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Verint’s recent announcement about the acquisition of ForeSee was for me the satisfying realization of a long held vision of the ultimate approach to digital customer experience (CX). I had the fortunate opportunity to work at both ForeSee and OpinionLab (another Verint acquisition) during times of high growth and market acceptance. Both companies were “the pioneers” in digital CX and combined represent a powerful force in the new era of digital customer experience.

Verint + ForeSee logo

At Foresee we focused on CX measurement. Our premise was that to deliver business value you need a customer satisfaction (CSAT) measurement that is based on scientific principles; it must be reliable, precise and accurate. It has to be based on scientific evidence so you understand what happened, and what is likely to happen in the future. Data collection needs to be based on a random sampling of customers who provide information after an interaction is complete. Foresee was able to use its methodology to calculate overall CSAT, primary CSAT drivers, and likely future behaviors. These predictive capabilities informed the client what elements of the experience to improve to achieve the highest ROI. As the business grew ForeSee created one of its most important deliverables, a CSAT driver benchmark that enabled companies to compare themselves to other like companies on an “apples for apples” basis.

ForeSee’s word of caution to the market (related to competitive approaches to digital CX like OpinionLab’s): Don’t confuse measurement with feedback. Feedback is bad – feedback is listening to the squeaky wheel and will not lead to good business decisions.

Conversely, at OpinionLab it was all about feedback. OpinionLab’s mantra was “Always On, Always Available”. I quickly learned what I had been taught when at ForeSee about the limitation of feedback was not always true. Passionate customers were providing unsolicited, verbatim feedback via millions of opt-in comment cards per week across a broad spectrum of sentiment (it was not just negative comments). OpinionLab’s methodology combines feedback with context (such as specific web page, device type, operating system, browser, customer segment, task completion, reason, and more elements of context). OpinionLab then applies real-time analytics, text analytics, and creates visualizations and alerts that identifies actionable insights and gets those insights to the right people.

OpinionLab’s word of caution to the market (related to competitive approaches to digital CX like ForeSee’s): Don’t confuse feedback with measurement. Measurement is bad – because it is just a score and does NOT provide actionable insight.

Although we didn’t readily admit it at the time, we all knew the combination of these two approaches was the killer application for digital CX. Clients who really understood digital CX used OpinionLab and ForeSee in tandem. The combination is powerful because it identifies the elements of the experience to focus on, then applies verbatim feedback, context, and real-time analytics to hone in on the root cause, develop a hypothesis, and turn the insight into action.

As an example, when I was at OpinionLab we had one client who used both OpinionLab and ForeSee and wanted to prove out the value. To help them do so, we first identified the elements of the customer experience that ForeSee calculated were the most impactful to overall customer satisfaction. We then utilized OpinionLab to identify, segment and analyze feedback that aligned with the elements identified by ForeSee to recommend specific changes to the customer experience. The client had an agile development environment and made the suggested changes quickly. When a change was implemented, we monitored the subsequent change in CSAT scores.

Over the course of a year this client increased overall CSAT (22 points as measured by ForeSee). Improvements made as a result of this initiative allowed our client to lower shopping cart abandonment, increase online ordering, improve task completion, substantially lower calls to the contact center, increase overall satisfaction and the likelihood to recommend the brand to others. The additional annual revenue and cost savings from this project were estimated to be $19 Million. Verint can now offer the killer application for digital CX to every customer.

Verint’s mantra for VoC can be summed up in this statement. If a customer says it, writes it, or clicks it, Verint helps you listen, analyze, and act on it. Verint understands the importance of measuring all customer touch points. Businesses can no longer afford to only think in terms of separate silos having separate impacts on consumers. We must measure the impact of each and every touch point with consumers: physical locations, call centers, web, mobile, chat, video and social network interactions all must be measured not only as individual channels but as they combine to enhance or detract from overall brand and customer journey.

Over time, large companies have acquired many different types of surveys and VoC solutions, an approach that’s not cost effective and makes the sharing of data across an enterprise difficult. As a result, the market is consolidating as customers understand the importance of a single version of the truth.

The combined capabilities of Verint include call recording, speech analytics, text analytics, artificial intelligence, predictive analytics, case management, real-time alerting, data visualizations, chatbots, social Interactions, strategic consulting, and now the best of breed in digital. With the acquisition of ForeSee, Verint is exceptionally well-positioned to meet the growing market requirement of a unified platform.

As a long-time participant in, and observer of, the evolution of the digital feedback marketplace, I could not be more excited about the value the combination of ForeSee and OpinionLab into Verint’s broader portfolio represents to our customers. You can find out more about Verint’s VoC Solutions here.

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