It’s just not true. Customer self-service is one of the key capabilities of any company that actually cares about their customers. Companies contemplating a self-service customer care solution to support digital customer experiences should consider the following five steps:
1. Anticipate Requirements for a Digital Business Model. As organizations make
the shift to a post-sale, on-demand, attention economy, organizations must start supporting self-service for post-sale scenarios. Brands and organizations should plan to support customers frequently during and after the sale and direct them to the next self-service experiences whether they be answers, community, video, product, new offer or feedback.
2. Determine Your Company’s Willingness to Change. Suggestions for improving self-service cannot be realized unless the organization, from top to bottom, is ready for transformational change and has the structure and the budget to make and support change. Align incentives to support self-service and digital customer experience initiatives by the customer’s journey. Customer experience should not be governed by a department or fiefdom business model. It must be driven by being customer-focused regardless of which department “owns” the channel.
3. Determine Metrics for Reducing the Cost to Serve Customers, While Enhancing Revenue from Top-Notch Customer Experiences. Look at critical metrics like First Contact Resolution (FCR), Average Handle Time (AHT), reduction in call volume, increases in the opportunity to generate revenue, improved marketing, greater self- service employee engagement, increased digital customer engagement on any device, anywhere, anytime. Use the customer journey as the guide for overall success metrics.
4. Create and Use the Customer Journey Map to Maximize the Customer Experience. Evaluate your current customer journey from the customer’s point of view. How customer-focused are the ways in which customers can interact and engage with your company? Remember, customers don’t think about which department they are interfacing with. They just want you to give them what they need, regardless of channel or device. They expect you to understand their context when they seek you out and expect that your responses are relevant, transparent and authentic. Once you have created a set of current customer journey maps, ask customers how they could be even more customer-focused. Use that feedback to transform your customer journeys.
5. Deploy a Solution to Create Integrated, Personalized, Seamless Customer Experiences that Generate Customer Loyalty. When you serve the customer, you serve the business. As you interview vendors, make sure they answer all your questions and you understand how the software will solve your business issues. When you find a solution that can provide the answers to your business issues, you will be able to reduce operational and managerial costs as well as increase revenue through the excellent customer experiences your brand creates.
For more information about this paper, you can find it here.
VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research
Covering Customer Service, Self-Service and Customer Experience