We look at customer engagement technology for the contact centre now and going forward. What’s on your 2020 wish list?

Customer engagement technology for contact centres

3 contact centre challenges

1. As 2020 gets underway, contact centres everywhere are trying to keep up with the demands of customers using multiple devices and channels. They want fast, easy connections and solutions.

Last year, there was much talk about how effective all the individual channels (mobile messaging, Twitter, web chat, email etc) actually were when being used by contact centres within a customer service context. 2020 will be about ensuring that a properly integrated approach is taken to deploying and using them.

This includes being able to connect an online customer easily to a live agent for a phone conversation when required. In a 2019 survey by online magazine, ‘Call Centre Helper’, 53.7% of contact centre professionals indicated that they couldn’t offer this. Respondents said that if their self-service options fail, customers still have to call in manually because the channels aren’t integrated yet.

2. For most contact centres it’s about deploying the right mix of SMAC – ‘Social, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud’. You need to create a blend of intelligent self-service and agent-assisted support using integrated, automated solutions. Customer engagement technology which provides an end-to-end customer service solution in one package is the answer.

3. Another challenge is not just being aware of, but preparing for, the newer communication channels being used by contacts. Budgets are foremost when considering what will ensure your contact centre provides an efficient service both for customers and the business going forward. But you have to have a growth mindset. You can’t rely on legacy thinking and systems to embrace the digital marketplace – and short-term, ‘quick fixes’ will not future-proof your business.

3 examples of transformational customer engagement technology

1. Some businesses are already utilising customer engagement technology to communicate with those of us with smart speakers and assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant at home. You may be one of the customers who use them to self-serve for everything from ordering pizza to paying a bill.
2. You can also make video calls and exchange text messages and images all on the one device with some applications.
3. Conversational messaging is being more widely adopted by both customers and businesses, as it allows them to engage better with contacts on their favourite channels. You can use messaging to provide information and solve customer issues – or in marketing campaigns with promotional offers etc. Features include being able to add amazing visual content, links and quick-reply buttons to messages, giving users a simple way of responding to different options. You can upload attractive videos and carousels to create compelling two-way messaging interactions. And all this can be tracked to measure engagement – open rates, exit stats etc.

As these real-time methods of communication become more popular and mainstream, contact centres will need to start planning for them in their service capability.

3 steps to securing ROI on customer contact technology

1. Investing in a platform that will take you and your customers where they want to be now and in the future doesn’t mean major upheaval and expense. A quality platform will have the functionality to allow you to roll out new services/campaigns only when you and your customers are ready for them.
2. Work with suppliers to explore ideas and technologies. An early conversation will help set you on the right path to remaining relevant for your customers and attractive as an employer.
3. Those businesses who have already digitised their operations and back-end systems – and joined them up properly – have a clear advantage. And they’re in a better position to embrace the ‘next phase’ of digital transformation – Internet of Things (IoT), Virtual Reality, Wearable Tech etc. So act now!

For help and ideas on transforming your contact centre with customer engagement technology, contact us.