The 2018 Siebel CRM Grand Tour has officially started. Co-hosted by SoftClouds and Oracle, the first stop was in Irvine, CA (April 3rd) at the Oracle Office. George Jacob,(GVP & GM, Siebel CRM at Oracle) opened the event by presenting the Siebel CRM Executive Strategy Updates. Following George, we had presentations by Agnes Zhang (Product Management Director, Siebel, Oracle), Balaji Ramachandran (CEO of SoftClouds), Mark Pirkl (Principal Sales Consultant, CRM Service, Oracle), Mahesh Jeyakumar (Practice Director, SoftClouds), Asokan Ashok, (Chief Innovation Officer, SoftClouds), and Sundar Viswanathan (Practice Director, SoftClouds).
The main focus was on Digital Transformation and helping customers realize how to leverage Siebel CRM as part of the various transformation strategies. We learned about the newest trends in the CRM industry, the innovation highlights in the Siebel world and heard interesting success stories about customers who managed to transform their Siebel investment and achieve surprising results.
Here are the key takeaways
1. Siebel is not dead; it's very much alive and full of potential
This is one of the most debatable CRM topics.
Oracle is not looking to stop innovating and developing in Siebel. Siebel is the most mature CRM software available in the market right now. It is rich in built-in functionalities, highly stable and robust, said George Jacob in his Siebel CRM Executive Strategy Update presentation.
The rumors of Siebel's demise are an exaggeration. Innovation and new implementation projects are still going on. Back in the days, Siebel had to be connected with all mainframes in big businesses, and interestingly today, Siebel has become a CRM Hub in regards to CX and digital experience. With Siebel as a Hub, you can extend and go in many of different directions; the possibilities are numerous. As you can see in the image below, the Oracle Integration Cloud Service (ICS) can help readily integrate Siebel into multiple products/solutions.
There is a common customer misconception that just "touching" Siebel will cost millions of dollars. This is not entirely true, as Siebel can easily co-exist with Oracle Cloud Solutions. And with the right development team transforming Siebel can be a much smoother and less expensive process, said Balaji Ramachandran.
Siebel + Qupplet + Watson
Chief Innovation officer, Asokan Ashok, and practice Director Sundar Viswanathan, the creators of SoftClouds's Innovation Lab showcased Qupplet, their latest innovation for Siebel that utilizes IBM Watson as a platform for Natural Language Processing. Qupplet from SoftClouds is an NLP engine integrated into the Siebel Interface as an applet and appears on the users screen. A quick Qupplet query can get accurate and relevant results and save users the amount of time it takes to perform a search. Qupplet is able to extract relevant information using natural language rather than syntactical queries to better define and narrow searches. In other words, Qupplet "understands" what you're looking for and filters, sorts and retrieves information based on plain English. Learn more about Qupplet in Next Generation Search in Siebel.
There are so many possibilities to take Siebel to the next level and Qupplet is only the beginning. With forward-looking technologies like NLP, AI, Predictive and Proactive Analytics, a perfect storm of innovation is coming together to shape the CX of the future, said Asokan Ashok.
2. Siebel in 2018 — from Innovation Packs to Continuous Innovation
Oracle introduced the Continuous Release Model for Siebel where all future features will be delivered in Updates. This new model will begin with the 18.4 update and will provide new features and innovation faster to Siebel customers so they can embrace frequent innovation updates without the need for significant upgrades.
Siebel 2018 Continuous Release Model
- Continuous Delivery — Align with Agile development and deliver cumulative releases
- Only one code line needed; no more multiple code lines like in past versions
- Never run out of maintenance updates for releases
- Simplified application update process, reducing maintenance over the old application upgrade approach
3. The Digital Customer — Taking an Outside-In-Approach
In the CRM world, we used to think of the world in an Inside-Out Approach, hoping that if we build it they will come. Today, we are guiding the customer to where they need to go next, and that is Outside-in-Approach, said Mark Pirkl during his presentation about unlocking the potential of Siebel CRM.
Today's consumer is more connected than ever before and expects excellent service with less effort. Siebel on its own lacks the capabilities to address the pain points of the modern customer and the digital workforce. As most companies cringe at the idea of rip and replace, they would much rather consider a Hybrid Cloud approach that allows them to get the best out of both worlds without the risk of costly major system replacement. At the Siebel Grand Tour event, both Oracle and SoftClouds teams shared success stories of customers who decided to go with a Hybrid Cloud solution where they integrated their Siebel CRM with Oracle Service Cloud and went from a slow single channel customer support to faster and more efficient multichannel customer service.
The event ended with a panel discussion where the panelists shared their views on how Siebel will progress towards the future and conquer the digital era. Our exclusive guest panelist Sule Klein,(Applications Manager, Mazda) shared the pain points of Mazda's call center agents and how she hopes to see Siebel transformed to solve call center inefficiencies and reflect the needs of the modern customer.
All panel participants concluded the discussion with a wish list that included, microservices enablement in Siebel, the upgrade model to reflect the mobile model, and high hopes for lower barriers for customers to stay in Siebel.
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This blog was written by Marija Dimitrova, Marketing Manager at SoftClouds. Marija has over 5 years of product marketing experience with a track record of mastering technical markets and products. Her expertise includes Product Management, Product Marketing Management, Content Writing, Search Engine Optimization, Web Development and Web Design, Graphic Design, UX and UI Design. She is passionate about the future of CX, IoT and Cybersecurity..