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How to Start Building a Successful Customer Experience Program

By the year 2020, customer experience will overtake price and quality as the key brand differentiator. In other words, brands that don’t work on improving their customer experience will be left behind.

Customer experience is more than a trend or buzzword — it will play a pivotal role in the future of marketing and has an insightful ability to predict where a company will be 5-10 years down the line. What should you be doing, if anything to prepare for this change?

First, what is customer experience?

On a basic level, customer experience (CX) refers to how a customer perceives their interactions with your company. How does your customer feel at every touchpoint they have with you, from marketing to sales to support? CX is ultimately defined by the consumer, which means businesses need to actively adapt and set themselves up to exceed expectations.

Should you be investing in this?

Joe Hanousek, Esker’s Customer Experience Manager, believes that every company needs to be tracking their customer touchpoints and working towards continually improving that process. He often says that: “Seventy percent of senior executives in companies believe that CX is important. In my opinion, the other 30 percent shouldn’t be executives.” So much of the B2B focus is on lead generation instead of improving customer experience, although most people are well aware that it is less expensive to keep existing customers than it is to acquire new ones. Companies mistakenly start looking into customer experience as a last resort once they’re suffering, but customer experience is best as a proactive approach, taken when business is growing versus lagging behind. The graph below shows just how valuable an investment in improving customer experience could be.

How do you begin?

If you’re just getting ready to work on improving customer experience, aim for C-level sponsorship. It won’t go very far unless there are people at the top behind it, so do the research you need to convince someone to back you up. Most executives are aware of the importance of CX, but still aren’t taking active steps to improve upon it. If you haven’t already started in a few years, it’ll be too late.

Next, be sure you’re ready to invest a significant amount of time and human resources into building a solid customer experience program. At Esker, the process took a full year to go from conception to having a Customer Experience manager and a team in place. It’s a good idea to have at least one person fully devoted to customer experience and multiple people from different departments committed to being a part of the CX improvement process; otherwise, CX can easily become a task that is swept away on an already busy to-do list. This will also depend on executive buy-in, as far as whether the need to have a customer experience manager or team is understood.

Finally, it is important to communicate the goals of the customer experience program throughout the organizationEveryone should be on board and kept up to date. As Joe puts it: “It’s not C-Level people or managers that make customer experience better — it’s the staff working directly with them.” Educate, train and update all those who interact with customers at any level on what needs to be done to improve those important touchpoints.

The beginning stages of our customer experience journey.

Joe’s biggest recommendation for those starting to work in CX? Change your perspective. “It is not an area for problem customers to go to, but rather a way to prevent customers from ever having the problem in the first place,” he explained. As staff focus on offering solutions to immediate problems, the CX team should be looking into why those problems happened in the first place, and if there is anything that could be done to fix that.

Customer experience goes beyond customer satisfaction or happiness. A successful customer experience program will work to prevent problems before they arise, delighting your clients past the point of mere satisfaction. CX has become more of a trend in the past two years, but it is definitely here to stay for the long haul. If you have any questions about the process we went through to build our customer experience program at Esker, or about customer experience in general, leave a comment below and we will respond to you!

eCommerce and the Digital Journey

With spending 15 years of my career in the eCommerce space, I’ve learned a lot along the way. One thing that has stuck with me is no matter how much a company believes the business case that this is going to be the only solution they need, you can’t force it.

You see, there is another entity involved that the company doesn’t control — its customers. For example, one of my chemical industry clients created a whole eCommerce site to sell its low-margin products. If a customer wanted that product they would have to buy through that portal. Other companies create significant campaigns to transition their customers to eCommerce, highlighting the benefits to the customer and offering discounts if they buy from their site. All of these are legitimate strategies, because, in today’s world, an eCommerce channel is a must.

The problem is an eCommerce channel is not going to work for all customers. Some of them are large, drive a majority of revenue, and want to buy through EDI so that the systems can talk to each other with no human intervention. Other customers have ERP systems that are spitting out their POs and they don’t want to re-key orders, or upload a spreadsheet to a website. Some industries have customers that don’t have the capabilities, nor do they want to deviate from what’s been working during the course of their relationship with you: sending their orders via email or fax (yes, there is still a lot of faxing going on).

Digital transformation usually begins with EDI and eCommerce sites, but it doesn’t end there. If neither of those channels work, email and fax orders can be placed into your ERP after validation checks for accuracy — all without manual intervention. This gives companies cross-departmental visibility to everything in the order pipeline, the ability to easily measure KPIs, and the actionable intelligence necessary to address priorities or concerns in real-time before they become big issues.

In today’s world, the customer experience is king. Figuring out how to efficiently cater to them is every companies’ challenge. Sometimes the easiest paths are overlooked for those more glamorous. It reminds me of a song I learned in Girl Scouts that says “Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.” Every channel is important in its own way and can co-exist to provide a truly exceptional approach to business.

Esker Achieves ISO 27001:2013 Certification

The Certification assures Esker on Demand customers that their data is safe, secure and accessible

Sydney, Australia — January 30, 2018Esker, a worldwide leader in document process automation solutions and pioneer in cloud computing, today announced that it received ISO 27001:2013 (ISO 27001) certification for its Information Security Management System (ISMS) by A-lign, an independent, third-party auditor. ISO 27001 is the internationally recognised standard for certifying that a company’s ISMS protects its data and that of its customers.

This certification demonstrates that Esker has implemented security measures and countermeasures that protect it from unauthorised access or compromise, that the security of data has been addressed, implemented and properly controlled in all areas of the organisation, and that IT personnel were found to be conscientious and knowledgeable in best practices.

ISO 27001 is invaluable for monitoring, reviewing, maintaining and improving a company’s ISMS. Accredited certification to ISO 27001 demonstrates to existing and potential customers that an organisation has defined and put in place best-practice information security processes and that all internal data and data submitted by customers and suppliers are handled in a secured way.

The benefits of information security, particularly the implementation of ISO 27001, gives partner organisations and customers greater confidence in the way they interact with a business. Benefits to customers are numerous, including:

  • Security risks are appropriately prioritised and cost-effectively managed
  • Security best practices are in place along with a managed approach to business information protection including risk, governance and compliance
  • Defined framework to ensure fulfillment of commercial, contractual and legal responsibilities

“This certification confirms our continued commitment to information security at every level,” said Jean-Michel Bérard, CEO at Esker. “Esker provides a consistent, reliable and secure operating environment to provide the highest quality of service to our customers worldwide.”

About ISO 270001

The International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) is an independent organisation that develops a variety of standardised processes across numerous industries and sectors in order to offer a uniform method for completing specific actions in a business or governmental setting. ISO 27001 provides an international methodology for the implementation, management and maintenance of information security within a company. ISO 27001 certification requires that an organisation systematically examine its information security risks, taking account of the threats, vulnerabilities and impacts, and implement a comprehensive suite of information security controls to address those risks that are deemed unacceptable. ISO 27001 advocates a plan-do-check-act methodology via an iterative process designed to drive continuous improvement.

Esker Announces Partnership with Optima ECM Consulting to Expand Revenue Opportunities and Accelerate Delivery of Cloud Solutions

Alliance is designed to accommodate Esker’s growth while enhancing solutions offered by Optima

Sydney, Australia — January 9, 2018Esker, a worldwide leader in document process automation solutions and pioneer in cloud computing, announced today its partnership with Optima, a global implementation organisation. The relationship is aimed to benefit the customers of both companies by providing a more holistic set of offerings that complement the evolving nature of digital transformation. 

Esker’s exponential revenue growth and increased consumer demand for cloud-based solutions is predicted to continue into 2018. In order to accommodate such rapid growth while maintaining excellent customer service, Esker entered into a partnership with Optima to help create efficiencies and better implement its solutions.

“As the demand for our solutions grows, we continue to look toward trusted partners to help us scale while identifying new revenue opportunities,” said Steve Smith, U.S. chief operating officer at Esker. “Because Optima has a reputation for unparalleled expertise in purchase-to-pay (P2P) and order-to-cash (O2C), it was a natural fit for us.”

Optima turned to Esker to help capture the mid-size market and to expand its business service capabilities to include a cloud solution.
“Esker is a known entity in the cloud space with a superb reputation for integrity and excellent customer service,” said Alex Nadesan, founding partner and chief operations officer of Optima. “Our customers are looking to the cloud and, in Esker, we know we have found the technological and cultural fit we were searching for.”

Now that the two brands have forged a synergistic partnership, they will begin offering integrated solutions to current and future customers in 2018.

About Optima EDM Consulting

Optima ECM Consulting is a global implementation organisation that specialises in the strategy, design and implementation of Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions for Compliance, Optimisation, Revenue Enhancement and Collaboration. Optima’s unparalleled experience in strategy, design, implementation and management of EIM solutions such as Purchase to Pay, Sales Order Management, and Enterprise Content Management solutions enables companies to achieve both their strategic and business objectives as they look to execute their digital transformation. With more than 60 consultants and offices in USA, Mexico and Spain, Optima is uniquely suited to ensure businesses rapidly recognise expected ROI and drive immediate value across their organisation. For more information on Optima and its solutions, visit

What a Year – 2017 Was a Huge Success!

What a year! 2017 has been a huge success, and it’s all due to Esker customers like you. Here’s how we’re wrapping up the year:

Esker Named to Food Logistics’ 2017 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers List

Sydney, Australia — December 12, 2017 — Food Logistics, the only publication exclusively dedicated to covering the movement of products through the global food supply chain, has named Esker, a worldwide leader in document process automation solutions and pioneer in cloud computing, to its 2017 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers list.

The annual FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers list serves as a resource guide for software and technology suppliers whose products and services are critical to companies in the global food and beverage supply chain.

“New developments and innovations in the software and technology sector are making sizeable impacts on the global food supply chain,” says Lara L. Sowinski, editorial director for Food Logistics and its sister publication, Supply & Demand Chain Executive. “The result is a greater visibility, improved regulatory compliance, enhanced shelf life for perishables, and the emergence of a more proactive and nimble food supply chain that benefits both the food industry and its logistics partners, as well as the end consumer.”

Food and beverage is among the few industries experiencing consistent growth. When companies encounter larger volumes of incoming orders, processing documents both quickly and accurately becomes more challenging. These challenges can be exacerbated by problems that warehouse distributors and manufacturers experience every day. Problems range from errors that result in incorrect shipments, inefficiencies in getting data into back-office systems and delays in processing orders for perishable items. Esker’s cloud-based solutions address these issues and allow food and beverage companies to trim costs, ensure timely delivery of goods and increase order processing efficiency.

“Esker is honored to be recognised once again as a top technology provider in the food and beverage industry,” said Steve Smith, U.S. chief operating officer at Esker. “We aim to provide our clients the most value by giving organisations the tools to improve supplier relationships, cut costs and streamline complicated business processes that can arise throughout the supply chain.”

Companies on this year’s 2017 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers list will be profiled in the November/December 2017 issue of Food Logistics, as well as online at

About Food Logistics

Food Logistics is published by AC Business Media, a business-to-business media company that provides targeted content and comprehensive, integrated advertising and promotion opportunities for some of the world’s most recognised B2B brands. Its diverse portfolio serves the construction, logistics, supply chain and other industries with print, digital and custom products, events and social media.

Digital Transformation – More Than a Simple Challenge, it is a Perspective Shift for Companies!


We are excited to share a guest blog post from SlimPay today. This post focuses on how digital transformation is creating change for companies a crossed several industries. Companies have to adjust how they develop and market their product in order to leverage opportunities through digital trends. This blog post is a two-part series when you’re done reading this post make sure you check out part 2!

GAFAM (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple & Microsoft) have transformed consumers’ habits, propelling them in a 100% digital world. Many other digital companies since then appeared in several sectors, from transportation to energy or leisure, generating an expansion of digital offers and making it sometimes difficult for traditional companies to follow the trend. Perceived as a threat by some companies, the digital transformation may also be an opportunity to re-invent, invest in new projects and take advantage of the new trends.

A recent Harvard Business Review ’s survey stated that companies are convinced of the importance to start a transformation by 2020. In its 2017-2020 plan, BNP Paribas announced the acceleration of its digital transformation.

How to face this challenge? What are the main steps and what to expect exactly?

PART 1 –  Digital transformation as a marketing and sales lever

The digital transformation quickly changed the competitive landscape in many industries. All the companies had to adjust their product development as well as marketing strategies in order to leverage opportunities offered by the digital trend.

Enlarge the scope: new audiences, new products

The digital age transformed our relationship to time, freedom, leisure as well as our consumption habits (unlimited access to music or movies, SaaS solutions, online banks, new transportation services, mobile applications). Whether it is to win back lost market shares or target a new audience, to enlarge an existing offer or improve a service level, the digital trend is an opportunity to innovate and remain competitive.

Those innovations are possible thanks to the analysis of usages, new habits of each audience segment and through the observation of other sectors to get inspired. Key elements are crucial to consider when creating or adapting an offer: think mobile, be customer focused (in terms of added value and features), do not forget the basics of marketing mix that are product, price, promotion, packaging, as well as payment that is taking on a more important role in the customer journey.

Accelerate profitability: how to launch an offer efficiently

The digital is also a good way to launch new offers and projects quickly for a limited cost. Beyond online promotion that allows high visibility for a minimum of budget, each step of the launch can now be managed online: customer acquisition, subscription step, sales channels, etc. Thanks to the cloud technology and SaaS solutions, it is now possible to create a 100% digital customer journey. Traditional process is now replaced by more efficient methods which is a clear opportunity for all types of companies.

Subscription: a viable business model

Already well known in the press sector, subscription and pay-as-you-go models developed a lot over the past few years, especially in the digital services industry. Benefits for consumers are obvious (freedom, budget management…), but also are benefits for companies (predictability of recurring revenue, revenue growth) : this reinforces viability of this model that attracts a lot of start-ups. Thus, many sectors are entering subscription commerce to sell their offer.

Maximize customer relationship

Big data is a revolution in terms of customer knowledge. Thanks to data collection, it is now possible to understand customer habits, journey and preferences. This customer-centric approach allows to customize offers and generates new types of interactions between brands and consumers. Social networks are also a new communication channel, in which consumers express themselves freely and this can be used as a source of inspiration for companies.

Digitalization opens up new paths for a customer experience that can be improved. But it is also creating new challenges such as subscribers’ management, customers’ app experiences, payment management … It must be handled cleverly!

Read the 2nd part An agile answer for a successful transformation

Mobile Requisition & Invoice Approval App | Esker Anywhere


Financial professionals are expected to perform with speed, accuracy, and accessibility. In a workplace where everything was needed yesterday and instant 24/7 availability and access is becoming the norm – mobile adoption in any solution is a necessity.

Esker Named to Food Logistics’ 2016 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers List

Sydney, Australia — February 2, 2017Food Logistics, the only publication exclusively dedicated to covering the movement of products through the global food supply chain, has named Esker, a worldwide leader in document process automation solutions and pioneer in cloud computing, to its 2016 FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers list. 

The FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers ( list serves as a resource guide of software and technology providers whose products and services are critical for companies in the global food and beverage supply chain.

“The software and technology sector continues to generate new and exciting opportunities for growers, food manufacturers, grocery retailers and the many logistics providers that support them,” notes Lara L. Sowinski, editorial director at Food Logistics. “Today’s cloud-based solutions and mobile connectivity are helping create tools that are more flexible, affordable and responsive, making software and technology even more valuable to those in the global food supply chain.”

Esker’s cloud solutions allow food and beverage companies to cut costs by automating manual tasks via one integrated platform. Increasing industry pressures have many companies seeking to lower operational costs and maintain supplier relationships. These companies are directly impacted by errors that occur in order processing due to increased costs from incorrect shipments, returns and lost goods. Esker helps manufacturers and distributors manage the supply chain without paper-based documents such as fax and postal mail, creating easier access to documents and reducing costs with fewer manual tasks. Supplier relationships are also improved when orders are on time, correct and can be accessed in real-time if questions arise.

“We provide a simple solution that streamlines business processes for wholesalers, distributors, manufacturers and third-party logistics providers in the food and beverage industry,” said Steve Smith, U.S. chief operating officer at Esker. “We strive to deliver the most value by giving organisations the ability to cut costs and improve supplier relationships, and consider it a significant achievement to be recognised as a top technology provider and resource in this industry.”

About Food Logistics


Food Logistics is published by AC Business Media, a business-to-business media company that provides targeted content and comprehensive, integrated advertising and promotion opportunities for some of the world’s most recognised B2B brands. Its diverse portfolio serves the construction, logistics, supply chain and other industries with print, digital and custom products, events and social media.



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