Over the next few months, I will answer the simple question: Is your Customer Communications workflow SIMPLE? In my experience with customers, workflows are never simple, but I believe they can be SIMPLE-fied through use of technology and strategy. That is, SIMPLE meaning: Streamline, Innovate, Measure, Profitable, Leverage and Extend. Really, it is all about how you approach your Customer Communications Management (CCM) workflow.
This month I will tackle the top ways you can streamline a CCM workflow; Next month, and the following months, I will continue to cover the rest of the SIMPLE-fied perspective.

Let's jump into the top ways you can streamline.

1. Remove multiple touch points: As I like to point out, there is gold in your workflow. The trick is figuring out how to mine it. Try this exercise and see how the multiple touch points your existing workflow creates cost in your day-to-day CCM. First you need a stack of one dollar bills or some dimes. Think about all times there is human intervention in your workflow and place your money on the table. In most complex workflows for CCM you will find there are many places these multiple touch points can be streamlined and, in many cases, automated. That saves time and money giving you a better ROI.

2. Graphical User Interface (GUI): This simple option in your CCM workflow can make all the difference in the world. For many years the day-to-day workflow management was done from the Command Line; in the past it was also the only real option. Today, a GUI can allow more of your FTEs to manage the workflow and solve problems. In the world of iPads, Smartphones and touchscreens, the GUI is not only more intuitive for today's up and coming workers, it also provides a visual method for quickly looking at and changing your workflow on the fly.

3. Automatic Reprint: Automation is a big part of how to streamline any process; just look at how manufacturing has changed over the last few decades. Reprints for the print and mail process of customer communications is critical. If your company doesn't have an automated reprint and management function, you are burning time and money. Today, customers expect their information to be delivered timely and if you aren't sure if, where and when their statement was printed and delivered it can create a communications nightmare. In fact, I conducted a whole webinar talking about the daily chores of having to look for a reprint in a manual reprint environment just to communicate to the customer if their statement was delivered and when they could expect it. Automating the reprints can save you money both in your workflow and in customer service calls. Drop me an email, and I will be happy to send you a link to the webinar replay.

The above are just a few of the ways you can move your customer communications to a SIMPLE approach. Next month I will cover ways to "Innovate" your workflow.

David Day, EDP brings over 32 years of experience in the document management & mail industry. As an active member of Xplor for over 17 years, David frequently presents at local and global Xplor meetings. He has also been a guest speaker at various company user and industry groups including National Postal Forum, Graph Expo and Mailcom. David, Product Marketing Manager at CrawfordTech, is responsible for worldwide for their Enterprise Output Management Products. He works with customers, prospects, sales and product development to identify customer requirements, evaluate solutions and make product recommendations