Last week Teleperformance UK hosted another event focused on exploring the way the entire customer service industry is changing. Titled ‘Optimising Customer Experience in the Digital Era’ the event analysed channel shift in the modern customer service environment.
Ben opened his talk by describing how the world is in a state of flux. He mentioned recession, depression, the economy, unemployment, and stock market panic all as new items that are endlessly analysed creating a fear of the future.
We are in the first era for several generations where we now expect our children to have a worse quality of life than our own. We are living through challenging times that are also seeing several industries change very quickly.
He mentioned customer contact centres and cited statistics such as just six per cent of customers now actually prefer to use a telephone self-service system – over half of customers now express a preference to interact with companies via the Internet – the rest actively preferring to speak to a human in a contact centre.
And there are good reasons for this. The main reasons cited when consumers complain about poor service are; being put on hold, waiting a long time, being passed from one person to another, not actually fixing the problem, being cut off… it’s no surprise that most people now want to interact with brands over the Internet when most of their complaints relate to an old style of service.
Ben described how the default for most consumers is now ‘always on’ – they have a phone that is connected to the Internet and is always available to receive and send messages or information.
Ben’s description of a future where the consumer is always on, where brands know the exact location of the consumer and what they are looking at on the Internet sounds like a privacy nightmare. But it’s already with us. Have you checked into a place on Facebook only to receive an alert that one of your friends is checked into a place nearby?
Advertising, marketing, customer service is all about to be shaken to the core and as Ben reminded us, most predictions of the future are entirely wrong. All we can do is explore the possibilities and see how consumers will want to interact with brands when all these options become an everyday reality.
Photo by Adam Bowie licensed under Creative Commons