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Industry Research : New Survey Results Point to Overlooked Pots of Gold in UK Contact Centers
British businesses are sitting on an untapped well of customer information in their contact centers--information that has the potential to provide missing, vital intelligence. This powerful insight could inform everything from customer service strategy and product development to improved customer experiences, the Customer Contact Association (CCA) claims today. However, according to a recent survey of senior customer service and contact center management carried out by the CCA and sponsored by Verint Systems, just one in five businesses are satisfied they are using their customer data to its full potential.
The majority of respondents to the CCA study believed that they could gain more insights from the customer service data they hold (voiced by 79 percent of respondents), and 82 percent agreed that insights gleaned from customer interactions could influence the products their companies provide.
The study also suggests customer service is currently not evaluated in a meaningful way. While nearly nine respondents in 10 (87 percent) use abandonment rates and 79 percent use call waiting times as key measures, perceptions of their value to the business are far lower (see table below). An astounding 63 percent of respondents said they evaluate customer satisfaction via their complaints procedure. In comparison, only two in five use professionally-organized third-party surveys to gauge satisfaction.
The study further places the disconnect between customer service and the rest of the business into sharp focus. Less than half the respondents (42 percent) agreed their management board understood customer service, and a similar proportion (49 percent) said their executives' compensation was not linked to customer satisfaction metrics. Further, one respondent in three was unable to quantify the saving in financial terms of a 10 percent reduction in the amount of calls taken by the contact center.
David Parcell, managing director and corporate officer EMEA, Verint, says, "There is huge potential in the information companies capture every day--insights into how customers are feeling, the suggestions they have for making things better, and the sources of frustration which can fast become a brand threat via social media. This survey clearly shows businesses are striving to better understand their customers, with 73 percent wanting to know how they could make customers happier."
"A more qualitative approach to evaluating customer service can deliver even greater value," adds Parcell. "Verint can help companies gather and analyze invaluable customer interaction data and turn it into Actionable Intelligence(R) to detect trends and provide early warnings to improve customer service."
Commenting on the study, Anne Marie Forsyth, chief executive, CCA, notes, "Companies can now expect customers to engage with them via the full range of communications media--including today's growing and wide-reaching social media channels. When it comes to the customer experience, it's no longer sufficient to draw conclusions from structured data and simple metrics alone. Organizations dealing with today's complex, rapidly evolving communications environments must adopt new strategies. They need to gather, analyze and interpret all customer data to extract intelligence which can drive business decisions, improve the customer experience, and deliver on growth and profitability objectives."
Helping capture, analyze and act on both structured and unstructured customer feedback is powerful Voice of the Customer (VoC) Analytics technology. With such solutions, organizations can deploy a flexible platform that delivers customer insight and feedback across channels. Verint's VoC Analytics, for instance, is designed to combine all sources of customer interaction data into a single platform with the capability to track individual customer interactions and view the customer journey across channels, providing automatic trend analysis, combined root cause analysis and the ability to forecast customer behavior. It helps companies understand critical customer experience information, along with sentiment analysis and emotion detection, giving them an automated and intelligent means of gathering, analyzing, presenting and acting on customer intelligence they would not otherwise know.
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Published: Friday, July 1, 2011