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How capable is BPM at handling customer relationship management?

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There have been some discussions recently about how BPM or case management is better able to handle customer relationship management, so in your opinion, how capable is BPM at customer service management?

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  • A great example of what BPM can do would be Carphone Warehouse in Europe. Their customer service reps are managing individual calls through a system that has identical data served up for selling products and accounting for sales. Only when there is a single source of process truth that can be represented can customer service be responsive. Individual cases, where the flexibility and differentiation occur, can be managed easily once everyone is on the same page in the overall process.

    Another great way to manage customer relationships is again at Carphone Warehouse. They've created a 'stack' of BPM processes that support each of their Net Promotor Score metrics. If the statement is, "I trust the CPW brand," they've created a visual depiction of the underling processes that support that statement. If a customer calls in with a problem that impacts credibility (trusting the brand), they can find the places in that stack where processes need to be analyzed and potentially changed to better support the goal of customer trust.

    I don't believe this would be something easily done in case management, but I'm open to hear other opinions.

  • State-of-the-art BPM platforms combined with a well crafted process model provide an ideal solution to meet the challenges of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Case Management.

    For example, BPM is an excellent platform for Inbound Action Response. Like it or not, all businesses are likely to encounter customer service issues from time to time. Responding quickly and decisively is likely to be the game turner for your business. Predictable responsiveness is invaluable in rectifying souring client relationships. BPM platforms with their feature-rich alerts, triggers, and actions are there to ensure your staff responds decisively each and every time.

    The rise in social media has turned the tide to make inbound marketing, or "pull the followers", the most effective marketing means today. BPM is uniquely adept at transforming your enterprise systems quickly to accommodate this massive shift in marketing philosophy through infinitely configurable process models which avoid old-school custom software development life-cycles and associated lead times.

    BPM enables enterprises to be more agile and proactive in managing customer relationships. BPM provides this agility with cost advantages and time-to-solution cycles that are unmatched in traditional IT approaches. Add SOA and web services integration to the mix and the cycles accelerate at an even faster rate. If you ascribe to the adage of "evolve or die", investigating how BPM can assist you in the realm of CRM and Case Management should be at the top of your TO-DO list!

  • I've deployed big-name CRM systems (I won't name them here, but believe me, you've heard of them). In my experience, a solid BPM solution can do everything a CRM system can do, at lower cost. CRM vendors would do well to look at partnering with or acquiring BPM providers before CRM is relegated to the dustheap of IT history.

    ...what's that? You say that CRM companies are already targeting BPM vendors for partnership or acquisition? Well then... I guess they must agree with me.

  • CRM is a great example of a busines function delivered as a silo which ultimately should be a function of something bigger.

    Essentially BPM should be a core component of so many solutions, CRM is the most obvious example. However, we still have to move away from this silo thinking, even with CRM companies looking to buy BPM specialists, they need to then deliver a seamless holistic solution. Not a CRM solution that uses bits of a BPM engine...

  • I would not say that either case management or BPM is "better" than CRM because they serve different purposes. However, there is no doubt in my mind that CRM can be a whole lot more effective with BPM than without it! and I'll further roil the waters by suggesting that case management really can be looked at as a subset of BPM that often needs to be closely tied to CRM, as well as other stacks like ECM and records management.

  • Perhaps an interesting story about CRM and BPM.

    A few years ago one of the major consulting firms approached me and asked if I could conduct a course on CRM. I didn't actually have a course called "CRM" but I did have a course on BPM. So, I said "yes" and used a search and replace on BPM to CRM in my materials. They loved my "CRM" course!
    To me this expresses the link between BPM and CRM. That is not to say they are one and the same, but they are very closely linked. It seems to me if you do a good job of BPM, CRM will be taken care of automatically.

  • We discovered that a special case of BPM, where an individual is guided through a sequence of steps in a single sitting (i.e. screenflow), is very well suited to CRM. In fact, we were so sold on this combination that we created a product offering specifically around running screenflows inside of Salesforce. Salesforce and other CRMs provide too little guidance on what should be done when. The combination of the CRM with custom business processes that guide the users through what they should be doing next provides more value than either the CRM alone or a BPM alone (even when the BPM manipulates the CRM through its API). With the combined approach the process guide runs right inside the CRM screen, so the user doesn't have to move away from the CRM UI they are comfortable with in order to get process guidance.

  • Business process management solves problems related to the business which resulting in a higher degree of customer satisfaction. It needs more ROI and time to value is minimized as compared to CRM.

  • Through BPM you will able provide knowledge to ensure that customer teams achieve the necessary competence and helps to improve revenue streams as compared to the CRM.These both things are closely related to each other. It will come to know when you do both.Bpmonline is the CRM with which i have worked once but i have never tried BPM for my business.So such amount of knowledge i have about both BPM and CRM.

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