Beyond omnichannel: driving connected customer experiences
Unify Communications and NICE inContact discuss the art of building the business architecture needed to provide customers with omnichannel experiences.
Whilst many organizations are heavily focused on the front-line customer interaction – working hard to deliver seamless omnichannel experiences – it’s all too easy to forget that beyond the initial interaction, your business has to deliver on the reason the customer made contact in the first place.
Driving the desired outcome
Delivering the desired outcomes for your customers should be the focus of the contact centre and those concerned with the overall customer experience. Often, due to silos within organizations and complexities in the contact centre platforms, achieving these outcomes can be difficult, time consuming and involve various separate teams within the business. For those operating within most service teams, where 64 per cent of customers have used multiple devices to start and complete transactions, and over three-quarters of customers expect to solve complex issues by speaking with just one person (Salesforce State of the Connected Report 2019), delivering on a desired outcome whilst providing a positive experience poses a significant challenge.
Nowadays, to be truly effective, customer experiences aren’t “just personalized, timely and omnichannel” (Contact Babel UK Contact Centre Decision Makers’ Guide 2019/20) – they must be connected to the wider business and drive the right outcomes.
For CX leaders within an organization, emphasising the delivery of seamless omnichannel experiences at the front-line translates to providing your customers with the channel options that are the most painless for them.
Omnichannel solutions via cloud systems can help businesses go a long way in enabling customers to reach out via their preferred method. However, whilst channel preferences may differ between customers – due to factors like varying patience levels, availability and emotional investment in the interaction – overwhelmingly, their main priorities will be the same. Customers want assurance that your business will meet their expectations; and increasingly, that their issue is not just resolved but will be dealt with first time.
Reduction in the cost-to-serve and deflection to self-service channels is all very well, but if you can’t deliver a connected experience (as 69 per cent of customers expect) that resolves customer queries, your overall CX will suffer.
But can brands practically drive connected experiences?
Consistent delivery with the contact centre at the heart
For businesses operating in the current demanding climate, it remains imperative to ensure that in the context of customer experience the contact centre does not stand alone.
By restructuring and redesigning the way in which work flows around an organization, putting the contact centre at the heart, rather than treating it as a separate silo, businesses can reduce unnecessary contact and ensure that their customer experience is truly end-to-end.
In practice, this means resisting the urge to concentrate only on the front-line and ensuring back-end workflows and processes are optimized and geared towards delivering against the desired outcomes.
The agents managing the additional backend workflows or processes required to deliver against a customer’s desired outcome, may find that remembering which systems to update, how to navigate through them and complete all necessary wrap-up work can pose significant challenges – as well as being time consuming and frustrating.
When £5.8bn is wasted each year on the time agents spend navigating between applications in the contact centre (Contact Babel UK Contact Centre Decision Makers’ Guide 2019/20), streamlining processes and simplifying the desktop they use delivers huge operational and financial advantages.
Ensuring back-end processes are tailored to deliver optimal experiences for both the agents and the customer takes the connected contact centre from an operational cost-centre to a wider strategic asset – reducing the overall cost to serve and increasing the speed at which a resolution can be found.
To create the best experience, you should ensure that customers remain informed of every status change and update, all your SLA’s are met, and all interactions are easily visible to all teams. Interaction is a transaction between your service team and your customers, and you need to be sure that the front and back ends of the process are helping to foster the relationships your increasingly connected, empowered and discerning customers demand.
Ultimately, great service will always be measured by how well you execute. That means optimising the entire end-to-end service lifecycle. If you’re looking to explore how your organization could embrace an end to end customer engagement to deliver an enhanced customer experience, Unify can help to advise, recommend and implement complete end-to-end solutions. Request a free, no obligation discovery session here.
This blog was produced by Unify Communications and NICE inContact
About Unify Communications
Unify Communications is an award-winning cloud contact center solution provider, specializing in the delivery of omnichannel self-service solutions. Working with international vendors such as Zendesk and NICE inContact, the team can reduce cost-to-serve and average handle times, improve CSAT scores and deliver actionable strategic advice to organizations looking to improve their customer journeys and transform the ways they communicate with their customers.
About NICE inContact
NICE inContact is the cloud contact center software leader, empowering organizations to provide exceptional customer experiences with the world’s #1 cloud customer experience platform, NICE inContact CXone™. CXone combines best-in-class omnichannel routing, workforce optimization, analytics, automation and artificial intelligence on an open cloud foundation.