This article provides a quick checklist of features and capabilities that any good case management system supporting a brand protection service should contain.
This chapter of a three-part series will discuss user experience, case management and workflow. To be effective, the technology must be useable and easy to understand. We have focused on factors that make the human elements of brand protection efficient.
Within online brand protection, case management is the system used to present the most relevant information to users in the clearest possible way.
Every system needs input, and in the case of a brand protection service this is usually carried out by a brand’s in-house staff or by external brand protection professionals. However, this is arguably the weak point of any system that seeks to run with minimal human interaction. Therefore, the job of any solution should be to make the user experience as intuitive and efficient as possible, to minimise time and maximise efficiency.
Cases should only require human analysis either during the onboarding process, while the software is still learning, or when cases do not meet the probability level needed to be automatically identified. This can be caused by a few key factors like new product releases, new sales channels or other significant changes to the product listing.
There are several approaches to workload management. Primarily, any good brand protection platform should provide its users with an agile layout that allows users to focus on one task at a time and complete that task before moving onto the second stage.
Any system that presents cases in the form of excel sheets or long lists will not be optimising staff time. Trello, the task management software, is the perfect example of an outlay that allows users to categorise tasks by what action is needed, group them by that action, then work on the groups. Doing this, the user is repeating the same action until the list is complete. The user is then able to move onto another group, which requires a different action. This works well as it allows users to optimise their work for that specific action.
In the case of brand protection, that action may be to validate suspected infringements of a product. With a human-friendly system, the brand protection officer will be able to group all the cases for a product together and work their way through that list. They should be able to group potential infringements by a website, product or whatever category they find useful. They can then evaluate the same variables, such as price and selling location, of each case. As they work through the group, they will become more adept at spotting infringements for these variables and work to maximum efficiency.
For the above process to be optimised, staff must be able to see the necessary information as they need it. Information layering is the process by which the most critical information is present first and in a very visual manner. Using this, the easy decisions can be made by scanning the screen.
For more difficult cases, the user is then able to click on the case and view more details, allowing them to make a more considered decision. By removing all non-essential information, the platform can keep the user focused on the task, optimising their work and only slowing them when completely necessary.
Some elements of brand protection can be time consuming. When dealing with case after case, if the platform isn’t designed with UX in mind then it can affect user productivity and even accuracy.
Infringement cases should be set to disappear once they have been actioned. For example, a brand protection officer validating potential infringements should see each case disappear from that list as they reject or accept the infringement.
Although these cases will then be moved to another list, where they may be pending a different action, this ability to work through lists based on the action required improves user efficiency and accuracy. Lists should not automatically refill as new cases are detected, they should be capped by a metric set by the brand protection staff, such as a limited number of cases or a time scale. This fixed work limit and depleting list feature provide users with an attainable goal.
Brand protection platforms are built for humans; if they have not been designed without a basic understanding of human requirements, then this will undoubtedly affect the product’s usability and utility.
Small prompts, such as “job well done” or notifications about the user progress have been proven to improve efficiency. Also, alerts that remind the user about important cases or jobs pending tend to have higher productivity
Content in this article has been taken from the Case Management Ebook, available from the link below.