Enterprises are bound by the constraints of their limited resources. Therefore, they must carefully decide how best to utilize them. Markets are competitive. Businesses need to make well-informed choices in order to gain advantage over their competitors.
As a performance measure, return on investment, or ROI, evaluates choices and determines the optimal investment opportunity.
As more businesses expand their market reach, proactive identification of telecoms issues using active path testing has led to considerable cost savings for enterprises around the world. Communications technology is key to serving remote markets. The humble phone call remains a primary choice for interaction.
The ROI which has been achieved by organizations highlights the value of active path testing. Enterprise organizations are now able to proactively monitor their phone numbers. By doing so, they can respond to a situation before it has a wide-ranging impact on their customers.
When choosing to commit resources, it is essential that the organization examines potential financial cost savings. It is equally important to remember that intangible benefits are capable of leading to cost reductions and increased revenue generation. There is a preference for voice communication, more time-conscious consumers, and limited customer feedback.
Preference for Voice
Monitoring phone lines is essential in order to ensure that lines are operating correctly. This is especially true in the key areas of sales and support. Consumers want to be able to connect easily with an agent when they choose to make a call.
The volume of calls received by businesses has increased greatly in recent years. Research in the United Kingdom indicated that on average 45% of all inbound calls result in a new enquiry. These calls generate US $393 billion of new revenue for businesses within the UK alone.
Current trends show that marketing, IT and telecoms are experiencing the biggest increase in call volumes.
Businesses conduct over 80% of their communications through the telephone. It is still the first choice for customers to use when they need something handled quickly. Initial searches may begin online, however, when something serious occurs, consumers want to speak to an individual who can resolve the issue promptly.
Missed phone calls can have serious implications for the organization. There is of course, the dreaded missed business opportunity, however, the chance to create or even build on an existing relationship with the customer is also lost.
Time Conscious Consumers
In today’s world, the majority of customers will only attempt to call a company twice before choosing to take their business elsewhere. BT Business also suggests that a fifth of customers will only make a single attempt to contact a business before taking their custom to one of the enterprise’s competitors.
It estimates that the cost of missing just one customer call is approximately US $1550. In the UK alone, the estimated cost of unanswered phone calls exceeds US $38 billion per annum. In the event of a business being uncontactable by phone, costs can be as high as US $26000 for a single day.
It has been shown that 10% of all calls face a simple issue, such as a misheard word or sentence, thereby forcing one party to repeat themselves for clarity. On average, 4.5% of call time is spent on repetitions. This results in higher labor costs for a lower volume of answered calls, and an increase in customer frustrations.
It is important to note that retaining an existing customer costs significantly less than securing a new customer.
This is true in terms of both marketing and maintenance. It is also likely that repeat customers will spend more money on each purchase that they make. Therefore, when consumers experience an issue, it should be promptly addressed.
Impacting the Customer Experience
Missed calls or audio impacting issues should not affect customers. These issues have the power to devastate the enterprise’s consumer retention rate.
Research has found that customers no longer base their loyalty solely on price or product; instead, they stay loyal with companies who have provided them with a high-value experience.
If an organization ensures that customers have a smooth and pleasant interaction, they will increase the brand loyalty of their consumers. If not, they are effectively handing these consumers directly over to their competitors. 67% of customers cite poor customer service as a reason for leaving a company.
When a customer-impacting issue happens, the enterprise faces a number of problems. These include increased call duration, higher costs per call and increased labor costs, along with disgruntled customers who can create an exponentially negative opinion of the business.
Unfortunately, only 1 in 26 unhappy customers choose to voice their complaints to the afflicted enterprise. A low volume of complaints likely hides issues. Support teams remain unaware of customer-impacting issues.
Round the clock monitoring of an organization’s phone services allows teams to stay up-to-date with any customer facing issues. It enables a proactive response. This is a much more beneficial approach, instead of waiting to troubleshoot an issue when a consumer does choose to lodge a complaint.
By monitoring numbers and ensuring that all are functioning effectively and delivering optimal quality, enterprises can reduce the number of ticket escalations that they are required to handle.
These escalations can often be very costly, especially when there are complex network arrangements involving call reroutes to multiple locations. Help Desk Institute research indicates that the cost of investigating and addressing problems can be as high as US $500 per ticket.
Labor is a very large percentage of these costs, with highly-trained staff involved in reactive escalation to troubleshoot the issue. These employees have a reduced capacity to advance other project work designed to keep the business competitive. With a proactive number monitoring tool, detecting a majority of issues is possible.
A missed call due to a network fault or a call suffering from poor audio quality may not seem significant initially, however, an unresolved problem often becomes a recurring one which has the ability to impact customers on multiple occasions.