Improving CX Through Simplicity and Security

Agencies seeking to improve customer experience face multiple hurdles — some that start long before direct interaction with constituents. “Legacy technology debt, and almost as importantly, legacy IT approaches, are core challenges,” said Matt Barry, Chief Operating Officer, HP Federal.

Aggravating that is the scarcity of IT talent, which hits government particularly hard. And, Barry said, government systems tend to grow more complex, although simplicity would improve internal processes and constituent experiences.

“The problem really stems from an attitude that says, ‘Hey, it worked yesterday, I’m sure it’ll work again today,’” agreed Tommy Gardner, Chief Technology Officer, also of HP Federal.

Good Security Is Good CX

Because improved employee experience leads to improved customer experience (CX), making things work easily is essential.

That’s especially true of security. “People shouldn’t have to think about security when they’re doing their jobs. They need security that’s just on and just works,” Barry said.

An example is HP’s Sure Click Enterprise, he explained. It keeps applications safe by putting each into its own local virtual machine container, isolating the computer from any potential malware. When the user leaves a webpage or document, the container closes, and the malware disappears with it. All this is transparent to the user and happens without interrupting the workflow. “There are literally billions of datapoints of sessions being closed out safely where there could have been an incident,” Barry said.

“If you’re compromised, your ability to deliver against your mission is dead in the water,” he added. “What you’re protecting is the ability of the agency to serve its customers.”

Make the Right Decisions

When innovating, keep CX top-of-mind or you won’t achieve it, Barry said. “It’s inherent in the phrase itself — customer experience. If you’re focused on speeds and feeds and technical specifications, you’ll miss the mark.”

Since employee experience is the driver of customer experience, think about the type of experiences you want both groups to have — consistent, secure and productive.

Of course, you must consider budget, too. “Customer experience is defined by money,” Gardner said, “as most experiences are.” Agencies naturally allocate their funds to the biggest risks, but that often leaves others unaddressed. “Most organizations have more unacceptable risk than they’ve got money for,” he said. “So you’re trying to find the best use for your dollar.”

Solutions That Cover the Bases

One way to cope with the tension between funding and function is to find products that do more for you. Offloading non-mission tasks to vendors and products frees teams to concentrate on constituents.

“There are so many things we do,” Barry said, “to help bring capacity online that can be redirected to an agency’s mission.”

The key, Gardner said, is communication. “The best thing we can do is form communication links between our team and the agency team.”

This article appears in “Improving Customer Experience: A Nuts-and-Bolts Guide.” For more insights on how to improve constituent trust when providing services, download it here:

Image by Stefan Schweihofer from Pixabay

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