Are Your Call-Center Employees Providing Service That Reduces Customer Effort?
To create an effective overall brand experience employees must strive to reduce consumer effort within every individual touchpoint. This attention to detail requires consistently engaged employees and continuous measurement to ensure employees retain your desired level of service. One pillar of the brand experience that is especially influenced by employee engagement is customer support, especially within your organizational call-center. Typically, customers will call these helplines to resolve a specific issue and it is vital that your team is striving to reduce as much effort when completing these requests. Implement mystery shopping and voice of customer survey programs to ensure that your call-center customer support staff is reducing consumer effort within each individual request.
An organization’s Customer Effort Score (CES) is a metric that is used to measure the customer support effectiveness within these interactions. To collect this data, organizations must ask, on a five-point scale from “No Effort” to “Very Difficult,” how much effort was required on the part of the customer to use the product or service. Rather than asking a customer’s future willingness to recommend, like the method used to collect the Net Promoter Score®, a brand’s CES instead is focused around a customer’s past experience with the brand. Typically, a brand will collect a CES score immediately after an interaction with a product that led to a purchase or subscription, immediately after an interaction with customer service or to measure the aggregate experience someone has with your brand or product in general.
Understanding how employees are engaging with customers within your call-center is because a poor support experience can leave a permanently sour taste in a customer’s mouth. Regardless of the service request, your call-center team members need to be fully equipped to handle any situation. Plus, as technology has further connected brands and consumers, there is an evolving set of expectations your employees must adhere too. Close to 75% of customers surveyed said that they expect a support agent to know their contact information and service history without being asked. Consumers are no longer willing to exert the effort required to inform each new associate they interact with, making it essential that the initial point-of-contact associate is prepared to handle this expectation. Additionally, US consumers report that being passed between agents is the most frustrating aspect of a customer service experience. Maintaining a highly trained, monitored and managed call-center staff can help ensure that consumers are satisfied with the first individual they speak with.
Understanding the CES within your call-center is valuable because it helps leadership determine whether or not these support employees are reducing consumer effort. When a customer calls into your brand, they expect associates to efficiently and politely handle the interaction. Utilizing measurement programs can help position your employees to reduce consumer effort levels because it offers an unbiased look at how these interactions are being executed. If these associates are unable to match the level of service provided by your in-store staff, customers will quickly notice and move on to competitors. In fact, 65% of consumers are likely to switch brands if they don’t receive consistent service at different touchpoints. This omnichannel consistency is the overarching goal of any customer effort reduction campaign. Consumers should complete an interaction with your brand without exerting any extra effort as they move throughout the customer journey. Utilize programs like mystery shopping to ensure that your call-center employees are contributing positively towards your organizational CES.
Net Promoter, Net Promoter System, Net Promoter Score, NPS and the NPS-related emoticons are registered trademarks of Bain & Company, Inc., Fred Reichheld and Satmetrix Systems, Inc.
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We adeptly design and manage mystery shopping, compliance, engagement and voice of customer solutions grounded in strategic relevance, program integrity and actionable insights. Our solutions are developed on the basis of solid research and statistical science. We achieve success through a relentless focus on quality and innovation, consultative relationships and a talented team of professional associates.