What if we could tell you the contact center can be better, faster, smarter and more successful in creating loyalty with your customers that is long lasting? Creating a better customer and agent experience has been a goal that businesses have been chasing for decades. It is finding the delicate balance between agent efficiency, self-service performance and customer expectations that continues to be the challenge for most businesses. How do you create a smarter experience for customers and agents without sacrificing something?
Touchpoints are vital to the overall customer experience. It is during these moments, when a customer reaches out to you to conduct business, that your company has the opportunity to really put its best foot forward and leave a lasting impression. When too much emphasis is placed on these moments, though, it can actually have a negative impact. It will leave the customer feeling like the only time you truly care about them is when there is something to be gained by you.
What You Really Need to Focus On is the Entire End-to-End Customer Journey
Chat automation and other forms of artificial intelligence are effective in boosting customer engagement. The micro-experiences these tools create, however, do not account for even a fraction of a customer’s entire experience with your brand. If your company defines the customer experience by only a series of touchpoints, you’re missing out on a valuable source of information.
Let’s face it, contact centers are not that exciting – but times, they are a changing. This next year the focus across the board will be on the customer journey. Customers are not just buying products anymore, they are buying experiences. We’ve put together a list of facts to show you just how crucial the customer experience is and will continue to be, both now and in the future.
“Few technologies are more despised than interactive voice response (IVR).
It doesn’t help that big companies have largely replaced the dreaded ‘press one for sales’ with voice recognition technologies. Instead of repeatedly pressing zero, we can all now repeat the word ‘representative’ until we finally get a human on the line. Is this progress?
It’s no wonder, then, that IBM decided to exit the IVR market a few years ago, selling off its WebSphere Voice products to a holding company that rebranded its new offering Blueworx in early 2016.
Out of the gate, Blueworx faced multiple challenges: not only does IVR top consumers’ most-hated list of technologies, but established incumbents like Avaya , Cisco Systems, Genesys, and Aspect dominate the space.
To make matters worse, Blueworx had no choice but to leverage older software that IBM had optimized for its own hardware, as well as AIX, its aging flavor of UNIX.
Playing ball by the incumbents’ rules was a losing proposition. The only way to compete was to reinvent the IVR game.” Continue reading on Forbes.com.
So, who are we exactly and what is it that we really do? I mean of course besides being an awesome team of people who might play ping pong between conference calls and rattle an employee in the hot seat once a month by asking them absurd questions (“you’re an ordained minister?!” True story.). We are more than that, we do actually work. Well most of us anyway. And not only do we work hard, but we love what we do. So, while some of us may wear socks with sandals or choose Batman over Robin, we’d like to share with you what Blueworx is all about.
Over the course of the next 12 days we will be showing you who Blueworx is. By day #12, we are confident you will not only choose Blueworx for your business, but shout out to all of your friends (real or Facebook) all of the reasons why you think we rock (and not because most of us really do believe in aliens).
The holidays are in full swing and even if you couldn’t tell already by the Christmas lights that adorn the many homes, you definitely can tell by the wait times, especially when calling into customer service. Two days before Thanksgiving I received text messages notifying me that packages I had ordered from an online giant had been delivered. Awesome, I thought. I love how technology has advanced so much that I knew the exact moment to leave my warm office chair to open the front door. Only this time as the chill blew into my face, my porch was empty. No package, and definitely not two that were clearly marked as delivered just minutes before.
In my last article on virtual assistants and bots improving CSAT by cutting down on boredom (https://www.blueworx.com/do-you-hate-waiting-in-line/ ), one thing I didn’t address was how to add automation to the contact center without it being perceived as just an extension of the IVR. Because, let’s face it, most people don’t like IVR, and few of them understand that without IVR, product costs would increase. So, how do you use chatbots and virtual assistants without adding to the frustration of the customer?
I bet you can recall the last time you had a really terrible customer experience. It was probably pretty recent and could still be as fresh as day in your mind. But are you able to remember a good customer experience, or even a great one? Perhaps it was in a store. Or maybe something as simple as an online purchase. Whatever it was, great customer experiences seem to stand out more than bad ones. And sadly, because those over-the-top-genuinely-want-to-help experiences are few and far between.
User Experience (UX) Design is intended to develop clear, efficient, user-friendly interactions between customers and businesses through a variety of applications. It is more than just recording prompts for your IVR with a voice that “sounds good” or designing a call flow that gets the customer where they need to go. An effective communication interface is intuitive. It is efficient, saving customers’ time and keeping their frustration levels down. A connection is made that is clear and easy to understand, giving the customer a positive experience.
Do you hate waiting in line? On hold? Most of us would certainly answer, “yes.” However, the psychology behind waiting in line says that most of us don’t hate waiting in line – we hate being bored. That’s why there are floor to ceiling mirrors in most large buildings near the elevator. It gives us all something to do (check other people out). In addition, one of the first people who studied the science behind waiting in line was AK Erlang. Some of you may recognize the last name – that’s right, he worked the probability and statistics behind the calculators that allow us to determine the lines/agents/bandwidth needed in a contact center based on busy hour traffic and average handle time.
“So what?” you ask.
With the increase in technology making competition for customers more fierce than ever, banks have a huge incentive to improve their customer experience. But just how important is the customers experience to a bank’s bottom line?
According to Forrester Research, the overall monetary impact of customer experience (CX) on a business, defined by how customers perceive their interaction with your company, is measured in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Poor customer experiences are a huge source of wasted money for businesses, which can be quantified in terms of tens of millions of dollars for a typical financial company. Combined with spikes in dissatisfaction due to the changing structure of banking fees, failure to implement and modify top-notch customer service solutions will have devastating consequences. In fact, among all businesses, banks have the highest correlation between customer experience and the likelihood of switching businesses.