Perficient Blogs Expert Insights Mon, 21 Jan 2019 21:21:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 30508587 Copyright © Perficient Blogs 2011 (Perficient Blogs) (Perficient Blogs) 1440 Perficient Blogs 144 144 Blogs at Perficient Perficient Blogs Perficient Blogs no no Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Healthcare Marketers Mon, 21 Jan 2019 20:45:17 +0000 Healthcare marketers today have a lot on their plates. From juggling the demands of traditional community outreach and marketing to exploring ways to educate health consumers about the services your organization provides, the landscape can be rugged with no clear path to success. Further complicating matters, consumers today expect you to know them and offer personalized communications; by delivering the right message, at the right time, to the right consumer. In light of this reality, we cannot understate the importance of Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Healthcare Marketers.

Insight and Research

In retrospect, we believe this may explain the recent explosion of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology within healthcare. According to research firm Statistics Market Research Consulting in their recent Healthcare CRM – Global Market Outlook (2017-2026) report, the global healthcare CRM market is expected to reach $28.89B by 2026. A key factor contributing to this growth is increased focus on patient engagement.

Certainly, key to that engagement is a robust email marketing strategy. Perhaps because email is still the most important tool healthcare marketers use to communicate with your community and consumers. Email allows you to reach your community at scale, easily share important announcements and content, and communicate and educate your community about the unique value of your services. When done properly, email can also offer personalized, one-on-one communication that your consumers will value.

In our experience, many health providers do not offer tools or even basic templates to help minimize the effort required for you to engage with your community. Most are also slow to adopt newer innovations in marketing automation, which offers tremendous benefits in audience segmentation, A/B testing of messaging and campaign management tools with email performance metrics.

Stay Tuned!

Over the coming weeks we will release a series of blogs highlighting the benefits of Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing for healthcare marketers. In this blog series we will highlight five email marketing trends and best practices that, when leveraged with Dynamics 365 for Marketing, can help you improve consumer engagement, driving higher marketing ROI. Stay tuned for our first blog highlighting how Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Marketing can help you with the basics of email marketing. Until then, you can visit here to learn how our clients are using Microsoft Dynamics 365 to accelerate their businesses.

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Perficient Elevates Twilio to Strategic Partner Status Fri, 18 Jan 2019 20:55:07 +0000 Perficient is excited to announce that Twilio has been designated a Strategic Partner.

This designation comes as our partnership with Twilio continues to strengthen and build momentum. Case in point, following Twilio’s general availability release of Flex in October 2018, excitement for their fully programmable cloud contact center platform has rapidly increased. It’s little wonder, as the platform is considered by many an innovation in customer service, with Flex offering total control to change any layer of the contact center stack, delivering it with the speed of the cloud.

The Perficient Approach to Twilio Flex

As a Twilio Gold Flex Partner with certified Flex engineers, our experts are uniquely positioned to help organizations evaluate and pilot Twilio Flex based on their current needs, usage patterns, and success criteria.

Whether you are exploring Twilio for the first time, looking to migrate your production contact center, or hoping to take customer care to the next level, our capabilities include:

  • Strategy and Planning – we’ll review your current contact center needs, map current functionality to Twilio Flex and other Twilio services and provide pilot planning.
  • Contact Center Migration – including Twilio Flex provisioning, call flow configurations, and testing.
  • Integration Services – ensures seamless integration with contact center applications (WFM, reporting, etc.), connectivity to third party and proprietary systems including CRM, ERP, ticketing and e-commerce, and development into Salesforce, Dynamics/Microsoft, Oracle and IBM platforms.
  • Managed Services – ongoing technical support and maintenance of Twilio applications and Tier 2+.
  • Adoption Management – provides a structured engagement plan, including organizational communication strategies, leadership and employee engagement, end-user training, and documentation to ensure employees play an active role in the change, receiving the training and support they need.
  • DevOps – including strategy and road-mapping, continuous deployment and delivery tools, integration and testing programs, and delivery and improvement program development.

To learn even more about our Twilio expertise and how we can help you begin your contact center transformation, click here.

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Innovation Predicted to Drive Cloud Usage in 2019 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 18:05:58 +0000 Enterprises will move beyond cheap fixes and instead seek innovative app services in order to modernize their businesses in 2019, according to Forrester’s “Predictions 2019: Cloud Computing” report.

Forrester believes that 2019 is the year that the cloud comes to the forefront for enterprises. Many companies look set to decide that now is the time to make the move from legacy software to cloud.

Cloud giants will grow

With this in mind, Forrester believes that the largest public cloud providers, such as Alibaba, Amazon Web Services, Google, IBM, Microsoft Azure, and Oracle, will continue to grow. The increased focus on app modernization will play a part in that, along with international growth for these companies. Europe in particular looks to be a region for further expansion.

Containerization to continue

Containerization will also continue to be the way forward for core enterprise apps and innovation within the industry – a trend that saw Kubernetes (K8s) thrive in 2018. This year will see a focus on making these K8s easier to deploy, secure, monitor, scale, and upgrade. Forrester expects cloud security vendors to help this trend continue by encouraging containers and the development of security features.

Private cloud choices

Migration will continue in private cloud too, with many choosing a private server due to compliance regulations regarding security. Forrester predicts that enterprises will need to decide among three key strategies for adopting a private cloud: building it themselves with developer-focused tools, getting someone else to build it for them with software stacks, or building it themselves with OpenStack. While the first is the traditional route, it is also expensive and complex, meaning companies may decide to go down one of the other two routes. Whatever the choice, integration of the company’s legacy systems with the cloud is still a necessity.

Day 1 vs. day 2

Decisions about PaaS deployment will also by influenced by a growing concern for quality in 2019, according to Forrester. The view from enterprises will be that day 1 and day 2 experiences are equally important. This means that enterprises will focus both on deployment and how easy ongoing governance and operations are. As a result, DevOps will be more important than ever in ensuring this is the case.

SaaS-based industry ecosystems to appear

Finally, along with the growth of the large public cloud providers, it is predicted that SaaS-based industry ecosystems will appear. This follows the emergence of industry-specific SaaS platforms and mergers in 2018. While this might not affect enterprises directly, it is something to keep an eye on. A merger and the development of an ecosystem could be a chance for innovation in 2020.

These predictions indicate that change is ahead, and that those that aren’t ready to embrace innovation will be left behind. Legacy systems often encapsulate the point in time that an enterprise adopted them – 2019 is expected to be the year that cloud makes this no longer the case.

To find the full report from Forrester, follow this link.

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Three Keys to Creating a Successful Support Team Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:43:15 +0000 When customers have a problem, call center agents are the front line of defense. In addition to using the right technology to enable them for success, make sure you have the right team to start with. Here are three ways you can create a successful support team that will service your customers with grace and efficiency.

1. Hire the Right People

As volumes of customer conversations balloon across an increasing number of channels, companies are increasing staff sizes: 46% of global contact center decision makers project 5%-10% growth in the next year, and 14% project growth of more than 10%.

With customer service hiring trends on the rise, what goes into a great customer service employee?

Here are some skills of a talented customer service representative:

  • Is patient, actively listen, and has the ability to practice empathy
  • Ability to “read” a customer’s emotional state and naturally mirror a customer’s’ language, phrasing, and tone
  • Speaks and write with clarity and brevity while detailing a list of issues and takes the time to proofread and correct any mistakes
  • Uses a human tone when reading from a script with a clear voice, smooth pronunciation, and allows customers can “hear the smile”
  • Is friendly and able to express negative information in a positive way, using supportive language
  • Summarizes the problem and ways they can help
  • Moves easily between channels and solve problems with the skills that best suit each channel
  • Is considerate of timeframes and communicates hold times
  • Looks for cues if something is unclear, is able to extract the right information, and also determine if something should be handled by another department

Most importantly, they can adequately communicate everything that you’re doing to help.

We recommend customer service agents interested in increasing their communications skills can take this training module.

2. Share How You Use Data to Measure Success

Dashboards built into Salesforce measure consistency, trends, and growth and how Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) can change over time.

Call center leaders look for quantitative information like fewer cases produced, reduction in phone calls, amount of chat sessions that engage a live person, reduction in cases, and time of human on case. They also look for length of case prior to resolution, how many articles viewed (and which ones), most viewed, and which articles were voted up or down.

Additionally, qualitative information can be garnered using surveys, pop up prompts to rate satisfaction, and user-provided positive feedback (manual text) on the document.

3. Use Rewards to Continue to Inspire Customer Service Excellence

When agents do go the extra mile, motivate them with rewards and recognition. They are dealing with the customer highs and the customer lows, and no matter what happens, they are they face the customer in need sees – and they need to be your biggest brand champions.

“Learning how to interact with customers is something that anyone starting any business must master. It’s an amazing opportunity to be able to learn the ropes at an established company and then employ your expertise at your own company.” — Marc Benioff

See more Marc Benioff quotes about employees here

The key to call center excellence is a blend of enthusiastic people properly enabled to offer customers service in a method of their choice, offering consistent, efficient service at every touchpoint. Perficient helps you transform customer service for your call center by advising you on potential goals, strategies, processes, and technology. To ultimately, support your agents and empower your customers with knowledge. Download our guide below for more info. 

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Setting Up The Current Period For New Asset Books Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:00:25 +0000 As many of you know, making uninformed decisions on implementation projects may prove to be costly. I have had experiences where customers are faced with making decisions but, they were not aware of the implications their choices would have on the project. One of those key decision is identifying Fixed Assets in the first accounting period.

Oracle Assets Overview

Oracle Assets has its own calendar, so thankfully, you are not forced to convert your assets legacy data at a particular time. Most legacy systems will give you complete data after closing the last period of accounting in your legacy system. The best period to start with in Oracle Assets is therefore the first period of the next fiscal year.

Set the current period to the last accounting period in the legacy system. The current period does not have to be as far back as the oldest Date Placed in Service. Going back to the oldest date placed in service will require you to close and open periods to roll the date to the current date. This exercise is time-consuming and adds no value.

Business Scenario: A Go-Live at the beginning of the New Year

It is a leading practice to convert legacy assets in the last period of the year prior to the go-live date.

Go-live period is Jan-2019.

Current Period is set to Dec-2018.

Oracle Assets screenshot detailing instructions


Business Scenario: B Go-Live in the middle of the New Year

In this scenario the legacy assets are converted in the period prior to go-live period.

Go-live period is Aug-2018.

Current Period is set to Jul-2018.

Closing Considerations

To continue reading more about Oracle programs, click here.

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Perficient Elevates Chef to Strategic Partner Status Thu, 17 Jan 2019 23:13:56 +0000 Perficient is excited to announce that Chef is moving to a Strategic Partnership.

They will join other distinguished partners on this list, including Google and AWS. These companies represent continually high levels of success and achievement at Perficient.

Graphic logo of Chef as Perficient Strategic Partner

Chef is a leader in secure, continuous automation open source and commercial software. Their elevation to Strategic Partner results from their increasing momentum and innovation in the market. We recognize Chef as a company that has the potential for significant growth opportunities. In addition, we recognize them for maintaining technology capabilities that can help us better serve our clients’ unique needs.

Jason Krech, Director of DevOps Consulting at Perficient, expressed his excitement around the expanding partnership. “Our work with Chef has continued to accelerate over the course of our two year partnership – we are excited to partner with Chef as a key services partner, as well as take Chef embedded solutions to clients as part of our DevOps solutions.”

As a services partner to Chef, we are also continuing to invest in on-going training and certification of our existing team of Chef-certified practitioners, as well as investing in hiring in this space.

This elevated partnership better positions us to continue achieving our goal of providing more clients with end-to-end solutions to automate their entire software delivery cycles. We are able to better leverage our core competencies, enhance and extend our service offerings, and strengthen our deep cross-platform experience and expertise.

Learn more about our Chef expertise and how we can help you begin your DevOps journey with Chef here.


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iReceivables Blog Series – Part 1 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 23:10:32 +0000 In my iReceivables blog series, I’ll give a high level overview of iReceivables, its pros and cons and will also provide some tips for a successful implementation based on experience I’ve gained over the years.


iReceivables, is part of Oracle’s Credit to Cash software solution, its main purpose is to provide a portal where customers can login and view their account activity, pay bills, run statements etc.

iReceivables would be a good fit for organizations that have a large number of customers and/or for those who spend a lot of time and money on billing and billing-related tasks such as statement printing and mailing, handling billing-related customer service calls etc. If your accounts receivable department is overwhelmed with receiving customer payments or remediating customer disputes, the application is a good fit for you.  iReceivables will help significantly reduce your load by passing on most of the laborious tasks to the customer.

Since security is a concern nowadays, features in iReceivables enable the customer to securely login to their personal portal using their own unique credentials. There is a locking mechanism in place to prevent hackers from accessing the system or customer data. The external portal is outside the ‘DMZ’ (Demilitarized Zone), which means that it’s located outside your internal network, therefore your internal network and business data is secured from outside traffic.

There’s a self-registration process whereby customers register themselves. Once a customer has registered and logged in to what Oracle calls the self-service portal, the pages and functions are user friendly. Customers will be able to view their own statements, balances that are due, aging on their invoices and any other details related to their account in real time.

iReceivables Dashboard

A very popular feature with customers is the ability to download almost all activity (statements, open transactions etc.) in Excel format, another is the ability to print copies of their invoices on their own. What the application does is give the customer control over managing their account while relieving you of attending to these tasks.

Other cool features include:

– ‘Internal’ access that enables personnel in your company access to the full customer search capability to display customer information.

– Drill-down capabilities on invoice activity, open and overdue balances, payments, credit memos, adjustments, payments and disputes.

-Attachment function that enables customers to view attachments on their invoices and also attach their own.

In Part 2 of this blog series, I’ll dive deeper into some of the functionality, talk of a few ‘cons’ I’ve run into and give tips for a successful implementation.

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The Business Case for Telematics Thu, 17 Jan 2019 20:56:59 +0000 1. Do you manage a small or large fleet of vehicles that are critical to your business operation?
2. Do you have the necessary data to manage your fleets utilization, preventative maintenance, driver behaviors and route optimization?

If you answered YES to question 1 and NO to question 2 you should consider a implementing a telematics solution.

Telematics Overview

Telematics is the monitoring of location, movements, status, and behavior of a vehicle/driver. This is achieved by installing a GPS communications device in the vehicle that sends vehicle data and engine diagnostics to the dispatcher and/or Fleet Manager.

A Telematics graphic explaining the process

Robust telematics solutions can offer the following capabilities and more:
Vehicle Tracking – Ability to view location of vehicles
GEO Fences – Ability to set virtual fences around company yards or drop sites. When a geo fence is penetrated the vehicle sends a notification to configurable individuals. This functionality serves as theft control or provides live alerts when vehicle is close to home base or at a customer site.
Driver Behavior – Monitors safety events such as speeding, hard braking, rapid acceleration
Idle Time Monitoring – Tracks vehicle idle events and alerts interested parties. Truck idling poses an enormous fuel cost for companies managing large fleets.
Preventative Maintenance– Actively monitors vehicle diagnostics i.e. oil pressure and transmits alerts when readings are out of specification.
Electronic Logs – Eliminates manual paper based logs. When driver logs into the vehicle, the driver status is tracked based on the motion of the vehicle until the driver logs out. Regulators and Managers like e-logs as they are far more accurate than paper based logs and far more efficient.
Electronic Vehicle Inspection – Mobile application that walks the driver through an inspection checklist for pre and post drive inspections.

Business Case for Telematics

I implemented a telematics solutions where the cost of implementation was funded solely with savings from idle time reduction. Drivers often leave vehicles running during the loading and unloading process. With the implementation of telematics, Managers receive active alerts for excessive idling events and are able to educate drivers and adjust idling behavior. One hour of idle time consumes 1 gallon of diesel fuel making the cost of a telematics implementation easy to justify and the benefits easy to communicate.

While idle time reduction provides tangible green dollar benefit, the real value of telematics comes from increased driver safety. Telematics provides the ability to detect unsafe driver behaviors such as speeding and hard braking. Armed with data, Managers can correct behaviors prior to the occurrence of traffic incidents. A single traffic incident can result in enormous financial liability not to mention the physical impact to those involved. That being said, any technology that can prevent such an incident is well worth the cost of implementation.


Telematics solutions offer a wide range of benefits from driver tracking to reduced idle time. These programs may have a tremendous ROI depending on the issues you are looking to address. Feel free to contact me if you are considering implementing a telematics solution and/or have any questions regarding implementation challenges.

Sean Breeze, Management Consulting Director
Cell: 303-916-7503  |  NASDAQ: PRFT  |
eMail –

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Improving Quality Management with Oracle Cloud Quality – Part 2 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 14:56:08 +0000 Welcome back!

In Improving Quality Management With Oracle Cloud Quality – Part 1,  we covered how Oracle Cloud quality is changing the game of managing quality data.

Specifically three pain points!

  1. Reducing the need for tribal knowledge by requiring data collection at specific points in the supply chain
  2. Not having the right resources notified of a non-conformance by leveraging automatic notifications
  3. Trying to report from various systems and files to reporting from a central data point

All big wins…right?

Today we are going to look at the structure and FLEXIBILITY of collecting quality data.

Imagine that we are going to manufacture batteries… and before they leave the plant we must know two things…

  1. Are the warning labels attached properly
  2. Are the voltage outputs within a specific range

We are going to assume you have an item setup for the battery, let’s call it BATTERY123

Now, there are three critical elements we are going to define.

1. Collection Characteristics

Collection Characteristics are the specific points of data you want to collect.

We will define two of them for our example:

  • Warning Label Attached 
  • Voltage Output

We will dive a bit deeper into the details of Collection Characteristics in Part – 3 (in development!)

2. Collection Plans

Think of the Collection Plan as the place we store all of Collection Characteristics for a specific product.

Let’s call it….BATTERY123_QA

As you can see below we have a Collection Plan with characteristics on it.

3. The Inspection Point

At what point in the supply chain do you want this data collected?

The competition of manufacturing makes sense for our example.

That way it never makes it into a box OR out the door if it doesn’t meet the standards!

Tying it all together

In summary, we have built a Collection Plan, with multiple Collection Characteristics, that is required to be acted upon once the manufacturing process is complete! All stored and required by Oracle Cloud Quality!

That is a pretty big improvement from the old file folder that only a few long term employees know about and remember to use!

Next time we are going to take a look at the flexibility of Collection Characteristics and how they can work for any business, including your’s.

To learn about other way Oracle Cloud can help your business make sure to grab your free guide below!

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Perficient Elevates Pivotal to Enterprise Partner Status Wed, 16 Jan 2019 22:03:56 +0000 Over the years, the relationship between Pivotal and Perficient has grown significantly. Throughout this partnership, Pivotal has enabled Perficient to grow our business and better serve our clients’ unique needs. That is why we’re pleased to announce Perficient has elevated Pivotal to an “Enterprise” partner, a designation that represents our largest and strongest partnerships. As an Advanced Pivotal Ready Partner, we are excited to watch this relationship continue to grow on both ends with a trusted leader in digital experience and business optimization.

Placing Big Bets On Pivotal

If you’ve been keeping up with our Pivotal partnership, you know that we’ve been placing “big bets” on the growing transformative software and services company. To date, we’ve completed 25 successful cloud migration projects through the optimized combination of infrastructure, applications, storage, data, analytics, collaboration, and messaging. All with minimal business disruption spanning industries such as automotive, financial services, industrial, media, retail, government, technology, and telecommunications. We’ve also invested in Pivotal’s PAL program to continue to enable our developers to create road-maps to execute complex digital transformations with Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF).

2018 Systems Integrator Partner of the Year for Customer Impact

Perficient isn’t the only one acknowledging this growing partnership. In September, Pivotal named Perficient a Systems Integrator Partner of the Year for Customer Impact award winner. The award recognizes our success in delivering innovative and effective solutions for customers on Pivotal’s cloud-native application platform, Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF). As Nick Cayou, Pivotal’s VP of Global Ecosystem put it, “the Pivotal and Perficient vision is to help Fortune 2000 enterprises move at startup speed to respond to customer expectations and bring new ideas to market faster, which requires a cloud-native platform and methodology”. Perficient is excited to continue spearheading cloud-native tools and methods. In addition, helping customers continuously improve software applications by partnering with Pivotal.

“The Pivotal and Perficient vision is to help Fortune 2000 enterprises move at startup speed to respond to customer expectations and bring new ideas to market faster, which requires a cloud-native platform and methodology.”

Enhancing the Connected Driver Experience

One of the more notable PCF projects Perficient teamed up with Pivotal to complete was one that involved creating a more effective, connected vehicle experience for a leading automotive company. The company’s existing platform relied on disparate legacy systems that lacked a robust user experience. This is where Pivotal and Perficient came in. By developing an API-driven, cloud native platform built on PCF, and implementing a rigorous, test-driven development approach in combination with CI/CD practices to streamline future development, we were able to provide greater flexibility, speed to market, and development effectiveness for the leading automotive company.

Interested in learning more about the Perficient and Pivotal relationship? Check out our newly updated Pivotal Partner Page, or download our guide that highlights the partnership as well.

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