Why systems of engagement are necessary for enterprises

Enterprise systems sometimes resemble Medusa.

They start out alluring, but often grow into a cumbersome monster. And, just like Medusa, they can turn your organization to stone— rigid and unable to respond to changing business needs.

"Most enterprises’ back-end operations are an unwieldy amalgamation, their business processes mingling with IT, a gray zone ‘people stack’, and systems of record," says a writer for Genpact.

What exactly lies beyond the monster? For most enterprises, it’s a hoard of rich data and complex tasks, all housed within existing systems of record that are great at storing information but not great at delivering that data or related workflow tasks back to employees.

As a result, businesses often lack the ability to provide information about new updates, system data, or personalized tasks to those who need it most — particularly mid-level employees, whose routine decisions can make or break a company’s success. When the right data, tasks that need action, or updates about changes in systems of record don’t reach the right hands at the right time, deals fall through and opportunities get missed.

So how can businesses get past the monster and reclaim their data?

For the hero Perseus, the answer was a reflective shield that helped him avoid Medusa’s gaze. What enterprises need is a way to simplify workflows and make business data and other system information accessible while shielding employees from the frustrating and complex processes that limit their ability to be productive and effective at work.

Fortunately, there is a better approach — and one that is becoming more necessary. Systems of engagement provide a simplified, flexible engagement layer that sits on top of existing systems of record, aggregating data and tasks from across the organization and delivering it to employees within an easy-to-use interface. Sapho is a new system of engagement that bridges the gaps between disconnected systems such as business operations, vendor ecosystems and supply chains, aggregating data, insights, and tasks from across your organization into a single, personalized workfeed that can accessed from any device, intranet, or messenger.

Rather than replacing existing systems, Sapho’s modern portal allows IT teams to build micro apps that delivers real-time, situation-specific analytics and tasks to employees in a consumer-like interface to help them avoid wasting time and enable them to make informed decisions at the point of contact. A system of engagement can help enterprises overcome barriers to growth by:

Solving communication issues

Although social media and mobile devices are changing the way we communicate, most enterprises still use email as their primary means of communicating with employees. But email is no longer fast enough to keep up with the pace of doing business.

Imagine a sales lead that comes in through one of your company’s digital marketing channels. Normally, someone in marketing would need to route it over to the sales team, which could take a while. But what if a sales rep were automatically notified the minute a lead came in, allowing them to address it immediately? Systems of engagement not only integrate data, personalized information or tasks from across an organization’s systems, but also allow employees to engage and interact based on the needs of their job, allowing for faster data-driven decisions.

According to digital strategist Geoffrey Moore, today’s businesses need to incorporate a new generation of communications based on:

  •  Connecting people in real time
  •   Utilizing smart and geographically aware mobile devices
  •   Leveraging cheap and ubiquitous bandwidth

"What is transpiring is momentous, nothing less than the planet wiring itself a new nervous system," he says in the AIIM report A Sea Change in Enterprise IT.  "Amidst the texting and Twittering and Facebooking of a generation of digital natives, the fundamentals of next-generation communication and collaboration are being worked out." He also warns that organizations that fail to tap into this nervous system will be "hard pressed to participate in the planet’s future".

Keeping collaborators connected

Enterprises also need to improve the way their employees collaborate. Long, clunky email threads and out-of-control spreadsheets are still the norm in many organization, while singular documents and requests must often pass through multiple inboxes before a task can be completed — all of which contributes to slowing decision making down to a snail’s pace.

The more an organization keeps key players connected — and removes superfluous individuals, the more quickly decisions can be made. “This involves moving collaboration from a document-mediated, asynchronous activity to a live-session real-time phenomenon,” Moore says.

By delivering requests, tickets, leads, and other tasks directly to the right person at the right time, Sapho’s system of engagement can streamline workflows and speed up decision making, allowing for more efficient collaboration.

Leveraging existing systems

With systems of engagement, enterprises can incorporate the latest communication and collaboration tools without having to reinvent the wheel. Since they sit on top of existing systems of record, they complement outdated legacy systems and breathe new life into them, allowing business leaders to better leverage their investments.

But systems of engagement aren’t just for updating legacy systems. They can be built on top of more modern systems, such as Salesforce, ServiceNow, HubSpot, or Jira, that suffer from the same complex interfaces, slow workflows, and feature-bloat that plagues many traditional enterprise systems.  Sapho’s modern portal modernizes all your different systems — whether they be legacy, on-premises, or SaaS — and delivers critical business data and tasks to employees anywhere they are working.

Imagine what your organization could achieve with a system of engagement such as Sapho. No more dropped balls. No more operational paralysis. No more missed opportunities. Instead, your employees could make the most of every opportunity with personalized, up-to-date, and relevant information.

Ready to learn more about how Sapho allows you to build a system of engagement for your employees? 

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Elle Sidell is a Digital Marketing Manager at Sapho. She joins from AVG Technologies where she worked on web content for business stakeholders. Her previous experience includes content creation, copywriting, and managing the online presence of several SaaS services.

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