In my last article I discussed how to keep things simple in contact center operations and introduced the importance of incorporating a human-centered approach to operational thinking, processes and technology. Now it’s time to take a look at how to translate theory into practical steps for success. Read on to explore some helpful tips to banish complexity in the contact center.
When Calabrio invited CX Consultant and Practitioner Clare Muscutt to present at a recent webinar, she asked delegates about the state of digital transformation for customer service in their organization. Although the majority (51%) had already deployed digital technology to support their customers, only 8% believed their digital service to be ‘awesome’.
While the pandemic has accelerated the uptake of digital technology, making it a rewarding and effective tool for driving customer experience (CX) and the employee experience (EX) can be a challenge for contact center leaders. At the same time, the explosive growth in digitalization presents a unique opportunity to do things differently and find a better way forward.
Here are five ways to get started. The first four are based on Clare Muscutt’s innovative human-centered model. The fifth reinforces the importance of gaining stakeholder buy-in, training and how to fully maximize the wealth of data that exists in every contact center. Combined these five steps provide an integrated approach to overcoming complexity:
Start with a meaningful baseline. This means spending time listening to the right people and collating critical data points like complaints or service KPIs to truly understand where you are and what you are trying to achieve. Talk to customers, hold employee focus groups and speak to the Board. Review what technology is being well used and received and what other new innovations might be worth looking at?
Create a customer journey with next-level data management software. Ideally, conduct the exercise with other people – think of everyone who is affected by or can influence customer journeys. This is great for engaging people across the whole organization and they will become more engaged and likely to come up with better ideas.
Remember to map the impact of these customer journeys for example, ‘what will it cost to fix the root cause in terms of tech or training versus return on value?’ Aim for low cost, quick win ideas that have the maximum impact on customers, employees and the overall business.
Visualize the target experience and test with users before changing anything to save time and money by getting it right the first time. Then, create an ‘experience blueprint’ that illustrates what organizational changes need to be done to turn your vision of the target experience into reality.
Utilize learning from the testing period and integrate it into a plan that includes timelines, clear measures of success and is communicated effectively.
Finally, consider the latest advancements in AI-driven analytics. They help overcome complexity by translating raw data into powerful business intelligence from a customer, employee and operational point of view.
Go beyond banishing complexity by also gaining buy-in from IT and senior decision-makers by promoting the benefits of AI-driven analytics. Try applying these methods below:
The latest speech, sentiment and predictive analytics can combine to harness valuable data that gives a complete view of all customer interactions, whatever the channel. This provides contact centers with the real-time data they need to identify specific customer pain points and moods, anticipate future needs and re-engineer complete customer journeys quickly and efficiently.
Combine speech and workforce management systems to build a smarter, more effective contact center where agent skills are fully maximized and training is efficiently scheduled during quieter times so staff can concentrate 100% on their customers. Add employee sentiment analysis to the mix and quickly identify where agents are dealing with unhappy and distressed customers or even where agents need extra training or support.
Why not introduce desktop analytics to better support remote agents? These really get beneath the bonnet of the technology that serves frontline agents. It is possible to detect what applications are being used during customer interactions and then unearth any slow or badly designed applications or integrations that make agents’ lives harder than they need to be.
Above all, remember that in order to banish complexity in the contact center, you must remain open to progress changes. Banishing complexity is a continual process that should be continually refined as customer, employee and business needs change. For more ideas and inspiration, download Calabrio’s latest webinar “Enhancing Customer and Employee Experiences Through Human-Centered Design.”