Articles

DCOE Best Practice #5 – Empower Business Stakeholders

BY Ed Worsfold

This is part five in a series of articles examining best practices companies can use to build a Document Center of Excellence. This time we focus on how a DCOE can help empower business stakeholders with increased ability and control over customer message management while protecting the critical production responsibilities of IT.

Barriers for Business Units

Organizations from all industries face increasing pressure to contain costs while finding new and more profitable ways to reach and retain customers. Meeting the challenge can be difficult however, when working with technology and systems presents a barrier; especially as the need for agility and flexibility in customer message management becomes more critical and pressing.

Communications Challenge

In info-intense industries like healthcare, for example, the volume of communications has risen sharply in order to respond to the many market changes as a result of healthcare reform. Requirements have become increasingly demanding as insurers initiate new systems, products and processes to appropriately comply with new legislation. But transformation is afoot in other industries as well: government operations, financial services, manufacturing, and high-tech — these are all industry segments undergoing tremendous change in customer communications. The question for companies is whether or not their document systems are up for the challenge.

Changes Needed

Companies can respond either with great efficiency or with great inefficiency. Many struggle to respond due to the current state of their customer correspondence systems. Making even the smallest change on an account statement, for example, can take weeks or months. Here are a few real-world comments directly from users from a survey we conducted recently.

  • “We need to submit a formal IT project every time a change is required
  • “Just to swap out a signature costs 6K to make the change because of hardcoded logic”
  • “We need quicker turnaround time for marketing and regulatory enhancements”
  • “We need the ability to add or change messages without going through an onerous process.”

A DCOE Inspires Document Agility

What is needed is greater empowerment of business users to add, change and implement customer messages without being hampered by the process to do so. As a result, many organizations are moving to empower business stakeholders with more direct control over documents via the governing DCOE. This is often coupled with changes in IT processes and systems that enable business units as well.

By virtue of its structure, composition and governance, a DCOE helps reduce or remove the barriers while looking to business stakeholders to take a more proactive role in integrating documents into broader operational marketing programs and campaign strategies.

Next up: DCOE Best Practice #6 – Measure and Improve

About the Author

Ed Worsfold is the VP of Marketing with Messagepoint, and has been Marketing B2B - Enterprise software technologies for almost 20 years.

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