Introduce Intelligence to Customer Experience: An Evolution Framework for Intelligent Decisioning

digital transformation course with tom goodwin

Partner Content


Simon Chung, International Head of Strategy at Acxiom, introduces Acxiom’s powerful “Evolution Framework for Decisioning,” a personalisation maturity model focused on intelligent decisioning from a people and processes point of view. Find out where your business is positioned.

Decisioning is the Answer for a Winning Customer Experience

Customer Experience has become the battleground for brands, with intelligent decisioning the key weapon. As consumers of all ages have embraced the digital worlds of Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon, their expectations have become sky-high. They demand instant, personalised and meaningful experiences from the brands they engage with at every touchpoint, every time.

For brands to succeed in this super-competitive modern battleground, particularly amid a competitive, shifting pandemic environment, they must be able to make better, faster and more intelligent decisions to gain that competitive advantage and provide the best possible customer experience across every channel.

Of course, meeting those expectations is no small order. Achieving that level of accurate, real-time, personalised engagement requires a level of intelligent decisioning, which is determined by the level of sophistication of a brand’s internal teams and processes.

But it is achievable! As David Keens shared in “The Evolving Identity Space,” the advancement and combination of data and technologies has made delivering customer experience frictionless, automated and in real-time possible, and rightly so. For example, imagine delivering personalised experiences that build brand trust and affinity – such as letting customers set spending limits on one-click purchase systems, and sending notifications before the limit is reached. Or helping customers get the best renewal offer online without having to call. Or, in the case of multi-brand conglomerates, ensuring that when a hotel is fully booked, a customer is not recommended to the same-chain hotel in a different city, but rather a similar hotel from a sister brand that is close by.

Intelligent Decisioning For Smart, Considered Customer Experiences

With this in mind, how can you achieve this level of intelligent decisioning, plus unlock the advantages of risk reduction, operational efficiency – and competitive advantage?

The starting point sits with the capability and sophistication of an organisation’s analytical, strategic and operational teams to:

  1. Turn data into actionable insights,
  2. Design robust decisioning rules that balance next best customer experience with commercial and brand impact, and
  3. Deliver creative and content that resonates on a personal and emotional level.

Acxiom’s ‘Evolution Framework for Decisioning’

To help organisations deliver across these three points, Acxiom have developed a new ‘Evolution Framework for Decisioning’. This starts with supporting the basics of data and technology maturity, and builds through seven levels of intelligent decisioning, to allow all of an organisation’s data sources to become fully accessible, and enable the operational process to advance from manual to machine based, to full automation.

Better decisioning, customer experiences, operational efficiency and competitive advantage are the result.

Moving through three key phases: Foundational, Strategic and Transformational, the Acxiom Evolution Framework for Decisioning is designed to support organisations at every stage of their data and decisioning journey:

The seven levels of intelligent decisioning aligned with Acxiom’s business development phases of foundational, strategic and transformational activities.

Key levels that the framework explores include:

  • Foundational Phase. At the foundational phase, a brand may have many data sources and disparate technologies – or lack of either thereof. Making the most of any existing capabilities, and auditing existing technologies is the first step to maximise value. This phase starts by setting the data and technology foundations for the future, whilst working to maximise an organisation’s current assets and capabilities.
  • Strategic Phase. Once the foundations are in place, greater value can be generated across the customer journey. This often requires some elements of change for an organisation, be it new technology, better data connections or shift in culture to be data-led. Prior to entering this stage, it is worth mentioning that adding new or replacing old technology platforms should have been considered against current and future business requirements.
  • Transformational phase. When advanced technology is integrated into the entire business it enables accurate, consistent and effective decisioning in real-time. With more data providing deeper insights than ever before, businesses at this level will be able to shift focus from improving customer experience to delivering hyper-personalisation at scale that will drive value and competitive advantage at each touchpoint.

Getting intelligent decisioning right is a gradual process across an organisation, and that organisation’s technologies and approach to data. And while you won’t go from a Foundational level to complete transformation overnight, get intelligent decisioning right, and you’ll be on the right track for CX success.

Find out more about Acxiom’s Evolution Framework for Decisioning here.