Customer contact center operations are set to undergo transformation to improve customer experience (CX) delivery, finds new research from Frost & Sullivan.
Commissioned by Webhelp, the study of over 1,000 senior customer experience management professionals finds organizations are embracing technology and new ways of working to deliver improved customer service, with 98% planning to transform operations within 24 months.
The study finds almost one in two senior CX professionals expect to see a rise in new customer channels supported by technology such as voice assistants and AR services in the next decade. Much of this change has been accelerated in the last couple of years by the Covid-19 pandemic; 90% expect working from home to be a permanent part of CX delivery models in the future, and 78% expect advisors to have the ability to determine where they want to work.
In remote environments operational challenges have remained, and the research reveals engaging and motivating employees is seen as the most pressing, closely followed by keeping up with the latest contact center technology and deploying it at scale.
“The study has provided fascinating insight on the future direction of customer experience delivery,” commented Alexander Michael, Director of Consulting at Frost & Sullivan. “As the industry continues to undergo rapid transformation, it’s pleasing to see that brands plan to embed work from home as a permanent part of their model. Those that recognize that this needs to be designed in properly, in a sustainable manner, will see true benefits for their business and their customers.”
A bespoke approach to quality customer journey delivery
Contact center management expects onshore, nearshore and offshore contact centers to grow in the future – showcasing the need for a tailored approach across different businesses to maximize quality delivery. Companies choosing to improve customer experience may need to adapt the approach, while ensuring the security of customer data, access to talent, the resilience of operation and cost base.
“CX transformation must start with the needs of the customer and strategy of the business,” commented Olivier Duha, CEO and Co-founder of Webhelp. “Once agreed, it’s important to think holistically about how an operation is designed to meet those needs. This model should embrace the most suitable delivery format, considering how onshore, nearshore and offshore locations can be combined with working models such as onsite, at-home, or hybrid work. The world we live in today means we can host a customer support location for anywhere in the world and scale it rapidly.”
The research indicates that any customer experience management approach must address operational challenges of the future, around managing employee attrition, integrating disparate channels and systems, managing compliance, and engaging and motivating employees (all areas estimated by one in two to be more challenging in the future).
Respondents that have engaged in transformation projects are seeing benefits, with positive impacts identified on the security of data/customers (77%), customer experience (78%), access to talent (76%), the resilience of operations (77%), and cost base (77%).
“Our research shows us that 99% of customer experience leaders are focused on being able to quickly scale operations to meet customer demand,” explains Matthieu Bouin, Group Managing Director at Webhelp. “To achieve this, you need two things. Firstly, you need to design your operation with this in mind. Secondly, you need the right tech platform that can adapt, scale, and flex in response to the increasingly rapid changes in consumer behavior.”