The Key to Your Financial Services Contact Center Success
You probably already know that customer experience is now a primary focus for financial services enterprises. This is a good thing. Businesses who have upgraded their communications systems to deliver the experience customers demand are enjoying tremendous returns on their investment. With fintech exploding, financial organizations survive by optimizing both inbound and outbound customer communication. That takes the right technology used in the right way.
The “E” Word
When brick-and-mortar businesses reigned, banks succeeded by building personal relationships with their customers. In the digital world, financial services still have to provide a personalized digital relationship. Customers must have access through their choice of channels and agents on every channel must instantly know customers by name, profile and accounts. Financial organizations have to understand what customers want and address, even anticipate those expectations.
At the core of every successful relationship is empathy. Businesses who’ve done their research and figured this out are flourishing.
So what does this mean for your contact center? If you aren’t already implementing empathy in your protocols, consider how other successful enterprises do it.
First of all, what is empathy? It’s simple. Empathy is two things: 1. Putting yourself in another person’s shoes long enough to see and feel the world from their perspective and 2. Communicating to that person effectively that you have done #1.
So how can empathy drive improved customer satisfaction and retention?
Ask customers and listen carefully. In order to understand someone’s experience, never assume you know it. Businesses must have a system of researching what their customers are experiencing and what they want, in order to create a satisfying customer experience. User experience research can come in many forms, but automated post-engagement surveys are one of the easiest. Built into your CRM software, these research tools can be collecting essential data about your customers’ experience at a low cost.
Ask agents and listen carefully. Contact center success depends on the relationship between the customer and the agent. Since agents represent the company, their own experience is also important to the quality of service you deliver. When contact center managers understand and provide what agents need, they can position those agents to offer the best possible end user experience.
Show you understand customer and agent pain points by providing the state-of-the-art standard for customer and agent experience. More and more enterprises are showing they get it. Only a few years ago, customers dreaded and avoided contacts with businesses because they’d had these kinds of experiences:
- Conversations with agents who were confrontational, manipulative, shaming, angry, threatening, or calling at an inappropriate time or place.
- Intrusive, robotic, unwelcome messages based on business need, not considering the customer’s perspective.
- Communication options limited to phone calls.
- Waiting long periods of time listening to terrible music and/or robotic voices repeating a single message about continuing to hold or unwelcomed sales pitches.
- An IVR system that often didn’t give callers an option that matched their needs, took them in circles, or took excessive time listing options. Sometimes the system hung up on them in the process, and didn’t offer a way to get to a live person along the way.
- Pushing buttons and waiting on hold for long periods, then getting an agent who couldn’t help with their problem. Customers were then transferred and often the call was dropped in the transfer, causing callers to have to start all over.
- Telling an agent their issue and then getting transferred to another agent who knew nothing about them, so having to repeat their whole story.
- Getting frustrated agents who were rude or unhelpful and seemed only to want to get the customer off the phone as quickly as possible.
Fortunately, the focus on customer experience has brought us beyond these dark ages. More and more, businesses are having the foresight to invest in the technology necessary to provide what customers are coming to expect.
For outbound communications, agents who use research data to understand the emotional state of people they contact have a much better chance of establishing a human connection. Agents can then successfully leverage that relationship to motivate people toward the action the business wants. Having the person’s profile at the agent’s fingertips and being able to communicate by less intrusive channels than phone are also ways to approach people in a more personalized, more customer-centric way.
When customers receive outbound notifications regarding their account activity, they feel reassured that their money is in good hands, without needing to know Mrs Clark at their local bank branch.
Surveys facilitate empathy
Automated surveys sent to customers after engagement, along with assessment and management tools that support agent performance offer data to improve both customer and agent experience. Managers can then respond constructively to any gaps in the flows.
Contact centers have realized that empowered agents are essential to satisfying customers. A user-friendly and powerful agent interface with everything the agent needs on one pane of glass gives agents support to deliver that great service, improve their job satisfaction and stay committed to the enterprise.
Inbound customers who have a question or problem expect to contact businesses on their choice of channels. If they’re on a website, they can type a chat message and an agent will type back. The whole conversation will be available to both agent and customer for reference.
If customers are away from a computer, they can engage in a text conversation on their phone. If the conversation starts in email, or the agent needs to send something by email mid-conversation, agents and customers can communicate on multiple channels simultaneously.
Chatbots can answer simple questions and offer self-serve options, allowing customers to handle some issues easily without an agent. Intelligent routing delivers customers from self-serve, chatbot or IVR to the right agent when needed. Getting a transferred call, agents can see the customer’s profile and all previous communications, so customers don’t have to introduce themselves or repeat their question.
All of these features are available as part of LiveVox’s true omnichannel, WFO, CRM/CEP seamlessly integrated software solution for contact centers. We have been listening carefully to how people want to communicate with businesses and we have provided the solutions that fit the demand. If your system is not as complete or as integrated as your customers now expect, let us show you how our true omnichannel solution can drive the success of your enterprise.
LiveVox is a leading provider of enterprise cloud contact center solutions, managing more than 14+ billion interactions a year across a multichannel environment. With over 15 years of pure cloud expertise, we empower contact center leaders to drive effective engagement strategies on the consumer’s channel of choice. Our leading-edge risk mitigation and security capabilities help clients quickly adapt to a changing business environment. With new features released quarterly, LiveVox remains at the forefront of cloud contact center innovation. Supported by over 450 employees and rapidly growing, we are headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Atlanta, Denver, Bangalore, and Colombia. Request a demo