Today, customers have become very demanding. They are more knowledgeable and have access to a greater amount of options in each and every industry that meets their requirements. Customer loyalty has become a rarity and it takes great deal of effort to keep customers happy and satisfied today, more so than was required a decade ago. Customers want a frictionless journey on channels of their choice. They want their problems heard and subsequently resolved quickly. However, the industry is massively unprepared for this revolution.
CSAT Scores Are Dropping
Experts cite customer experience as the key differentiator for any businesses success. Yet, it has been found that the C-Sat scores have been dropping for some time now. One of the reasons for this is that contact centers are still looked as cost centers. However, there is an urgent need for call centers to evolve into resolution centers. This requires a cultural change across the company, where the front line employees (call center agents) are considered the most vital clog in a customer’s journey.
Based on the findings present in Dimension Data’s 2015 Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report, it seems there is still some time before companies are able to catch up with their customers’ requirements. Some of the key findings with respect to technology are:
With experts believing that there will be a 74% increase in customers’ interactions, it becomes all the more necessary to upgrade the call centers with the newest technologies. Add multiple channels to this mix and the complexity levels are further intensified.
Customer Contact – The Channels
The following image shows what is to be expected in the near future about customers preferred channel for interactions:
Digital Revolution is the need of the hour. The telephone-centric contact center stereotype is no longer valid. Digitals interactions are proposed to exceed voice contacts. Marketers are concentrating on personalization. Organizations have started to recognize that customer engagement is a great method of maintaining loyalty and obtaining repeat business.
Focus on Contact Center Interactions
This has in turn reflected the importance of data. All the data in the call centers that has been lying around should be put to good use. Big Data and analytics tools are predicted to be the biggest trend to shape the contact center industry over the next five years. Understanding the customer journey, as well as the context of customer behavior over multiple contacts and channels, is paramount. It will help the organization address customers’ issues, shape their experiences, and enrich the engagement, creating greater value for both parties.
The combination of technology and the ability to effectively listen to customers across channels and then analyze and act in real time will give a good head start in developing an excellent engagement model, which will in turn positively affect customer experience.
(This is the part 1 of a 3-part series – ‘Future of Enterprise Contact Centers’)