Customer-Centric Innovation: IoT Meets ERP
Extraordinary customer experience (CX) has quickly become the crusade of the most successful companies. It directly impacts brand reputation, customer loyalty, and, ultimately, your bottom line.
But actually providing a great customer experience is complex and unique to each business. There’s no simple path because every company and product is different. So, how do you untangle the many facets of a great customer experience?
The answer may surprise you. It’s the process of integrating IoT and ERP solutions. Stay with us here as we explain IoT and ERP and how integrating these powerful allies into your business processes can transform the customer experience you provide. Here we go!
Defining IoT and ERP and what it means to integrate them
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of tangible objects that are connected and constantly sharing data in real-time over the Internet. Examples include the smart thermostat in your home that you can adjust from your phone to a wearable fitness tracker that updates information on your various other devices. One of the great benefits of IoT is the insights into customer behavior it can provide, which you can leverage to tailor your products and services to better meet customer needs.
Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP, refers to a system that serves as the digital backbone of an organization. An ERP system integrates various business functions within an organization (like finance, human resources, procurement, and inventory management) to enable streamlined processes, data-driven decision-making, and, ultimately, operational efficiency.
The actual integration process is fairly complex, including data collection, processing, integration, and analysis, but the results can mean the difference between customers being loyal fans or moving on to your competition.
The overarching, big-picture benefit of integrating IoT and ERP systems is the ability for organizations to harness the power of real-time data to transform their customer interactions and delivery of their products and services.
Meet Stuart - COO of a growing online retailer
According to a 2022 survey from Verint:
64 percent of consumers have jumped to a competitor following a poor customer experience
69 percent ranked brands responding quickly as the most, or second-most important aspect of a good customer experience
And 55 percent of consumers agreed that “effortless” customer experiences are vital
Stuart has seen the validity of the above statistics firsthand. Since joining his company five years ago, Stuart has worked hard at growing and overseeing operations. But as the company grows, so do the complexities of maintaining control of everything from sharing data to streamlining processes to customer interactions.
Stuart’s team has become challenged by frustrations like order delays and shipping disruptions due to outdated processes, warehouse equipment breakdowns from lack of maintenance, customer support issues, and poor customer reviews as a result.
Feeling like he was fighting a losing battle, Stuart researched and learned about the success many companies had with IoT/ERP integration.
Diving deeper into the benefits of IoT/ERP integration for CX
So what happens when these two transformative technologies converge, and how does it translate to tangible improvements in customer experience?
The high-level answer is that IoT/ERP integration empowers organizations to harness the potential of real-time data to transform how they interact with customers and deliver products and services.
The data we shared about brand reputation and customer loyalty validates that most customers have a short fuse for poor quality, slow or nonexistent communication, and a lack of empathy from the companies they engage with. In most cases, they’ll be more compelled to move on to your competition than wait it out during a laborious and frustrating customer experience.
Below are some of the transformative benefits of IoT/ERP integration and the valuable insights into customer behavior you can gain to better meet their needs:
Improved data accuracy and visibility into inventory and orders means fewer disruptions for customers, such as backorders and out-of-stock items, as well as improved real-time data and decision-making.
Predictive maintenance through equipment monitoring via IoT sensors. This ability to receive data on product usage and potential issues helps to proactively identify and resolve problems before they escalate. The result is minimal unexpected downtime and uninterrupted availability of products and services for your customers.
Streamlined operations as a result of process optimization and reduced response times. You can optimize supply chains, logistics, and resource allocation, ensuring customers receive products and services faster and more efficiently.
Personalized customer interactions. IoT collects customer data, which is then integrated into the ERP system. This process enables you to tailor customer interactions, product recommendations, promotions, and offers, resulting in a more engaging customer experience.
Proactive customer support. IoT devices can identify customer problems BEFORE they occur. Customers appreciate such preemptive interactions, increasing loyalty and reducing churn.
It didn’t take long for Stuart to see that IoT/ERP integration was the solution he’d been looking for to streamline operations, inform better decision-making, and ultimately transform customer experience at his company. Post-integration, they’ve seen drastic improvements in customer experiences, an excellent ROI, and increased revenue.
Are you ready to create a seamless flow of information, enabling your organization to harness the power of real-time data for more efficient operations and an A+ customer experience?
I2S has deep experience helping companies implement IoT and ERP solutions. We welcome your questions about the process and would love to discuss how we can be a great partner to you.
Contact us for a complimentary consultation, and we’ll set you on the right track for your organization’s implementation of IoT solutions within your ERP system – and your future success.
About the Author
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