EDITOR ’ S QUESTION
MARTIN TAYLOR , DEPUTY CEO AT CONTENT GURU
Consumer behaviour is far from motionless – it ’ s constantly shifting and evolving . Prepandemic , many businesses were already grappling with changing behaviours around the subscription economy and the heightened – almost cutthroat – customer expectations associated with this modern consumer model . Consumers now seek services over products , and the ease and speed at which customers can change providers means the experience any single brand affords its customers is now its key competitive advantage .
Disruption has spurred innovation
and at scale to enable contact centres to cope with unprecedented volumes of demand . Organisations have since used Contact Centreas-a-Service ( CCaaS ) solutions to manage everything from workforce performance and wellbeing , to delivering support and training tailored exactly to the real-time needs of individual agents .
From service to engagement
Businesses have been forced to refocus CX on digital and self-service and rethink what customer care actually means . What ’ s more , many of the tools , technologies and techniques that enabled the sector to navigate the last 18 months have put the contact centre on a course of continuing innovation and disruption for the decade ahead .
Global disruption over the last 18 months brought this Customer Experience ( CX ) challenge into stark focus . During the early stages of the pandemic , many firms found themselves scrambling left , right and centre to plug holes in their go-to-market strategies that no one knew were there . At the same time , consumer behaviours and expectations shifted permanently , thanks to real-life disruptions that forced them to migrate to digital channels to interact with brands on a day-to-day basis .
Times of crisis and disruption have always spurred both ingenuity and necessary experimentation – driving suddenly-motivated organisations to work at speed and develop solutions to challenges across multiple fronts simultaneously .
As the last 18 months have demonstrated , it sometimes takes an external threat to jolt the business from its lassitude and on to a war footing that prioritises radical change across multiple fronts . This is what we have seen in the contact centre industry , where – in response to customer behaviour shifts – cutting edge cloud technology has been implemented rapidly
With consumer behaviour irrevocably changed by recent events , the ways in which businesses use technology to improve customer interactions and brand relationships from now on will prove pivotal for commercial and reputational survival in a new consumer landscape of fragile loyalty and easy switching .
The remote and hybrid models implemented in 2020 will also determine how organisations resource contact centre operations in the future . This will usher in an era of more choice and flexible working options for agents , together with greater operational agility needed to cope with evolving market demands and changing consumer behaviour .
The last 18 months have presented contact centres with an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate Digital Transformation and completely redefine their ability to deliver on changing customer expectations . In the coming years , they will continue to evolve into value-driven customer engagement hubs capable of orchestrating an end-to-end and intuitive customer experience in every channel . x www . intelligentcxo . com