CONTACT CENTERS ARE BROKEN (BUT THEY DON’T HAVE TO BE)

Customer Experience is the phrase that everyone’s talking about. Engaging with customers is no longer simply about offering your service; it’s about giving the customer a favorable overall experience. It all seems so painfully obvious, yet in the business world it takes experts to continually publish tips and give seminars on how to provide a good customer experience. Shouldn’t most of this just be common sense? Why is providing a good customer experience seemingly so difficult?

Part of the problem is the customer perception of contact centers. They view them as a last resort, the people you call when all other options have failed. Too often, customers are left stuck in a maze of faulty IVR, and when they finally reach an actual person, they have to repeat all of the information they’ve been growling into their phone through gritted teeth for the past hour. Instead of having their problems solved or placing an order, customers are instead treated to more problems or frustration.

Most individuals would rather spend hours doing anything else than reaching out to a contact center. Consumers are watching YouTube videos, reading forums, and even starting their own companies just to avoid dealing with customer service representatives. It’s become a hassle that most consumers don’t want to deal with; because no matter how strange and frustrating the work-arounds are, it still beats calling customer support. The worst part is, these perceptions aren’t entirely unwarranted.

Things aren’t just bad from the customer side; they’re flawed from the corporate side as well. Contact centers are usually run on extremely complex systems, with bulky platforms that require teams of IT professionals to maintain. This complexity is a big part of what leads to such high attrition rates, as most agents cannot learn the intricacies of these complicated platforms, or don’t want to. With turnover rates so high, and so many resources needed to maintain contact centers, most companies view these places as “expense centers,” where money is essentially sent straight down the drain.

All of which is to say this: contact centers are broken. It’s a hard reality, but it’s true.

It doesn’t have to stay that way, though. The tools needed to fix them are at your disposal. These mazes of sorrow can become THE place your customers flock to when they need service fast. These “expense centers” can easily become “profit centers” that provide a memorable customer experience, that will have them bragging to their friends about your company.

All you need to do is reverse your thinking.

Why make it hard to interact with your company. Let’s make it easier for everyone.

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