If you receive errors when attempting to view this white paper, please install the latest version of
"Acquired by Consona Corporation in 2006, Onyx Software had always been a strong player in the CRM marketplace, consistently maintaining a vision around product quality and leading-edge technology.
Building on Onyx CRM’s solid foundation, Consona began to expand its CRM capabilities and purchased KNOVA Software in 2007, a leading knowledge management software company that had developed a suite of self-service, contact center, and community applications to help automate the most critical part of customer service—case resolution."
Source : Cosona
Six Key Elements to Delivering a Consistent Outstanding Customer Experience in the Contact Centre and Beyond
Customer relationship management (CRM) is also known as :
Customer Service ,
Consumer Relationship System,
Enterprise Relationship Management ,
Employee Experience Management,
Consumer Relationship System,
Customer Experience Management,
Relationship Management ,
Customer Experience Solutions,
Customers are the life blood of any enterprise, and keeping them both happy and loyal is a
major focus for any competitive organisation. However, truly progressive companies recognise
that the only way to cement their success is to ensure that every interaction creates an
outstanding customer experience.
The Keys to Success
When applied together as a cohesive solution, these key elements enable an organisation to unlock
the lifetime value of their customers and build an outstanding referral platform for future growth.
When creating an outstanding customer experience, technology can go a long way towards
maximising productivity, increasing sales and enhancing customer satisfaction. However, if your
organisation doesn't have a culture and processes that place the customer first, the value you derive
from your technology investment will be limited.
Could it be possible that companies which focus more on driving sales than on creating a consistent
outstanding customer experience and empowering their staff are actually missing out on the very
results they desire?
One of the financial sector's most successful institutions, ASB Bank, has set itself apart by focusing
almost exclusively on creating an outstanding customer experience at every level of the organisation.
ASB has found that an uncompromising commitment to customer satisfaction, backed by an
integrated customer management solution, has delivered huge growth in revenue and profitability as
customers respond by voting with their wallets.
While recognising the need to satisfy a range of stakeholders, including management, board directors,
financial and IT departments, ASB's experience warrants a closer look by enterprises that are serious
about improving their results.
Most organisations will profess to put the customer first, but how many companies actually take the
time to stop and ask their customers what's important to them and how they can serve them better?
"For almost 15 years, our mission has been clear - deliver exceptional customer service through trusted
interactions and consistent performance. Onyx will help us continue to enhance our relationships with
customers, and at the same time improve our operational efficiencies so we can continue to meet
our clients needs."
Chief Operating Officer and President, Leading Financial Organisation.
It's no coincidence that two of the world's most successful CEOs, Charles Schwab and Michael Dell,
both make a point of regularly spending time in their contact centre, speaking to customers and
listening to their concerns
Pace-setters like Schwab and Dell recognise that their customers are both internal and external to
their organisation, and are both critical to delivering the desired results. External being the companies
and individuals who purchase their products and services, and internal being the employees who
operate their systems and processes and at the end of the day, both groups must be left satisfied
and feeling valued.
Not only does this practice allow them to stay connected to the needs and wants of their customers,
but it's also enormously gratifying for their contact centre agents to see their work being given such
a high priority.
While a customer-centric culture and processes have always been the hallmarks of successful customer
relationship management, leading companies also place a strong focus on employee satisfaction
With customers saying very clearly that they continue to value human contact, enterprises must ensure
they can attract and retain quality customer service staff.
This remains one of the biggest challenges for contact centre managers, with average turnover rates of
17 per cent each year keeping recruitment and training costs high. Considering that Australian contact
centres spend thousands of dollars per agent in training each year, any solution that can streamline
how agents work and the amount of training required, will immediately impact profitability.
While an integrated contact centre solution addresses the cost of training by simplifying and
automating transactions, it can also play a vital role in improving agent satisfaction.
"Better management of information means we know what's happening with our customers in the Call
Centre and we know the state of sales with the customers. We can do everything more efficiently. Onyx is
a powerful tool that lets us record, manage and utilize the customer information that is our business."
Technology Manager, ASB Bank.
Progressive enterprises are leveraging their technology not only to enhance the customer experience,
but also to maximise variety and keep work interesting for agents.
By using technology to drive productivity and automate those processes and transactions that don't
require human intervention, contact centre agents can be freed up to do what they do best ' create a
unique and enjoyable customer experience.
A simple example of how this can be achieved is to configure your CRM solution to pre-populate forms
with existing customer information. This alleviates the need for agents to revisit old ground, apart
from a quick check to confirm the details are still current, makes the customer feel more valued and
appreciated, and allows the agent to focus on building rapport and enhancing the customer experience.
The ultimate goal is to create a framework that delivers a consistent customer experience across
multiple touch points and types of interaction, ensuring continued customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Since it is far more cost-effective to grow existing customers than to acquire new ones, this approach
provides a measurable benefit to the bottom line.
Conversely, an unrealistic focus on reducing call handling times or cost-cutting at the expense of employee
satisfaction will inevitably impact staff morale and the quality of their interactions with customers.
In a commodity market, a consistent and repeatable branded customer experience, achieved
through the combination of a sophisticated technology framework and value-added service, remains
a key differentiator.
The ability to distinguish customers by value also enables agents to make the most of opportunities
to add personalised touches to customer interactions as appropriate, to further enhance key
This is made possible because an effective CRM solution integrates disparate customer databases
across the enterprise to deliver a single, consolidated view of the customer.
By amalgamating the details of every customer interaction across every touch point in the company,
the system ensures that agents have access to a complete history for each customer.
"We know that in order to build successful and profitable relationships with clients, understanding their
investment objectives and needs, we need to get to know each customer better. Onyx Enterprise CRM
provides us with a single view of all customer information that is accessible anytime. With Onyx we have
all the tools we need to more effectively market to, sell to and service our customers based on their
personal needs and preferences, leading to significant revenue for Dreyfus."
Complex Manager for Dreyfus Corporation.
It's all about creating an on-going dialogue with customers that understands and values every past
contact they've had with your organisation, regardless of whether it was over the phone, on the
Internet, by email or on paper.
Everything is captured, because the more you know about your customers, the more opportunities
you will have to assist them or add value by cross-selling or up-selling.
Of course, having great customer data is only half the equation and will achieve little if you don't have
the right context or efficient processes to apply the information in meaningful ways to achieve a
positive customer experience.
The biggest development in contact centre technology in recent years has been the integration
and automation of customer-related business processes both within contact centres and across
Customer process management (CPM) is delivering unprecedented efficiency gains by streamlining
and tracking processes from initiation to fulfilment to enhance first call resolution rates and simplify
In many organisations, continued reliance on complex legacy systems means contact centre agents
have to operate multiple applications and visit numerous screens to complete what should be
relatively simple customer transactions.
For example, if a customer called a financial institution to report a lost credit card, the agent might
have to work through up to 15 different screens to cancel the original card and then access a
completely different system to issue a new one.
Effective CPM utilises a single user interface to automatically populate the customer data, allowing
the agent to cancel the card in just a few key strokes. An automatically generated process then sends
out a new card. In the background, seamless to the agent, CPM provides intergration at the process
level from the contact centre to the back office and back again, ensuring the agent is fully informed
of all changes.
"Onyx has paved the way for delivery of a whole new level of service and efficiency. It has automated
many manual and semi-manual processes, slashed approval times from weeks to hours, and enabled us
to manage and update vast amounts of applications and customer data quickly and accurately to increase
service levels, productivity and profitability."
Manager CRM, ASB Bank.
By combining process integration, workflow and business rules, these systems significantly reduce the
time and number of steps involved in performing all customer-related transactions, as well as the
training required to make contact centre agents productive.
In a bid to improve productivity and cut costs, many companies have sought to reduce traffic in the
contact centre by pushing customers out to the web. However, this approach can backfire if not
implemented as part of a considered strategy.
The growth of the Internet has fuelled customer expectations for real-time access to information,
increasing the pressure on contact centres to provide a rapid response to customer queries.
While the introduction of online self-service features can ease the load on customer service
representatives and improve productivity, organisations must choose carefully which transactions will
be offered online and which should remain in the contact centre.
While some transactions, such as a quick information request, might require no input from a contact
centre agent, others provide valuable opportunities to cross-sell or enhance the customer relationship.
In some cases, the introduction of self-service options has also helped customers to become better
informed, leading to more in-depth questions and complex challenges being posed to customer
This can create higher call volumes and longer talk times, necessitating more sophisticated tools and
systems to empower contact centre agents to address the need.
Leading Australian financial institutions that pioneered self-service have recently moved to bring back
into the contact centre key transactions where an agent can add value for the customer, while
continuing to automate those which do not benefit from human interaction.
Metrics play a significant role in measuring the performance and effectiveness of a contact centre.
However, too often the focus is purely on operational issues such as wait times, call abandonment
rates and handling times. While important, these metrics fail to measure or reflect the strategic value
of the contact centre. Metrics should include:
- Customer retention
- Share of wallet
- Customer satisfaction and loyalty
- First call resolution
- Employee retention
- Customer lifetime value
- Customer relationships (existing or potential customers)
It is also important to review contact centre metrics and objectives regularly to ensure that they are not
diametrically opposed. For example, pressure to increase call volumes can adversely affect how much
agents can achieve when speaking with customers, or indeed, the level of satisfaction the customer
feels as a result of the interaction.
Outstanding Customer Experience Guaranteed
In today's competitive marketplace, the customer is King and demands the right to mandate how he or
she will interact with your organisation. Customers want multiple touch points, 24 x 7 access, to have
their value to your organisation recognised and reinforced, and to receive a consistent quality of
service regardless of the communication vehicle.
Contact centres act as the primary customer interaction hub in most organisations. While receptionists
have long been known as Directors of First Impressions, the contact centre is the Department of First
(and Sometimes Last) Impressions.
"In today's competitive market, a focus on customer relationships and service is a crucial differentiator.
At Australian Central we are committed to meeting and exceeding the expectations of our members.
Implementing Onyx is a core part of Australian Central's ongoing Member Relationship Management
Program and represents a significant investment in this customer focused strategy."
Managing Director of Australian Central Credit Union.
With so much pressure on organisations to do more with less, as customer expectations continue to
rise and budgets are squeezed, there is an incredible opportunity for contact centres to "bring home
This requires a recognition that, rather than just being a service and cost centre, the contact centre is
the primary driver of customer loyalty and retention, and a key contributor to customer lifetime value
and overall profitability.
The contact centre might be refered to as a hub, but under no circumstances should it be an island.
Its effectiveness relies on close links with the rest of the organisation through:
- Integration of customer data from other departments, enabling a "single view of the customer"; and
- Integration of customer processes across the enterprise to drive operational efficiency and reinforce
a consistent and positive customer experience.
"We saw this CRM initiative as an opportunity to not only better understand our customers; we also saw it
as an opportunity to transform as an organisation. The Onyx solution will transform the way we engage
with prospects and customers by delivering a comprehensive customer view, enabling detailed customer
profiles, accelerating customer application processes, and improving customer service across all banking
channels. This will significantly enhance our ability to deliver value to our customers."
Chief Marketing Officer, Leading Financial Organisation.
When you organise everything around the customer - information, processes and interactions -
your contact centre becomes a 'real-time' operation that provides a positive customer experience
with consistent, repeatable, scalable and measurable performance while increasing staff productivity
In an age of globalisation and commoditisation, the quality of customer experience has become the
most important factor in a purchasing decision. The six key elements outlined in this paper offer a
powerful way to clearly differentiate your product or service from your competitors and provide that
elusive consistant outstanding customer experience.
As a leading and proven supplier of integrated contact centre solutions, Onyx partners with
organisations to address their customer service challenges, delivering measurable time and cost
savings through process automation while empowering agents to improve service quality through
increased access to customer data.