Order Management Crucial to Omnichannel Customer Service Improvement

Data provides the underpinnings for improved customer service
January 4, 2017David Gill

ManhattanAssociateslogoFULLATLANTA-Building a customer service platform based on order management data is a vital element in retailers’ omnichannel efforts, according to a report from Manhattan Associates, a supplier of supply-chain technology products and services.

The report cited a finding from a survey conducted by the American Marketing Association and Duke University, which said “great service” is a retail customer’s top priority, ranking above product quality and low prices. Order management is the foundation for such a customer service platform because it “provides a window [on] what’s available to sell,” Manhattan Associates said. “Pricing, customer purchase history, order status and returns and exchanges—all of which move omnichannel retailers toward channel-agnostic customer service interactions and brand experiences—are underpinned by order management.”

Omnichannel retailers that build their customer service platform based on order management data—and which then put that data in the hands of “customer-facing associates”—lays the foundation for providing improved customer service, according to the report. A properly constructed platform provides a “360-degree view of orders and transactions,” information on appeasements, the capability to apply in-store promotions to online orders, visibility of fulfillment status, price overrides to match competitors, an online shopping cart and visibility of wish-list contents, order history across all channels, payment adjustments, requests for free shipping and information on cross-channel returns and exchanges, according to Manhattan Associates.

“Order management serves as the system of record for all customer orders, regardless of channel, delivering a common set of information to all associates,” the company said. A platform that serves stores, the online channel and call centers gives omnichannel retailers the opportunity to build transaction volume, boost profit, drive repeat business from increased customer loyalty, minimize the efforts of shoppers and reduce call time, the company added.

David GillDavid Gill | Senior Editor
dgill@hfnmag.com

David Gill covers home textiles, small electrics housewares, personal-care products, cleaning products, mattresses, consumer electronics and major appliances. He also reports on retailers and writes about the business and financial side of both vendors and retailers. He has more than 30 years of experience in business journalism, and has worked for other publications and websites that cover consumer products from both the manufacturer and retailer sides. His outside interests include sports (he is a big fan of the New York teams and of British soccer), cooking, movies and theater. He occasionally enjoys a good cigar as well.

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