In today’s world, it’s not enough to simply provide good products and services. Delivering a superior customer experience is also key to success. Part of this is because it’s easier to find competitors with a quick search on the Internet. Because of this, every business needs to focus on providing optimum experiences as well as goods.
Defining Customer Experience
Customer experience is often defined as the perception of what a consumer has for any given company. It relates to how people feel about interacting with an organization.
Good or bad, customers often take to the Internet to express concerns regarding a company. As studies show, most consumers trust reviews and testimonials from peers over branded advertisements. This means it’s imperative to make sure all customers have the best experience possible.
This is where optimal performance from a call center comes into play. Even the success of the most amazing products or services can suffer if customer support and experience is lacking. Although consumers may still make purchases, a lack of faith in a brand will undoubtedly affect the bottom line.
Customer Experience Services in the Call Center
Contact centers need to focus on more than merely providing a facility for customers to call. A lot can happen in an interaction with a consumer, and how those interactions are handled will play a major role in future success.
Call center consultants look deep into the functions of the facility. Everything from technology to agent training is assessed. The end result is a contact center consumers feel comfortable using, which boosts the customer experience for the brand.
Customer Journey Mapping
Customer journey mapping is an element which provides data points in an easy-to-read graphic. By collect information across a range of metrics, an infograph shows the key points of interactions.
The point of the map is to breakdown interactions and provide a method to create working strategies. It’s a visual representation of how people are communicating with the call center. By examining the data in a graphic, it’s easier to pinpoint various opportunities for growth and improvement.
This map doesn’t just display the good points, however. It also shows areas that are negative to help create future strategies. After all, it’s difficult to fix a problem if management doesn’t know one exists.
Thanks to technology, consumers have a wide scope of methods to contact brands. A “call center” isn’t merely about accepting phone communications. It needs to be flexible and offer other avenues to engage customers.
These other channels include:
- Mobile Apps
- Online Live Chat
- Social Media
- Text Messages
- Contact Forms
All of these facets need to provide the same level of experience. Consider not everyone wants to spend time on the phone but may feel comfortable chatting online. Simply offering this other method of communication begins the process of providing a good experience. This is because it addresses a person’s preferred method of communication.
The customer experience is often divided into three key elements: Customer Effort Score, Customer Satisfaction Score and Net Promoter Score. All of these elements contribute to an overall efficiency rating that helps measure the effectiveness of a call center.
Customer Effort Score – The Customer Effort Score, or CES, is often measured through customer surveys. These short Q&As are used to determine the amount of effort a customer puts forth when dealing with the brand.
Customer Satisfaction Score – Feedback from callers is often taken in the form of a questionnaire for the Customer Satisfaction Score, or CSAT. It usually involves a short series of questions allowing users to present their level of satisfaction with the company.
Net Promoter Score – A Net Promoter Score, or NPS, is often a single question about a customer’s likelihood to share a brand with others. For example, questions like, “How likely are you to share this product with friends and family?” is a common method of determining NPS.
CX Performance Improvement
By taking the data collected in various metrics, consultants can begin developing an improvement strategy. This has potential to be an ongoing process, but the rewards in efficiency and satisfaction make the process worthwhile.
The cycle works like this: A review is made including analysis of operation compared to others in the same industry. After which, recommendations are provided in a prioritized list according to needs. Then, implementation of those recommendations are monitored. The purpose is to strengthen any weaknesses in the call center. Finally, the results are collected and used to determine if further recommendations are needed for continual improvement.
Customer Experience Management
Customer Experience Management, or CEM, is the process in which an organization uses data to improve interactions with the customer. This often includes tracking and overseeing changes to ensure a superior experience.
Proper CEM relies on a complete view of customers throughout the entire lifecycle. This includes up-to-date personal information as well as contact preferences. All of this data needs to be integrated with other systems throughout the call center. The more informed and agent is about a caller’s situation, the better he or she can help the individual.
Agent Experience and Training
One of the most vital areas of any contact center is that of agent professionalism. An agent is the contact point, and the customer experience begins with how he or she handles the job.
Experience and training are two elements that will affect how callers perceive the brand. The better an agent is at his or her job, the more efficient the brand appears. In fact, a negative situation can still be turned into a positive interaction depending on the skill and knowledge of the agent.
Another aspect to consider is proper training of the call center’s software and various tools. A lack of knowledge can lead to agent frustration, which can then lead to a negative interaction with a customer.
One thing to bear in mind is agent attrition rates are often higher in areas where there is a lack of training. These attrition rates will cost the company over the long-term.
Reputation and branding are important in today’s Internet-driven world. A good customer experience can go a long way with most consumers. Take into consideration key metrics which detail call center performance. Without accurate data, it’s difficult to develop a working strategy.
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