Delight Customers By Delivering 3 Critical Aspects of Customer Service
The Northeast Contact Center Forum (NECCF) consistently brings together the right mix of professionals to facilitate an exchange of ideas among contact center professionals. That’s why I enjoy going to their events such as this year’s annual fall event. NECCF events consistently focus on practical, applicable outcomes:
- The most cost-effective ways to invest your contact center resources
- Real-world insights in creating more organizational value without compromising service levels
- Best practices to collaborate staffing levels and optimize productivity
- Everyday operational practices to employ immediately for both high quality and efficient outcomes
“To surprise and delight customers in our modern world, contact centers need to build three critically important aspects of service into their customer experiences.”
NECCF proves to be a great place to keep an ear to new advancements and perspectives in the contact center industry. The fall event’s first speaker outlined a few important ideas centered around a common theme — surprising and delighting customers. To do that in our modern digital landscape where customers can get almost anything they want delivered to their door or instantly binge-watch their favorite tv show, contact center executives need to build three critical features into their customer service experiences.
1) Give Customers A Choice
Customers today use many platforms to interact with businesses. That means corporations need to offer different channels to access answers. In the past, the faces of a corporation were the employees working in showrooms, retail floors, and speaking face-to-face with customers. Today, the faces of a corporation is spread out across many channels of interaction, making websites, social media, and the Customer Service team equally important to, or even more important then, the brick and mortar experience. Microsoft’s State of Global Customer Service report found an incredible 59% of consumers have used three (or more!) channels to get their questions answered. To keep up with customers, fast, easy to use, digital self-service for common, straight forward inquiries is imperative along with minimal wait times to speak with the live agents that handle complex or empathy-critical questions and special solutions. Businesses can also use social media and SMS-connected platforms to reach customers where they are instead of forcing customers into limited channels of communication.
2) Give Customers 24/7 Access
Thanks to the on-demand economy, customers want to work on their own schedule. Businesses can no longer limit customer service to business hours. Consumers are accustomed to and expect access to what they want exactly when they want it. They assume the same unlimited access to solutions will be available from customer service. Consumers don’t see any reason they should be forced to wait until the next day to find a solution to their problems.
3) Give Consumers Full Autonomy
Consumers today are more powerful than they’ve ever been. Even in our day-to-day lives if we have any questions or concerns we can Google the answer, diagnose ourselves online, or even find a video to teach us a new skill. Before many customers even call customer service, they’ve self-diagnosed the issue and are confident they know how difficult the solution should be to resolve. Many times customers understand them well enough to solve the problem on their own. Rarely does someone want to wait for someone else’s assistance if they can self-serve instead. In fact, Microsoft found 88% of consumers expect businesses to offer some sort of customer self-service capabilities, and 66% try using self-service before trying any other form of customer service.
The Future Is Self-Service
Customer service is becoming more important by the day. Groups like NECCF and the events they host are as well. By sharing ideas and best practices across the industry, vendors like Zappix can make platforms and solutions that optimize and streamline contact center interactions and provide consumers the experiences they want and expect from modern customer service. Insights like the ones I heard at NECCF’s fall event, as well as what we’ve learned working with customers in industries that include insurance, retail, healthcare, logistics, and others are why our ethos at Zappix revolves around four main principles: speed, simplicity, mobility, and automation.
Visual IVR and On-Demand Apps provide consumers the experiences they demand, transforming the customer journey, and helping businesses in every sector move out of the past and optimize their systems to deliver a modern-day customer service experience.