With today’s proliferation of brand choices, no matter what industry you serve, it’s safe to say that competition is fierce. Most of us have read reports and articles asserting that acquiring new clients is anywhere from 5 to 8 times more expensive than retaining existing ones. Having the tools and information required to provide exceptional customer service makes the difference between keeping and losing customers, but where’s the best place to start when it comes to taking your customer service to the next level? Try agent productivity.
The most critical foundation for contact center agent productivity is the use of proper software tools, and this is where computer telephony integration (CTI) can play a big role. With CTI, all functionality an agent needs – from interpreting information a customer has entered in the IVR system to logging call results – is available within a single application. It’s what we sometimes refer to as a “single pane of glass” user experience. CTI may provide a single pane experience, but the benefits are multiple.
Contact center agents are under a lot of pressure to achieve performance targets. Providing better tools to help them reach these goals gives a boost to employee morale and has the added benefit of making the contact center as a whole more efficient. CTI helps with features like screen pop of a customer’s information when a call comes in, click-to-call links within the CRM for easy connection of calls, and automated call logging for faster wrap-up time. Fewer clicks for the agent translates into lower average handling time and increased call capacity.
Better Customer Experience
From the customer’s perspective, they want an interaction that is low effort and fast. CTI provides a consolidated view of all customer information and past call logs within the CRM, so agents have the information they need to provide better service. If another agent is needed to resolve an issue, CRM screen transfer gives all of the relevant information to the next agent as well, so the customer doesn’t have to repeat any details. Informed agents are better equipped to provide first call resolution, and happier customers as a result. If you want to dig deeper into the benefits agent productivity can bring to the customer experience, check out 5 Benefits of Improving Agent Productivity on the MindTouch Blog.
CTI also makes life easier for contact center managers. Having agents operate solely out of the CRM, rather than multiple, separate applications, means easier on-boarding of staff. Since all information is also stored directly in the CRM, it’s easy to make reports that combine phone system data and agent performance. Productivity savings, increased employee satisfaction and improved customer retention all impact the bottom line for contact center managers.
You already invest a lot in your telephony infrastructure and CRM. Now, consider CTI the next piece to address agent productivity and to provide the level of service today’s customers expect.