Integrating Customer Communications Management
Increasingly, we’re seeing more demand for integrating Customer Communications Management (CCM) into other enterprise systems. As companies map their buyer’s journey, they are discovering more opportunities to communicate with customers.
In the past, we tended to think about how to bring data into Customer Communications Management platforms to enable personalized messaging. Although this is still important, NextGen CCM platforms are finding an increased need to expose capabilities to other business systems. This need is driven by a desire to enable those systems to communicate with customers more effectively, consistently and to maintain compliance.
To ensure compliance and optimize cost, a consistent message, voice and tone and review process for all customer communications needs to be developed. For example, in insurance when a client interacts with the claims team, or member support, communications should be developed with the same rigor as those used for sales and marketing.
Document composition engines in other business systems tend to lag behind those of NextGen CCM platforms. NextGen CCM provides a much richer authoring and editing experience. NextGen CCM also offers superior versioning, approval, and auditing capabilities.
To integrate with other business systems NextGen CCM offers an Application Programming Interface (API). An API defines the interactions between software solutions. It defines the requests that can be made, how to make them and the data to be exchanged. In short, it enables other software to access the capabilities of an external software platform.
A good CCM API allows companies to create better customer experiences without significantly increasing cost. The following are some of the key benefits of using a NextGen CCM API:
Most businesses leverage a diverse stack of technology to support their operations. These desperate systems are assembled out of necessity and weren’t built to work together. This puts the burden on the business’ technical resources to integrate them to support business processes.
For most businesses, the majority of their intellectual property lies in their business processes. These processes are the methods used to deliver their value. APIs help streamline operations leveraging the power of integration. Businesses can efficiently connect desperate systems and achieve synergies that would otherwise be out of reach without APIs.
Reducing the Cost of Integration
APIs help developers meet business objectives on time and on budget. An API is not an integration itself, but it specifies how an integration can be achieved. Vendors providing APIs often provide documentation and examples to guide developers in their integration efforts. By providing a standard method for achieving an integration, documentation and examples, developers are able to achieve connectivity between systems more efficiently.
Improving the Quality of Integrations
If you’re a developer you’ve probably heard the phrase “don’t reinvent the wheel” ad nauseam. APIs provide examples and documentation for achieving common integrations. This takes the guess work out of how to do it and ensures developers are using best practices and not reinventing the wheel.
The vendors that developed the third-party software the business relies upon are in the best position to know how to integrate their software. APIs are their guide for doing this in the most efficient and effective manner. Following the documentation and examples ensures best practices are implemented and quality integrations are achieved.
Many business processes have been created to fill the gaps between business systems. From moving data from one system to another, to asking a person in another department to complete a task, these manual processes can be automated leveraging APIs. Automating manual tasks takes cost out of the business and improves efficiency.
Integrations automate manual tasks to generate frictionless links between applications. For example, support software can rely on NextGen CCM to communicate with customers through a problem/resolution process.
Automation and integration of manual business processes saves cost, time and effort. The integration of manual tasks is the foundation of larger automation strategies.
The ability to take two diverse things, in this case two business systems, and blend them together into something new has always been a key part of innovation. NextGen CCM APIs open up this possibility for developers. APIs enable developers to think beyond silo’d systems to find the best solution to business problems.
Exchanging data between other business systems and CCM software enables advanced personalization. Integrating applications brings NextGen CCM closer to how users interact with other applications and allows developers and business leaders to improve customer experiences. APIs enable data scientists to take personalization even farther by bringing together data, content, and profile information across the entire customer experience.
APIs are a key foundational element of digital transformation and the creation of innovative business models. They enable faster and lower cost development and foster innovation. They also bring the development and execution of communications closer to where the customer interacts with the business. These are all important factors in achieving a superior customer experience.