March/April 2020 Issue

What Type Of Contact Does The Customer Really Want?

Today’s connected customer conducts research, makes decisions, and transacts in ways that are far different from our non-digital generations. Customers seek empowerment, smooth brand experiences, and value self-service, and self-guided research in the moments they choose. Technology has helped to evolve customer expectations, and machines are getting smarter every day. 

The banking industry is discovering new ways they can leverage technology to provide seamless, more meaningful experiences. As technology advances, AI is becoming more dynamic and less expensive. It never gets sick, requires no sleep, and can work around the clock. However, while AI and automation offer the ability to streamline processes and create more operational efficiencies, it cannot interact on the same emotional level as a human does.

As customers expect more transparency from businesses and exceptional technologies that allow them to make quick and easy decisions on things like refinancing a home loan, they also expect an elevated human interaction. You may not be able to control dynamics such as, market conditions, interest rates, rising consumer expectations, or swift evolutions in technology, but you can control how you develop your employees to drive experiences through a vigorously changing environment. Automation and AI are significantly changing the skills needed in the workforce. McKinsey’s Future of the Workforce Report Suggests that in the coming decade, the demand for emotional and social skills will increase by 26% in the United States, second to technology skills predicted to increase by 55%.

Connected customers demand a smarter banking experience, and they want consultation, guidance, and information, not tactics designed to get them to close. Salesforce reports that in a study.

“79% of prospects rate that it’s ‘critical’ or ‘very important’ to interact with a (loan officer) who acts as a TRUSTED ADVISOR and adds value to the buying process.”

Evolving roles to acting as a trusted advisor, more advanced customer communication, improving interpersonal skills, and demonstrating empathy and adaptability require more agile ways of working. The McKinsey survey reports that “Introducing more agile ways of working will be a high-priority organizational change, and a similar proportion described more cross-functional collaboration as a key going forward.”

Agile organizations act and create new ways of working based on data.

The ProblemThe Solution
Lack of awareness about the caller experienceDiagnose and benchmark where calls fail and why in your organization.
Failure to operationalize effective processes that create positive first impressions and prevent long hold times and poor transfer experiences.Listen to your phone calls and use our best practice guide assess your caller’s experience:  Paying attention to average talk times, listen to talk ratios, and script adherence.
Lack of customer-centric processes working seamlessly together.  Map your customer’s journey. Consider what the current experience looks like at each touchpoint. Next, define what an outstanding experience looks like. Review gaps and create an action plan to address them.
Focusing on the close instead of transparency, building trust, and answering all the caller’s questions.NEW-skill employees by teaching more advanced skills.

 A well-trained workforce equipped with the skills required to adopt automation and AI technologies will ensure that our economies enjoy strengthened productivity growth and that the talents of all workers are harnessed. Failure to address the demands of shifting skills could exacerbate social tensions and lead to rising skill-and-wage bifurcation. The ability to ensure the former scenario—and ward off the latter—will depend in large part on how well the workforce is trained and how adaptable companies and workers will prove to be in the face of multiple new challenges from automation adoption