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Virtually Speaking

Why don’t we see more software guarantees?

Posted by Tracy Malingo on Jun 9, 2014 1:22:12 PM

 

In the past months, I’ve spent countless hours putting together Next IT’s marketing and sales strategy for Alme for Chat.

While evaluating the offerings of our competitors and other enterprise software companies, I began to notice something: performance guarantees are a rarity in the enterprise-software business.

This got me wondering why. Of course, the prospect of not getting paid is daunting, but why aren’t more companies willing to guarantee results?

The first reason you often hear is that the need to integrate with multiple existing systems is unavoidable, and very risky. While software companies may feel confident in their own product’s ability to operate in an ideal environment, the lack of control over how well their product interacts with other systems is scary. How can performance be guaranteed in the face of so many unknowns?

This fear of uncontrolled variables extends beyond technical issues.

The success of any implementation is directly dependent on the client’s commitment to the project. If, for example, the software is implemented but it receives too little marketing – internal or external – then business results become impossible to achieve, and a guarantee becomes a money loser.

Oftentimes a big implementation poses enough technical challenges that an IT organization can easily overlook the cultural hurdles to adoption, or governance issues that need to be addressed in advance.

Healthcare.gov is a great example where politics and poor planning led to a failed rollout. The Standish Group did a great analysis of IT project failures for Computerworld in response to that very issue, and their findings amount to a litany of variables that have little to do with the technologies themselves.

So why are we so confident in Alme for Chat that we can offer a performance guarantee?

With over ten years invested in human emulation technology, we know that if a client’s employees are capable of succeeding in a live-chat environment that requires them to interact with multiple systems, then our intelligent virtual assistants will succeed there too. Our people have been doing enterprise-grade integrations across our client base for a decade, and it’s a rigorous part of our planning and implementation process.

To go one step further, we believe we have a responsibility to do more than sell software: we deliver solutions to business problems. If you look at many of the infamous IT project failures over the past two decades, you’ll find that the technology typically did what it was expected to do. The problem is that the project didn’t solve the stated business problems.

Alme for Chat is a great example of how we focus on our client’s business problems, not just the tech requirements and a features list. We address an implementation holistically and partner with clients to ensure end-to-end success of the project, not just our technology.

What are the results of that approach?

When we front-end the live-chat systems that our clients have built, we deliver fast, quality service – answering the majority of their customers’ questions and providing a smooth hand-off for issues that require live help.

The results we’ve achieved for our current customers – like an 83% drop in live-chat volume and a five-fold ROI within six months – means that we’re sure enough in our product to offer a guarantee, plus a limited-time business analysis offer, that takes the risk out of choosing Alme for Chat.

In an industry where it’s rare, we’re 100% confident in the performance we’ll deliver.

Topics: Alme, Business