Back office workforce optimisation could unleash hidden productivity and improve customer experience
The shift of power into the hands of consumers has made it imperative for organisations to improve standards of service delivery through back office workforce optimisation (BOWFO). As Frost & Sullivan says, EMEA and APAC markets trail behind North America in adopting these high-impact service delivery tools.
Companies are rapidly realising that customer service is no longer the sole province of the front office and are identifying the impact that unresolved issues in the back office can have on the overall business. So, BOWFO tools, which can cut down inefficiencies, while maintaining and boosting quality, process compliance and resource allocation, can be expected to witness significant traction globally.
Despite the major cost pressures on account of the strained global economic climate, organisations are readily adopting BOWFO, reveals the new study from Frost & Sullivan, Profiling the Back Office Workforce Optimisation Market. A canon of forces, which include faster return on investment, increased productivity, enhanced customer service delivery, and greater transparency have been motivating organisations to invest in BOWFO solutions.
“The North American market has demonstrated the highest uptake rates, with a large number of early adopters of BOWFO tools in comparison to Europe, the Middle East, Africa (EMEA) and Asia-Pacific (APAC),” says Frost & Sullivan Information & Communication Technologies principal analyst, Nancy Jamison. “Strong labour laws in EMEA and a cautious approach to investment in APAC have kept these markets behind North America in terms of the adoption curve.”
Although BOWFO tools are gaining popularity, tenured management in most organisations still rely heavily on spreadsheets for resource planning, performance management, and other operational needs. Many back office managers believe that their issues are so unique that no out-of-the-box solution can improve performance levels. This has resulted in the suboptimal uptake of BOWFO tools.
The lack of awareness on the benefits of BOWFO and the existence of competing solutions that partially address back office issues are key challenges for the market. The misplaced belief that front office WFO solutions can be retrofitted to suit back office operations is also a cause for concern.
“Vendors should build awareness on these solutions to convince senior management of BOWFO’s potential to support the efficient and effective delivery of brand promises while creating a true omni-channel customer experience,” advised Jamison. “Along with this, they must introduce BOWFO solutions that can act as an extension to front office WFO solutions and provide a unified view for managing the workforce, allocating work, and ensuring its dependable completion.”
“With the right BOWFO solutions, market participants can exploit the tremendous growth opportunities that the emerging market holds,” concludes Frost & Sullivan Information & Communication Technologies lead consultant, Martin Hoff ter Heide. “Though the financial services and insurance industries are the leading early adopters of BOWFO solutions, other sectors, including government, healthcare, telecommunications, utilities and pharmaceuticals will catch up over time.”
Profiling the Back Office Workforce Optimisation Market is part of the Contact Centres & CRM Growth Partnership Service programme. Frost & Sullivan’s related studies include: Growth Verticals: Customer Care Outsourcing North America, 2014 North America Hosted/Cloud Contact Centre Buyers Guide, 2014 North American Contact Centre Systems Buyer’s Guide, and EMEA Hosted Contact Centre Services Market.
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