With such a shift to be consumer-driven in 2021, how can businesses keep up? As consumers make it more and more apparent that they want to shop with brands that offer transparent communication across all platforms, some companies are lagging behind. Some examples point to laggy, poorly designed websites, and others suggest the root cause is outdated products or services.
However, in our experience, the downfall with the process of communication for a company begins and ends with their support center. Conventional support centers would opt to utilize single-channel call centers, where the customer's only line of communication was via the phone. More commonly, businesses are utilizing multi-channel call centers... sure, these allow the consumer more channel options, but the service is not unified and is often wasteful.
So, what might the solution be? Simple: the omnichannel call center environment.
The Specifics of an Omnichannel Call Center Environment:
First things first, an omnichannel contact center is NOT a multi-channel contact center. Despite both having multiple contact methods, the omnichannel approach utilizes a system that unifies the entire process and keeps things consistent across the board. For instance, if a consumer began a support ticket via phone, they could easily request to navigate to live chat functionality with the same agent and retain all of the information associated with their support query.
Multi-channel approaches would often have the ability to switch customers to different channels at will. Still, they would not retain the information across agents... leading to customers feeling annoyed as they have to repeat their issue over and over again. Thanks to the unique capability of information retainment, omnichannel platforms lead to a more positive customer experience; this experience yields greater customer loyalty and an increased measure for repeat business.
How to Staff and Train the Omni-Channel Call Center Environment:
To ensure that your customers receive the best experience possible, your support agents need to be aware of all the information they have at their disposal. Such problematic access to information usually means that these agents will need to be prepared to handle even more complicated requests, inquiries, and problems.
When staffing these call centers, you need to look for candidates that possess advanced problem-solving skills, the willingness to collaborate with a team, and the ability to take advantage of multiple channels of communication. Bear in mind; it may also be of use for the company to place agents in different channels when they display a skill set that is better suited for that channel - for instance, someone who talks well on the phone may be horrible at texting.
If Everything Works Right... "Conclusion":
In essence, when everything functions as intended, the omnichannel call center environment will allow consumers to choose how they want to support. Consumers will be able to utilize the platform they feel the most comfortable with and have their problems solved.
Be sure to focus on providing the right channels for your consumers, only go where your customers are... as there is no point in concentrating a lot of attention on Twitter if your consumers primarily use Facebook. Whatever the case, having an omnichannel system works to go above and beyond that of what a multi-channel system ever could.