Less than four seconds separated gold from silver in the 4x100m women’s freestyle relay final at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, but only just over half a second was the time difference between the last world record and the new achievement. For the winning Australian team, that half a second represented nearly two years of training. If you were managing a large team of contact centre agents, how long would it take you to cut a few seconds from the average handle time or average time customers wait in your IVR queue?
While your organisation’s contact centre is no longer the sole owner of customer engagement, by no means are contact centre metrics any less important. In fact, time-related metrics, along with broader customer engagement analytics, are becoming more critical for digital transformation and business success. They give a direct indication of your customer satisfaction and hence enable your contact centre managers to make informed decisions to adjust, develop and engineer to outperform and break new success records.
As your contact centre becomes more and more advanced, the hours taken out of the live customer interaction for a team’s training purposes become less and less impactful to these metrics. That is due to human capabilities variances and limits to absorb the abundance of data that they could be presented with. There is no question here of whether to use this customer data. Instead, it comes down to how it is used; it’s a matter of establishing the best way to optimally organise and use it to help customer-facing representatives, rather than bombarding them with the raw data.
But it takes more than just your contact centre team’s training to enhance your customer experience metrics. Smart and advanced technologies today, like augmented intelligence, give your organisation new dimensions in the game.
Chatbots, for example, which provide an automated text experience, are becoming widely deployed. Not all solutions in the market, however, come equipped with key capabilities such as Natural Language Process (NLP), routing to live agents, or the automation of social media mining. These capabilities could be the difference between positive and poor customer experiences.
Those capabilities enable you to automate not only the monitoring function of social media text communication traffic, which never sleeps, but also analyse them with NLP, which enables you to manage and mitigate negative customer experience in social media space 24×7. Needless to mention the reduced pressure on your agents, and allowing them to focus on more advanced customer issues rather than repetitive tasks and standard customer requests.
Augmented intelligence is now also in the contact centre routing technology. Behavioural pairing, for example, discovers and predicts patterns of interpersonal behavior to optimally pair customers with agents. The technology is used to examine customer data to determine patterns of successful behavioral interactions and applies these patterns in real time to drive improvements in customer satisfaction in several verticals including health, financial services, airlines, travel and others.
But should you start from there?
Clearly, that depends on your strategy on the customer engagement and where you are now in that strategy. While augmented intelligence is a reality today, it might not be the best place where to start. Where the objective is to get the best results on customer experience as quickly as possible, laying out the best digital transformation journey starts with the business objectives, and is followed by current business challenges, an analysis status quo and investment in the resources to drive a transition.
To drive a modernised customer experience story, keep monitoring your metrics, adjust your goals, choose the right partner, leverage what the smart technology can do for you and go compete with your younger you because, in customer experience, human expectations will always keep raising the bar to new levels.