Delivering on higher levels of customer service is a challenge when tensions are high. This is especially true during the holiday season when the call center is inundated with customers seeking help. While agents are scrambling to deliver on expectations, customers are building brand perceptions based on holiday treatment. Can 3rd party remote call monitoring help?
A recent infographic posted on Business2Community outlined just how much of a hassle customer service can be during the holidays. For the consumer, it appears there are much worse things they would rather do than contact customer service. In fact, 37 percent would rather eat last year’s fruit cake than initiate a customer service interaction. A full 74 percent believe it’s more of a hassle to contact customer service this time of year compared to non-holiday seasons.
It has such an impact, in fact, that 38 percent of consumers would prefer to give money as a gift rather than deal with customer service during the holidays. This means lost retail revenue if the receiver would prefer to spend that money on services or regular monthly bills. Only 36 percent have high hopes for good customer service. Meanwhile, 91 percent believe the customer service department should be better prepared for the holiday rush.
To offset these experiences, consumers are taking customer service into their own hands, preferring self-service channels over live calls. Channels such as email, chat and in-person are becoming more popular as consumers feel they have more control over the interaction. The numbers show there must be something to that as only 48 percent prefer phone, versus 52 percent using email, chat, text, social media, and in-person during the year. These numbers change to 33 percent and 67 percent, respectively during the holidays.
The survey was conducted using the omnibus online services of TNS (News - Alert). A sampling of 2,500 Americans 18 and older were included in the survey. The most important takeaway from this data – customer service departments have to step up and offer more than just multiple channels for customer contact. Consumers want a seamless experience and, yes, customer service departments should be ready for the influx of customers during the holiday season.
For those customer service centers that want to be prepared for the holiday season, getting a handle on volume trends and common calls is key. This is where 3rd party remote call monitoring can make a difference, providing direct insight into the customer experience from a firm outside of the company. The feedback is without bias and offers critical evaluations so as to make the necessary changes for improvement.