Order Management is at the heart of any business. When you are a company with numerous items, it is essential to have a system in place to provide the best experience to your customers. One of the ways modern businesses improve their service is by implementing automation or investing in Digital Transformation. However, that being said, this month we conducted research and had a chat with different businesses in the UK and ROI. The numbers that we found are astonishing! 

Before we drill down into the results, let’s see what exactly we mean by Digital Transformation?

We see Digital Transformation as the process of using digital technologies to create new or modify existing, business processes, culture and customer experiences, to meet changing business and market requirements.

It is a “reimagining of business in the digital age”.

Put simply, it is about looking at what we want to do or are currently doing and seeking to improve that experience using digital technology.

And this is also the why – “seeking to improve”.

We should not do Digital Transformation just because we think we need to appear modern or because someone else is doing it, and we need to stay competitive. These can be valid reasons, but the primary goal of any Digital Transformation project should be to improve – whether that be our processes, our people, our customers, or our planet.

 

Let’s check these examples that are commonplace for most people nowadays:

eCommerce – allowing buyers to browse and shop items any time, from anywhere
Online banking – from day-to-day banking to applying for loans and mortgages, all without stepping foot in a branch
Streaming services – be it music, TV shows or movies – are all instant and available for rental or purchase 

These industries have all been disrupted by Digital Transformation. However, they always provide clear improvements for customers allowing them to get what they need from the comfort of their homes. Usually by giving more choice or lower-cost offerings than traditional methods.

Seeing so many positive examples of Digital Transformation, you might assume that most businesses have some automation in their workplace. However, we found out that 74% of companies receive orders by phone & email. It means they manually process incoming requests, key in 50 to 100 lines in each order form, and spend most of their week covering this tedious task.

With a third of businesses processing orders manually, it leaves only 26% of companies have a platform for order management. This automation provides them with better customer service and gives them a competitor’s advantage. 

 

5 Issues with Collecting Orders by Phone or Email

During the research, companies have mentioned these 5 main issues with collecting orders by phone or email:

  1. Data mistakes
  2. Time
  3. Missed emails
  4. Complex forms
  5. Urgent calls

1. Data Mistakes

Due to a high turnover rate in the Customer Service industry, many employees either do not have enough experience or simply have never been through training to correctly input information onto the platform. Therefore, there are frequent situations when they process orders with errors. On the other hand, due to a high volume of work, Operation Specialists key with data mistakes, which leads to customers receiving wrong products or an incorrect number of goods.

2. Time

Order processing is a tedious and time-consuming task. On average, teams take hundreds of orders daily, which eliminates them from engaging in high-value work. Statistics show that nearly 60% of employees estimate they could save six or more hours a week — almost a full workday — if the repetitive aspects of their jobs were automated.

3. Missed Emails

Another big issue with manual order management is missed order emails. Teams either open them too late and breach the delivery terms or never open them if they arrive in a junk mailbox. One of the Sales Specialists mentioned, “Missed emails are their main challenge. It affects their Customer Satisfaction Rate and makes their team feels helpless.”

4. Complex Forms

 

Following the time issue, complex order forms take up most of a working day from Customer Service teams. In most industries, order forms are between 50 to 100 lines which take a lot of time to fill and process, especially if your team does it manually. For example, a Customer Order Manager said, “Although we receive customer orders by web, EDI and email and have everything in one place, our 3-person team is exhausted. All order forms are complex, and it takes enormous time to fill them. Due to the tedious and repetitive work, we would find data entry mistakes and inaccurate figures.”

5. Urgent Calls

It was the last issue highlighted during our research. Processing orders via emails might be a complicated aspect for the Operation Managers. However, how about phone calls? Customers always phone with urgent orders and expect the next day’s delivery even if they haven’t paid for the product yet. This line of work takes all the energy from the Customer Service team, and 70% of workers say the biggest opportunity of automation lies in reducing time wasted on repetitive work.

What About Those with Automation?

We believe most companies who proceed with orders one way or another can relate to the list above. However, what about the 26% of businesses with some automation in place? We have such feedback here as well!

“We have a customer portal, and we couldn’t imagine our working life without it! Customers place orders that are automatically filled and updated accordingly in our system. It takes almost no time for the platform to fill the form when our orders have between 50 to 100 lines! Our team now deals only with exceptions or orders coming via phone. It allows us to reengage sales people in other aspects of the business and allows them to take part in high-value tasks.” – Sales Coordinator

Sounds great, isn’t it? Now, want to see if your business can benefit from automation as well? Chat with us today!

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