When Shifting Left Isn’t Always Right - XSELL

With the onset of football season coming upon us in some form (hooray), it is once again time to get caught up on all the terms and nomenclature we have forgotten. 

Shifting, which requires repetition after repetition in practice to get right, can confuse the defensive opponent by having two players shift their position on the offensive side before the ball is snapped, causing a change in the formation. If the team properly executes a shift, the results will often lead to success. Perhaps a first down or even…a touchdown.

Shifting is also becoming one of the most popular  terms used today with business executives. Specifically, you can’t avoid hearing the term “shift left” when in the accompany of most business process, operations or development circles. 

In business process speak, shifting left means getting people or technology closer to the customer, an effective strategy in almost any case. Implementing this often includes some form of automation also, with a laser like focus on applying technology on patternistic, repetitive processes that something like a robot can easily achieve. 

Shifting left does not always need to be about the customer though, it is also  thought of as a way to expedite internal processes, optimizing the tasks for computers or lower skilled, less expensive or experienced associates to handle, freeing up those on the right for more complicated and intricate items to solve. The cost saving and efficiency gains here are very well documented and the opportunities are huge. Now that seems right!

Yet still, there are even more ways to think of shifting. In the DevOps world, shifting left suggests the need to identify bugs and do testing much earlier in the development and coding stages.  System security groups shift left by embedding security testing much earlier in the coding process than usual, resulting in improved detection and prevention (they hope). 

Yet with all the talk about shifting left, one process that remains in place is sales. And for good reason – so much of sales still requires the human touch, the interpersonal listening and live person efficacy. After all, we are mammals, not pieces of silicon.

That doesn’t mean to imply automation should not be applied where it can drive faster, cheaper and more efficient results. Ecommerce has proven that. Yet, there is a big difference between, seeking inventory levels in a row and column for a desired product and presenting it on a screen versus hearing an objection, showing empathy with the customer while exhibiting product knowledge and closing a more complex, dialogued interaction into a profitable sale or business outcome. These steps are not what a bot or any computer system is designed to tackle all that well. 

XSELL is here to merge the two sides – a bridge of the left and the right. Let’s find ways to automate conditioned learnings of the customer intent with our own offers/sales guidance on what is working so to improve the human and drive desired behavior across the board. Let’s raise the competency of agents with automation. That is what we call at XSELL a SHIFT UP. 

Hut one, hut two, let’s go!