I can’t believe that it’s been nearly 6 months since I wrote my last blog (2021 – more of the same, but some changes) & also that we are nearly half way through 2021. This year is going faster than ever but at least the world is getting back to some sort of normality after the UK’s extended lockdown. The first half of 2021 has certainly been filled with more web meetings, and the M40 continues to be a distant memory! I can’t see any big changes for the rest of 2021. Maybe in 2022 we will spend more time in the office and on customer sites, but “Dynamic Working” will be the new norm for a while yet.
2021 has been a busy, interesting, and sometimes a challenging, year. My personal projects have seen around half-a-dozen go-lives and almost twice this number of new customers or new automation projects for existing customers. Being able to speak with Esker’s customers about more than one process is perhaps one of the most exciting things at Esker at the moment. We have had Order Management automation in the cloud for more than 10-years now but being able to automate several other processes across the order-to-cash process with the same solution is a real benefit for our customers.
Every time I initiate a new demonstration environment, I am pleasantly surprised by the new features and functions that I see. I know that we release a new sprint every couple of weeks but quite a lot of new features are ‘under the hood’ or are designed to improve security and performance aspects of the solution. However, 2021, has seen lots of new (and visible) features. The list below is certainly not exhaustive, but I have seen some key changes and improvements in the following areas;
- An improved ‘chat’ function allowing enhanced communication between our customers and their customers, available for responses 24/7 and allows full visibility of all past conversations held.
- A new Customer Enquiries module that helps customer service departments triage the customer enquiries received in their email inbox to address enquiries faster, analyse data more efficiently to deal with the enquiry better, and improve the overall customer experience to strengthen relationships.
- An enhanced web portal that has a user experience similar to the ones offered by the B2C e-commerce web sites, such as Amazon, which include product pictures, prices and categories, as well as a shopping cart. This is therefore very recognisable and easy to use.
I’m looking forward to the rest of 2021. I can see another half-a-dozen or so go-lives ahead and hopefully many more new customers and projects.