visions in with what the dialer is likely to accomplish. Cost versus features? Do I need all the bells and whistles I may never use?
In order for a technology implementation to deliver what you dreamed it would—and at a certain price point—you must translate your big picture service model into tiny little details.
Those little tiny details are what determine the kind of technology you need to provide the service you want your customers to have.
Mapping out your processes (i.e., how the work gets done) is the best way to translate the big picture into the little details of the service process. Once you have mapped them out, then you can begin to describe the functionality you want the software and hardware to have. You should have a full understanding of what systems can do so that when you are ready to start your technology implementation project, everyone on the team has the information they need to make informed business decisions.
With business process mapping you might even eliminate some of the steps or find overlaps in various departments, thus leading you to do some business process re-engineering (BPR). Most people start with telling vendors they want for technology without understanding what they want the technology to do.

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