Empowering the Connected Rep to Drive Customer Service Success

Call centre worker

Pauline Ashenden at Enghouse Interactive explains that empowering the Connected Rep drives customer service success.

Changing customer service needs mean companies need to transform the role of the agent – and a technology strategy that Gartner calls the Connected Rep can help.

Digital channels, such as chatbots, now handle routine queries through self-service. The interactions that agents handle are therefore much more complex and important. They require a combination of information, empathy, and collaboration to close successfully.

However, Gartner research finds that many agents don’t have the support they need to become truly Connected Reps. 43% said they were overwhelmed by the number of systems and tools they had to use.

At a management level only 34% of leaders said their investment in desktop systems for agents was effective.

Altogether this adds up to a poor experience for customers and agents, and inefficient customer service operations.

Turning this picture around has enormous potential. Gartner believes that implementing Connected Rep functionality can improve contact centre efficiency by 30%, for example.

Understanding the Connected Rep

So, what does a Connected Rep strategy involve? It brings together technology, knowledge, and talent to support agents in a scalable way.

They have all the information they need available at their fingertips, along with guidance on next steps and the ability to collaborate across the organization. This breaks down into three key areas:

1. Context

Providing agents with the full context behind a call is vital to delivering personalized service. Connected Reps benefit from access to customer information, from their name and journey history to how long they’ve been waiting.

This enables them to build an immediate rapport, while accelerating First Contact Resolution (FCR).

To deliver context companies should integrate contact centre solutions with their CRM to provide a complete view of the customer.

This means that the agent can quickly see customer details, welcome them by name, and apologize for any wait.

By also providing agents with a view of the current customer journey they can understand more about the caller’s issue, and the steps they have tried already.

This means they won’t suggest solutions that haven’t delivered results or force customers to repeat themselves. All of this improves the experience, shortens calls, and increases FCR rates.

2. Guidance

More complex queries often require more complex answers. To deliver these agents need more than just access to more information.

In fact, 62% say their current systems provide them with too much information already. To be empowered they need the right information, at the right time, in the right format.

Connected Rep strategies provide tailored guidance, based on the context of the interaction. This could include suggesting the reason for the call and providing potential answers and phrases to use.

To deliver this technology has to go beyond traditional knowledge management systems. Instead, systems have to provide hyper-personalized responses using Generative AI to deliver focused information.

Answering complex queries can mean involving subject matter experts from across the organization.

Software has to support the agent by enabling seamless collaboration, such as through Microsoft Teams, so that they can find the information that they require.

3. Design

Agents have to access a growing number of systems to answer customer queries. According to ContactBabel agents in 96% of contact centres use more than one system when interacting with customers, while 38% access four or more solutions such as customer accounts, payment, or supply chain systems.

All of this risks over-complicating interactions, with agents forced to switch between systems while on a call.

Customers then have to wait for answers. There is also a risk that inaccurate or out-of-date information will accidentally be provided.

What Connected Reps require is a unified desktop. This provides agents with automatic access to the specific systems they’ll need, in a single place.

The result is more seamless interactions for customers and a better user experience for agents. Unified desktops also save time and eliminate manual errors by automating wrap-up processes such as by updating multiple back-office systems at the same time.

Today’s contact centre agents have to handle increasingly complex queries. Delivering effective, empathetic responses to these interactions is vital for superior customer experience.

Adopting a strategy based on the Connected Rep concept empowers agents with access to the right information, systems, and processes.

This guides them to successfully solve customer problems, increasing satisfaction, boosting efficiency, and making their jobs more rewarding.

This blog post has been re-published by kind permission of Enghouse Interactive – View the Original Article

For more information about Enghouse Interactive - visit the Enghouse Interactive Website

About Enghouse Interactive

Enghouse Interactive Enghouse Interactive delivers technology and expertise to help bring your customers closer to your business through its wide range of customer contact solutions.

Find out more about Enghouse Interactive

Call Centre Helper is not responsible for the content of these guest blog posts. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of Call Centre Helper.

Author: Enghouse Interactive

Published On: 27th Feb 2024
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