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Article : Digital Customer Service Predictions for 2022 and How to Excel

Premium Content (Sponsored)

#contactcenterworld, @egain

Digital Customer Service defined

Digital customer service (DCS) is the act of providing or receiving customer service through one or more digital touchpoints such as online self-service, messaging, email, social media, and live chat. It is a key step that businesses must take in the digitalization of customer experiences.

While customer service digitalization had been under way even prior to the onset of Covid, the pandemic instantly elevated it to the top of CxO agendas. We predict that demand will continue to grow exponentially not only for DCS but also for modern knowledge management that is up to snuff to meet today’s requirements for handling more complex customer queries and automate compliance at scale. Here are the megatrends we see for 2022.

  1. More DCS

In early 2020, digital customer service went from "important" to "imperative" when Covid hit the world. On the consumer front, even analog aficionados like older consumers became digital die-hards to avoid the risk of infection. Digital habits acquired in the pandemic era are remarkably sticky—to the tune of 70%, according to a survey by Oliver Wyman Forum across 10 major countries. The increase in the use of digital channels remains significant even today with more than 120% for getting virtual financial advice and more than 65% for online grocery shopping, compared to pre-pandemic levels. With new variants upending the return to "normal" everyone had been hoping for, demand for DCS will continue to remain strong in 2022 and beyond.

  1. More with DCS

Consumers will want to accomplish more through digital channels, whether it is having a video call with a doctor or going through a loan application process end to end—from getting questions answered to filling out complex forms to uploading documents to signatures to eventual approval. Or they may want to get financial advice and sustained financial coaching from a bot, or get a smartphone fixed without ever having to go to a physical store.

  1. Knowledge-guided DCS

Businesses had been adding digital channels over time with Covid speeding up the pace in 2020. However, companies found that the more channels they added, the more their customer satisfaction dove. The Forrester CX Index, which covers digital as well as phone touchpoints, did not show any "meaningful" movement in 2021, compared to the baseline in 2019 among US brands. Canadian brands were no different and none of the European businesses offered what Forrester grades as "excellent" customer experience in the 2021 CX Index. Chatbots, a much-ballyhooed DCS tool, ranked last in customer satisfaction with 57% of consumers getting confused by the answers the bots were giving, which were different from the answers they got at other touchpoints, according to a consumer survey by Dimensional Research.

Moreover, per Gartner, 81% of contact center leaders believe that many of their agents—between 30% to 80% of their agent pool—will be working from home by 2023, pandemic, endemic, or otherwise. Many of them will be gig or seasonal agents to boot. None of these WFH (work-from-home) agents will have the luxury of walking over to the next cube to get answers if they get stumped by a customer query, elevating the need for knowledge guidance for these agents.

Deploying digital channels is only the first step—it is like laying piping. What good is the piping if you don’t get the right content and knowhow that flows through it? Per Gartner, businesses will realize by 2023 that the lack of knowledge management will impair "further success" in digital CX transformation. No wonder they recommend a modern knowledge management system as the #1 tool to deploy or refresh for customer service excellence in 2022 and beyond.

  1. Proactive DCS

The pandemic unleashed a tsunami of calls coming into the contact center. Unprepared, many businesses had no choice but to keep announcing that wait times will be horrendously long. Proactive outbound customer service, sometimes called "preemptive service", can help reduce incoming calls by anticipating what information the customer might need and disseminating it even before the customer reaches out to the organization. For example, it could be information relating to a transaction in progress or just completed, an alert about a bank account getting too close to the service fee threshold, or it could be useful advice that will eliminate the need for the next inbound contact for service (Next Call Avoidance).

Some businesses have ventured into proactive outbound service, but such operations have been siloed across channels and business functions, leading to uncoordinated engagement and inconsistent content, which creates customer confusion and drives more inbound calls.

Per Gartner, proactive (outbound) customer engagement interactions will outnumber reactive (inbound) customer engagement interactions by 2025. This is the time to get going with unified proactive DCS so you can get ahead of customer expectations!

Leaders are already ahead

Innovative leaders are already ahead of these trends, positioning themselves for experience-based differentiation and increased market share. Here are examples from our blue-chip clientele.

  • Rich DCS
    • Name-brand retailer serves over 9 million shoppers across geographies with rich digital customer service, including virtual assistance, live chat, and digital deflection of IVR contacts, all backed by knowledge, AI, and analytics. The retailer has successfully deflected up to 60% of calls to virtual assistance and 40% of contacts from the IVR to contextual digital self-service amidst shipping delays in the holiday shopping season
    • State government agency uses cobrowse technology to help ~3 million seniors fill out forms and get retirement benefits without having to visit the agency’s offices and expose themselves to an infection as new Covid variants rage on

  • Knowledge-guided DCS
    • Behemoth government agency deflected up to 70% of incoming calls to virtual assistance, reduced case handling time by 25%, and improved form filling with cobrowse-aided phone and chat conversations and granular knowledge assistance within forms. No wonder these powerful capabilities elevated their agent engagement to 92% versus the industry benchmark of 67%!
    • Hyper-growth SaaS provider improved agent confidence in answers to customer questions by a stunning 60%, while improving consistency of answers by 62%
    • Premier health insurance firm reduced agent training time for handling complex health insurance queries by 33% even as its agents—over 2,000 of them—had to go remote overnight due to Covid lockdowns

  • Proactive DCS
    • Leading financial services company serves over 11 million members with personalized, proactive, outbound messaging across SMS, email, voice, in-app notifications, and letters. They send over a billion notifications—800 different kinds—per year with our messaging solution, wowing members with a high level of service. No wonder they are a perennial number one in their industry in the Forrester CX Index rankings, among other benchmarks!
    • Healthcare giant serves over a 100 million members with proactive outbound customer messaging through SMS, email, voice, in-app notifications, and letters on a wide range of topics from prescriptions and vaccinations to compliance notifications


Get to DCS excellence in 2022

The DCS megatrends are like a tsunami—you can ill-afford to have a five-year plan to act on them. Fast deployment and quick time to value are critical success factors. Choose a solution partner with a proven track record in knowledge-powered digital customer service that offers rich capabilities out of the box, track record of success at scale, proven domain expertise, and easy, risk-free ways to adopt. That is the surefire way to go in a hurry from dilettantish to distinctive in DCS!

#contactcenterworld, @egain

About Anand Subramaniam:
Anand Subramaniam is SVP of Marketing for eGain. Prior to eGain, Anand served as an executive in corporate and product marketing, as well as product management and pre-sales roles at companies such as Oracle, Intel and Autodesk as well as startups.

About eGain Corporation:
Company LogoeGain customer engagement platform automates digital-first, omnichannel experiences across all touch points. Powered by AI, machine learning, knowledge, and analytics, our top-rated software optimizes customer journeys with virtual assistance, messaging hub, and desktop to serve customers, reduce cost, and improve compliance.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Build In Training Time

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Wednesday, January 5, 2022

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2023 Buyers Guide Consultancies

3D Vision Consulting

. Contact Center setup, management and transformation across all key components including Vision & Strategy, People, Technology, Quality, Processes, Communication and Facilities.
• Customer Experience strategy, design and implementation across multiple delivery channels.
• Design and implementation of full-cycle Ticket/Complaint Management Process/System.
• Develop Customer Satisfaction, Staff Satisfaction and Staff Motivation strategy and programs.
• Develop end-to-end Business Processes, efficient SOPs and well-structured SLAs.
• Build modern customer communication channels including Live Chat, AI Chat Bots, WhatsApp and Social Media Integration.
• Design Sales/Telesales structure, p...
(read more)

Call Center Masters

Giving consulting services to call centers

ccc by stc

Contact Center Consulting and Business Process Management
Where other consulting firms end their roles by providing a multi-year road map, ccc goes further by transforming the end-to-end contact center organization. A well-organized contact center ensures continuous value-based delivery for any organization. Through our structured contact center consulting activities, ccc provides you with contact center strategies that are aligned with your vision and mission as a business. Our offerings include:

Contact Center maturity assessment

Business Process Consulting

Technology Consulting

Business Process Management as a Service

CC-CMM Certification Institute

CC-CMM Certification


Service Journey Thinking
Service Journey Thinking is a comprehensive approach for improving the experience customers have along the service journey. It considers the service journey not only from the customer’s perspective, but it also examines the components that support the experience, including people, technology, processes and policies. By applying Service Journey Thinking, COPC Inc. helps brands promote greater efficiency, improved performance and reduced cost within their operations. For customers, this means reduced effort, improved satisfaction and enhanced loyalty.


Genesys PureConnect
Call Centers, Contact Centers and Cloud Solutions Consultancies

7.) Customer Support Asia

Customer Support Asia assures the success of service offshoring initiatives in the Philippines. Our consultancy serves both:
- clients that have service partners in the Philippines, and need to implement a major service initiative (performance/CX improvement, service change, site expansion, etc); and
- clients that desire to outsource services to the Philippines for the first time, and need expert help to qualify an an "ideal fit" partner, and manage an end-to-end service transition

We support both contact center services and "back office" BPO projects, limiting our practice to sites in the Philippines

CX Central

Contact Centre Specialist Consulting
CX Consult provides specialist contact centre consulting with decades of experience across Australia and Asia/Pacific lead by industry expert Justin Tippett. Services include health checks, optimisation, outsourcing (local and offshore), technology upgrades, strategy and more.

Whether you have a 5 seat contact centre or a large multi-site operation we'll provide you with expert advice to ensure you can achieve your business objectives.

ERIC YOUNG ASSOCIATES (Tele-Centre Assist Inc.)

Contact Center Consulting & Profit Improvement (Lean Six Sigma), Inside Sales, Efficiencies, Call Center Audit, Technology & vendor selection, Telephony, Recruiting, Training, Performance Management, Customer Journey Mapping, Software (CRM) Implementations

Lieber & Associates

Contact Center Consulting
Lieber & Associates assists organizations with contact center issues.This includes management, processes, training, and technology. The firm's assessments evaluate and make recommendations for 15 call center areas ranging from call seasonalities to staffing to better use of the telephone systems. Contact center technology services range from new technology selection and implementation to problem-solving and optimization to technical trouble-shooting. Senior consultants have more than 20 years of experience each and are leaders in their discipline. Clients span most business sectors.

Mpathy Plus

Mpathy Plus transform service, improve performance and provide operational support. We work in all areas of customer service and contact centres from initial strategy, feasibility studies, business cases, project management through to operational reviews, resource planning etc. We are independent and have vast experience of implementing, managing and changing contact centres and the customer experience.

Outsourcing Solutions

Outsourcing Solutions Europe is an advisory firm that helps companies to find the right contact center/BPO partner to serve European customers

PCA Advisors Ltd

Contact Center Sales - growth and marketing strategies
I work with contact centers to position their companies to take advantage of opportunities that exist for them. We also work with their existing sales team to improve their communication and hunting skills. 'Growth' is our greatest ability.

Pelorus Associates

Marketing Communications
Pelorus Associates is a market research and marketing communications company that assists developers of contact center solutions by providing in-depth market research and by authoring white papers, e-books, and blog posts.


We can help You boost Your business results by:

- Building or developing high performing multi-channel customer care operations

- Improving metrics like Customer Satisfaction, Net Promoter Score (NPS), Customer Effort Score (CES), First Contact Resolution (FCR), Customer Retention rate, Inbound conversions

- Developing Your teams' skills to excel front and back-office operations and Customer relations

- Preparing and executing efficient Voice of the Customer and Customer Advocacy approach

- We will help You manage challenges and risks when changes affect people, operations and technology.


PT VADS Indonesia provides consultancies with trainers, modules, a development programs for individuals and/or teams. Types of consultancies provided by PT VADS: Knowledge Process, Transformation Consultancy, Customer Services, Contact Center, Leadership, Interpersonal Development, Motivation, Training for Trainers and Digital Marketing.

SCC Services Group

Contact Center Operations Performance Management
In today’s competitive business environment, contact center and marketing professionals are constantly challenged to manage a growing business, achieve superior performance levels and at times are asked to support services and products that are becoming more complex.

Faced with this reality, the consulting disciplines that SCC Services Group focuses on are operations management and service delivery excellence in the customer service, contact center and brand marketing arenas.

Our consulting practice puts emphasis on:

- Contact Center Operational Assessments
- Human Capital Management
- Organizational Structure
- Brand Marketing
- Strategic Planning
- Sales and Customer Care Tra...
(read more)

The Taylor Reach Group

Established in 2003, The Taylor Reach Group is an award winning, call, contact centre and customer experience consulting and advisory firm. The company is based in Toronto and has offices in New York, Atlanta, Washington, Ottawa, London, Bangalore, Hong Kong and Beijing. We are vendor agnostic and do not partner with technology or outsource agencies. The only one who pays us are our clients. Each of our consultants possess a minimum of 20 years of ‘hands-on’ call/contact center operational management experience. We do not sell the pyramid, the seasoned experts you deal with through the sales process are the same people who will complete your project.
Taylor Reach has worked with contact cen...
(read more)

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