Going from Buzzword to Mission Critical: Customer Experience in Telecom
“The customer is always right,” is a saying that you have undoubtedly crossed paths with on several occasions. Many businesses today operate around a customer-centric model, which supports this mantra and it is the reason why Customer Experience Management (CEM) is vital to an organization. CEM is the process in which companies track and measure customer expectations of interactions against the reality of these exchanges. In order for organizations to execute this, they need advanced technology to collect feedback across business channels, analyze it and disperse internally, allowing teams to optimize their customer service offerings and grow their customer base.
CEM is not just another buzzword; each and every one of us is a consumer, and many of us have encountered situations where we were either thrilled or disappointed with the customer service we received. In our connected world, consumers are not afraid to voice their opinions. The challenge for businesses is that often they are the last ones to “hear” this message. Praise and criticism are being spread by word of mouth or through social channels to family, friends and complete strangers which enables the customer to make complaints in real-time to an even larger audience. Attacks have the potential to be quite influential, presenting threats to brands and reputations.
Companies can no longer turn a blind eye to or be selective with addressing the needs of their customers. It is imperative that companies listen to their customers and take action to offer better, personal service to avoid being faced with the harsh reality of losing business to their competitors.
To do this effectively, it is essential for organizations to seek a CEM solution that will provide employees at every level with insights regarding direct customer feedback and satisfaction. Equipped with this data, companies will be able to hone in on problem areas and make simple adjustments such as updates to training materials or adding supplemental resources. Providing frontline employees access to feedback related to their customer interactions makes them accountable to the essential role that they play in the company’s performance. This sense of ownership draws their attention to how one individual interaction has the ability to “make or break” the customer’s experience, thereby affecting the company. With access to survey results as they happen, employees can better assess their performance and are empowered make adjustments accordingly.
Upper level management and executives can also take advantage of these customer insights. They will receive a collective data set, with the ability to drill in for additional detail as required. This will allow them to evaluate trends and key metrics to drive improvements from the top level to improve operations and customer satisfaction.
What This Means for Telcos
The demand for improved customer experience is not a trend that falls short in the telecom industry. With countless customers depending on mobile phones, the telecommunications industry, by nature, relies heavily on customer interactions. In a field where offerings are not drastically varied, telcos could certainly make use of a CEM solution to identify customers at risk and implements steps leading to a reduction in churn and enhanced customer retention. There are various channels by which a customer can have interactions, through which they expect to receive friendly and helpful service.
Organizations that are adopting CEM programs and strategies are witnessing immediate and noticeable increased customer satisfaction and retention rates. Customer insight is essential to every decision employees make, from how they approach and interact with a customer, to how they allot their budget and train their team.