When it comes to UI, One size does NOT fit all
Good User Interfaces increase user productivity, require less training and make users happier. Part of a good user interface is to ensure that the information shown on the screen is relevant to the user and the task they want to accomplish.
Pay-TV clients operate in different geographical, competitive and technological markets. This translates into varying business needs which impose different requirements on the system.
Even within an organisation needs differ by user groups. For example, regular CSRs (customer service representatives) need to quickly assess and solve customer’s common issues, while expert users need more flexibility and depth to cater for less common, more difficult cases.
For the sake of simplicity and cost saving, a “One size fits all” approach is often taken to handle the User Interface needs. However, this often means that the UI is not optimal for any of the user groups. Even if some user groups may be served well, it clearly is a case of “One size does NOT fit all!”
Optimising the user experience for each specific user group helps reduce handling time, training effort and mistakes. Even with complete call centre and billing systems, like Hansen CCB, there are typically several external systems involved in providing good customer service. Integrating those systems in a single front-end provides a 360-degree view of the customer and reduces the “Swivel chair” effect where a user needs to look in several systems to get a full picture of the customer.
Hansen CCB is built with customisation and extensibility in mind. Out-of-the box it caters for the largest common denominator between user groups. However, the UI framework and expansion pack also allows clients to optimise for their specific needs and to cater for their specific user needs.
The Hansen CCB UI is a framework that consists of menus, pages, widgets and sparklets:
Widgets and Sparklets are the building blocks used to create pages. A widget is an element with a specific function, like a Device Data Table, Product Summary, or Last Invoice. A sparklet is a specific type of widget that is used to draw the user’s attention to some important information in a concise form – they are typically smaller and appear on top of the screen, like the Account balance sparklet, and the Alerts sparklet.
Hansen CCB comes with an extensive User Interface comprised of predefined menus, pages and dashboards. These can be customised through the use of extensions if a client so wishes.
Typical customisation include:
- Creating custom menus
- New dashboards specific to each user role
- Integrating third-party systems into the customer creation flow (for example a credit check using a credit bureau, or checking product availability with a GIS)
- Showing third party data on a dashboard
CSRs and other key users of a system everyday can have an experience that maximises their efficiency and effectiveness, plus also help deliver an enhanced customer experience too.
By Coen Vanbaar – With 20+ years’ experience in the Pay-TV and Billing industry, Coen is our in-house expert and is responsible for the product management of Hansen’s billing and customer care software applications.