Developing a Long-Lasting and Positive Customer Experience
By Ray S. Naeini
It’s not about customer service anymore; it’s about customer experience. Today’s enterprises strive to develop long-lasting, positive experiences with customers. However, traditional WFO (workforce optimization) solutions alone are inadequate in resolving CXM (customer experience management) challenges. CXM requires certain fundamental paradigm shifts in serving and interacting with today’s customers:
Inside-Out Versus Outside-In: Enterprises have used a variety of WFO and workforce management (WFM) solutions to better serve customers to develop customer satisfaction. They drive this with their internal business processes with the intention of externally creating customer satisfaction – the inside-out method. Unfortunately this is inadequate to enable them to successfully implement a true CXM to deliver a positive customer experience. Therefore, an outside-in method is needed, in which enterprises first focus on understanding customer experience and sentiment to determine the internal optimizations. This is essential given today’s customers’ extensive use of digital and social media to communicate.
Capture All, Analyze All: CXM can be more successful when:
- One hundred percent of customer experiences are captured at every touch point and every channel used by customers; sampling does not provide sufficient insight.
- A systematic analysis of all captured interactions is conducted in order to produce actionable knowledge and trends obtained from the outside that could determine internal actions to create a positive customer experience.
Capturing all interactions and transactions from every customer touch point creates massive amounts of data, which requires big data management technologies.
Produce a Holistic View: Multichannel analytics can assist managing big data by automatically analyzing captured data from each channel and producing actionable knowledge. Nonetheless, there remains the challenge of associating and encapsulating relevant data from multiple channels to produce cohesive actionable knowledge, creating a holistic view across all channels.
What You Don’t Know: Enterprises can be caught off guard when they use multichannel and cross-channel analytics merely to look for specific subjects they know about. Cross-channel analytics equipped with trend analysis is required to discover the building up or diminishing of trends, which is critical in understanding the tendencies and inclinations of customers.
Seamless Customer Experience:Consistency across channels, sometimes called omni-channel customer experience, is a major driver in developing positive customer experiences. This means that customers may start with a self-service channel, such as the enterprise’s website, and then transition to an assisted service such as chat, email, or agent with no reduction in the quality of their experience. This can be accomplished by understanding customers’ general behaviors while using each individual channel to holistically view the customers’ experience, with the ability to drill down. Such insights can then be used to align each channel to offer seamless customer experience.
Unify Enterprise Silos: Omni-channel customer experience requires the unification of enterprise data silos to capture the customer experience at every touch point to analyze and continuously improve customer experience in a customer’s journey throughout the enterprise. This includes telecom platforms (PBX, IVR, voicemail, and Internet access), customer interaction, and transaction applications (CRM and WFO). Unification can directly benefit the enterprise in increased productivity, the resolution of problems, and the discovery of true customer sentiment, and the voice of customer (VoC).
Are These Initiatives Enough? The simple answer is “no.”
The fact is that all initiatives related to improving customer interactions when the customer is actually connected to the source of the service (such as an agent) are only half of the solution.
The other half is provided by optimizing the service routing and all entities engaged in the routing of the service to the right supplier of the service as efficiently as possible. These entities include network routing elements, ACDs, IVRs, PBXs, service centers with specific capacity, and skill sets or capacities to process customer service requests.
Cognitive CXM: The overall initiatives introduced in this article can create a foundation for developing a true CXM solution. However, solutions can be continuously and automatically improved when operating as a learning machine. This continuous acquisition of knowledge and trends related to customer sentiment and the entities providing services to customers is called a cognitive CXM solution – the ultimate CXM outcome.
Ray S. Naeini is the CEO and chairman of OnviSource, Inc.