On March 14th in Scottsdale, AZ, dozens of business professionals gathered to discuss the benefits, and customer expectations, of an omnichannel contact center. Consumers want options when interacting with the companies they choose to work with. When companies are able to honor their preferred channel, they receive higher customer satisfaction scores. Many of those in attendance were already operating an omnichannel platform in their contact centers. They expressed that they were finding many benefits, such as lower transaction costs, lower agent turnover and higher NPS (Net Promoter Score) from customer feedback and their customers express how pleased they were to be able to interact with the company through SMS or chat.
Attendees expressed concern over the challenges they faced when using solutions from disparate vendors, which has caused them difficulties in bringing all of the activity data together and unifying the business intelligence. The integration of the channels into a single platform is what really makes the omnichannel experience holistic and seamless for their customers, improves their ability to manage their contact center and maximize their agent productivity.
One participant shared that they are finding that SMS interactions were much more profitable for their company. By having these alternate channels, they have seen a lower cost per interaction and a higher conversion rate. While another attendee shared that they are seeing a shift in the overall channel usage with voice dropping below 60% of transactions and SMS rising above 30% just over the past year.
Another customer shared that his operation has significantly reduced their workforce over the past 2 years as their productivity increased through offering multiple channels. They now handle the same work more efficiently and found that the natural agent attrition addressed the extra staffing for them.
The key to a successful transition to a multi-channel operation, is training. First, remember that your agents are not at the same level when it comes to being comfortable with new technology, some may require more training and some may never grasp the complexities of a multi-channel environment. Consider letting the transition occur organically as agents self-identify their willingness to learn and participate with these other channels. Train your customers to know that they have other channel options for interacting with your company and collect permission early in the relationship to use these alternate channels to communicate with them. Lastly, be diligent in staffing and responding to customers choosing to communicate on these alternate channels.
For additional information about how inContact can help your organization to realize the benefits of omni-channel communication in your contact center, register for one of these upcoming webinars.