Customers can be demanding, and your customer service is one of the areas where you can surprise them and distinguish your brand from your competitors. That’s why it’s important for customer service to operate effectively and efficiently. In this article you’ll find various topics relating to customer service telephony and omnichannel channels that will enable you to easily check if you can improve your (international) customer service operations.
In today’s digital world that is becoming increasingly globalized, it is getting ever more difficult to distinguish yourself at product level. It is difficult to compete on great products alone as there are more of those. The emotions evoked by your brand and company therefore become all the more important. One of the contributing factors is the accessibility of your customer service. Here you can create a wow experience and exceed expectations. Because let’s face it, how do you feel about a company that is hard to reach if you need help?
Compliant, effective, and efficient
One of its prerequisites to provide excellent service is that your customer service is set up properly and efficiently. These days customer service is available through multiple channels. Not only by telephone but also digitally. It is important that these channels are set up in a compliant, effective, and efficient manner.
You want to make sure that:
• the service numbers and rates that you use are compliant and in line with the market
• you have the right insight into and overview of all call data
• the calls always end up in the right place
• your employees have the right tools and channels at their disposal
Create an overview of your international service numbers
Is your customer service available in various countries? Then it is very likely that your numbers are active with different suppliers as your first supplier may not provide numbers in the new country and you therefore look for another party. And so, it slowly expands. This makes it important to have a complete overview of which numbers are active with which supplier/provider so you can quickly contact the appropriate party in case of changes or problems. When making this overview (master number plan), it is advisable to include all numbers for both inbound and outbound traffic. Including inactive numbers that are no longer in use or that you have requested but in the end were not activated.
Check local rules and regulations
Customer service inevitably involves compliance. Regulations regarding the use and registration of service numbers are constantly changing. In many countries, for instance, the costs of calls to service numbers must be free or at most charged at a local rate. Also, more and more countries require proof of presence in the respective country, e.g., business address and ID of the person in charge. If you do not provide this, it may happen that your numbers are deactivated, and you are temporarily unavailable by phone. Make sure you or your provider knows about these rules and regulations, so you don’t run into issues.
Have complete insight and overview
If you use many different numbers several countries, having an overview of all your call data is extremely important. Because overview provides insight:
• How many calls do you receive per hour/day/week/month etc.
• At what times do you see peaks, both up and down
• How easily can you check metrics like average call duration, wait time and number of missed calls
• How many calls do you receive outside opening hours
• Which contact center scores best when it comes to KPIs
The more data you have at your disposal, the better you can manage your customer service operations. Your supplier’s contact center software or portal may not automatically provide all available and relevant data. A specialized number supplier can often offer a solution. And provide customized dashboards and reports with that important data you’re after.
Efficient call distribution at all times
Incoming calls must be delivered to the right place. Also, if you are internationally active and have multiple contact centers. This must also go well when a destination number changes and during peaks or migrations. Your customer expects you to be easily accessible 24/7.
That’s why you want to:
- change a final destination number yourself
- activate a notification during peak times so callers are immediately informed
- send callers a text message with a url to a specific page with more information
- smartly route calls to a contact center where it is quieter
- remain easily accessible during a migration because your numbers are active with an independent party
Work with an omnichannel platform
Customers can contact brands and companies through more and more channels. Therefore, it is important that customer service representatives can effectively and efficiently manage the interactions in the different channels. Not in several standalone tools, but in one omnichannel platform that integrates all active channels. This enables agents to see all customer data and history and more easily handle questions in one interaction.
Work anytime, anywhere
Many of these omnichannel platforms are cloud-based, which means that employees have the same data and integrations at their disposal at every workplace. This means both the way of working, and the quality that your employees deliver remains the same, regardless of where and when they work. At home or in the office. And managers have a clear overview of what’s going on and the current workload at any time.
Integrations and latest developments
Most omnichannel platforms have native integrations with CRM and ticketing tools such as Salesforce, Zoho CRM, SugarCRM, Zendesk, Microsoft Dynamics 365, and many more. This way, all information is easily available, and customers can receive optimal service. They also include integrations with bots like Amazon Lex and Google Dialogflow. With the use of AI, you can generate bots that satisfy customer requests by interpreting their intentions. Taking the weight of your agents so they can focus on more complex and urgent questions.
Effectively and efficiently organize
Optimizing the accessibility and setting up your customer service effectively and efficiently results in:
- A better overview and more insight into your customer service KPIs
- Improved (international) accessibility
- Improved customer experience and customer satisfaction
- Cost savings
- Resulting in increased turnover
So don’t miss out on those opportunities for improvement but start working on them. That is not only good for you, but also for your employees and therefore your brand.
Make the right choices
Do you prefer not to tackle the optimization by yourself but rather brainstorm with someone about your customer service and office telephony environment and your modus operandi? Do you want to be relieved of the (operational) management and have a better overview? Get in touch with us, Sound of Data. We will gladly help you make the right choices to resolve any accessibility and operational problems.