Service deliveryDigital Customer ServiceResearch highlights need for simplified customer experience

Research highlights need for simplified customer experience

Advancement of technology, access to the internet, and smartphones are driving changes in the customer experience landscape for public sector organisations

New research from CCA, the professional body for customer service, states that organisations need to simplify the complex environment of customer experience as we approach 2020. This research was carried out in partnership with Twilio.

The research which surveyed 70+ senior customer service executives, found that businesses were challenged in four main areas, namely:

  • Evolving and changing skills requirements are needed as customer service becomes increasingly complex
  • Keeping pace with new technologies including Artificial Intelligence and automation and how and when to best apply
  • Being agile and flexible in their approach to delivering improved service
  • Changing expectations about the role of front-line agents

The research is greatly applicable to the public sector in the UK, especially councils, who are under pressure to deliver excellent customer experience. Councils need to provide their citizens with the cutting-edge service that they crave for.

Simplifying the complex

CCA CEO Anne Marie Forsyth commented: “Simplifying the complex is much easier said than done. We are experiencing extremely uncertain times and organisations are challenged with investing in customer service and CX when the landscape is continually shifting due to the political environment, technology changes and increasing expectations from customers.

“Established and effective connections across the whole enterprise need to be in place so that customers are dealt with appropriately and in ways that suit them versus the organisation. The challenge for today’s businesses is knowing how to prioritise these challenges, balanced with investment in the most appropriate solutions.”

David Parry-Jones, regional VP of EMEA at Twilio commented: “In today’s business landscape, the most disruptive organisations are using customer experience as product and service differentiators. It’s critical that organisations take a customer-first approach to customer service and are prepared to meet their customers on the right channels, at the right time.”

Customer experience in the public sector

The public sector is one of the biggest service providers in the UK and delivered through a large number of central and local government departments, the quality in service provision across these organisations can vary widely, often resulting in an inconsistent and frustrating customer experience.

Customer expectations for flawless service and immediate gratification have never been higher. UK citizens expect to waltz through train barriers with a simple tap of a phone, pay for online goods in a single click, and have queries resolved 24-hours a day, thanks to the now omnipresent ‘chat’ services found on most websites.

Technology has not just raised the bar for service expectations but has empowered the voice of the customer to complain. Social media platforms provide a huge audience of customers often eager to share and weigh in on complaints. The digital footprints of negative publicity and poor service delivery cannot easily be erased, thus having long-lasting consequences. What’s more, full histories of events are easily accessible to prying audiences, ensuring that even public relations specialist cannot delete poorly manage customer service complaints. Delivering good customer service is thus no longer a choice for business, it is imperative to both thrive and survive.

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