by Dennis Redden
Published in Contact Center Pipeline
Contact centers today are facing multiple, and sometimes competing, pressures. The need to improve operational efficiency, integrate new technologies, support multichannel environments, exploit and manage social media, and hire and retain agents, while still keeping customers satisfied and loyal can all be daunting for many organizations.
Putting the customer first, achieving a balance between efficiency and customer satisfaction (experience), and focusing on employee engagement are three key strategies that go a long way toward improving the quality of service in contact centers.
Put the Customer First
To improve the quality of service in its contact centers, companies have to know and empathize with their customers. That directive is deceptively simple, as no two customers are exactly alike, and companies are now expected to essentially treat each customer as an individual when he or she contacts them. Fortunately, both journey mapping and persona mapping can help companies and agencies get to know and understand their customers beyond a name and phone number on a screen.
In journey mapping, companies build out the topology of their customer touchpoints. They document the path(s) their customers take from a navigation or process perspective, analyzing and visualizing how a customer may engage with the contact center via all support channels. That is, they try to predict how customers might interact with businesses from the moment they hit the customer service queue and are put on hold until the moment that their question is resolved.
To envision the different journeys a customer may take, call center executives analyze different citizen objectives. This information comes from data including the types of calls taken (hours of operation, availability of products, problems with orders and so on), and the resolution to those calls. Once they examine the data underlying the calls themselves, executives can put together different paths that customers might follow.
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