customer experience grand slam

Hitting a Customer Experience (CX) Grand Slam

I was privileged to be the third at bat as part of a NICE inContact webinar series this month. My title and batting order reference are taken from the theme of the series, how to turn-around a slump in customer experience ratings.

As a native New Yorker, and die-hard Yankees fan, I also had the opportunity to highlight Yankee star batter Aaron Judge in my presentation slides, an opportunity I embraced. My baseball moment was recorded, as was the rest of the webinar – which included fellow speaker NICE inContact CMO Randy Littleson– and is available here.

The topic of the third webinar was Orchestrating Immersive CX in Your Contact Center. There were several themes that we discussed to delve into the topic, the first being the nature of disruptive customer experience. To take a pulse of the audience’s opinions on the topic, we asked the following as a poll question, “Is CX viewed as a disruptive factor in your industry?”

The response choices, and the results of the poll, are shown below:

Yes, we have designed experiences that are market-leading14%
Yes, we have a plan to re-design our CX to up our game55%
Yes, but we are unsure where to start20%
No, our industry is more conservative with CX changes11%

The data shows that 89 percent of the webinar participants believe that customer experience is a disruptive force in their industry – just 11 percent felt that their company operated in a more conservative business. Littleson and I discussed the fact that five years ago, the results would have been very different. The influence of digital native companies like Amazon, Netflix, Uber and AirBnB has spread to just about every business. Traditionally conservative sectors such as healthcare or government have come to understand that they too must compete with the digital customer experience offered by these firms in their own patient and citizen customer care.

To evaluate the progress companies are making on the path to creating digitally transformed customer experience, we asked a second poll question, “Can your contact center agents interact with customers through multiple channels simultaneously – send them a text message, social media, co-browse?” The question gets to the heart of the “omnichannel” experience companies are trying to offer customers – the ability to seamlessly move from one media channel to another during a single interaction. The responses from the webinar audience are shown below.

Yes, to all three features7%
Yes, to one or two of these features36%
Planning to deploy some of these in the next 6 months14%
Planning to deploy some of these in the next 12 months29%
No plans to add these in the near future14%

While only a small proportion of the audience feels they have created a completely digital-friendly interaction environment for their customers, a total of 43 percent allows agents to interact with customers via at least one digital channel during a voice interaction. An equal proportion of respondents plan to deploy omnichannel features in the next year or so and just a few have no current plans.

I’m excited by the progress those of us who work in customer care have made in the past few years, moving from offering a primarily voice-centric customer experience to supporting the digitally-enabled customer journeys customers not only prefer but demand. As discussed during the webinar, cloud technology has been, and will continue to be, an important enabler of creating disruptive customer experiences. I predict that within the next few years, we will be able to add artificial intelligence-enhanced routing, interactions and workforce optimization to the list of tools companies have used to push the envelope on customer experience.