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According to a recent survey by McKinsey, the way companies engage with customers and the tools supporting customer interaction will change dramatically over the next few years.

An omnichannel world will emerge with customers having access to a wide range of digital contact options for interacting with companies, not just the traditional call centre. Fully 75 percent of customers will use multiple service channels. This will include web sites, apps, social media, chat and voice.

Frontline robotics will also play an important gatekeeper role, helping to determine customer requests and handle simple issues. The report estimates that robots will be able to fully resolve 30 to 50 percent of all customer requests.

The emergence of omnichannel digital options will not mark the end of human contact centre agents. However, their role will change significantly, handling only the most complex requests, supported by robotics and artificial intelligence analysing large amounts of data and voice recognition patterns to communicate insights and recommendations to agents.

Manual work will be widely automated, allowing agents to focus fully on advising customers, delivering enhanced customer experiences, pursuing cross-selling and upselling opportunities. To achieve performance excellence in this future state, the report concludes that talent management and coaching will be crucial in empowering agents to seamlessly handle complex requests.

Five key dynamics transforming the customer care industry are identified:

  • Inbound calls will decline in number or be eliminated
  • Digital-care channels are already the starting point for most customer-care interactions
  • Large investments will be required to improve the skills of customer-care workers
  • High-end customised experiences will require companies to rethink customer engagement
  • New technology providers will flood the customer-care space, so companies must choose wisely

You can access the full article here.

Well worth a read.

Jim H

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