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At Signavio World, center stage belongs to customer excellence

Signavio brings customer experience data into its process management platform with the Signavio Business Transformation Suite Customer Excellence Edition.

Signavio's technology is built to help organizations understand and improve business operations by analyzing their processes.

Now the process mining company is taking things a step further by integrating customer experience data into the mix, with the release of its Customer Excellence Edition (CEX Edition) of Signavio Business Transformation Suite.

The CEX Edition was announced at the Signavio World 2020 virtual conference for Signavio's partners and customers.

Process mining is a data-driven technology that crawls through data on enterprise operations systems, such as ERP and CRM, mapping the processes and showing where there are anomalies and breakdowns. The Signavio Business Transformation Suite (BTS) adds modeling capabilities that show various ways processes can work, and allows process management experts to work together on improvements via the Signavio Collaboration Hub. Users can take these process management insights to a variety of business operations initiatives, such as digital transformation, RPA and cloud migrations for SAP or Infor ERP systems.

Gero Decker, CEO, SignavioGero Decker

The COVID-19 pandemic has made it even more vital for organizations to understand their processes and have a data-driven way to improve them, said Gero Decker, co-founder and CEO of Berlin-based Signavio, in an interview prior to Signavio World.

"Process mining leverages data that's being recorded by different systems -- ERP, CRM. It's about reverse engineering what's happening, and the pandemic is accelerating the need for this because you can't wait weeks for consultants to figure out stuff," he said. "People want to have these types of insights now in real time, especially when changes occur, like if you suddenly have a shift in demand, or you have spikes in demand somewhere but not somewhere else."

But process mining is only one part of the puzzle, because it can show only what has happened with processes, Decker said.

"The other part of the puzzle is how to bring people who have critical knowledge about the processes together and tap that creativity to reshape or repurpose certain processes," he said. "For example, if a hospital wants to move to telemedicine consulting, process mining won't help you because they haven't done that in the past. This is a design task to figure out what are the possible options, so it's a blend of process mining where you have stuff running and want to learn from and improve, but also the creativity that's about reinvention or invention of new processes."

Melding customer experience and operational experience

The CEX Edition introduces customer experience data into the process management mix.

We know there are costs associated with a negative customer experience.
Ron AgamChief product officer, Signavio

Customer experiences can boost a company's reputation and bottom line if they are handled well, or have deeply negative effects if handled poorly, explained Ron Agam, chief product officer at Signavio, in a presentation introducing the CEX Edition at Signavio World.

"We know there are costs associated with a negative customer experience," he said.

Agam said research from PricewaterhouseCoopers indicates that the top drivers for a good experience that customers are willing to pay more for include efficiency, convenience and easy payments. While all are processes that can be designed, there are gaps in information between how companies believe they are doing and how customers actually perceive it.

This is where the Signavio CEX Edition comes in, he said, by taking the customer experience data and melding it with business operational data, identifying areas where breakdowns occur and determining how to fix them.

"It's not about learning that your NPS [Net Promoter Score] is bad at certain touchpoints and not knowing what to do," Agam said. "It's about figuring out that you have a negative NPS at a certain point in the journey and knowing exactly which business process, which task, which team and which IT systems you need to fix and improve."

The CEX Edition works within Signavio BTS and uses a design environment called Journey Modeler that enables users to build visual tabular format models of customer experience processes ("journeys"). All the steps in the customer experience journey models can be connected with the business process data that resides in the BTS.

The goal is to be able to create processes that make great customer experiences, Decker said.

"The CEX brings together what you're doing on the customer experience side -- the experience you want to deliver -- but also operationalizing that," he said. "What are the processes in the back that need to work, that prepare a touchpoint, that avoid frustration, that anticipate things, that provide a smooth trajectory for your customers -- this transformation is about bringing that change to reality."

Process mining innovations well-timed

According to Maureen Fleming, a program vice president at IDC, Signavio is worth watching because it's building out tools that help business operations understand how their processes impede or support customer experience.

Maureen Fleming, program vice president, IDCMaureen Fleming

Customer experience has to be looked at holistically across all systems that touch the customer, she said, and it was good to see that Signavio has identified this as a distinct opportunity and invested in it.

"[The CEX extensions] are both innovative and well-timed, as the current economic climate means that enterprises are trying to drive down their operating costs, but they know they can't do that by compromising customer success," Fleming said. "These extensions will help enterprises support the decision-making teams' need to go through to optimize their processes for customers, while also identifying how to become more efficient."

The process mining and process intelligence space is very innovative, with companies like Signavio and Celonis, which offers its Execution Management System that builds on a process mining engine with applications that solve specific process problems and allow better control over processes, she said.

Customers should do well with the Signavio or Celonis process management platforms, and may do much better than companies that don't invest in process management.

"There is now enough maturity from the major players to see enterprises using this successfully and much more broadly," Fleming said. "We're almost to the point where we'll see measurable differences in operating margins tied to those enterprises deeply investing in process mining compared to their competitors who have not yet begun to use this technology. The different and distinct innovations from vendors across this market give enterprises different places to invest."

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