Why the Omnichannel Experience is Not Just Digital
When your customers are calling, emailing, or messaging with a problem, the last thing you want to supply them with is a frustrating experience. Customers want to explain their needs, get resolution, and move on with their days. It seldom happens this way. All too often, customers hop between self-service channels, bots, and agents where they are typically forced to repeat the same information from a previous call or digital inquiry over and over again in hopes of getting resolution. While this has been the norm for quite a long time, it is no longer acceptable with today’s demanding end users who are less likely to remain loyal customers. These consumers may just seek out companies that can better understand them and serve them on their terms without making getting help so frustrating. Customers may also post negative reviews or make social media posts that damage your brand when they are frustrated. This is the battleground for customer care strategies going forward.
There is a lot of buzz in the market around integrated digital customer care channels. However, most of this talk separates digital from voice. Some of this discussion even ignores voice entirely, due to the desire to drive digital adoption since many enterprises have more budget allocated for these channels. To develop the right channel mix strategy, you should not focus merely on digital and ignore having integrated voice. To best serve your customers your digital and voice platforms have to work together, or you’ll end up with the same frustrated customers. To us, a true modern experience features integrated digital and voice and all of the associated customer data (history, notes, extensive CRM data, etc.) available in real-time when the agent needs it the most. Consumers are now becoming accustomed to this.
The Results Are Worth the Effort
We always tend to focus on industry KPIs to gauge the success of an initiative, but sometimes there are more practical goals to track to get a gut check. Some clear measurable goals you should set as you map out your new digital and voice omnichannel strategy: reduce customer frustration (NPS and other metrics), increase productivity (FCR, AHT), and improve agent retention. In the end, this will reduce customer churn and improve agent morale. Just think about it: imagine shifting away from angry customers having to retell the same information about their personal journeys to a model where their histories follow them to expedite resolution across channels. This is what customers want, so why not give it to them?
Leverage the Cloud to Test Your Strategy
Not all companies have a digital care strategy in place today, so it’s worth considering how important it is to include voice as part of it. Of course, the power of the cloud is to be able to spin up pilots to prove out a new strategic direction. So look for cloud-based platforms that offer the necessary capabilities pre-designed for use in an agile way. Of course, today this includes considering how Artificial Intelligence can best be leveraged and available day one in the cloud platform, as well as having an open API design to maintain flexibility, and the agility to be proactive rather than reactive.