Workforce Optimization Featured Article

E-Book: True Customer Engagement is Scalable, Secure and Real-Time

August 12, 2014

Today’s customer has many names. He or she is “the digital customer” or possibly “the multichannel customer.” One of the most critical nicknames to keep in mind, however, is “the now customer.” Today’s customer expects to be served immediately when he or she reaches out to a company through an agent, with issues taken care of correctly and immediately, before the phone call or chat session even ends.

Customers still want a human touch, however, and research has found that 88 percent of customers still choose to interact with companies through a live agent. This number escalates the more complex or urgent an issue becomes.

This has put a large burden on many customer-facing companies, and most are still playing catch-up, trying to put the right technologies and processes in place to be able to service customers effectively according to their needs today.

According to a recent e-book published by NICE, these realities also present a huge opportunity for customer service organizations to differentiate themselves based on the quality and immediacy of service they provide.

“Your agents must react faster and smarter in the moment to improve satisfaction, loyalty and retention,” writes the company in its publication titled, “The Next Generation of Customer Service: The Real-Time Engagement Center – How to Transform Service in the Digital Age. “And in doing so, your organization will reap other benefits, such as greater share of wallet, improved compliance and fraud prevention. That’s what the real-time engagement center is all about.”

Becoming a real-time engagement center means being able to stream interaction data in real time, as interactions occur and with minimal latency, which boosts relevance. Gone are solutions that don’t scale well, that can’t handle large volumes of multichannel interactions or that don’t tie to critical contact center systems that provide the knowledge needed to answer questions or support transactions. Systems must be easy to use but secure, and must contain protections against outages, attacks or downtime, which means adding cutting-edge security and redundancy.

NICE says it’s about both the quality and the quantity of the data, and the speed at which it can be processed.

“Interaction analytics sifts through the masses of data to identify key customer insights, and makes them available to applications such as real-time decisioning, agent guidance and more,” writes the company. “This is the technology that lends the most tailored, insightful and value-adding edge to interactions in the real-time engagement center.”

These technologies include real-time speech analytics, agent guidance, intelligent automation, authentication and fraud prevention, compliance with rules and regulations, and more. The end goal is to attain 360-degree view of customer engagement in real-time, which allows companies to touch customers more proactively, more efficiently and in a manner that matches the customer’s needs and wants. In 2014, anything else is just “running to catch up.”

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