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When Amazon released its contact center service, Amazon Connect, it was met with skepticism by some industry insiders because it didn’t have the features other solutions offer. After working with the cloud-based contact center service for a little over a year, we’ve seen firsthand the power of Amazon Connect in its simplicity. It’s not that the service isn’t ready for prime time, it’s just a fundamentally different way of solving a problem. Before contact center leaders can embrace Amazon Connect, they need to change how they think about contact center infrastructure.

Automatic Call Distributors (ACDs) have been around since the 1970s. Over the years, they have evolved to incorporate a rather large, rigid stack of products and functions that includes workforce management, quality management, IVR, CTI, automatic callback, and many more. Companies tend to buy and integrate these various heterogeneous contact center technologies at different times, resulting in several challenges.

Multi-year maintenance schedules that began at different times make it difficult to execute any significant changes to the technology stack. This paired with heavy dependencies results in technology lock-in, which further complicates future integrations. Meanwhile, data silos proliferate across the environment. Each system has its own module and reporting database, making it difficult to extract and analyze data—an increasingly important task as contact centers seek to measure key performance indicators.

These issues and challenges related to the ACD and bolted on systems are not easily solved. In fact, solving the problem would require tearing apart the contact center technology stack and starting over from the ground-up. That’s essentially what Amazon has done with Amazon Connect. By deconstructing the contact center, Amazon has reimagined the technology stack in its own way, enabling the cloud service provider to address these challenges head-on.

Admittedly, Amazon’s conception of the contact center looks very different from what we’re used to. In order to appreciate the value of Amazon Connect, we encourage organizations to disregard how they currently think about contact center technologies and redefine the contact center within the context of Amazon Connect.

Amazon Connect is essentially a core set of tools that organizations can build on and enhance when they’re ready. It provides basic ACD functionality with the flexibility to customize and add “contact flows” and other features to suit your business. There’s no need to wait for a provider’s update or new feature rollout. Because Amazon Connect is an open platform, you can build what you want, when you want it.  Amazon Connect has tight integrations with Lex and Lambda, which allows you to customize your configuration in nearly limitless ways, using developer skills that are readily available.

Of course, Amazon Connect adopters can also leverage the native functionality of the Amazon Web Services (AWS) ecosystem. You can store recorded calls in Amazon S3 or use Pinpoint to reach out to your callers with additional information after their call is concluded.

Finally, with Amazon Connect, your data is your data to do with as you please. It’s easily accessible and reporting-friendly. You can export your data to third-party applications and services or use it within the AWS ecosystem. For example, you can export detailed contact data in real time to either a third-party data warehouse or Amazon Redshift using Amazon Kinesis Streams or Amazon Kinesis Firehose. You can ETL agent and contact data in real-time or in regular intervals, allowing you to leverage computing resources at off-peak times (think EC2 spot instances).

By deconstructing the contact center, Amazon has transformed the traditional technology stack with Amazon Connect’s simplicity. Amazon Connect gives contact center organizations the ability to more easily access and utilize their data, more easily integrate with other systems, and customize their technology stack—the very capabilities that were previously difficult to come by.

About USAN:

USAN is a pioneer in omnichannel communications and cloud deployments. Our sweet spot lies in combining design, integration and implementation services that convert rigid, siloed environments into dynamic business systems. With years of Amazon Web Services experience and as a certified AWS consulting partner, USAN provides a proven methodology for deploying Amazon Connect solutions.

Contact us to learn more.

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It’s no wonder that “self-service” is one of the first adjectives Amazon uses to describe Amazon Connect. Self-service is quite possibly the most notable difference between the cloud-based contact center service and traditional contact center technology.  But self-service doesn’t necessarily mean you should do it all yourself. Let’s look at areas where it behooves you to call in the experts versus areas that can be DIY.

Implementation

Implementing Amazon Connect is nothing like implementing traditional contact center technology. Anyone with an Amazon Web Services (AWS) account can set up an Amazon Connect Instance by simply logging into the AWS Console. You don’t have to issue an RFP, talk to sales folks, or request network services. You can get up and running yourself in a matter of minutes.

However, if you want to get the most out of your proof of concept and really run the service through its paces, then we advise taking a different approach. A jumpstart program like the one USAN offers removes internal friction and resource constraints so that you can get your POC up and running quickly. You can then focus on fine-tuning your applications and truly becoming self-sufficient.

Administration

The traditional ACD is something of a Frankenstein. It’s grown up to be a complex amalgamation of systems, each with its own interface and environment—and its own specialist. As a result, the traditional ACD is only self-service if you have the appropriate skill set.

Amazon Connect features a consistent look and feel throughout the service. Every screen uses the same kind of language and interface. If you can drag-and-drop, then you can design contact flows, manage agents, and track performance metrics in the Amazon Connect dashboard. In fact, you can leverage all the ACD functionality Amazon Connect offers, such as:

  • Skills-based routing
  • Dynamic and personal contact flows
  • Outbound calling
  • Integrated call recording
  • Real-time and historic metrics
  • Pre-built integrations with CRM systems

Features and Functionality

It’s tough to do a feature-by-feature comparison between traditional contact center technology and Amazon Connect because as I stated in my previous blog, Amazon Connect is fundamentally a different way of approaching contact center solutions.

If you want to leverage integration capabilities or advanced features, you’ll need help from a developer who is proficient in developing for AWS. Fortunately, finding that help shouldn’t be difficult since Amazon Connect is an open platform. Once you do, you can build out features that are more robust and customized for your business needs. A developer versed in Amazon Web Services can help you leverage AWS Kinesis to analyze streaming data, for example, and Amazon Lex to build chatbots. These technologies have been built out and tested across several industries and use cases, making them powerful components in a contact center technology stack.

Getting started

So, where does that leave you? We suggest you give Amazon Connect a trial run. Give yourself the best chance at a successful POC with a professional implementation. Then start with some basic use cases. Once you realize the value at the entry level, then you can determine whether it’s worth investing in more advanced functionality.

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When Amazon released its cloud-based contact center service, it was met with skepticism. In a feature-by-feature comparison with any of the existing leaders, Amazon Connect usually came up short. That was a little over a year ago, and much has changed and continues to change when it comes to feature functionality, but we’ll get to that in a future blog. One of the most interesting things we’ve learned is about the infrastructure itself and how the public cloud is transforming the contact center. This is the first in a series of blog posts in which we’ll share observations and the lessons we’ve learned as we became an AWS Consulting Partner for Amazon Connect.

Comparing Amazon Connect to a traditional contact center solution running in a private cloud is like comparing apples to oranges. Amazon Connect is a fundamentally different way of approaching contact center technology. Some of this is because Amazon Connect runs on the public cloud, and some of it is because it specifically runs on Amazon’s public cloud infrastructure. Let’s look at five differences between a private cloud-based contact center and Amazon Connect.

Difference No. 1: Flexibility

The traditional contact center consists of a conglomeration of technologies that are purchased and integrated at different times. As a result, organizations juggle an assortment of multi-year maintenance schedules that create technology lock-in and heavy dependencies. These deep integrations not only create a lot of technical work, but they also put organizations in a weak negotiating position.

Amazon Connect changes this dynamic. There are no contracts, no minimum monthly fees, or upfront payments. You’re provided with a set of tools that are open and available to use whenever you’re ready. There’s no lock-in whatsoever: no data lock-in, no integration lock-in, and no contract lock-in. Customers pay by the minute for Amazon Connect usage plus any associated telephony charges. This gives you the freedom and flexibility to adopt new tools and expand and enhance on them at a pace dictated by the business—not another vendor.

Difference No. 2: Improved Scalability

In an on-premises implementation or private cloud, you must plan for demand spikes and build out the infrastructure accordingly. Because Amazon Connect runs on Amazon’s public cloud, there’s no hardware to deploy or manage. Plus, it’s available on-demand. This makes scalability a breeze. You can quickly onboard tens of thousands of agents and scale back down without so much as talking to a sales person, managing telephony circuits, or sending out an RFP. Amazon does ask that you notify them if you are going to have a significant jump in scale, but, this is a notification not a negotiation.

Difference No. 3: Access to the AWS Ecosystem

Amazon Connect is an open platform, so you can integrate it with your other contact center technologies. But you can also take advantage of the AWS ecosystem to get more out of your customer and company data. In the traditional contact center, each system has its own module and reporting database, making it difficult to pull data out, compare it, and analyze it. When you use Amazon Connect, you have access to all your data in real time, as well as the tools to make sense of it. For example, you can use Amazon S3 to store call recordings, and control the lifecycle of the data. You can process data in real time with Amazon Kinesis and use CloudWatch to raise an alarm.

Difference No. 4: No More Silos

Because data and applications exist in silos in a private cloud, contact centers are challenged to deliver omni-channel customer service. Each touchpoint operates independently, with its own dataset. Amazon Connect breaks down the barriers between these touchpoints by eliminating the need to integrate separate data silos. All your data in Amazon Connect is available in real time across the entire environment.

Difference No. 5: Easy to Get Started

Setting up a proof of concept in a private cloud can take months and require coordination across multiple departments – contact center operations, IT, procurement, etc. Amazon Connect is more straightforward. The graphical interface, which has a consistent look and feel across the AWS ecosystem, makes it easy to set up and manage. With no hardware or initial coding required, virtually anyone can fire up a basic proof of concept in less than a day. For more complex POC’s, it’s never been easier to engage an AWS Partner. In fact, it’s so easy, there’s no reason not to try Amazon Connect.

It wasn’t long ago that companies balked at the idea of moving their contact center to the cloud. It was just too complex and too costly to move all the integrations. In the past year, that perception has changed. The contact center used to be the last thing you’d move to the cloud, but thanks to Amazon Connect, it can now be the first thing.

Contact us when you’re ready to make the move.

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As contact centers evolve into omnichannel centers, they’ll need to establish and track new KPIs that accurately measure value and success. That means taking new approaches and establishing new metrics that map to omnichannel strategies and goals.

Here are a few examples of each.

New Approaches Qualitative as Well as Quantitative

We’ve been primarily focused on quantity in our traditional metrics. How high, how low, how often. Average hold times and call abandonment rates are still important metrics. But omnichannel presents us with new and different customer experience KPIs; one example is issue resolution across channels that supports customer journey analytics.

Measure in Context

Measure the KPIs of one channel within the context of all active channels. For example, you might see a surge in call abandonment rates and think you have a problem. But measuring all channels together and in context you could discover that many customers are finding ways to solve their issues through another channel while they’re on hold. Omnichannel strategies provide this visibility.

Verticals Matter

In traditional contact center metrics, the KPIs are more alike than dissimilar across industry. Average Hold Time (AHT) is the same whether you’re a bank, a hospital or a retailer. When omnichannel comes into the picture, that shifts. Now the KPIs are more different than they are similar, from one industry to another. Just as the omnichannel goals differ, the omnichannel metrics differ too. For instance, while every industry wants to achieve First Contact Resolution, the resolution itself differs: for healthcare it might be an explanation of benefits via chat session, while for retail it’s the status of a shipment via traditional IVR.

New Metrics Channels Per Task Per Interaction

It’s important to note that the omnichannel investment pays for itself only if it’s easy for customers to use. For instance, a retail clothing customer in-store finds that the size or color he wants isn’t available. Rather than wait to find a sales associate, he uses an app to scan the barcode for the item to find and order the right size or color, receives confirmation on his device and tracking information via email.

Self Service by Task Complexity

When it comes to self-service, transactions have different levels of complexity, from simply checking a balance to transferring an auto title or making complicated travel plans. The KPIs here should be an evaluation of how many complex transactions that traditionally require a live agent are now being handled through self service, and on what mix of channels.

Net Outcome Score

Net Promoter Score® measures customer loyalty with the brand and with individual transactions. The same principle applies to the contact center. But our “one question” can’t be about loyalty: you’re not measuring how likely a customer is to recommend your contact center to a friend. Now your search is to find out how easily the customer achieved the outcome. Maybe our “one question is “would you take the same steps to solve the same problem again?” Let’s call it the Net Outcome Score

Check the Wallet

As you achieve greater levels of self service, you’re going to expect to see an impact in your financials. It stands to reason. As your customers become expert at using omnichannel self-service channels, they start solving basic issues on their own, freeing up your knowledgeable and skilled agents to handle more complex issues. That means fewer agents to handle the same call loads, which is a big cost cutter. (And while you’re cutting costs, don’t lose sight of the price/performance benefits of running your omnichannel contact center in the Cloud.)

A new model for customer interaction in the contact center demands new ways to measure those interactions. I’ve laid out a few here, but the list is hardly complete. We’d love to hear what your new KPIs are today, and what they become over time, for your own omnichannel program.

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Visual IVR for Amazon Connect extends omnichannel IVR to Amazon Connect service

October 23, 2017 – USAN, a provider of cloud-based omnichannel customer engagement solutions, today announced the availability of Visual IVR for Amazon Connect on AWS Marketplace. Visual IVR is a customer self-service solution that seamlessly integrates with Amazon Connect, a cloud contact center platform. With Visual IVR, companies can offer customers another choice in the way they interact with their business.

USAN customers today demand service that is fast and easy. Often, that means using self-service options. Unfortunately, some interactions are perceived to be too difficult to handle through an IVR and end up with a live agent, resulting in higher costs and longer call times.

Visual IVR for Amazon Connect makes service easier for customers and lifts the load from contact center staff by recreating the IVR experience as an optical, mobile application. It augments IVR menus, prompts, flows, and rules in a graphical format. Companies can use voice prompts to guide customers through the graphical process, as well as mobile web and SMS options to collect and present complex data.

With Visual IVR for Amazon Connect, many of the interactions that were considered too hard for IVR become easier. Rich interaction capabilities and improved usability make self-service a viable option for more complex issues. USAN customers therefore “zero out” to agents less frequently, improving IVR containment rates. And with Visual IVR’s Amazon Connect integration, companies using the cloud-based contact center service can take advantage of this enterprise-grade functionality.

Since its release in March, Amazon Connect has made it easier for any business to deliver better customer service at a lower cost. Setting up a cloud-based contact center is as simple as a few clicks in the AWS Management Console, and agents can begin taking calls within minutes.

“Amazon Connect makes it easy for companies to set up and start using a cloud-based contact center,” said Steve Walton, President and CEO of USAN. “By leveraging Amazon Connect, USAN customers gain access to enterprise-scale features while honoring the agility and open integration tenants of Amazon Web Services. Availability on AWS Marketplace enables USAN to be a value-added provider to the most exciting new contact center solution introduction in a decade.”

Visual IVR’s seamless integration with Amazon Connect helps customers:

  • Improve the customer experience
  • Increase call containment
  • Reduce costs associated with live agents
  • Easily deploy enterprise-grade IVR functionality using AWS standard tools

Visual IVR is powered by Metaphor Engage, USAN’s omnichannel customer engagement platform. Metaphor Engage integrates communication and backend channels to enable companies to deliver a seamless customer experience across all channels. A built-in integration framework, workflow manager, and adapters connect almost any existing technology and database to unify data and enable companies to consistently deliver personal and relevant service. Metaphor Engage eliminates silos, centralizes business processes, and synchronizes them to work together according to specific business requirements.

For more information:

Visit our Product Page

About USAN

USAN helps companies profitably engage customers and deliver amazing omnichannel experiences with an industry-leading cloud and hybrid customer engagement solution. From traditional telephone interactions to web-based communications including chat, email, and social, USAN’s portfolio of contact center applications gives businesses infinite flexibility in the way they engage customers across channels.

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Does Your IVR Really Save You Money?

As the original self-service tool, IVR technology has long been a cost savings mechanism. Unfortunately, many organizations today don’t realize that their antiquated IVR solution is actually driving up contact center costs because the options are so limited and the containment rate is so low. So, what can a new IVR do for you? Plenty. Here are just a handful of the many cost saving opportunities that can be realized when you replace your IVR.

IVR technology hasn’t stood still. Advanced features and capabilities address rising customer expectations. Conveniently, they also reduce your costs. Take, for example, a capability that isn’t exactly brand new, but has evaded widespread adoption, virtual queuing and call back functionality. Giving customers the option to be called back rather than waiting on hold addresses one of the top complaints customers have about customer service queues: it wastes their time. And by calling customers back, the contact center reduces toll-free costs since virtual queuing doesn’t incur telephone charges.

Conversational IVR is another example of advanced IVR functionality. Handling simple queries and transactions via speech recognition software helps you resolve these tasks faster (and for the customer, more naturally) than through a touchtone IVR menu. While older voice-based applications can cause customer frustration, today’s speech recognition capabilities have advanced by leaps and bounds. In addition, the rise of speech recognition software on smartphones has increased customers’ comfort with the technology.

Contact centers have to walk a narrow line between streamlining IVR menus and offering enough options to prevent customers from zeroing-out to request a customer service agent. Visual IVR helps address this problem.

ContactBabel reports, “Because it is far quicker to read text than to listen to text being spoken – some studies show that a caller can navigate a visual IVR menu between four and five times quicker than a DTMF IVR menu – the customer experience is improved without sacrificing any functionality or options.”  As a result, visual IVR can reduce your costs “through improved call avoidance and more accurate routing, improving first contact resolution and decreasing call transfer rates.”

Contact centers can also offset costs by increasing revenue through upselling or cross-selling. For instance, if you know that a customer is eligible for an increase in a line of credit or that a major life event is coming up, you can use hold times to present related offers to customers. These revenue-generating opportunities are possible with a modern IVR that leverages a context store. The context store is a data repository that holds information pertaining to your customers’ interactions. You can configure the IVR to query the context store after a customer is authenticated, and then generate an applicable offer.

The context store also enables you to personalize your customer’s IVR experience by proactively identifying the customer’s need. If the customer’s last interaction was to make a deposit, you might conclude that the customer is calling to confirm whether the check cleared and offer that information automatically, once again reducing call times.

The role of the IVR in the contact center has always been to reduce costs, and advances in IVR technology enable it to continue to do so. If your contact center costs are increasing or your IVR is lacking these features and capabilities, it may be time to declare your current IVR dead and look for its replacement. Would you like to learn more? Contact us today.

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Some folks in the contact center industry would have you believe that IVR technology is dead. Perhaps you agree, based on your own high opt-out rates and low customer satisfaction scores. In reality, the saying couldn’t be further from the truth. Advancements in IVR are ensuring the technology’s role in the modern contact center.

The customer service industry has evolved rapidly over the last ten years or so, and much of the industry’s attention has been on the shiny and new: omnichannel, personalization, web self-service and most recently, Artificial Intelligence. But this same innovation applies to IVR. Providers have evolved their offerings, delivering new features and capabilities that help address current customer service trends. Here are some of the recent advancements in IVR technology that could benefit your contact center – and your customers.

Central context store

Now you can put all that customer data you collect to good use. Modern IVRs allow you to execute sophisticated rules against a context store to determine how to handle specific calls. The context store is a central data repository that stores recent customer interaction steps/actions from multiple channels. These steps/actions are granular in time and detail and allow you to make just in time decisions based on the customer’s past interactions and behavior.

New ways to interact with the IVR

Say goodbye to numeric menu options. Customers today can engage with the IVR in a more intuitive and natural way. Speech recognition has advanced to the extent that conversational IVR is a viable option, and visual IVR allows customers to engage through a graphical interface on their mobile device.

Fraud prevention capabilities

Telephony-based fraud remains a real risk for contact centers, but call detail records hold valuable clues that can help prevent fraud – if you can find them. A modern IVR can analyze call detail records based on rules and flag details that are indicative of suspicious or fraudulent activity.

Analytic dashboards

The ability to measure key performance indicators (KPIs) like call abandonment and IVR containment are key to improving customer satisfaction scores. After all, how do you know what to fix if you don’t know what’s broken? Today’s IVR solutions not only provide analytics pertaining to IVR utilization, they also enable you to drill down into specific IVR interactions to perform root cause analysis and improve upon those KPIs.

Flexible options

Contact centers today have more options for their IVR than ever before. Advanced integration capabilities mean that you no longer have to use your ACD provider’s IVR offering. Instead, you can use (and integrate) any IVR that best fits your needs. You also have additional deployment options that can help reduce costs. Secure cloud hosting eliminates the capital expense of running an IVR on-premises while reducing operational expenses associated with ongoing management of the technology.

With these advancements in IVR, the question that remains isn’t whether IVR is dead – but whether your IVR is dead. If your IVR technology is missing any of these features or capabilities, it may be time to replace. Would you like to learn more?  Contact us today.

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Let’s face it, there are other technologies in the contact center that are more exciting than your IVR. But despite the rise of other communication channels, telephony remains “by far the largest inbound interaction channel,” according to ContactBabel. That being the case, it’s worth asking, “Is it time to upgrade the IVR?” Here are five signs that it might be time to upgrade your IVR – and the benefits of doing so.

  1. You have no visibility into breaking points within the IVR. You can’t fix something you don’t know is broken. If you don’t know where customers are “zeroing out” so that they can speak to a customer service rep, then you don’t know how to improve your IVR containment rate. Modern IVRs provide that visibility as well as IVR utilization analytics so that you can see where containment suffers and even listen to snippets of the IVR interaction to identify the root cause.

Benefit: Visibility into IVR utilization enables you to improve containment rates and the return on your investment.

  1. Customers hate your IVR. Customers generally don’t care whether their problem is handled by an agent or through an IVR – so long as it’s handled quickly and easily. If your IVR’s operations are based on ten years of rules, confusing menus and logic trees, and paths that go nowhere, then your customers will hate it. But they don’t have to. Modern IVRs enable you to simplify IVR menus and predict why customers are calling.

Benefit: Making self-service quick and easy via the IVR improves containment rates and customer satisfaction scores while reducing contact center costs.

  1. You bought your IVR at the same time you bought your ACD. There was a time when using a third-party IVR was simply unheard of. Today that’s no longer the case. Integration capabilities have come a long way, and any IVR can easily integrate with any ACD as well as external databases.

Benefit: Contact centers aren’t locked into a specific IVR but instead can choose a best-of-breed solution.

  1. Your IVR lacks advanced features and capabilities. Modern IVRs offer a variety of features and capabilities that enable contact centers to improve the quality of service they deliver. For instance, machine learning capabilities enable you to predict why a customer is calling. A context store enables you to personalize calls and deliver a true omnichannel experience because you have the entire interaction history at your fingertips. Analytic capabilities enable you to identify and reduce telephony-based fraud by detecting anomalies and patterns in the IVR call detail record. These are just a few examples.

Benefit: A modern IVR enables you to more effectively meet your customer service and business goals.

  1. Your IVR is running on-premises. The benefits of procuring cloud-based IVR services far outweigh any benefits you gain from running a system on-premises. In addition to reducing expenses, a cloud-based IVR reduces the support and operations burden placed on your IT organization while giving the contact center access to advanced features and capabilities as they become available.

Benefit: A cloud-based IVR eliminates capital expenses and reduces operational expenses while delivering the tools organizations need to deliver superior customer service in the 21st Century.

Finally – a bonus sign. If your IVR makes you yawn, if you’re not truly excited about the possibilities that are open to you through your IVR, then it’s time to contact us. IVR technology has come a long way, and we’re excited about what it can do for you.

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You’ve begun the process of replacing your call center software solution. After conducting a self-assessment, you have a good idea of your technology and business needs. Now you’re ready to create a request for proposal (RFP).

An RFP is a standard part of any procurement process. By soliciting bids from multiple providers based on the same set of requirements, companies can compare and contrast solutions. This process is particularly helpful when determining a provider’s ability to deliver on your call center technology needs.

Call center software solutions can comprise of several components, including interactive voice response (IVR), automatic call distributor (ACD), outbound campaign management and workforce management. Your needs for each of these components can be as varied as the solutions themselves. The RFP template below will help ensure that you consider all the various aspects of call center technology solutions and the relevant questions for each component.

Download the Sample Contact Center RFP Guide

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Customer journey mapping can be a useful tool for organizations as they implement an omnichannel approach to customer engagement. However, like the customer journeys themselves, mapping is a complex endeavor that involves data integration, data analytics, and data visualization—capabilities that can be found in an omnichannel customer engagement platform like USAN’s Metaphor Engage.

A customer journey map traces your customers’ “footsteps” from channel to channel as they attempt to solve a specific problem. Different customers take different paths for different issues. What’s more, these paths are likely to cross departmental lines. For example, a journey map for a billing dispute may show that customers first email the contact center, and then they call customer service where they are forwarded to the finance department.

The challenges of customer journey mapping

To retrace your customers’ paths, you need data—a lot of data. Fortunately, with the evolution of the contact center as a customer experience hub, data is more plentiful than ever. For example, if you record your customer service calls, then you have data on why customers call you. The challenge is getting that data, integrating it with other data that sits in silos across the enterprise, and transforming it so that it can be analyzed.

The data you need is stored in many places, in many formats. You need to pull data from the systems that support various customer-facing channels, such as email, chat, social forums, and the IVR. But you also need to pull data from your internal, departmental systems such as the CRM solution, ERP systems, billing, etc. If any data silo is left out, you risk missing that step in your customers’ journeys.

Once data is integrated, it must be transformed into a standardized format so that it can be analyzed. The analytics system maps the interactions and weaves them into a journey, which is then visualized as a customer journey map. Analysis uncovers key information such as the issues customers have, the channels customers use and in what order, how long customers engage with a specific channel, the reason for switching channels, etc. This is the information you need to improve and optimize the customer journey.

Customer journey mapping made easy

An omnichannel customer engagement platform like Metaphor Engage is engineered to deliver these capabilities to enable you to optimize customer journeys and deliver a seamless customer experience. Metaphor Engage connects various systems, integrates and transforms the data, and centralizes and synchronizes business processes to work together according to your business requirements.

Metaphor Engage features a flexible integration layer that can connect all of your systems and channels. Adapters for every common data API ensure that Metaphor Engage can integrate with and become aware of your critical business systems and data. Customer data is then unified in a single customer view and where it can be analyzed to improve business intelligence and decision making.

Metaphor Engage also allows you to centralize and manage business processes related to all channels from a single decisioning engine. This way, you can influence which channels customers use and share customer data between various channels for true omnichannel customer engagement. The ability to build business logic in self-contained, reusable chunks also ensures consistent service delivery.

Whereas customer journey mapping brings visibility to your customer interactions, Metaphor Engage brings visibility to the data needed to create your customer journey maps. What’s more, Metaphor Engage has the orchestration and automation tools needed to implement the improvements your customer journey maps bring to light.

To learn more Download the Ventana Research paper sponsored by USAN

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