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Delivering a joined up Digital Front Door experience


I’m always keen to see how organisations actually deliver when it comes to customer contact innovation, particularly in terms of joining up their service offer across multiple channels.

Person at a desk making the most of a digital front door experience

So when I recently had an issue with my Apple Watch strap – first world problem I know – I was interested to see how Apple Support responded.

Black Apple Watch on a wrist highlighting the digital front door experienceI started online, and it’s clear that Apple have really focused on getting its Digital Front Door sorted. I was offered a choice between waiting for an agent, selecting a callback or chatting. Having selected the chat option, I had to wait a few minutes but was soon able to discuss my problem – even though the product itself was out of warranty. It turned out I would have to call in to move things forward to the next stage, however to ease the transition between channels Apple was able to email me my chat transcript. The next day when I called in, Apple recognised my number, starting the conversation with ‘Hello Stuart, are you calling about the issue you discussed yesterday?’

Given the sheer volume of iPhone sales, Apple probably has active mobile phone numbers for over 90% of its customers, however it’s still great to see an organisation working hard to recognise people when they get in touch, and investing in joining up its engagement channels. While other businesses may not have as much customer data to hand, there’s certainly an opportunity for them to unlock performance improvements through ongoing Digital Front Door optimisation.

This week’s SabioSense looks at the requirement to co-ordinate digital, marketing and customer contact activities, examines how AI can fit into your strategy, and highlights some myths around Virtual Assistants. Our selections are from update highlights a number of recent stories that identify ways to reduce some of the friction points that customers can experience when attempting to engage with organisations across multiple platforms. Our selections are from CIO, Harvard Business Review and Nuance.

  • Gartner suggests CMOs to outspend CIOs on IT in 2017 – New research from Gartner suggests that marketing tech budgets are now on track to exceed the amount that CIOs say they are going to spend on technology in 2017. This also follows recent Altimeter Group research that suggests that CMOs are now nearly twice as likely as CIOs to lead digital transformation efforts. Morag Lucey, Avaya’s CMO recommends that CMOs and CIOs should stop battling and start collaborating.
  • Establishing just what AI can and cannot do right now – Interesting Harvard Business Review story that explains how the majority of today’s AI applications involve ‘supervised learning’ and require a huge amount of data to work well. The article suggests that ‘if a typical person can do a mental task with less than a second of thought’ then it can probably be automated using AI. However, it goes on to say that understanding what AI can do – and how it fits into your strategy – should just be the beginning not the end of the process.
  • Debunking common myths about Virtual Assistants – Empowering customers to solve issues on their own makes smart sense for organisations that are serious about building a joined-up Digital Front Door and Self-Service strategy. In this Nuance article, the author sets out to dispel many of the myths around virtual assistants that are often shaped by what people have seen in science fiction movies.


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