Guided self-service applications allow customers to access information and perform routine tasks without requiring any interaction with a representative of an enterprise. They can also reduce operational costs through decreased paperwork and lower call center activity. Users can be given relevant information in the context of the transactions they are trying to complete and even have real-time collaboration with a representative when required. Examples of guided self-service applications are product configurators, online banking and e-commerce.
Rich Internet applications (RIA), such as those created using Adobe Flex 2.0, are an ideal candidate for creating a guided self-service application for the web.
Adobe Flex 2.0 can simplify complex, multi-step processes in a single, dynamic interface that provides a higher level of service to customers, resulting in deeper loyalty and higher-value relationships. An RIA built using Adobe Flex can also provide in-context prompting through audio and video integration providing the real-time collaboration required by self-service applications.
While a guided self-service application is an excellent means for effectively capturing data and providing a superior user experience, a complete Enterprise solution will also require the ability to archive signed documents, provide output that can be printed and offer the ability to go offline. An RIA cannot satisfy all of these requirements on its own but it should be able to integrate easily with additional server solutions in order to gain this additional functionality.
A RIA created using Adobe Flex and an application created using Adobe LiveCycle can then be integrated into one complete solution.
Want to learn more? Attend Adobe MAX during October 24 – 26 in Las Vegas and be sure to check out some of the Adobe LiveCycle sessions. In particular there is an Adobe LiveCylce Forms workshop that will show how to create and integrate a guided selef-service application using Adobe Flex and Adobe LiveCycle Forms.
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