Expert Opinion: Top 3 Customer Support Trends to look for in 2018
With Customer Experience being a crucial factor in business operations, comes the importance of optimizing Customer Support and forecasting trends. With 2018 around the corner, it’s a great time to discuss current and anticipated trends.
Recently I was asked to contribute to an expert round-up on the top customer support trends to look for in 2018. Each of us were asked to contribute our perspective on the top 3 trends and while all of the mentioned Customer Support trends are very relevant in the Customer Service industry, here is a summary of my insights to this topic.
1) Omnichannel I think that 2018 will be the year the Omnichannel becomes a reality for many customer support centers. The increasing number of cloud-based services that can support omnichannel has reduced the cost of entry and deeper integration with CRM and similar platforms means that real-time information can now be employed to support live channel switching and migration – a key building block to true omnichannel service
2) Video Service will continue to increase and become mainstream. Video can enable easier customer authentication, increased emotional connection to customers, provide insight into technical support challenges and allows for more interactive services. Banks are already deploying ITMs (Interactive Teller Machines). High-end automakers like Land Rover and Jaguar are employing video and government agencies are offering solutions such as video chat at DEWA (Dubai Electricity and Water Authority) in Dubai. Web RTC, the underlying enabling technology, is increasingly available in SaaS and CCaaS solutions eliminating barriers to deployment.
3) The Shift to Self-Service will accelerate. Simple, straightforward calls and contacts will increasingly be served by self-service solutions including mobile, web, IVR, chatbots etc.
The shift of ‘easy’ calls to self-service will leave the remaining contacts challenging and difficult. The agent skill and proficiency requirements to effectively manage these contacts will eliminate many agents who may be working in Contact Centers. This shift is also likely to see wages rise for these ‘super-agents’ and training and skill development budgets will increase as organizations respond to the need for enhances skills and capabilities to solve advances and complex customer challenges.
In summary, “To excel in customer support, you can no longer rely on conventional channels such as phone and emails. Customers demand instant resolutions to their concerns and leveraging techniques such as live chat, instant message services, AI, chatbots and Knowledge base can help you achieve the objective.” – ProProfs. In employing multi-channel or omnichannel ensure to remember the Importance of Consistency Among Different Channels in the Contact Center. To view additional expert insights on Customer Support Trends for 2018 I encourage you to view the entire expert round-up: Expert Opinion: Top 3 Customer Support Trends to Look for in 2018