Customer service is changing enormously. Given the new changes brought in by the Age of the Customer, profitable business requires you to cause a revolution of management. Technological advancements are heralding a movement towards customer focus, results, analytically-based choice and workflow, automation and a deeper ecosystem foundation.
While 80% of customer service operations can now be automated with the use of bots, half of those need more comprehensive tools to enable bots to complete the tasks.
However, customer service jobs can never be completely given away to bots. Many tasks require the deft human, emotional touch that, at least so far, Artificial Intelligence is unable to replicate. Many of the world’s highest achieving companies successfully utilise both human and robotic customer services.
Index of Content
The evolution of customer service
Several aspects led to the evolution of customer service, all related to the movement towards the Age of the Customer.
The organisation of a customer service department became more important, raising the level of the COO.
Customer Service became the principal focus of a customer’s interaction.
The newly empowered customer desired further opportunities for self-service. Chatbots rose to meet this challenge.
Movement away from traditional communication channels such as phone and email and towards chatbots.
Funding has followed suit as business are now focused on investing in these areas.
How to achieve customer excellence
Business are implementing operational excellence in customer service is in new ways, following five different fundamentals.
- Previously, a company would focus on what was most cost-effective and efficient for them. Now, it is essential for companies to focus on their outcomes and ways to analyse the worth and potential of their outcome. Therefore, everything changes with it: the procedure, management and product are all liable to change.
- The changing market is forcing businesses to focus on the needs of the customer. They now must recognise that these needs are constantly in flux, and inclined to adapt depending on certain factors. Businesses now consider the customer first, with the product they need created only after that consideration.
- Customer service is no longer fragmented and disconnected. Within your business it becomes part of a large whole powered by data. This allows you to concentrate on the most important outcomes and analyses. Eventually, this inter-connected and data driven customer excellence strategy leads towards full automation, a profitable aim.
- Automation can already take care of a large portion of your customer service. Over the next few years you should be aiming to have it handle around 80% of your interactions. Not everything can be run by chatbots, however. You should keep a team on the payroll that are able to deal with the more nuanced issues that a robot will never be able to have a ‘feel’ for. Aim to have robots and humans work in tandem, with chatbots acting as a triage system.
- Your business’s ecosystem should be a complete, holistic and open system. Information should be available to all. This helps deliver complete information to users, as no matter what department they’re speaking to, information is available across the board.
One of the major benefits of automation is the boost it brings to your bottom line. Once you’ve streamlined the work that human staff do, then it theoretically leaves a gap in your employment. However, don’t be tempted to call that extra money profit quite yet. Think about ways you can invest the money saved into staff training and advancement, allowing them to collaborate with Artificial Intelligence. The more you invest in staff the greater your return will be.
Boosting customer excellence involves shift in awareness
Boosting customer excellence is about embracing Artificial Intelligence but through a deep understanding of how, why and what you are doing. This involves knowing what is useful for you and your customers and what isn’t, while understanding that a large majority of the world’s prominent companies are already using AI to outstanding effect.