19 Causes of Poor Customer Support and How AI & Automation Can Help

by May 13, 2020Knowledge Management

Shift starts at 9:00? Better be at your desk at 8:30 to login and reopen all of the tabs you need. Colleague needs help with a difficult issue? Thank goodness, your customer seems calm and can hold on for 10 minutes while you research a completely different issue.

Each day at work, your agents waste paid and unpaid time “filling in” this Bingo Sheet, which results in bad customer service, ineffective agents’ performance as well as unwanted friction around your brand.

When your agents start winning this Bingo – your business starts losing customers.

How This Happens

When it comes to high quality customer service, speed is just as important as the accuracy of information. In a chat queue, customers’ patience wears out at 10 minutes of waiting. For voice, the priority channel for more complex queries, customer’s typically will not wait on hold longer than 90 seconds. 

While all these numbers put a large burden on the shoulders of agents, contact center management tends to underestimate just how much the department’s metrics rely on accessibility of their own knowledge and processes.

Agents’ workflow consists of researching required information and making the right decisions based on it. So what happens when they can’t find the right data? Bingo! They make the wrong decisions and take a long time to do it. 

contact_center_bingo

As a result, you get frustrated employees scavenging for information across all internal communication channels, checking the internet and wandering around the office, all the while failing both their KPIs and their customers.  Often asking why can’t we have the right tools?

This leads to another implication of an unhealthy workflow, stress, which  directly correlates to a decrease in performance and lower job satisfaction. Experiencing inefficacy is among top stressors of contact center agents and has a direct effect on high agent attrition and burnout at work. Large call centers report a staggering turnover rate of 44%, with 27% of agents not even passing the entry-level. Few people are able to cope with the constant stress and frustrations of the fast-paced customer support environment. 

Why This Happens

Many issues of poor customer support stem from the way you create and distribute information. Having an outdated technology that fails to efficiently guide agents through multi-step processes and automatically surface answers that are otherwise buried, simply leads to more inefficient processes and time-consuming pitfalls. Here are some other common mistakes you might be doing:

  • You utilize too many resources to store information. → Agents are forced to keep 15-20 tabs open and need to run numerous searches in order to access required information.
  • You distribute updates in communication channels. → Agents don’t trust the documents and search for updated information in internal chats, double-check information and provide “blurred” answers to avoid responsibility.
  • Your FAQ’s lack structure and clear guidelines. → Agents keep creating wrong tickets or transfer customers to the wrong department.

A combination of the wrong workflow sequence and poorly managing puts numerous spokes in the wheels of your customer support department. Creation and application of information equips your agents to make the right decisions and perform at levels inline with customer expectations.

Level Up To a Win-Win Solution: Agent Assist Technology

When it comes to fixing the problem, contact center leadership often hesitate to take action and intervene in the delicate system that has been “working” for years. However, with the use of modern technology, the old fragile structure can be turned into a powerful instrument that ensures smooth and time-effective processes in the customer support department. 

Agent Assist is at the core of knowledge automation – intelligently surfacing the best answers in real time. By considering a variety of consumer’s actions and intents, whether that’s based on IVR selection, customer profiles, resolution patterns and search path history, Shelf’s AI is leveraged to suggest the most relevant content, in most cases eliminating the need to search for content manually. With AI automatically parsing the knowledge base and rendering recommended answers – your agents will be equipped to make the right decisions and fix the issue.

Instead of searching for information, agents can focus on your customer’s needs – whether that’s master analyzing data, fixing complicated issues or up-selling your product or service.

Make Your Next Step

The power of automation has been helping us upscale processes in various industries for the past 75 years. It is now time to employ innovation that can transform the workflow of a contact center and level up both agents’ and customers’ experience.

Learn more how Knowledge Automation & AI can take your customer support to a new level.

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