Industry Commentary

Customer Experience Basics Have Never Been So Important

By October 17, 2019January 10th, 2024No Comments

Sometimes amid the stress of the modern world, it is easy to lose sight of what counts.  But in the domain of customer experience management, this is just not acceptable.  With consumers in major markets now more focused on outstanding interactions than ever before, to do anything that puts relationships at risk will serve only to undermine a company’s long-term performance.  This is why keeping a focus on the basic tenets of customer experience management is essential for both enterprises and outsourcers as they navigate their respective paths into 2020 and beyond.

For those unfamiliar with List25, it is a YouTube channel that is a must-watch, with topics ranging from the best cleaning hacks to some of the most fascinating aspects of nature.  However, an upload from September called 25 Grievous Antics That Are Detrimental To Good Customer Service is certain to resonate with contact center professionals.  And, while not every one of these 25 listed elements has direct applicability to contact centers operations, each bears reflection in terms of how an interaction can be detrimentally impacted.

Among the most important ‘faux-pas’ collated by List25, the one that jumps out most immediately for customer service is #23: representatives hiding behind rules and procedures so as not to solve an end-user’s concern.  No agent should use process as an excuse not to help a consumer.  Those that do so immediately place the relationship with the enterprise in peril.  Should a customer choose to contact an organization, the last thing they expect is lip service as to why their issue cannot be solved.  Also important is #16, which relates to rushing consumers through interactions. End-users want to feel valued, and they do not take kindly to being treated as commodities.

Equally, the impact of bad service on revenue generation is specifically addressed in the 25th placed customer experience no-no: not providing consumers with options or alternatives.  For any contact center agent that fails to do this, they risk losing a chance to drive a new sale to a motivated consumer or a cross-sell / upsell opportunity where an existing relationship exists.  And, while many of the other factors that comprise this Top 25 list could be considered no-brainers (not eating / drinking during a call, avoiding abusive language, or putting callers on speakerphone), List25 deserves credit for refreshing its viewers on how the basics really count when managing end-user relationships. No contact center operator can afford to lose sight of these home-truths.

Consumer loyalty has never been at more of a premium, and it is incumbent for customer experience executives to ensure that their front-line teams are ready.  This can be accomplished by way of strong training at the time of recruitment, as well as over the course of an agent’s career.  But training is only part of this equation.  Whether an in-house operation or one run by an outsourcer, it is the responsibility of the contact center’s leadership to ensure that the best possible applicants are being recruited to work the front-lines and that all training materials that emphasize the core elements of customer management are as pervasive as possible.  In the current competitive environment, these elements should be customer experience table stakes and need to be prioritized by contact center decision-makers.