Consumer expectations have skyrocketed in recent years, and contact centers today are under an enormous amount of pressure to keep up with their demands. Today, customers expect flawless interactions at every touchpoint. And even the slightest inconsistency could be enough to negatively impact their overall experience, and cause them to seek out competitors.
For this reason, customer service administrators need to have eagle eyes for inconsistencies in the contact center that could negatively impact customer relations. Such inconsistencies need to be discovered and eradicated in a timely manner.
Here are some common inconsistencies facing contact centers today:
Poor after hours support: In the past, contact centers could get away with asking customers to call back the following business day. But now, contact centers can never really close. Contact centers need to offer around-the-clock customer care, especially for critical processes like billing, financial support or card services. For instance, suppose a customer loses his or her payment card on a Saturday night. That customer shouldn’t have to deal with a complicated interactive voice response system, or wait forever to speak with an agent on the phone to take action. He or she should always have a direct pipeline to a live customer service representative.
A lack of omnichannel support: By now it’s no secret that businesses need to be offering customer support across a variety of different channels — like social media, the phone and email. But now, businesses need to go a step further and offer “omnichannel” support, or consistent and contextual support across all channels. A customer service department, should be able to “follow” a customer across different channels while helping them. For instance, a customer should be able to start a live chat with a customer service agent, then switch over to a phone call without breaking stride or having to repeat information. Not enough businesses are offering omnichannel support today.
“Shadow” agents: Large contact centers sometimes suffer from “shadow” agents, or representatives who operate with little managerial oversight. When this happens, agents may be less inclined to follow the rules. They may “pass” difficult customers along to other agents, or drop them altogether. Or, they may be unprofessional to customers—putting the brand’s reputation at risk. This problem can be solved by using small teams of customer service agents who are in direct communication with team managers throughout the day. “Shadow” agents need to be prevented.
Stagnant data: Contact centers today are collecting a variety of important data, but most organizations aren’t using it effectively. Data needs to not only be collected, but also processed and shared across the enterprise in a robust customer relationship management (CRM) solution. The more fluid a business’s data is, the more effective it can be.