Today’s Guest Post: Kevin Craine
Three Ways to Boost Customer Experience in Telecom
Every business needs to ensure that customers are happy and keep coming back for more. If your service is slow, your customer engagements are impersonal, or you are generally seen as behind the times, it’s easy to start losing customers to the competition. High consumer expectations, the proliferation of competing providers and options, and intense market pressures are all spurring service providers to look for new ways to improve customer experience and retention. As a result, there’s a new mantra pervading telecom today: deliver the optimal customer experience.
Improving customer experience is critically important in the telecommunications industry where consumers have an ever-growing assortment of providers and options to choose from. According to Accenture, just 28% of U.S. consumers are loyal to their providers and brands. Nearly half say they’re more likely to switch providers than they were 10 years ago. What are the top three reasons customers leave? Failure to quickly resolve an issue, lengthy hold times, and interacting with representatives who cannot provide a solution.
You can find out more by downloading this Infographic from IBM “Customer Experience Matters in Telecom” and exploring the important factors that help retain customers and reduce churn.
Transact and Interact
While business has become increasingly digital, many telco’s continue to communicate and transact with customers through print documents—even though it is an expensive and inefficient process for both back-office users and customers. But more and more organizations are adopting systems and techniques that allow them to eliminate the burden and inefficiencies by capturing previously paper-bound high-volume output from line-of-business systems and then re-purposing and redistributing that content online. Quicker response, improved customer service and automated workflows all work to boost customer experience and loyalty.
Top Tips to Keep Customers Loyal
Maintaining great a customer experience service is critical for retaining customers and reducing churn. But keeping telecom customers loyal is harder than ever before. Here are three areas to consider:
#1 Fast Response – When your customers have service issue or a billing question do they dread the idea of calling your company for assistance? Let’s face it; the longer customers wait for an answer the more likely they are to decide to go elsewhere next time. Indeed, getting an answer quickly is the top criterion for superior customer experience…and a poor service experience is the number one reason customers leave. So, the question becomes: Do your customers get immediate service, or are they on hold while your agents struggle to find the information needed to resolve the call quickly?
#2 Self Service – Most telecom consumers would rather help themselves. If you don’t provide easy-to-access self-service options you can quickly lose ground to the completion. Customers like being able to adjust their account, download forms and find answers to common questions when it’s convenient to them — and that may include hours when your office is closed or when your call volume is high. Make sure your website acts as a resource for self-service and not a barrier to great customer experience that both you and your customers are looking for.
#3 Personalized Experience – One important way to improve customer experience is to improve how you use customer information to support that experience. By leveraging existing customer data through more thoughtful analytics, telecoms find that they can put more powerful data-driven customer experience strategies into place that make a difference. It’s all about using the power of personalization to boost customer loyalty and engagement. In what ways do you use the customer data you already have to improve customer experience and retention?
Improvements via Content on Demand
Going beyond a traditional output management and distribution is critical in order to address the shifts in the Telco market toward increased speed, responsiveness and customer service. How can you do it too? One way is by using IBM Content Manager OnDemand, a high performance solution to capture and convert high-volume computer output into digital information that can be accessed easily and securely online. This allows customer service agents, account managers, and even customers to manage and work with content directly from any device — including smartphones and tablets — that would otherwise be locked on paper. Users can retrieve reports and statements, check images and get other computer generated output with just a few clicks.
IBM CMOD provides call-center agents with fast access to relevant content so they can be more responsive and provide superior service. CMOD helps boost satisfaction further by giving customers easy, self-service options through the web and other mobile devices. The added benefit is that you may not need as many employees to handle customer service requests by phone or mail. The extended capabilities of CMOD enable strategies to extract actionable insight from customer data to create targeted marketing campaigns, more personalized and relevant service engagements, and products and services that are more tightly aligned with customer demographics and buying patterns.
Keeping customers loyal is essential for telecom companies today. The key is thoughtful strategies and systems that allow you to be more responsive, provide superior customer service, and bring about a more strategic approach to customer experience and loyalty. Want to find out more about IBM Content Manager OnDemand and how you can use the tools and capabilities to provide superior customer experience? Just visit: ibm.biz/BdEr5m
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Guest contributor Kevin Craine is the author of the book Designing a Document Strategy, host of Everyday MBA on C-Suite Radio, and a respected authority on document management and process improvement. He is the managing director of Craine Communications Group. For more information visit CraineGroup.com.