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Impact of Mobility on Business Could Exceed that of the Internet, Accenture Survey Finds

Facing one of the most significant business challenges since the advent of the Internet, CIOs in emerging markets seeking to mobile-enable their enterprises are making mobility a higher priority and spending more money on achieving that goal than are their mature-market counterparts, according to a new study by Accenture.

The global study, The Accenture 2012 CIO Mobility Survey,found that two-thirds (67 percent) of CIOs and other IT professionals believe mobility will impact their businesses as much as or more than the Internet did in the 1990s. The research also found that over two-thirds (69 percent) of IT professionals surveyed would allocate more than 20 percent of their discretionary budgets that are delivering mobility capability for their business this year – with a striking contrast between IT leaders in emerging markets (94 percent) and in mature markets (35 percent). Similarly, the survey found that 48 percent of respondents in emerging markets have an extensively developed mobile strategy, while only 12 percent of respondents in mature markets claimed to have extensively developed strategies.

Accenture conducted the global survey of CIOs and other C-Suite IT professionals, and a companion online survey of mobile application developers, to understand the current state of enterprise mobility by identifying the top priorities of IT professionals, the obstacles to achieving them and the challenges faced by application developers.

The study also found a few areas of concern complicating the adoption of mobility by enterprises. Of note, security and cost led the list of IT professionals’ biggest concerns. Fifty percent cited security as the leading factor preventing them from addressing their mobile priorities; cost and budget ranked second (43 percent), while 26 percent cited either interoperability with current systems or a lack of understanding about the benefits of mobility. In addition, none of the most widely used smartphone operating systems received overwhelming security endorsements from app developers, but more than half (53 percent) said Apple’s iOS operating system had the best security, while Google’s Android operating system ranked second at 24 percent.

The results highlight the challenges created by the fragmentation of the market, including the large number of different mobile platforms and devices. App developers rated this fragmentation among device platforms as particularly difficult to manage and monetize. For IT professionals, fragmentation complicates a company’s ability to accommodate one of the strongest trends in mobility – employees bringing their own devices to work and wanting to run office applications on them.

In this frenetic market, IT professionals and application developers have various plans to generate revenue. In the enterprise arena, 42 percent of IT professionals indicated they want to improve field service or customer service delivery with instant access to corporate databases, relevant business data, and on-the-spot transaction processing. Application developers cited downloads (41 percent), in-app purchases (29 percent), traditional advertising (24 percent) and subscriptions (20 percent) as ways to monetize consumer applications.

The study also revealed some intriguing anomalies based on geography. Far more IT professionals in emerging markets focus on mobility compared to those in mature markets. Ninety-three percent of Latin American and 81 percent of Asian IT professionals indicated mobility will provide significant new revenue. But only 66 percent of European and 56 percent of North American respondents agreed. Similarly, half of Mexican and Chinese respondents, as well as 40 percent and 32 percent of Indian and Brazilian respondents, respectively, strongly agreed that mobility will impact their business as much as or more than the 1990s Internet wave. But only one in five (20 percent) of both U.K. and U.S. respondents strongly concurred.

Accenture’s study concludes that IT professionals must craft a comprehensive strategy for enterprise mobility. In order to do so, Accenture recommends a multi-pronged approach that includes three key elements: technology, business requirements, and management.
[Full Article]   Mar-04-2012


Study: Less Than 20 Percent of Businesses Have Achieved a Single View of the Customer

DataFlux, a provider of data management solutions, released results from a new survey highlighting that fewer than 20 percent of businesses have successfully leveraged their data to obtain a single view of their customers. The research is a result of 551 survey respondents (40 percent of whom are C-level executives).

Key Findings

While organizations understand the business value of obtaining a single view of their customers, few companies have actually achieved this feat. According to the survey respondents, only 17 percent have achieved a single view of their customer base. However, almost half (48 percent) are either in the process of – or have plans to – implement a system to deliver a single view of the customer in the next 18 months.

The survey also highlighted a gap in the implementation of data management initiatives. While there has been significant adoption of data quality (59 percent) and data integration (55 percent) projects over the past 18 months, master data management (MDM) initiatives lag behind at 31 percent.

As the value of data becomes more widely understood, an increasing number of businesses are moving toward implementing comprehensive data management strategies. Large businesses (greater than 10,000 employees) are leading the way with more than 65 percent stating they already have a well-defined data management strategy in place. The number falls to 49 percent when taking all respondents’ answers into account. Only nine percent have yet to formalize a strategy.

Despite a majority of respondents indicating that they currently have, or will be implementing, comprehensive data management strategies, executive ownership remains elusive. When asked to identify all the organizations that are accountable for managing and resolving data management problems, respondents stated:

  • IT – 80 percent

  • Operations – 33 percent

  • Finance – 20 percent

  • Executive management – 17 percent

  • [Full Article]   Mar-04-2012


    New Survey: Putting a Price on Happy Customers

    A new survey by LogMeIn, Inc. and market research firm, Ovum, reveals a shifting mindset among telecommunications operators when it comes to measuring the success of their contact centers and help desks. Covering large customer care organizations in the US, UK, Canada and Australia, the survey found that customer satisfaction metrics now exceed traditional cost savings and efficiency metrics, like average handle time (AHT) and first call resolution (FCR), as the primary gauge of contact center success. And nearly 70 percent cited investments in online technologies, including live chat and social media, as key contributors to boosting customer satisfaction.

    Key findings include:

  • 90 percent of respondents are measuring the success of their service and support organization based on customer satisfaction metrics

  • 62 percent cited customer satisfaction as the number one priority for their contact center today, outranking average handle time and first call resolution metrics, with that number expected to grow 11 percentage points to 73 percent within the next two to three years

  • 69 percent of organizations cited investments in online customer engagement channels -- live chat, social networks, forums, etc. -- as key contributors to improving customer satisfaction

  • 69 percent of respondents quantify or are actively in the process of quantifying direct financial benefits of improved customer satisfaction

  • 30 percent of the organizations surveyed have adopted Net Promoter Score (NPS) as a philosophy -- NPS is an industry standard measure around the likelihood of recommending a company, product or service to colleagues or friends

  • [Full Article]   Mar-04-2012


    Hiring Managers Share the Most Memorable Interview Mistakes in Annual CareerBuilder Survey

    In a labor market where a single open position can receive resumes from dozens, even hundreds of hopeful applicants, just getting to the interview stage is an accomplishment for many job seekers. But once one lands the elusive interview, what are the sure-fire ways to make the wrong impression?

    In a nationwide CareerBuilder survey conducted by Harris Interactive among more than 3,000 employers, hiring and human resource managers were asked to rate the biggest mistakes candidates make during interviews and share their most unusual interview memories.

    Most Harmful Common Mistakes Hiring managers say the following are the mistakes most detrimental to your interview performance:

  • Answering cell phone or texting: 77 percent

  • Appearing disinterested: 75 percent

  • Dressing inappropriately: 72 percent

  • Appearing arrogant: 72 percent

  • Talking negatively about current or previous employers: 67 percent

  • Chewing gum: 63 percent

  • Most Unusual Interviews

    Several thousand hiring managers shared their most memorable or unusual interview experiences. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Candidate brought a "how to interview" book with him to the interview.

  • Candidate asked, "What company is this again?"

  • Candidate put the interviewer on hold during a phone interview. When she came back on the line, she told the interviewer that she had a date set up for Friday.

  • When a candidate interviewing for a security position wasn’t hired on the spot, he painted graffiti on the building.

  • Candidate wore a Boy Scout uniform and never told interviewers why.

  • Candidate was arrested by federal authorities during the interview when the background check revealed the person had an outstanding warrant.

  • Candidate talked about promptness as one of her strengths after showing up ten minutes late.

  • On the way to the interview, the candidate passed, cut-off, and flipped his middle finger at the driver who happened to be the interviewer.

  • Candidate referred to himself in the third person.

  • Candidate took off his shoes during the interview.

  • Candidate asked for a sip of the interviewer's coffee.

  • Candidate told the interviewer she wasn't sure if the job offered was worth "starting the car for.”

  • [Full Article]   Feb-26-2012


    Organizations that Integrate Communities into Customer Support can Realize Cost Reductions of Up to 50 Percent

    Radical levels of customer service, which account for an average of 75 percent all customer interactions, threaten to undermine the customer's affinity for brands in 2012, according to Gartner, Inc. It is critical for customer service organizations to figure out how to harmonize customer service processes that sometimes happen with a human support agent, sometimes through self-service and sometimes by peer-to-peer community networks.

    Gartner's central predictions for the CRM customer service and support market are:

    By 2014, organizations integrating communities into customer support will realize cost reductions ranging from 10 percent to 50 percent.

    The cost savings are principally through the deflection of calls to the community, where the costs are less than 5 percent of the cost of a technical support agent. During 2012, three industries will realize the biggest successes (up to 50 percent savings on a per-case basis) with communities that solve customer support issues: B2B software, consumer electronics and telecommunications service providers. Laggards (less than 5 percent savings) will not get involved in 2012. These will be health insurance, government and banking. The U.S. and parts of Western Europe will lead the trend, with sharply reduced success over the next four years, as the concepts mature.

    By 2014, customer fallout will drive down customer satisfaction in 70 percent of organizations that shift customer support to communities.

    Many organizations are employing communities as a platform for customer support. While there are examples of organizations experiencing moderate to great success in call deflection and increased first-contact resolution (FCR) cost savings, there are also unsuccessful community deployments. These unsuccessful deployments happen when the organization thinks that if it creates community self-help sites, customers will come. Similarly, these deployments tend to be plagued by the perception that peer-to-peer communities require no administration or moderation. Enterprises should recognize and plan for the administration and moderation required to maintain a customer support community, but be ready for the community to fail.

    By 2015, 50 percent of online customer self-service search activities will be via a virtual assistant for at least 1,500 large enterprises.

    More than 1,500 organizations worldwide are in various stages of production with virtual assistants (VAs). The results range from profound cost savings (5 percent reduction in service costs) and increased customer loyalty to simply the entertainment of having a robotic presence on a website. But the number of organizations adding this capability is growing by 20 percent per year, especially in travel, consumer goods, telecommunications and banking. A challenge is that computer-generated characters have limited ability to maintain an interesting dialogue with users; they need a well-structured and extensive knowledge management engine to become efficient, self-service productivity tools. VAs will lead to further downsizing of customer service centers.

    By 2015, the marketing budget allocated to retaining customers and increasing loyalty through customer service will more than double.

    As organizations attempt to get social, it is ever prevalent that marketing departments spearhead social media-based initiatives on their behalf. In marketing's continued effort to protect and evolve the organization's brand through social media, the department increasingly engages in two-way communication.

    Marketing and customer service departments will have to work in cohesion within an organization to successfully deliver on both strategies. Marketing is likely to fund initiatives that are jointly developed, executed, managed and measured by marketing and customer service. This will put marketing in a lead position to drive retention and loyalty strategies through customer service, improving the alignment between the two departments.

    Through 2015, the dominant themes in customer service and support will be collaborative customer service processes, application migration to the cloud and support of mobile consumers.

    Interaction channels have exploded in the past few years, from direct- and phone-based to the corporate website and across a growing selection of mobile devices and social media. To keep pace, the scope of functionality included in customer service and support (CSS) applications has expanded. Gartner analysts said it is time to build an iPad app competency. Continuing merger and acquisition activity is challenging organizations to adapt to a changing supplier landscape. Organizations have had difficulties managing and planning for an increasingly complex CSS solution portfolio. These organizations should use new delivery models such as cloud computing and mobile for extending and receiving customer service processes and applications.
    [Full Article]   Feb-26-2012


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