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inContact Illustrates Need for Omnichannel Excellence

May 22, 2017

The delivery of exceptional customer service today is a far cry from a few short years ago. To the growing presence of chatbots and AI, to improved call routing, training and technology overall, this is not your dad’s contact center. Underlining the struggle it can be to provide consistently positive experiences and deliver resolution time and time again is the “inContact Customer Experience Transformation Benchmark Study.”

Delivering customer service in an omnichannel world is no small feat, but while most customer interactions may start on social media or self-service, according to the inContact survey nearly 70 percent of respondents noted a preference of agent-assistance.

Only 45 percent of those surveyed are satisfied with agent-assisted service, and less than 40 percent of respondents are satisfied using self-service channels. The problem is this: each method has its own merit, but there is a time and a place for each. Self-service is a superstar for addressing simple customer service issues, whereas agent assistance can better assist with more complex issues. While a self-service option allows for convenience, sometimes it’s best to speak with a human being.

Eighty percent of consumers today will take business elsewhere as a result of poor customer service; the key – according to inContact – is “quality interactions.” When online chat and video are easily accessible, user friendly and result in human interaction, consumers are far more likely to continue doing business with said company as well as refer the business to a friend.

Context is the special sauce to much of customer service. Knowing a caller’s issue or purchase record before interacting is crucial to providing exceptional service. Consumers expect this. The study highlights that more than 70 percent of customers expect proactive, contextual service, which means purchase history knowledge and pointing the customer in the direction of rapid resolution. While it’s awesome to provide omnichannel options for customer service, the journey must be seamless and contextual.

“As customer service channels continue evolving, companies need to meet customers where they are, whether it is on the phone, email or chat,” said Paul Jarman, CEO at inContact. “As customer service continues to be a key element to business success, it’s no longer sustainable to provide just one method of quick resolution. Companies need to leverage strong cloud contact center technology to empower agents, while also embracing efficient self-service tools, to enable consistent, positive interactions across all channels.”

Providing perfect customer service is impossible – there, I said it. However, that doesn’t mean each organization should not aim to provide perfection in the contact center and omnichannel options. Your customers are your lifeblood; treat them well and you shall be rewarded.

Treat them poorly, and well, you know…

Edited by Alicia Young
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