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Social software is used meet the challenge of constant change - Customer Service Examples

One consequence of the Big Shift is that, increasingly, employees encounter non-routine issues which break the standard processes. These “exceptions” impede operating processes and drag down business performance across all parts of the organization. Employees spend hours, or days, attempting to find relevant information and expertise in an environment of proliferating information flows. Often, they either guess or create a solution from scratch. The current technologies store information and support standard business processes but fall short of supporting the dynamic informal communications needed for handling exceptions. To improve efficiency and effectiveness, employees need tools that enable navigating across organizational boundaries, connecting to the right people, and accelerating exception resolution.

At both Alcoa and OSIsoft, the increasing number of exception handling activities hampered business performance. At Alcoa, the outcomes of compliance activities were well-defined but the processes to get there were rarely standard. Compliance Leads spent much of their time searching for contacts, communicating via e-mail and phone, sending documents back and forth, finding answers to non-routine questions, and collecting approvals. At OSIsoft, resolving customer issues consumed Customer Support Technicians’ time because they did not have a single source of trusted answers to common questions. Technicians would lose valuable time searching through previous call logs, trying to determine if the solutions in those logs were actually correct, or sending numerous e-mails trying to explain the problem and identify contacts in Engineering who could help resolve the customer’s issue. Neither Alcoa nor OSIsoft had easily accessible, reliable documentation of these interactions and the solution, so similar problems occurred again and again. Without the preservation of institutional memory, each company was bogged down by exceptions.

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