The New Guy’s Perspective on the Customer Experience

I'm the new kid on the block here at CRMXchange, but since I've been involved in customer-related issues since the prehistoric days when CTI was the golly-gee technology and it was still acceptable to use the dreaded "T" word to summarize the industry as a whole, I'm not all that new and hardly a kid.

I've seen the terminology migrate from customer service to customer care, to customer relations management- –before it became the acronym we now all know and love. But the growing demand for immediate satisfaction and the diminishing tolerance for inept and uncaring service has made "customer experience" perhaps the most all-encompassing description that I've heard.

Today, when people reach out to contact an organization, the expectation is that their specific purpose will be understood and resolved without having to put a lot of effort into the process. They want to navigate through simple and direct IVR systems or give the necessary details through non-robotic sounding speech self-service programs that actually comprehend and process their responses. And if they have to take it to the next step, they feel entitled to deal only with intelligent agents who have any information they've already provided at their fingertips and are empowered to take appropriate action without having to transfer them to another level.

If someone sends an email or a text to a company, they don't want to sit around waiting for a response. And if they tweet or post to a Facebook page, the ball is in the organization's court to answer appropriately. The tools are out there to make it all work for companies that are savvy enough to use them. Call recording and monitoring. Analytics. Multichannel applications Workforce optimization and workforce management,,,and so much more.

And yet, with all of this available to them, even big players sometimes manage to get it completely wrong. Working from my home office last week, I fielded a supposed courtesy call directed to my wife from our mobilie phone provider (name withheld to protect the guilty). The agent asked for "Wolf Caroline," a highly unlikely sounding inversion of my wife's first and last name. When I pointed out that it wasn't very courteous to start a conversation by misidentifying the intended recipient, the response was something right out of the dawning age of customer communications: "I'm sorry, sir, but the system doesn't allow me to make changes." Yikes! Sounds like the plot of a pseudo-retro comedy flick: "Call Center Time Machine."

I'm privileged to be a part of CRMXchange which provides a content-rich environment for CRM and call center professionals and a powerful information-sharing network for solution providers. I hope to help them keep offering the added value that has made this portal a trusted resource for more than 17 years.

I'll be talking to you…

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