A recent survey by the DOCUMENT Strategy Forum of executives and senior managers revealed that prospective conference attendees ranked collaboration as the number one conference session choice. This is an understandable choice, since collaboration is essential to innovation, and innovation, in turn, leads to market differentiation and competitive advantage. The respondents reflected a broad range of industries, including financial services, professional services, manufacturing, publishing and government.

As an essential ingredient for superior customer service, collaboration has applicability across all industries. In many organizations, service reps depend on their formal and informal networks to get answers and solve problems. Collaboration, in the form of social media content, is increasingly a component of knowledge sharing among field service reps. Digital experience and multi-channel document and information strategies were strong runners up in this survey, not surprising either, since these techniques support customer service.

Developing a business case for better information management also ranked high because implementing these enabling technologies can be expensive. In fact, other research has shown that many executives have a difficult time justifying IT expenditures and showing the payoff from such efforts. Hard ROI remains elusive, and without that linkage to bottom line results, it’s very difficult to convince the organization to focus on these areas, even though to most people such initiatives make intuitive sense.

Creating a winning digital experience
Participants in the survey were asked what issues present the greatest challenges and opportunities. The respondents seem to feel somewhat bombarded with challenges. As mentioned in my previous article on the survey results, process management was seen as the top challenge, but knowledge management, customer experience management and (somewhat surprising in this electronic age), removing paper from processes all were clustered closely behind it. 

Although perceived as the greatest challenge, process automation was also considered to provide the greatest opportunity, with customer experience management a close second. Customer experience management is a broad term that represents the different ways that customers interact with the organization. Increasingly, online interactions end up cutting across numerous internal systems, processes and applications. Creating a seamless digital experience means stitching together disparate processes that are not under the control of the people responsible for delivering that experience. 

How do executives pull all of these disparate pieces of information together in order to make the best decisions and build new capabilities that will cause the organization to leapfrog competitors? Answering these questions was the goal of the team that worked on the Connect-IT Conference. By bringing executives who have successfully delivered programs in each of these areas and achieved digital transformation in their organizations, we will create a forum for sharing the best practices in these key areas. 

For more information about the Connect-IT Conference, please visit www.Connect-ITconference.com.