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Enabling the human side of digital

When it comes to creating a great customer experience (CX), today’s technology can provide countless insights into areas including employee performance, customer satisfaction, support trends – the list goes on. But bringing action to this information often goes beyond today’s technological capabilities.

That’s where the human element comes in.

At the recent Customer Contact Week (CCW) conference in Nashville, we sat down with a team of CX experts during the “How to Enable the Human Side of Digital” session.

During this interactive session, we addressed how to bring empathy and the human touch into each customer interaction, while employing technology and processes to deliver exceptional service. Specifically, the discussion looked at how the combination of humans and technology influence the workforce experience, culture, consumer needs and build successful and meaningful engagements.

Improving the workforce experience

For many organizations, the standard measurement of success is often found on a 1-10 scale, but companies need to get more qualitative in their evaluations. Specifically, technology allows companies to move from a one-to-many to a one-to-one approach by being able to look beyond performance rating numbers, and dive deeper into individual worker needs.

For example, is an agent finishing transactions quickly and if so, is that because he or she satisfies the customer or abandons quickly and pushes this person to the next support tier? Digging deeper into these individual metrics allows organizations to better empathize with their employees and tailor an experience that fosters their individual growth.

Enriching workforce culture

Bringing the organizational vision to life is critical to success, and technology has the potential to merge the strategic vision from the leadership level with the tactical execution at the agent level.

The goal is to connect the best of both worlds for a shared vision, which is accomplished by focusing on transparency and reinforcing the cultural mission.

For instance, moments occur when managers should positively coach agents to help empower them to improve their skills, change behavior and enhance customer service. Consider, for instance, what knowledge leaders and peers can share, through their own experiences, which can help agents improve?

When it comes to talent attraction and retention in a high-attrition environment, knowledge-sharing, collaboration and coaching are critical to nurturing an inclusive culture in which agents thrive.

Meeting evolving consumer needs

Consumer support channels continue to grow and evolve past the traditional phone or email support models. Our most recent survey shows 70% of consumers describe CX excellence as either a strong relationship with the brand or one that evokes happiness. And three-quarters of consumer respondents said brand interactions were successful because the agent was helpful which was much more important than efficiently getting the job done. This also shows technology alone isn’t enough consumers want personal interactions with brand agents.

To effectively meet consumer needs, it’s essential to integrate solutions that bring all functionality under the same roof, enabling ease of use for agents and providing tools to properly solve consumer needs. This visibility is critical in painting a full picture of the consumer, allowing support teams to better empathize with their situation and play more of a consultative role.

Building meaningful interactions

The combination of technology and human interaction has emerged as the foundation of the ’know me’ CX. Specifically, organizations must ensure their infrastructure relies upon a combination of foundational stability (proven technology and established workflows) and process flexibility (the human touch) to properly solve consumer needs.

From a technology perspective, organizations need to restructure siloed processes and data to make this visible across all departments. Similarly, the human touch must incorporate accountability and collaboration to ensure that teams interact in a way that both fosters growth at the team and individual levels as well as employee efficacy.

As you close out 2022, now is the time to evaluate your processes and determine how your technology and employees are working together. If there are inefficiencies, it’s time to create a technology-human balance that provides a sustainable customer experience processes and mutually benefits agents, consumers and brands.

To learn more about how to deliver a holistic customer experience through people, process and technology, visit us online.