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The customer-communications industry in Australia has undergone significant change in the past 15 years, during which time the traditional print and mail house has given way to a proliferation of 'customer-communication specialists', many of which are now publicly listed in what is effectively a fully-outsourced market.
This rapid change has been fuelled by the powerful combination of:
* increased technological development
* streamlined processes
* the rise in consumer demand, and
* the continuous search by companies to develop more meaningful, cost-efficient methods with which to communicate with their customers.
But to fully understand where the industry is heading, it is important to examine how it has evolved.
Specialist expertise helps shape the industry
In our opinion, there have been two significant trends in the industry in the past 15 years: the continual outsourcing of essential print and mail services (from 10-20 per cent initially to 80-90 per cent today); and an expansion in the number of services available.
While rapid technological development helped drive these trends, the ongoing issue was that, while the technology was always available to support more efficient, …