Companies that have delayed investments in their core infrastructure over the past 10 years or more are starting to spend money on essential applications. A mission-critical function that organizations are struggling to address is their CRM or servicing applications. Besides Salesforce.com, which does not have strong customer service capabilities, no vendor has emerged as a leader in this sector. In the last two years, DMG has seen a number of solutions that offer much promise and, with time, will mature, but none are flexible enough to meet the needs of many industries. The problem is that companies have pushed their existing CRM/servicing solutions beyond any reasonable life expectancy, and are finally ready to make investments. However, they don't want to take the risk of spending a great deal of money and ending up with little to show for their efforts. It is for these reasons that desktop analytics (DA) is starting to attract the attention of IT and business managers.
What Is Desktop Analytics?
Desktop analytics is a relatively new solution with great potential to deliver value and benefits to contact centers and back-office operating departments by providing transparency into everything employees do at their desktops. The solutions are a multifaceted suite of modules that analyze and report on employee desktop activity and enhance productivity and effectiveness. The five most common capabilities these suites offer are:
1. Employee activity tracking and process: This includes measuring keystrokes, applications accessed, time spent in each application, and transactions. DA also tracks and analyzes the processes and paths that employees take in the course of handling various tasks.
2. System performance analytics: Identifying system delays, bugs, and inefficiencies that impede staff from completing their jobs.
3. Employee guidance: Providing step-by-step contextual and rules-based navigation and instructions to employees.
4. Process automation: Using a nonprogramming method for creating new graphical user interfaces that bring together data and functionality from multiple in-house and third-party applications and data sources.
5. Workflow: Automating business processes by systemically passing data between employees and/or systems.
What makes DA unique is its ability to perform these functions without changing the underlying code of the systems it is addressing.
Adoption of desktop analytics is poised to take off over the next few years. DA is a powerful application that can alter and vastly improve the quality and reduce the cost of handling interactions in front- and back-office operating environments. (DA was initially targeted for contact centers, but in the last three years, vendors have realized that it's an ideal application for back offices as well.) DA can also dramatically improve the customer journey. It is not a simple application, but it is capable of delivering increasing levels of value and benefits to organizations, depending on how it is used.
Increasing Productivity in 2014
A benchmark study published by DMG Consulting in October 2013 found that the number-one contact center initiative for 2014 (reported by 55.8 percent of respondents) is improving agent productivity. The most fundamental function of desktop analytics solutions is to capture, track, and analyze all employee desktop activities. The reporting and analysis of this data lets enterprises understand the actions and process paths taken by their best performers (as well as all others). DA solutions can enable the automation of data prorogation (copy and paste) between screens and systems used by employees, to reduce the likelihood of errors and handling time. These solutions can also identify suboptimal systems and poor response times that are impeding agent efficiency. These abilities yield substantial productivity improvements and cost savings for operating departments, while improving quality by reducing errors. When all of these functions are combined, something DMG has not yet seen, DA solutions will transform operating groups.
Regulatory Compliance Requirements
The continuing expansion of regulatory compliance requirements all over the world is another trend driving investments in desktop analytics. DA solutions can be programmed to identify and monitor compliance issues that can put an organization at risk. These issues