Why do Manufacturers Need a CX System? (Part 1)
Manufacturers’ B2B customers now expect a more digitalised and personalised service. They want the convenience of interacting with the organisation however they choose. At whatever time and on whatever device. The old model of customers having to phone to place an order or get a shipment and invoicing queries answered is becoming obsolete. What we’re seeing is B2B manufacturing customers doing their own research online, as they do in their private lives before they make any significant purchase or investment. They only really want to interact directly with organisations when they’re ready to do so.
Providing product information online is no longer cutting it.
Customers want to access back-office information like stock, order status, delivery times, production plans and even to have visibility into the supply chain. It’s becoming essential to provide B2B customers with an all-round online service. In the context of a CX system, it’s about providing a portfolio of information that a customer needs: availability to promise, customer pricing, individual product design and so on.
Getting the customer experience right online is a much better way of ordering what can often be a relatively complex product. If the process is self-service, the customer is more likely to have their order 100% correct. Typically, ordering processes can be quite inefficient and disconnected between the customer and the ERP system. The traditional ordering method is either over EDI or a phone call with someone at the manufacturing organisation typing in the order, which is both time-consuming and prone to manual error. If someone gets that wrong, then obviously you get a very dissatisfied customer.
Processes are siloed so overall engagement and customer service perception can be poor. Manufacturers engage with their customers across lead, order and account management which includes aftersales services such as warranties, maintenance and dealing with product issues. Many companies struggle to pinpoint when orders will be delivered, especially if they’re complex engineered products.
The manufacturer creates the order from production and it can go into a black hole. They will chase down delivery dates and won’t have any visibilities of delays. A CX system can give a full, real-time view of the production line and the ability to track deliveries. To grow and increase revenue in a volatile market, manufacturers must give their customers a ‘one-stop shop’ approach to accessing information and services online in a consistent way. A good CX system can break down the walls between the customer and the manufacturer. It empowers manufacturing organisations to serve their customers far better and in the ways the customer prefers. It also impacts revenue by increasing online orders and average order values, due to cross-sell and upsell opportunities.
CX can also help manufacturers to innovate.
By upgrading their environment, they can adopt a microservices architecture and take advantage of cloud solutions. All this is possible via incremental improvements and quick projects that bring value almost immediately, instead of the traditional long-running projects which take years to go live.
At NTT DATA Business Solutions, we are in the rare position of having both the front-end CX skills and the back-end process and industry knowledge to really deliver a full CX solution. We’ve been in business for over thirty years and worked with manufacturing clients since day one across a number of sectors – high tech, discrete, consumer products, food & drink, industrial machinery, automotive and so on. As an SAP Platinum Partner, our customers have peace of mind that we can deliver high-quality projects on time and within budget. Plus our in-depth knowledge of innovative technologies enables us to continue to guide them in their digital transformation journeys.
Watch the session “Learning from Experience: B2B Commerce in Manufacturing” to hear more about CX challenges facing the Manufacturing sector.