Realities of managing the customer experience in the contact center.

Today, many contact centers are managing their resources and investments on a cost per contact basis. But while this is a core metric for managing those centers, I would argue that in the current economic climate, there may be more to the equation than just this.  For contact center managers, understanding the customer experience, and moreover managing it more effectively, is rapidly becoming equally important.  With the trend moving more towards a self-service model, managers are increasingly challenged to provide a positive experience, while keeping the overall cost to service their customers low.

Today, the measured customer satisfaction rating for these self service interactions is relatively low, leaving room for improvement, and in some cases, room for innovation.  This can come from a myriad of issues that many of us have faced in our own interactions with Web and phone support systems in use today.  What's more is that when a failed self service interaction results in a phone call, the lack of connection between the two interactions only further frustrates the consumer.

Customers want and expect more. This calls for self service tools that go beyond basic inbound and outbound voice - and create a productive interaction that uses speech to its greatest capacity, while connecting to live agents only as needed. In addition, there should be a recognition that there have to be self service solutions tailored to specific company needs, based not only on a specific industry's requirements and practices, but also by helping serve the commonly accepted ways in which customers are comfortable sharing information. This, of course, introduces a new set of challenges, such as security and cost to serve, but companies can start with the goal of striving for and providing outstanding customer service. After this is established, companies can build upon this momentum as the company matures.
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This page contains a single entry by Chris McGugan published on February 11, 2009 5:21 PM.

When Self-Service Applications Fail to Deliver is the next entry in this blog.

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