By Paul Korber, Vice President, Contact Centre Solutions at Bell
Evolve your contact centre into a customer experience centre
With over 25 years’ experience, Paul Korber has gained unique insights into how the traditional contact centre is evolving – and what Canadian businesses can do to deliver a better customer experience.
Today’s customers expect simple, user-friendly and low effort experiences – they want to get what they want, when they want it, on their own terms. These expectations create opportunities for organizations to differentiate themselves by evolving the traditional contact centre into a customer experience centre.
A customer experience centre enables seamless and meaningful customer interactions. By fully integrating the contact centre into business operations, agents can easily view customer insights across all lines of business. We’ve seen Canadian businesses achieve great results implementing a comprehensive ‘omnichannel’ view. It has enabled agents to provide customers with personally relevant information and services, and feeds metrics back into the business – generating additional insights and revenue.
What’s your strategy?
Too often organizations get caught up in the promise of advanced technologies available in the market. From my experience, you must define the holistic experience you want to deliver before you can determine what tools or channels will be right for your customer experience centre. Fundamental questions to consider up front include:
Demographics can help you determine how customers prefer to interact with you, and in turn, the platforms and channels to invest in. We encourage our customers to check in regularly with their end users to ensure they continue to develop the right experience.
Leverage surveys, focus groups, integrated reports, one-on-one interviews and data relevant to your industry vertical, to analyze the full customer context, map out the customer journey and determine any areas of risk. Our in-house experts recommend and facilitate journey mapping to help Bell customers identify breakdowns and opportunities to build momentum towards their target omnichannel experience.
Even the smallest contact centre generates a ton of data. Bell cloud-based contact centre services offer leading analytics, artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing natively embedded – enabling businesses of all sizes to optimize their data strategy and proactively personalize experiences.
Delivering an omnichannel experience
We are seeing customers increasingly prefer using multiple platforms to communicate rather than just the traditional one-to-one voice experience. They might get in touch via social media before switching to chat, then completing the transaction on their mobile – interacting with a different agent at every step.
In an omnichannel world, the goal is to reduce the effort needed for a customer to interact with an organization. At Bell, we’ve observed that agents benefit from training that builds the emotional intelligence, advanced language, customer service and technology skills required to interpret interactions across channels. When agents are given access to the full customer context and trained on customer experience objectives, they report higher job satisfaction and positively affect the bottom line.
Moving to the cloud
10 years ago, contact centre solutions were primarily premises-based. Over time, organizations began moving to hosted and managed offerings to help reduce capital expenditures and improve the customer experience. Thanks to the public cloud, companies of all sizes can now take advantage of innovative offerings and lower cost structures. Today, the number of agent seats for hosted and cloud solutions is growing 20% annually, while the number of premises based agents is declining by 2%.1 I believe that the move to the cloud has made the customer experience centre possible – accelerating innovation and facilitating omnichannel capabilities.
With cloud solutions (or ‘contact centre as a service’), you get access to a platform that is always up to date and continually advancing. Contact centres can simply ‘turn on’ the latest innovative capabilities, as they need them, like robotics process automation (RPA) and natural language processing. End users are benefitting from features that are refined in the cloud’s open ecosystem, and make rapid triage and analysis of customer data possible.
Choosing the right partner
To transform your contact centre into a customer experience centre, you need a partner that prioritizes your customer and agent experiences, and provides and supports leading cloud-based technologies. Bell has the experience and expertise to define, design, develop and deploy best-in-class contact centre solutions. With more than 250 contact centre experts, we can look at all aspects of your operations – across the customer journey – and recommend strategy, processes and future-proof technologies.
Your contact centre is at the heart of your customer experience, and with the right strategy and partner, you can deliver the seamless and insights-driven experience your customers want.
- Frost & Sullivan: An End User Perspective on Navigating Digital Transformation (2017)