Congratulations Mr. President!

Congratulations Mr. / Ms. President! Your company has won Cooldimi's CXPA award of the year for the most improved Consumer Experience. During the year, your company's extra ordinary achievements included

  • Response time improved by over 50%
  • 70% of the customers were on hold for less than 30 seconds
  • 80% of the customer problems were resolved in the very first attempt - an improvement of over 200% compared to the previous year (YoY)
  • 70% of the customers were able to resolve their problems without being forwarded to another customer service agent
  • 80% of the customers liked that they were greeted with their names and your company was already aware of their problems.
  • #complaints went down by over 50%
  • NPS (Net Promoter Score), a lagging indicator, jumped by 60%

Customer Experience: a reality check

 

We have a long way to go from where the businesses are today to a vision of an ideal customer experience.

Here is an anatomy of a complaint about an online insurance company:

My vehicle was hit while I was at work. I had to file claim, take time off work, and fight them with every step to get my car fixed. They even tried to talk the guy who hit me into blaming me. Good things we are friends as I was in the building when he hit my car. Very unethical practices going on here. First your guy hits my car. Second: I have to miss a day of work to deal with it. Third: in order to get a rental car, I had to drive 45 miles, then you argue with me about it. Fourth: you argue with me about all aspects of fixing my car, reimbursement, and I lost all value in my car. I have been nice, tried to work with you and nothing but attitude and disrespect. Never ever buy this insurance, this is a horrible company to deal with.

Almost every reader have had bad experiences with reputable companies in the world. Here is one of my own stories

 I have had a problem with a smartphone service provider. Over the last three months, I have called them at least five times and wasted over 6 hours. Every time I call, a customer service agent gets my information, listens to my problems and concerns with courtesy, promises to solve it forever. Alas! They forward me to another agent because I did not reach the right agent - my bad. After 10 to 20 minutes on the phone, now I am on hold again - waiting for agent 2.  As the agent 2 comes on board, they ask the same set of questions the first one asked and make big promises, dig into the problem and end up routing me to a third agent. After trying for over 6 hours over 3 months I gave up - lost my time and my money.

Quoting from Worst Customer Service: 5 Companies People Hate Calling

Nothing’s worse than something going wrong and realizing you’ll have to call a company that you absolutely hate to talk to. These companies have no clue how to treat customers, you think to yourself. Do these people hate their jobs? Why is it my fault? How the heck are they in business!

Customer Emotions

 

 

 

 

 

Customer frustration builds up with every minute of hold time. As per studies, customers are tolerant for the first three minutes. After that, it builds up exponentially. Similarly, every time a customer is redirected to another agent, frustration adds up very quickly. 

 Automation with AI & Chatbots

While customers are wasting their time trying to resolve a problem, the service providers are wasting their time and resources as well. In the case of car insurance, the poor customer had to take time off, leading to loss of income in addition to frustration and anger.  Artificial Intelligence and Chatbots can help large companies dramatically improve their customer experience (CX).

In an ideal scenario, businesses would

  1. Know their customers very well
  2. Expect calls for certain problems from customers based on their usage pattern
  3. When a customer calls in / messages in, instead of making them wait, gather required details with an automated agent (a bot). If the bot can resolve the problem, its well and good, else 
  4. Efficiently route (or escalate) to the most relevant department or a customer service agent
  5. Provide auto status updates if a problem needs more time to resolve.

Just do it 

As the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, Amelia Earhart, once said "The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity." With the advancements in technology, specifically with Artificial Intelligence and Digital Assistance/Chatbots, companies need to just take an initiative to improve their customer experience. In the beginning, it could be as simple as creating a proof of concept with a minimal functionality - for instance, with Natural Language Interface (NLI), chat bots can answer questions like "Which channel is running Oscar Awards?” or "How is the weather in San Francisco?” without the customer having to take any additional steps other than asking a question.

After all, companies have a lot more to benefit than lose with improved customer experience. 

  • Satisfied customers become loyal and the best brand ambassadors
  • Happier customers provide higher lifetime value to businesses
  • Businesses gain better insights into individual customer's unique requirements.

With Cooldimi's Customer Engagement Platform, you can dramatically improve your customers’ experience.

Posted in Artificial Intelligence, Chatbot, Customer Experience, Digital Assitant, Machine Learning and tagged , , , , , .

Kuldip S. Pabla

Kuldip believes in and practices Customer Centric Product Designs. He believes that customer experience must not be an afterthought. A well designed product should require minimum customer support, and even before a customer calls in for support, the support team should be aware of the problem with an actionable insight.

2 Comments

  1. I believe insurance companies are a special case.

    For they make money only when they do not pay. Therefore, it is in their interest to create friction between the customer and the insurance company’s money. They stay with in the letter of the law, just barely, at least enough to prove to the regulators and the courts that they “tried” to do their job. But the customer just gave up too soon. Or the customer did not fill out the “new” form correctly. Or the Insurance Company did fulfill their legal obligation to notify the customer that, yes, again it is a new month and the insurance company sent both a letter via post office and an email that the customer needed to contact the new adjuster for any questions.

    All kinds of things happen just before the end of quarterly reports that determine bonuses.

    Maybe AI can help one keep track of end of quarter insurance company behavior to try to detect a pattern.

  2. As we look into the future of customer experience especially in the area of customer service and support, another promise of AI and chatbots is that customers will no longer need to receive those super annoying and often biased/poorly designed customer satisfaction surveys after a case is logged. CSAT survey questions like “Was your issue resolved?” or “How courteous was the agent?” or “How knowledgeable was your agent about your issue?” or “Were you satisfied with how quickly your issue was resolved?” – all of which are badly formed questions for different reasons – would be moot. Imagine that!

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