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Integration: Elevating Customer Service to Customer Experience.

Taking Care of ME

Everybody likes personal service, and why not? It’s service, it’s great, and it’s all about me. Just hearing the phrase conjures up pleasant thoughts. I imagine a resort spa, a friendly attendant greeting me by name and suggesting treatments that I’m sure to enjoy. The masseuse masterfully targets my lower back pain as if she had carefully studied the lousy golf swing that produced it. The steam’s heat and the pool’s chill feel just right for me, and finding my slacks freshly pressed is a great finishing note. I hear my name once more as I leave (reluctantly) and I am assured that my visit was entirely their pleasure.

Every Interaction Is Personal

An inescapable fact is that most customers tend to be people, making every customer interaction personal by default. (I know, pets are people too, but when it comes to writing checks, the lack of opposable thumbs really bogs down the buying process.) While not everything we do is as enjoyable as a spa day, every customer interaction can be - and must be - personalized in a similar manner. Successful businesses that had traditionally won on product and price now realize that customer experience has become the differentiator, and personalized service elevates that experience. The more you now about your customer, the better the experience you can provide.  Of course, it’s hard to deliver personalized service if you don’t know the person. So how do you find all the information you need and turn it into an outstanding experience?

Your Customer Already Told You What They Like

You’ve probably already collected plenty of information, just not in a central location. Some may reside in a customer directory, some in billing records, and even more in legacy or historical databases. What you’re missing is Integration. I mean full, end-to-end integration - of your systems, your data, your departments, and your personnel.

Just as every staff member at the spa helped produce a great personal experience, everyone in your organization provides a service (whether directly or indirectly) that impacts your customers’ experience. It is vital then to keep them all on the same page. Internal communications gaps will almost always be exposed as customer service gaps.  If your agents can’t access the same customer data IT sees, or if information is lost when a call is transferred, personalized service is unattainable. Your loyal customer instead feels marginalized, like just another first time caller.

Stronger Together

A completely integrated call center solution maximizes the value of your collected data and breaks down the silos that create information gaps. Account information, conversation notes and caller histories can be easily shared between agents or between departments when systems are integrated. Agents are empowered to greet customers by name and engage them in their preferred manner. With instant access to customer-specific data, they can service the call quickly and efficiently, without transferring to a specialist or supervisor.  Managers can spend less time juggling multiple systems, networks and vendors and more time assuring quality of service.  Relevant information can be targeted, mined and utilized to identify opportunities for improvement and enhance process efficiency.

Whether answering calls, running reports, researching inquiries, or applying system updates, everyone in your organization has a hand in your customers’ experience. Integration enables each of them to turn great service into personalized service, and personalized service is the centerpiece of an exceptional customer experience.

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