Technology has taken over many functions. The jobs that human beings may lose against automation and artificial intelligence have been a hot topic for quite some time now. One of the jobs included in the discussion is customer service.
Customer service in this day and age
Today, we can already see forms of customer service that were previously regarded as fiction or something that only happens in the movies. In California, a hotel is already utilizing robots who could give towels and beverages to their guests. The Japanese also have a robot named Pepper which could chant during funerals when Buddhist priests are unavailable. And just recently, Amazon has launched its very first cashier-less supermarket. Needless to say, more and more organizations are leveraging technology to transform their service operations.
Despite all these opportunities that technology could offer, the undeniable truth stands: a personal touch is essential in customer service. The technology we have today is young and with functional limitations. It is inevitable that human beings still need to step in for service processes initially facilitated by bots or other forms of automated service whenever a situation becomes too complex. While human beings embrace technology when they look for information, they still yearn for the input of fellow humans for complicated issues. They can’t ask a machine if there’s something vague about a piece of information after all.
This inflexibility of technology is the reason why Amazon still has staff in Amazon Go should its customers need assistance that its store alone cannot suffice. Moreover, you can’t take emotion out of customer service because human beings are inherently emotional creatures. Should a customer miss a flight, only a fellow human being can genuinely empathize and alleviate the frustrating and stressful situation. As such, business owners should keep the key purpose of the service in mind whenever they think of improving their operations with technology.
Customer service that will never go out of style
Before diving into exploring other technologies, think about solidifying how you interact with your customers across all your customer service platforms first. Or better yet, always take the importance of personal touch into consideration when exploring new technologies. Author Melissa Thompson stresses the following good, old-fashioned customer service approaches that will unfailingly improve customer satisfaction, retention, and loyalty:
- Truly listen to your customers
- Show empathy during customers’ moments of frustration
- Remember customers’ names
- Aim to provide prompt service always
- Thank customers sincerely
To keep it simple, never forget how to be human to successfully improve your customer service operations.
Customer service outsourcing
Customer service outsourcing has been a trend among businesses for the past years. The top outsourcing destinations that businesses often look into are India and the Philippines. The latter is more preferred for customer service and other voice BPO because of the competency of its labor force in the function.
The primary advantages that companies are able to enjoy through customer service outsourcing are as follows:
- An improvement in customer retention and loyalty. Agents in a BPO company undergo extensive training and follow strict metrics to attain customer satisfaction. This mature process allows it to make repeat customers and earn new ones for its clients.
- Enable focusing on activities that can generate income. By letting a BPO firm handle customer service, a business can have more time to concentrate on its core business function. It enables business owners to focus on tasks that can increase business earnings.
- A decrease in operational expenses. Customer service outsourcing induces comparatively lower costs than doing the function in-house. Choosing a BPO provider to handle it can further the savings that a business can obtain.
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