Drive Customer Satisfaction by Integrating Communications and Contact Center

Excellent customer service is and always will be a key to success. But as customer expectations have risen, their satisfaction with the customer service they receive has tanked to a 15-year low. To make matters worse, the customer experience environment is only getting more complex.

Over the years, technology has changed the way companies do business and has created new channels for interacting with customers to meet their evolving needs. Customer service, sales, marketing, IT, billing, and other teams each have a piece of the customer experience, but they don't have a reliable way to link the insights and context residing in each. Today consumers expect consumer-level experiences from companies and are switching faster than ever after just one bad experience. The unfortunate result is lost or dissatisfied customers.

Siloed teams, disparate data streams, unhappy customers, and frustrated, inefficient employees don't make a recipe for business success. A customer-first world demands an integrated approach. It's essential for understanding customers and improving internal collaboration.

Research from Five9 found that 75 percent of customers expect businesses to maintain information about their past interactions, and 59 percent say they'll end the relationship if getting help requires too much effort. With the commoditization of enterprise technologies and the abundance of providers available across every market, it's never been easier for customers to switch to greener pastures. They need their questions answered quickly, and support teams frequently take too long to find the right resources to provide solutions.

Contact center platforms obviously help, but too often customer service personnel struggle to connect with other internal team members to solve customer problems quickly and efficiently, leading to siloed information, negative customer experiences, decreased time-to-service, and forced follow-up correspondence without resolutions.

Unified communications (UCaaS) are a known resource, but to reach modern customer satisfaction, companies need to integrate their customer communications into one central unified strategy [it is more than just connecting customers to businesses]. And companies are understanding the added value of these tools when provided by one source. According to a recent survey by Metrigy, of the 62.8 percent of organizations that have integrated their UC and contact center platforms (CCaaS), 61.9 percent are using the same provider.

You might be asking what the integration of UCaaS and CCaaS could do for your business and customers. The answer is a lot, including the following:

  • The ability to quickly and efficiently connect customers with subject-matter experts;
  • A clear reduction in contact center costs and customer churn;
  • An increase in agent productivity and a valuable investment in their success; and
  • Vastly improved customer sentiment with quicker service speed and increased brand loyalty.

This customer experience dream is attainable, but to achieve it, companies need to consider bridging the divide between UCaaS, CCaaS, and their CRM tools to create a single customer profile that includes past interactions and to see customer sentiment in real time. They must also be able to resolve issues immediately based on the profile, which results in a seamless experience for the customer across all touchpoints.

Implementing technology that keeps pace with change and consumer demand often predicates business success. It's what separates Netflix from Blockbuster or Target from Sears.

Marc Stoll is president and chief operating officer of Nextiva.