Entering the New Year, prognostications for CX in 2024 are coming fast and furious, with no shortage of audacious predictions from thought leaders the world over. Thus, in no specific order, Ryan Strategic Advisory is pleased to share its ideas on what will define customer experience for the next 12 months.
- Realistic expectations around Generative AI CX capabilities – the hype cycle about generative AI over 2023 was truly (in Québec parlance) du jamais-vu for anyone working in the CX space the past two decades. The anticipation of what this technology would do during the first half of 2023 ranged from the provocative to the absurd. Luckily, discussions have morphed into a more balanced discussion around the role and future of generative AI in the contact center. While the generative AI CX debate will continue, in 2024 customer management strategists are likely to concentrate on the role that this technology can play in augmenting the agent experience and developing the large language models that will drive the best possible automated interactions on the front end.
- ESG becomes a more central point around sourcing partnerer choices – if there was one message that rang loud and clear in 2023, it was that Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) considerations are here to stay when it comes to business decision-making. Moving into the next 12 months, ESG is going to be a bigger part of how enterprises choose their CX partners. Smart outsourcing executives are already taking note, so watch for a greater emphasis in the coming year on green initiatives, impact sourcing (both domestic and in nearshore/offshore locations) and inclusive hiring/promotions policy. Further, those who assume these are considerations only for large-scale enterprises will be mistaken, as firms falling into the SME category are certain to weigh ESG factors more heavily into their partnering choices.
- Consumer pushback on poor digital CX delivery – end-user anger with poor customer service via non-voice channels is already palpable. Ongoing concerns include poor response times, overloaded agents required to manage too many interactions concurrently and the deployment of half-baked chat-bots, all of which erode consumer loyalty. Sadly, this is only going to become more of an issue in 2024. Over the next 12 months, savvy enterprises and their BPO partners will invest to develop higher standards of care for all non-voice channels, so as to reduce customer churn.
- Voice becomes a CX differentiator in 2024 – with more enterprises ending telephone-based care for their customers, a chasm has opened for companies to invigorate their CX via voice-based delivery. This will be welcomed by end-users who prefer the telephone and those who do not have access to devices required for non-voice interactions. In 2024, watch for forward-looking organizations across all sectors to re-embrace the telephone as a CX channel to distinguish themselves positively among consumers. Also, expect these same firms to use voice-enabled CX as an edge in advertising and promotion.
- CX becomes a political hot potato – anger at the poor levels of customer service experienced by end-users will boil over in 2024 and become a point of contention among lawmakers. No one should underestimate the fact that consumers are angry, and with competitive elections scheduled to take place in some of the world’s biggest economies including (but not limited to) the USA, the UK, Austria, Belgium and Portugal, vote-hungry politicians may indeed grab hold of this issue as a means of winning support. And, while this may sound like a flight of fancy, the precedent has been set via a Spanish law that comes into effect this year, which will mandate minimum levels of service provided to consumers. The extent to which this legislation can actually be enforced is up for debate, but with its introduction, it is likely that aspiring elected officials in other countries will seek to propose similar ideas as they seek office in their respective jurisdictions.