Why Next-Generation Customer Experience is the Cornerstone of Digital Success

Experience modernization is a priority for organizations moving to the cloud – because customers demand it

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It’s clear how much destination sites like Netflix and Amazon have raised the stakes for seamless and convenient digital interactions. In response, businesses across all industries are scrambling to modernize their customer experiences to meet the heightened expectations of more demanding buyers.

Today’s digitally-savvy customers expect nothing less than anytime, anywhere access to a brand, across any device, without friction as they move across different channels. That’s a tall order – and it’s no surprise that experience transformation is the No. 1 priority for organizations adopting the cloud, according to a new IDG/Cognizant survey.

More than half of organizations (55%) have already started down the path of customer experience transformation in the cloud, with the goal of improving customer satisfaction and productivity while maximizing profits. Eighty percent of respondents say cloud investments are already improving customer experiences. These results align with IDG’s 2019 Digital Business survey, which ranks customer experience improvement as the top objective of digital business strategy, with customer satisfaction the primary measure of success.

Customer satisfaction, always a central business tenet, has risen to a whole new level in the age of digital business. “It’s a cosmic shift,” contends Ron Goldman, Practice Lead, Customer Experience Transformation with Cognizant. “Most every product is commodity-based—banking, cars, healthcare. The thing that differentiates you is the experience.”

A Multi-Dimensional Approach

Years ago, customer interactions were limited to a call center or retail outlet. That’s no longer the case in a world where the cloud, big data, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things (IoT) open up new possibilities for engagement and more personalized experiences. A modern take on customer experience transcends a redesigned user interface (UX) on a website—it requires a multidimensional approach that integrates systems, data, and newly connected “things” to provide a 360-degree customer view designed for action. The goal is to lead customers on a cross-channel journey that provides the right context and delivers continuity, regardless of whether the interaction happens casually with a chatbot or escalates to a live agent for a higher level of support.

To make good on this modern version of customer experience, organizations need to take the time to understand their different customer segments and the individual journeys that each take as they interact with the company. It’s also important to consider the data and processes that support each of those journeys as well, as the technology enablers. There may also be a need to reskill customer service staff to support more complex interactions, as automated bots take care of answers to the most common queries.

On the technology side, Amazon Connect and AWS offer a full suite of products and real-time APIs that enable experience modernization. Another upside of cloud-based platforms: They can be less expensive to operate than legacy, siloed systems, as cloud services minimize the need for big upfront investments in software licenses, hardware, or infrastructure.

“The cloud is really enabling these things,” Goldman says. “It’s about getting your organization aligned and getting there fast. Speed is of the essence.”

Learn more about experience modernization by visiting Cognizant Digital Business Services.  

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Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.