Is your customer communication solution provider focused on a non-core direction?

After Hewlett-Packard started a massive restructuring in 2012 that has caused job reductions of about 50.000 people until now, it announced in September 2015 another round of layoffs that will cut a further 10% of its workforce of 300.000 until 2018. The company will be split and move 60% of its workforce to low cost locations. That obviously opens the question what will happen with its HP Exstream product. Ever since Exstream was sold to HP, it has been lagging behind the mainstream in Customer Communications Management. HP is a huge business in deep trouble and the tiny Customer Communications segment is unlikely to contribute much to its declining software business. The Exstream product could be discontinued at any time without anyone sneezing at HP over a few upset customers. Exstream and Customer Communications is nowhere near a core element of HP’s business.

HP revenues

It is therefore prudent to consider a move from HP Exstream to ISIS Papyrus and gain the most extensive function set in Customer Communications. ISIS Papyrus had in difference nearly 15% growth in 2015, being the strongest in the last 10 years. On their product website, HP Exstream has apparently no other means left to compete than spreading the false rumor that the ISIS Papyrus Customer Communications functionality is being retired because we withdrew from the Gartner CCM report. Gartner stated in the report that ISIS Papyrus focuses on Adaptive Case Management or ACM. ACM enhances CCM dramatically rather than delivering less functionality. ACM like BPM makes little sense without the ability to consider and execute the natural connection between business content and process goals. CCM makes little sense without the related processes. Analysts think in artificial market segments that they protect vigorously, because if their segment is devoured by another the analyst looses his ‚expertize‘.

At ISIS Papyrus, CCM functionality is used in a 100% of all customer solutions because that is our unique selling point in the artificial ACM market segment. ACM is our unique selling point in the artificial CCM market segment. Only the Gartner Group CCM analysts do not get that. Especially in the area of supporting important and thus extensive document management processes HP Exstream has not added any such features to its portfolio. To actually make state-of-the-art Customer Experience happen, managing just the layout or the textual content of a channel message is nowhere near enough. CX processes supported through ACM make the difference!

It is easy to be happy with a current product if one does not look over the edge of the plate (of the CCM market segment) to what is happening in the industry. Rather than just updating marketing materials and clicking yes in analyst questionnaires, ISIS Papyrus is the only vendor in Customer Communications who actually enables the Customer Experience processes without the need for complex integration.

ISIS Papyrus is the only CCM solution to not only support all digital channels but to actually drive the inbound and outbound processes that make these channels work. There is a direct link between marketing and the actual business transaction that makes money. All other CCM products and especially HP Exstream require extensive integration with CX solutions or BPM to make that possible. There is no common link and management to change the content and its related process in HP Exstream. That is a natural in the ISIS Papyrus Platform. So yes, it is obvious that all Customer Communication Management solutions are not created equal. And yes, now is a good time to consider to drop a product like HP Exstream that has stopped on a busy motorway and is being overrun by everyone.

Customer engagement is NOT a new frontier but has been addressed by ISIS Papyrus years before it crept into the glossies of other CCM vendors. Exstream quotes Gartner Group as saying that “89% of companies plan to compete primarily on the basis of customer experience.” That is utter nonsense because for a 100% of companies customer experience is not a management choice but something that happens regardless of what businesses do. It is the reason we focus on an integrated solution with ACM. Designing a customer experience is utterly useless without the ability to create a seamless goal-driven interaction with the customer using business content on all channels. That becomes really difficult and expensive with a standalone CCM product such as HP Exstream. It is exactly that point that led to a conflict with the Gartner Analysts who consider that capability not-mainstream CCM, proving that ISIS Papyrus is the ONLY VENDOR who currently addresses this integration.

HP Exstream alludes that it can migrate ISIS Papyrus installations. In fact, it has not helped a single business to migrate from ISIS Papyrus and has neither the knowledge nor the product functionality to do so. Other analysts than Gartner have taken the effort to make product comparisons for real and ISIS Papyrus always comes out as a leading and innovative CCM provider with the highest level of process integration. In fact there are businesses that are migrating from HP Exstream to ISIS Papyrus.

As HP states, you should really be worried about the cost of migrating to another CCM solution and you should be seriously concerned that you don’t have the funds or bandwidth for this type of project. HP Exstream is actually proposing to just install HP Exstream as an additional CCM product and create a dramatic fragmentation and systemic breakpoint that stymies progress into a seamless Customer Experience. ISIS Papyrus has in difference always provided substantial functional upgrades for free under the maintenance agreement. There is a continuous stream of innovations as well as customer requests that are being added to the platform and its CCM functionality.

There has not been a single discontinuation of ISIS Papyrus CCM and certainly not after the installation of HP Exstream. Our strong growth comes from the powerful combination of CCM and ACM functionality. We know what our customers need and barebones CCM functionality is a dead-end.

You will get less for your money if you install HP Exstream next to ISIS Papyrus and the additional expenditure in software, consulting and training would be much better spent on actually stepping into the REAL WORLD of Customer Experience and not just following some irrelevant analyst market segments and vendor glossies.

So to add HP Exstream to your portfolio is not a big decision, it is simply the wrong one. The right move is to drop HP Exstream and other outdated CCM solutions and start investing into the future of Customer Experience!

I am the founder and Chief Technology Officer of ISIS Papyrus Software, a medium size software company specializing in communications and process management. I wrote several books and hold a number of patents. My quest is to bring common sense to IT, mostly by focusing in human quality issues rather than cost saving, outsourcing and automation. I am also Chief Architect at VIPorbit software which provides mobile relationship management.

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Posted in Adaptive Case Management, Customer Communications, Customer Relationship Management
2 comments on “Is your customer communication solution provider focused on a non-core direction?
  1. spieltmit says:

    I never would have expected open war with HP. I can imagine that you are angry about their comments on ISIS but just ignore them as ISIS on the fast lane anyway…..
    Keep up the good work!


    • It is not open war at all. Just making clear that if someone does have a non-core direction problem it is HP and not ISIS Papyrus. Yes, we are on the fast lane, but we need to be careful so we do not rear-end them as they have stopped.


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Max J. Pucher
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by Max J. Pucher. All rights reserved.
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