Enhancing Customer Service and Efficiency
A customer service contact center does more than answer customer calls. Every interaction can transform customer relationships from satisfied users to loyal advocates. It takes a strategy that involves all channels working tightly together to drive growth and keep customers loyal to your brand.
One of our retail clients struggled with seasonal call and email volumes. They even cancelled the contract with an existing customer service partner because their partner was not able to scale according to seasonal volume or special promotions.
Providing Custom Solutions for Unique Problems
When they asked DATAMARK to propose a solution, our first step was to build a model that could confidently predict volumes each month. We used the 1917 Erlang C formula for the model and it worked – the change was almost immediate. Our team designed a system where both the client and project leaders could listen to any call-in real time, allowing for call-handling success levels to improve and stay consistently at a satisfactory staffing level. This forecasting system enabled our team to project the days and time when the project experiences an influx of customer interactions, whether by phone or email. We could see the client was now confident that each time they planned a promotion, our team would have the bandwidth to handle additional customer interactions.
The key is to step back, look at the problem, and then propose a solution that can transform the process, so it works more effectively.
Stepping In and Bridging The Gap
We faced a similar challenge when a bank client asked us to advise on the issues they faced each month in reconciling their accounts. The immediate problem was that key accounting staff members had left the organization, taking valuable experience and tribal knowledge related to the bank reconciliation workflow. This gap in staffing rippled through the organization.
The simple answer would be to augment the team with additional accounting resources.
DATAMARK took a different approach. We modeled all the process flows involved in the reconciliation process, connecting suppliers and customers with all inputs and outputs. Our team presented a process map to the client, to design and engineer a complete reconciliation process that could also be consistently improved using the Six Sigma process improvement framework.
The client needed a well-defined process for reconciliations that would run smoothly each month – just adding people isn’t an answer. The client understood that the back-office functions were becoming an expensive and time-consuming distraction from its core business. In outsourcing their bank-reconciliation process, this client was able to reap benefits such as cost saving, process documentation, reduced turn-around time, and continuous improvement.
Processes matter and thinking of your customer service strategy as transformative and process-driven is a good approach. Often you can achieve dramatic efficiency without any change in team numbers or budget.
All interactions with customers have the potential to be positive, but how well have you designed the customer journey so that after they interact with your brand they are likely to keep returning again?
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