The COVID-19 pandemic has forced businesses to focus on operations more than strategic. What should be your technology and digital priorities for COVID-19 to insulate your existing revenues?
Very few businesses are currently able to operate from physical locations due to social distancing rules. This has driven customers to online channels and competition for services has spiked beyond all strategic forecasts.
All businesses need to offer the same consistent customer experience across all channels so that they can seamlessly continue their journey as they switch from one channel, such as web, to another, such as mobile.
Similarly, the experience must be consistent across the customer life cycle, from the early stages when little is known about them, through to sale and service; for example messaging and tone of voice must be consistent during customer service with that during the marketing or sales activity.
Businesses should start with identifying value opportunities, not data, and then determine how data can deliver that value.
This allows the processes and tools required to collect, store and analyse the data to be defined and deployed to deliver value rather than the data equivalent of panning for gold.
Sophisticated machine learning models can be deployed to personalise and improve products and services based upon the data with adaptive AI technologies providing a competitive advantage, and these are rolled out across the value chain. Collecting only the data you need also reduces the potential risk of future data compliance or security headaches.
Look for areas of automation throughout the business, and then look again. For example:
- The product and software development process from idea to market at numerous points including workflow, testing, deployment.
- The operations and support can be automated to proactively identify potential issues and remove manual tasks.
- The supply process can be automated with advanced analytics to enable innovation and output- or outcome-based services.
When considering automation, start with a blank piece of paper to reinvent the business process rather than simply automating a process which may not necessarily be the most optimum way.