Global Benchmarking Series CX Understanding and Strategy

Understand customer experience organizations’ objectives, the challenges they face and the programs in place to deliver a seamless experience when customers reach out for support.
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Transcript

James Cammareri (00:00):

Hello, everyone. Thank you very much for joining us today for this Global Benchmarking Series webinar. My name is James Cammareri from COPC. I’ll be your host for this session. Today is one of an ongoing series of webinars where we invite leaders and experts from COPC to delve into our research and share their views and opinions on some of the more interesting findings from our global benchmarking series reports.

James Cammareri (00:23):

These reports are published on a monthly basis and will cover a range of topics such as contact center technology, contact center outsourcing, recruitment and hiring, employee experience, and many more. Today’s session will be focused on customer experience understanding and strategy. Joining me today are Kyle Kennedy, our global COO, and Ian Aitchison, the CEO of our Asia Pacific region. Kyle and Ian, thank you very much for joining us today. I’ll turn it over to you guys to get us started.

Ian Aitchison (00:55):

Hey, thanks, James. Thank you very much. My name’s Ian Aitchison. I’m the CEO of Asia Pacific region for COPC. I’ve been involved with a research team in pulling together a lot of this research and I’m very happy to be able to share a little bit more depth into some of the findings. The report itself is about 70 pages long. Hopefully you’ve had the opportunity to download it and digest some of it. But today, we are going to focus more about some of the common operational challenges.

Ian Aitchison (01:31):

We’re going to look at what customers care about, we’re going to look at channel preferences, and then we’re going to get into understanding more about the customer experience with some of these various channels and also the impact of resolution. Joining me for the discussion and the presentation is Kyle Kennedy.

Kyle Kennedy (01:49):

Well, thanks, Ian. I’m Kyle Kennedy and I’m the global COO for COPC. Like many of you, I have recently gotten a chance to see the research report and I look forward to Ian taking us through it. And I think I have also a few interesting questions for him on some of the results.

Ian Aitchison (02:05):

Okay, thanks. The first thing I wanted to talk about were some of the challenges that executives in the contact center industry said they were facing. The two biggest challenges were improving the customer experience and improving efficiency, but which is really about cost, right? So it’s managed customer experience and managed cost.

Challenges to be addressed slide

Ian Aitchison (02:31):

But what we thought was really interesting this year was how much organizations were having challenges around training and agent development or difficulty in recruiting staff, staff turnover, not having enough staff available, inadequate headcount to be able to meet the requirements. That has come across really quite evidently when we then broke it down into what’s the difference between what we call in-house contact centers and outsourced contact centers.

Kyle Kennedy (03:08):

Yeah. I was wondering, many of our customers fall into those two categories and they have been experiencing very different things over the past 18 months or so. Can you tell us about some of the things that might be different about the two types of centers?

Ian Aitchison (03:22):

What I’m showing here is just some analysis that I’ve pulled together on the research, on the report, as I was reading over the last few days. This is showing the net difference in how many of the executives were reporting it’s a challenge. Integrating multi-channels, introducing new service channels, organizational restructuring, those are all much more an in-house challenge than they are an outsourcer challenge. But it’s really interesting that it’s outsourcers who are having difficulty recruiting staff, outsourcers who are saying that staff turnover is a challenge.

Ian Aitchison (04:01):

Then associated with that are things like agent training development and not having enough headcount at all. So that whole attracting and retaining staff and outsourcing… Now, this is around the world. This is not just North American. That seems to be a real challenge for outsourcers just now. One of the interesting things that we looked at, and this is where correlation and causality are two different things, but we wanted to understand, how many organizations that we were speaking to actually had a chief customer officer?

Ian Aitchison (04:41):

To put this into perspective, we interviewed more than 900 managers, executives in the contact center industry around the world. 27% of them said that their organization had a chief customer officer, 61% said they didn’t, and actually 12% just weren’t sure whether they did. Now, what we found interesting, and this is the difference between correlation and causality, is organizations who said they had a chief customer officer were more likely to have leadership that’s committed to their vision or mission, their statement of direction.

Ian Aitchison (05:16):

They are more likely to have customer contact employees, frontline staff, who were committed to the vision or mission. But also, they were more likely to go out and look to benchmark, to get data to help them set targets. Now, I’m not sure if that’s because companies with chief customer officers, if it’s the chief customer officer who drives that, or is it organizationally companies who care more about their statement of direction or their vision or how they set their targets are they more likely to have a chief customer officer?

Chief Customer Officer Slide

Ian Aitchison (05:53):

I just thought it was an interesting aspect when we were looking into it in more detail. In the report itself, there’s a lot more about the strategy aspect and I recommend everyone to have a read of that. What we wanted to really focus today’s session on was more about the customer and the customer experience and what customers are telling us about their experiences with the customer contact industry. The sample that we got of customers was a few thousand… I can’t remember. Four and a half thousand customers from around the world. We tried to spread it out between North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Ian Aitchison (06:42):

We asked them all the same questions and then some of this is aggregated data. 84% of customers around the world said that they believe that an organization’s service department is either important or very important in shaping their opinion of that organization. We are going to dig into some data in a few minutes which backs up that assertion from the customers, that tells us that customer contact and customer service departments play a big role in shaping the customers’ emotions about an organization and why that might be important.

Ian Aitchison (07:19):

Well, I think many of you will have seen this type of data before, but it’s good to have it reiterated again. A big majority of customers said that they would be willing to pay more for their product or service, whatever it was, if they thought they would receive world-class customer service as a result. So they value it, many customers around the world value customer service. One of the really interesting things was we interviewed people who had both contacted organizations and had not contacted organizations to get their opinions overall.

Ian Aitchison (08:00):

Those who had contacted an organization, so spoken to a customer service rep or dealt somehow with that organization, were 1.3 times more likely to be willing to pay more. So they’ve had a good experience, they know a good experience is, and they’re willing to pay more if they can get that good experience again. One of the things that we tried to understand when thinking about what matters to customers was comparing the customer view, the end user view, the consumer view, with the corporate view. So we asked the same questions to both cohorts, to the 950 plus execs and the four and a half thousand consumers, customers.

Ian Aitchison (08:44):

We wanted them to rank what they thought was the most important aspect. Fortunately, both sets of respondents said that aside from getting their issue resolved satisfactorily, the most important thing was a quick and easy process. So we were aligned with their views there. But then what seemed to be a really big difference is customers said, “Hey, we just want fair and honest treatment.” That was their second most important thing, whereas that ranked at the bottom for corporations.

Ian Aitchison (09:17):

I wonder if we’re missing a trick there in terms of running customer contact, that we need to make sure that we really are treating our customers the way they deserve to be treated. They just want fair and honest treatment. Another question that we asked to be able to do a comparison was, what do you feel organizations should do differently to help customers avoid having to contact customer service to resolve an issue? How can we avoid the need to contact?

Ian Aitchison (09:51):

For customers, really they were saying, improve the quality of services, improve the quality of products, and then they got into how we would interact, then they got into develop more self-service solutions, deploy more proactive solutions, design better policies, processes. That really did not match up with the corporate view.

Kyle Kennedy (10:15):

Ian, I find it really interesting the difference between the develop more self-service solutions between the customer and the corporate view. It seems that the corporate view obviously seems to be slightly self-motivated around trying to save money. I really wonder if there’s a bit of fooling themselves into making incorrect investments in their CX strategies.

Ian Aitchison (10:40):

Well, obviously our research can’t tell whether an individual organization has made a bad investment decision by putting self-service in. But it’ll be interesting as we look at the data later on to see whether customers prefer self-service or using self-service, does self-service manage to resolve their issues, what’s the satisfaction of self-service. So I think that’s a good point to bear in mind. Thinking about channels, one of the questions… How many years have we heard that the call center agent is dead or the death of the call center agent?

Ian Aitchison (11:20):

There’s definitely changes as new channels have come in. The death of the agent was predicted many, many years ago, and it doesn’t seem to have gone. It then changed from the death of the agent to the death of the phone and that doesn’t seem to have changed. The way that we categorized these things were into human-assisted channels, so obviously channels where a customer interacts with a person, with a human, and then self-service technologies. Within the human-assisted channels, we split that up into two things. One is you get your assistance in real time.

Ian Aitchison (11:57):

So you’re right there, you’re on a phone call, you’re involved in the web chat, you’re there, you’re interacting, you have a wait time. If it takes too long for them to answer, you’re likely to abandon the call or the chat, whereas assisted deferred are more asynchronous, so asynchronous messaging systems or email. Certainly, what customers said they preferred was phone and email. Those were the two biggest. The third biggest was web chat and then self-service technology came down at 10%. So 57% of the customers told us that they prefer to interact through real-time, human-assisted channels.

Ian Aitchison (12:45):

Now, I think 10 years ago that would’ve been higher. So it’s not wrong that we’re moving away from it, but we’re a long way from saying that human interactions, call center agents have died. What was really interesting was that the customer preference for human-assisted channels when we looked into the data was nine times that of self-service channels. Customers still want to deal somehow with people. But not all customers, okay? So we’ve got to remember, not all customers. We dug into this in a little more depth.

Ian Aitchison (13:26):

We wanted to understand, is there some migration from… What do we call it? Traditional channels to new channels. So we’d ask them what your preferred channel was? That was the slide before. We also then asked them, has your preferred contact method changed in recent years? So we had two different cohorts that we could compare against each other. Now, the dark blue, those are the people who say their preference has changed and this sort of tan light, brown color, they said their preference has not changed.

Ian Aitchison (14:03):

If the dark blue is smaller than the tan, that means that people are moving away… when they change, they’re moving away from that channel. What it shows here is that although phone and email are still the most popular… and they’re still the most popular even for people who’ve changed their channel preference, we’re moving away, it’s moving away. It’s also moving away from in person, face-to-face. That doesn’t surprise us. COVID has shut down a lot of face-to-face interactions.

Channel Preference and Usage Slide

Ian Aitchison (14:39):

And a lot of customers are moving. 47% of them said, “Yeah, I’ve changed my preference in the last few years. I used to like something and I like something else.” As they’re moving away from phone, as they’re moving away from email, they’re moving to web chat, they’re moving to messaging systems, they’re moving to video. Again, that may well have been driven by the acceptance of video which has exploded since COVID came onto the scene. But also, they are moving to self-service technology.

Kyle Kennedy (15:10):

Ian, that’s really interesting, that even though they are moving to self-service technology, a lot of the movement from phone and email is making its way into other human-assisted channels. So the goal of diverting cost away from those human-assisted channels is only partially being taken up by the self-service piece. I just found it interesting that people were still very, very interested in having a human interaction or being assisted in real-time that way.

Ian Aitchison (15:41):

When we’ve asked questions, similar questions, over the last few years, any number of years, when you ask, would you prefer to be assisted by a human or find answer yourselves? It’s always a majority have said they would prefer some human assistance. So this is year over year customers are still needing some help. When 47% of customers say that their preference is changed, one of the things that I wanted to look at was, well, when it changes, are they moving to…

Ian Aitchison (16:16):

So where it says they’re moving to self-service or they’re moving to messaging systems, are those channels actually delivering good results for them? So we looked specifically here in this group of customers at customers who said that they had had a multichannel interaction. Okay? In the research that we did, we looked at customers who did single-channel interactions. We also looked at multichannel. This was looking particularly at multi-channel interactions. We wanted to understand, what was their… We call it a starting point.

Ian Aitchison (16:55):

So where did their service journey begin? Where did they go to first of all to get help from an organization? Now, before even this point, they might have looked online, they might have looked on Google, they might have looked on YouTube, they might have looked on a third-party website. But this is, where have they gone with the organization themselves? The dark is where the journey started and then the tan is where journeys ended. It was interesting that 26% of journeys start in phone, but almost 40% finish in phone.

Ian Aitchison (17:34):

Whereas in web chat, only half the number of journeys finish in web chat as start web chat. And also, self-service technologies, they’re good at starting journeys, but they’re not good at finishing the journeys. So it’s interesting that maybe whilst people are wanting to move to self-service, maybe it’s… I don’t know what you think? The self-service hasn’t yet been designed to help them actually finish their journey?

Channel Preference and Usage - Multi-Channel interaction Slide

Kyle Kennedy (18:05):

Yeah. It’s not obvious or necessarily directly from the research, but phone is clearly still the safety net of the industry.

Ian Aitchison (18:13):

Yeah.

Kyle Kennedy (18:14):

It doesn’t seem that we’re moving away from that even though we are introducing all of these new technologies. And the service journeys, which are clearly not built out very well, are failing out before us and the phone is having to catch and clean up the messes.

Ian Aitchison (18:31):

I wonder how much of this is the design of the service journeys themselves, or how much of it, just the technology that’s being implemented, doesn’t have the capability of solving the problems that the customers have?

Kyle Kennedy (18:48):

Well, then don’t design it into the service journey.

Ian Aitchison (18:53):

There is no point implementing something like web chat or something like self-service if you can’t resolve a majority of the inquiries through it, because as we’ll see as we go on, bringing someone into a channel and not being able to fix their problem causes dissatisfaction. In fact, that’s a nice segue into talking about, why do people have to move? We see that a large portion of consumers do have to move between channels. But we wanted to understand from them, why did they have to move between channels?

Ian Aitchison (19:30):

37% of them chose to move channels where 63% of them were forced into moving channels. The 37% who chose to change channels said that they did it either to speed up… They believed it would speed up resolution or they believed it made it easier for them. Whereas the 63% who were forced, they said either they were forced to because of the complexity of the issue… Actually, we’ll dig into that soon, about what impact complexity has on satisfaction. But the single biggest item, 35% of them said they were forced to by the customer service process.

Ian Aitchison (20:11):

The thing about that, is when customers are forced to use multiple channels rather than choose to use multiple channels, their dissatisfaction was one and a half times more than those who chose to move channels. So I would say that if the customer service process or the way we’ve designed the journey for customers to get to resolution is forcing them to go from one channel to another, we’re doing ourselves a disservice in the industry.

Kyle Kennedy (20:41):

Well, and it’s critical that if we’ve designed it that way or we believe that it should be working, that we’ve got to be able to monitor and measure this so that we can avoid that one and a half times incremental dissatisfaction.

Ian Aitchison (20:54):

Yeah. Yeah. I think service design, service journey design, I think, needs quite a lot of thought put into. I think service design is going to be a big part of the future of managing customer contact. One of the issues there, a third of them, 28%, almost a third, said they were forced to change channel to get their issue resolved because of the complexity of the issue. So we wanted to delve into a concept that complexity has a role to play in issue resolution and a role to play in satisfaction.

Channel preference and usage - reasons for multi-channel interactions slide

Ian Aitchison (21:40):

Across the board, across the thousands of people that we interviewed, 64% of them said their issue was simple, either very simple or simple. 23% of them said it was neither simple nor complicated. Only 13% of them said it was complicated or very complicated. So the majority of issues that they’re contacting an organization with, the customers believe, are simple. Then we thought, well, how does that impact resolution? So we broke that group down into two different cohorts. One is their issue was resolved, they’ve told us their issue was resolved, and one was the group who told us their issue was not resolved.

Ian Aitchison (22:30):

When the issue was resolved, only 10% of the people said that their issue was complicated, whereas for those who were not resolved, it was a quarter of them. That intuitively makes sense. The more complicated the issue, the more difficult it is to resolve it. But actually, our industry is supposed to be there to resolve customers’ issues. I know that we have tier one, tier two, tier three where appropriate, but we should be designing our knowledge management systems, our knowledge bases, our service journeys, our service design so that even complicated inquiries are dealt with as though they are normal, right?

Ian Aitchison (23:19):

It’s not a special event every time a customer has a difficult inquiry, it should be part of the customer service process. Interestingly, if we deal with it in first contact and we resolve it in one contact, 79% of those were simple transactions. That drops down to 64 and 62% if it went to two contacts or three or more contacts, and then 44% when it’s not resolved at all. We can just see the more complicated the issue or the more complex the issue, the more contacts it takes to get it resolved. That has not only a satisfaction issue, but that’s a cost issue for an organization as well.

Inquiries - complexity and resolution

Ian Aitchison (24:08):

Let’s delve into the different channels themselves. I wanted to dig into what the research was telling us about issue resolution by each channel and also how issuer resolution impacts the customer’s emotions. The way that we measure customers’ emotions in the customer contact industry, there’s three main metrics. The most common one is customer satisfaction. It’s not a factual thing, it’s an emotional thing. Are they satisfied with the service or not?

Ian Aitchison (24:49):

The second most common way, so our execs told us that we’re measuring emotions of customers is through the net promoter score, which is a likelihood to recommend the organization to family and friends. The third most common, although quite far behind the first two, is what’s called the customer effort score, which again is an emotional representation of how easy they felt it was to get their issue resolved or to deal with the organization. That’s what I mean when we’re talking about customers’ emotions. The way we measure the customers’ emotions are through those metrics.

Ian Aitchison (25:26):

Anyway, looking at the phone, 91% of customers, when we surveyed them, said that their issues had been resolved. So clearly, 9% had not been resolved. Then we dug into, okay, well, how many contacts did you need to have to get your issue resolved? Only 46% got their issue resolved in one contact. We’ve done this type of analysis across multiple organizations for many years and we have seen self-reported data be up in the 80, 85, in the 90s, but this is customer-reported data. So this isn’t a company creating their own metric.

Ian Aitchison (26:13):

This is customers telling us… Yeah, only 46% of them said that they got their issue resolved in the first contact. 29% of them in two contacts, 16% in three or more contacts, and 9% were not resolved at all. So how does that issue resolution impact their emotions? Well, you can see in here that there are three different metrics. The dark blue is customer satisfaction. The first one’s 76%. So that means on a five-point scale, 76% of the respondents said they were satisfied or very satisfied.

Ian Aitchison (26:55):

The tan one is the customer effort score. And that 64% are the people who scored… it’s a seven-point scale, who scored either a seven or a six. Then the net promoter score, which is a calculation where you take away those people who scored you a nine or a 10 on… What’s actually an 11-point scale, you take those who scored zero to six away from those who scored nine and 10. So it’s possible to have a negative net promoter score. It’s not possible to have a negative customer effort score, a negative customer satisfaction score.

Ian Aitchison (27:31):

In general, if you just surveyed all the customers who had contact with an organization, their top-two box satisfaction from our group was 76%. Customer effort score was 64%, net promoter score was neutral. It was zero. So then you broke it down into resolved versus not resolved. If you resolved the issue, you had 81% top-two box satisfaction, you had a positive net promoter score. If you didn’t resolve it, well, that kills the emotions, right? That drops down to 33% top-two box. They feel it was hard to deal with the company, so the customer effort score drops down to 17.

Customer experience with phone - CX Metrics

Ian Aitchison (28:13):

And the net promoter score, well, if you are not resolving issues, that’s just destroying value. That’s destroying brand value, that’s making customers just feel negatively about that organization. And more nuanced, it was looking at, well, if you resolve it, a net promoter score of plus four isn’t much to write home about. On this call, there are probably organizations heading up in the plus 50, plus 60 net promoter score. So remember, this is across multiple countries, multiple industries. But look at how first contact resolution can drive up satisfaction.

Ian Aitchison (28:55):

90% top-two box, 79% customer effort, and plus 18 net promoter score. If you have to have a second call to get the issue resolved, that drops, and a third call, well, even though you resolve the issue, you’re still destroying the relationship or you’re damaging the relationship you have with your customer. What this is saying to me is that you have got to push resolution closer to the starting point. Don’t make customers change channels, but also don’t make customers have to contact you more than once because every call they have to make to get their issue resolved drives down one of these CX metrics, one of these emotional measures.

Kyle Kennedy (29:38):

I think it’s particularly interesting though that a service-related call can actually be an opportunity to improve the customer’s opinion of the company.

Ian Aitchison (29:47):

100%. This is something that I know some of our clients are aware of and think about. But actually, the frontline staff, we’ve looked for years, for 20 years, to work out how to turn a contact center from a cost center into a profit center. Well, think about it this way. Good customer service is driving up net promoter score. If net promoter score actually has a link to increased spending, number of recommendations, repeat business, then good customer service is driving that up and there is a financial benefit in delivering good customer service.

Ian Aitchison (30:32):

I think that is a huge finding personally. That was phone. Emails also has a 91% issue resolution. But email, as you can see, has worse first contact resolution. Only 34% of customers who went by email got their issue resolved first time, 31% two contacts, 26 in three or more contact. So it typically takes more time to get your emails resolved. The patterns of the emotions are the same again. The actual numbers slightly vary, but the patterns are the same. Resolve the issue, you get better results than if you don’t resolve the issue.

Ian Aitchison (31:19):

In email, if you don’t resolve the issue, it was a really bad net promoter score. Now, I wouldn’t stand up in court and say that it is that much worse than those who don’t get their issues resolved by phone. There’s some margin of error in that number, but the pattern is still the same. Similarly, the number of contacts you have to make has a big impact, that if you resolve it first time, customers are happier. So that’s looking at two of the… the two most common. As we saw, the two most preferred channels, although the two channels that people are moving away from.

Ian Aitchison (32:03):

Let’s look at one of the channels that customers are moving to and let’s look at self-service technologies. When we’re talking about self-service technologies, we really mean mobile apps, online self-service, chatbots, et cetera. Now, the type of inquiry that goes to self-service is generally less complicated, less complex than those who go to human assisted. So the issue resolution in self-service is higher, right? It’s 95%. Compare that to the 91% in the human assisted. But it’s still not great at first contact resolution.

Ian Aitchison (32:43):

They’re still having to find their answers by going to the self-service more than once. Maybe they don’t understand how to use the app, maybe they have to look in different ways. So only 40% of them said that their issues were resolved at first contact. But one of the interesting things about self-service was just how disappointed customers could be when their issue was not resolved. Resolving the issues in the first contact for self-service doesn’t necessarily bump up the emotions as much as they are when they are in touch with a human.

Ian Aitchison (33:27):

There’s something about the expectations, right? Satisfaction is your perception of what you got compared to your expectation of what you got. So sometimes, just dealing with a nice person, dealing with a warm person, dealing with somebody who’s got some empathy, dealing with someone who wants to help you, when they resolve the issue, that can make your net promoter score, your satisfaction even higher. We don’t have that opportunity as much in self-service technology. It’s a bit more functional.

Ian Aitchison (34:00):

If you resolve it, that’s fine. If you don’t resolve it, it can really drop down. Clearly, there’s not only a downside to self-service technology. But if customers are coming to use it, they have an expectation that their issue will be resolved. If you don’t meet that expectation, it can really drive down satisfaction. One of the things that we really wanted to dig into in a little bit more depth were chatbots, because chatbots are being implemented everywhere in the world. There’s a number of countries who actually got in there earlier.

Ian Aitchison (34:41):

China was one country that we’ve worked with where chatbots were adopted a little quicker. In countries like the US and Australia, where I live, early chatbots weren’t hugely successful. So then, they weren’t used for a while. But then again in the last couple of years, we’re seeing more and more organizations putting them in. But with the chatbot, we didn’t ask how many times you had to contact. We just asked about, was it resolved? Was it not resolved? The customers contacting the chatbot, 83% of their issues got resolved. That’s way lower than any other self-service technologies.

Customer experience with Chatbot - Issue resolution and CX Metrics Slide

Ian Aitchison (35:19):

It’s way lower than email, it’s way lower than the phone. So we can see that chatbot still hasn’t been designed well enough to resolve issues. But even if you do resolve the issue, it’s not driving satisfaction to the same degree because those customers just have an expectation that their issue would be resolved. But what chatbots are doing is driving real dissatisfaction. If you’ve got a chatbot and it doesn’t resolve what the customers want, their net promoter score goes to minus 54, their top-two box satisfaction’s 11%. They feel it’s hard work. The customer effort score’s only 7%. So I think chatbots have got a lot of work to be done.

Kyle Kennedy (36:03):

Well, for that matter, even when the issue was resolved, they had a negative impact on NPS. So I think the repercussions of maybe bad implementations, failing technology at the beginning, even though there’s been lots of improvement, clearly the public is not enjoying working with the chatbots just yet.

Ian Aitchison (36:23):

No, I think we’ve got a long way to go with chatbots. What the research has told me this year is that while organizations are focusing on channels, they’re focusing on channel strategy, they’re trying to bring in new channels, it’s not quite been aligned with, what do the customers want? The issue is not the channel, or the channel is not the issue. The issue is the issue. The customer wants their issue resolved and most of the time they don’t care which channel is used.

Ian Aitchison (37:01):

They just want their issue resolved. All our data is showing us that issue resolution is super important. But even more than that, all the data is showing us that first contact resolution as determined by the customers here… And we all know that different organizations have different ways of measuring first contact resolution. But when the customers tell us, first contact resolution has the biggest impact on customer satisfaction, net promoter score, and also the customer effort score.

Ian Aitchison (37:38):

My one takeaway, probably because I’ve been saying it a thousand times now in this one webinar, is I’d be looking at how can I design my channel strategy, my knowledge management strategy, how do I set up my customer contact to be able to get better first contact resolution? That’s what I think this data that we’ve gone through just now is telling us.

Ian Aitchison (38:05):

We wanted to keep this webinar to approximately 40 minutes. We believe that people want to consume their information in shorter periods. So we’re trying to not do one-hour-long webinars anymore. But I thought that I would just summarize with a bit of a conclusion.

Ian Aitchison (38:30):

There are gaps between what organizations believe customers attach importance to versus the reality of what customers attach importance to. An example of that was the self-service technology. That was something that companies thought was important to get in. That was way down the rankings for consumers. Another example was the sort of being treated fairly, being treated honestly. Customers value that around the world. We’ve got to make sure that consumers don’t feel that we are not being fair with them. I think that’s important.

Conclusion slide

Ian Aitchison (39:13):

If you read through the whole report, and if you do and you disagree with some of the conclusions, we’d love to hear from you. But I think that by putting in more multi-channel opportunities, by its very nature, multi-channel journeys are going to increase. What we want to make sure is that multi-channel journeys happen because the customer chooses to not because we’re forcing them into multi-channel journeys. The third aspect related to that multi-channel journey was that it’s not the journey, but it’s the resolution that’s the…

Ian Aitchison (39:54):

It’s not the channel, it’s not the journey, it’s the resolution that’s the most important driver of customer satisfaction, and the closer we can get to first contact resolution, the better. The final thing is that there is some truth in the last 10 years that we’re moving away from the phone. We are moving away from the phone. Human-assisted channels are still preferred, but when people have changed their preferences in the last couple of years, they are moving away from phone and towards things like web chat, which is still human-assisted, or self-service technology. As they move to that, we’ve got to make sure that we can still resolve their issues.

Ian Aitchison (40:45):

Every month, as James said at the beginning, we’ll be releasing a new report. These reports are free. I think as you’ve registered initially, you’ll be able to get them for free. We’ll send them to you. The next one coming out is about technology. We then will have one about outsourcing. We’re going to look specifically at recruitment and hiring, which as we’ve seen from today is an important issue. We’ll focus on some more operational aspects later on in the year, quality management, workforce management.

Ian Aitchison (41:19):

A big thing that I think that COPC really wants to help organizations with is the employee experience. We’re going to focus on that. The final ones are channel management, training and development, efficiency and cost management. We will then look at what are the right performance metrics and KPIs. Although if you listen today, you’ll know that I’m already focused on issue resolution and first contact resolution. But we’ve got to take a broad view of service, quality, cost, and customer satisfaction. Then finally, we’ll tie back into this first one. We’ll be looking at service design and service optimization.

James Cammareri (41:57):

Thanks very much for attending today’s COPC session. We hope that you found it very valuable and we hope to see you again soon.