72% of customers stating that a ‘good customer support experience’ is the most essential element of their relationship with a brand. Why is this so often where brands look to cut costs?
The Customer Support team is the front line of a business yet so often the support agents are not armed, or trusted, with the correct knowledge and tools to resolve issues. They are simply ticket-making machines, distributing enquiries to the relevant departments.
Firstly, we need to understand how to best utilise your support agents’ time. Repetitive queries combined with outdated technology leads to monotony and leaves your frontline team with an overwhelming sense of dread as they receive each enquiry.
Secondly, the overall attitude when establishing a customer support process tends to be “set it and forget it.” Processes are in constant need of updating and streamlining to keep them relevant.
The answer is to invest in your Customer Support teams and that does not mean increasing headcount.
Value your support agents. They are the face and backbone of your company and carry a lot of responsibility. The training should include education in CS technologies, management of tricky situations and understanding of customer-facing etiquette.
With poor opportunities for growth in these positions, it is no wonder Customer Support teams have high staff turnover rates. New CS developments and technologies emerging because of Covid show it’s time to nurture your support agents and prepare them for leadership roles.
40% of customer enquiries are tediously mind-numbing and 80% of enquiries could be resolved by a bot!
Automated support can be available 24/7 and across a range of channels. Bots also come with a full range of reporting and analytics. Get your support agents to review the bots’ performances to improve and refine the automation.
Automating the easy and frequently asked questions will reduce repetitive tasks for your support agents, giving them time to engage in more meaningful conversations. This will further their development and they will feel valued. This will in turn reduce staff attrition.
Support agents must switch between a multitude of systems to find information such as product specs, customer accounts and order details. Around 20% of the agents’ time is spent simply looking for information to resolve customer queries and issues. A further percentage is spent in completing post conversation admin.
Agent-assisting bots that speed up research time alongside process automation can help with back-office tasks. This reduces pressure and allows valuable relationship-building conversations to happen.
Although these might seem like obvious solutions, the lack of time and investment put into improving CS teams is quite astounding!
Consider the changes mentioned and you will be running a first class, happy, Customer Support team!