How Best to Support the Customer Experience


How Best to Support the Customer Experience

Customer service is more important than ever in this uncertain market. And businesses are under immense pressure to meet rapidly shifting consumer expectations and foster customer loyalty.

A customer-centric business strategy, focusing on the customer experience (CX), can be a differentiator. And digital transformation is a vital part of the equation.

Central to this strategy is enabling the personal connection with customers. When customers contact companies, it is usually because they couldn’t find what they wanted online. Or they have challenging and/or emotionally fraught issues (like a credit card transaction denial) they want to speak to an agent about.

It makes sense that CX continues to be heavily tied to emotion, with even minor improvements to a company’s customer experience quality making a difference. According to Forrester, 54% of customers who report feeling valued and appreciated were willing to forgive brands when they make mistakes.

A company’s first line of defense in protecting CX is its customer service contact center. But furnishing that emotional connection between customers and agents is becoming challenging in this light labor market with the Great Resignation, “quiet quitting,” retirements, or workers’ opportunities in other fields.

The Future is IA

Improvement on the CX front is critical for businesses to remain viable long-term, with digital solutions that offer personalized and seamless customer interactions.

While most organizations seem to recognize the importance of digitalized CX, with, according to McKinsey 77% reporting they have established digital platforms, only 10% also say those platforms are fully scaled and adopted by customers.

Developing a solid automation transformation strategy can seem like a daunting task. Companies’ growing awareness of the need to digitalize amid insufficient human resources is driving no-code adoption rates.

Software bots known as digital workers assist agents and are managed via an intelligent automation (IA) platform. IA is the combination of artificial intelligence (AI), business process management, robotic process automation (RPA), and other complementary technologies. It allows organizations to optimize workflows and streamline processes.

Intelligent automation, especially the AI component, enables an unprecedentedly proactive and tailored CX experience. It’s something that today’s savvy consumers have come to expect, giving companies that embrace it a competitive advantage.

How IA Optimizes the CX

As businesses seek a solution that seamlessly connects human employees and digital workers, a comprehensive and flexible IA platform is key. It enables companies to reengineer processes quickly and accurately. The solution should also enable scaling across the enterprise for maximum business value.

The result can be impressive. Certain IA-powered solutions can help organizations deal with the overflow of consumer issues by reducing call times by up to 75%, reports our datasheet.

The bottom line is that digital workers free human customer service agents from mundane tasks, giving them more quality time to spend on critical, difficult, and emotionally-charged customer issues. This is key to providing an excellent CX that builds customer loyalty.

How does an IA platform help reduce resolution times and enable collaboration between digital workers and human agents?

Customer service agents are given a 360-degree view of every customer they interact with, as digital workers source information from across systems and databases, then provide it to the agents in a single, easy-to-use, consolidated interface. Agents can rapidly resolve issues with all the required information at their fingertips.

Digital workers deal with simple customer requests, which enables service agents to give customers with more complicated enquiries the time they need and deserve.

Such service is critical for customer retention and only made possible by scaled automation. A backlog of customer tickets are dealt with thanks to faster resolution times and digital workers’ end-to-end resolution of simple cases, not to mention the ability to operate at full capacity 24/7.

You can turn any email into a workflow with communications mining automation. By combining AI and natural language processing, you can extract valuable information from emails, calls, notes, chats, tickets, and so on, to better understand your customers’ needs and your internal processes.

When companies automate decision-making insights, it helps accelerate time-to-value and eliminate wasted opportunities.

CX Automation in Action

Digital solutions that increase productivity have a positive impact on the CX.

For example, one of our clients, power company DTE, unlocked new efficiencies by automating the ability to cross-check errors in bills. Now bills requiring human review have been cut in half, and a further 35 processes across customer service, finance, HR, and corporate have been automated, saving DTE 250,000 hours per year.

Another client, the financial management firm Invesco, gained back three million minutes by automating many front-office and back-office tasks. Digital workers also help complete 10,000 daily transaction reports for client services per month, thereby greatly reducing the time needed to complete a report. This frees up resources to focus on value-added client work.

Beyond the Contact Center

More time for your employees means more time for your customers. By implementing business process automation to assist with logistics management, businesses realize cost and time savings to give organizations more time to service customers.

Organizations should combine RPA with AI for data management. Digital workers consolidate data and provide reliable analytics to empower human workers to make value-adding decisions and drive innovation to better the CX.

With this, workers no longer have to manually comb through reams of information. For instance, a mortgage provider could use business process automation to improve operational efficiencies, leading to customers being serviced faster.

Anyone who has applied for a mortgage knows it’s a longwinded and painstaking process, requiring endless paperwork. Traditionally, workers processing applications must collate and manage the paperwork, ensuring the correct information is delivered to the right party.

With digital workers, much of this can be automated. Digital workers can automate checks, offer searches, generate paperwork, and distribute the appropriate version to the correct party.

Automation also fills in or highlights any missing gaps. Collaborating with a digital workforce enables providers to process more applications than humanly possible while also giving hours back to employees. Human workers can then use this time to address more complicated case matters beyond the capabilities of digital workers.

Getting on the Right Side of the Competitive Gap

The CX is the fastest-growing priority area for customer care leaders and today’s challenges are unlikely to be solved, says McKinsey, at scale without AI and data analytics.

End-customers have more options than ever before, and a company’s degree of digitalization is one of the leading factors when it comes to customer loyalty. With advanced technologies like AI, machine learning tools, and RPA on an IA platform, businesses can deliver consumers a fast yet thorough and tailored experience.

The benefits of digital CX for enterprises are multifold: they attract and retain more customers, enhance worker satisfaction rates and cope with staff shortages, along with boosting ROI and operational efficiency. No-code solutions enable businesses to drive digital transformation despite the tech skills shortage.

Business models across industries are changing to accommodate rapidly changing consumer behavior. Those companies that fail to adapt risk being pushed out. But those that do transform will stand the best chances of success.

Colin Redbond

Colin Redbond is Global Senior Vice President of Product and Strategy, SS&C Blue Prism. He is responsible for driving SS&C Blue Prism’s Intelligent Automation strategy, across a portfolio of products that includes Robotic Process Automation, Business Process Management, Intelligent Document Processing, and Artificial Intelligence.