7 things you need to know about the evolving contact centre and CX
Insights from our 2016 Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report
Your success as a company depends on giving customers a differentiated customer experience (CX) across many channels, and today that could be as many as nine channels. As you create an omni-channel journey that sets you apart in the market, the contact centre continues to play a part of your strategy, even as our definition of a contact centre becomes more fluid and embraces more digital channels.
Our newly released Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report, which includes responses from over 1,320 organisations across the world, shows the strides contact centres have made over the last year, as well as the challenges and opportunities still ahead.
Here’s what you need to know about this year’s benchmarking results:
1. Digital continues to dominate
Digital volumes are still on track to exceed phone contacts by the end of the year. We saw growth in almost every digital channel, while phone contacts dipped by 12%. Overall interactions have increased again this year. This is a challenge for many – 40% of respondents say their digital tech doesn’t meet business needs.
2. CX recognised as competitive differentiator
CX is at the heart of a service revolution. As organisations mature their approach to digital and traditional interactions, they’re noticing the link between improved CX and business performance. Over 80% see CX as a competitive differentiator – especially in the boardroom. Analytics can show how CX impacts sales, cost saving, customer loyalty and employee engagement.
Fast fact: 82.5% of companies see CX as a competitive differentiator.
3. Customer journey mapping top 5-year trend
To deliver true omnichannel capability – with well-designed and connected customer journeys – is the top industry trend impacting CX. The combination of contact channels offered by most contact centres – on average nine – means organisations need to provide frictionless journeys to maximise their CX. In fact, customer journey mapping has emerged as the top five-year trend, alongside analytics, that will reshape the industry.We see that capability is lacking – with just 17.4% of respondents able to locate problem ‘hotspots’ across the full contact spectrum.
Fast fact: Full channel integration levels set to treble from 22.4% to 74.6% in next two years.
4. Proactive automation
This contact approach is shaped by evolving customer expectations. Most businesses want to reduce calls through predictive analytics. It’s clear that digital channels will drive proactive outbound contact activity. Switching from reactive to proactive – using predictive analytics with tailored messaging to customers – is set to become the standard for many businesses, pre-empting customer needs and reducing costs.
Fast fact: Currently, 31% of organisations have capability for proactive automation – but it’ll rise to 57% by the end of 2016.
5. Analytics and service personalisation driven by the power of data
Most organisations want to offer an enhanced choice that’s tailored to a customer’s needs to deliver a more personalised CX. Personalisation of services will become more important – and this will be enabled by small, actionable information derived from big data analytics. It’s still early days for this though – 79.4% of organisations still have no ‘big picture’ of their interactions across service channels.
Fast fact: Personalisation of services enabled by analytics was voted a top trend, with 50.2% ranking analytics as the number one factor that will reshape the industry over the next five years.
6. Cloud and hybrid solutions
Cloud, in one form or another, is fast becoming an industry standard as contact centres recognise its value in providing seamless customer touchpoints. Plans to locate technology in the cloud are trebling, with the majority of organisations leaning towards a hybrid cloud solution that fuses premise-based legacy systems with new solutions.
7. Digital needs a human touch
This was probably the most compelling insight from this year’s Report. Our research shows that digital channels are often missing that human touch. In short, technology is only as good as the people who control, manage, and ‘own’ it. New digital channels can’t be developed in isolation of the contact centre. It’s important to get input from your employees, customers, and other stakeholders in your organisation when thinking about digital. It’s the only way to provide productive, efficient, and relevant channels in this new CX-focused service revolution.