Over the last two years, Verint® has assessed customer engagement concerns; business priorities; and investment plans across geographies and industry sectors. This provides a perfect barometer for how well businesses are adapting to the new customer expectations

Introducing the Engagement Capacity Gap

In 2021, Verint introduced global research. This explored how organisations were being challenged by new workforce dynamics; ever-expanding engagement channels; and exponentially more consumer interactions. These must be managed with limited budgets and resources. The Engagement Capacity Gap™ is defined as the difference between elevated customer expectations and organisations’ resources to meet these.  

Engagement capacity gap diagram

Understanding your customers remains the biggest concern

For the second consecutive year, understanding and acting on customer behaviour comes up as the single biggest challenge. There are more C-level appointments in the CX space and more investment in technology to track, digest and develop the customer journeys. But this feels counterintuitive. Why is this still a key concern? 

For many of the business leaders surveyed, the main concern lays in rapidly changing customer preferences and expectations.  High-quality experiences are now expected for each interaction channel. Digital-first has become the norm – customers expect empathy and authenticity when they engage your brand in-person. This further shifts the goal posts. 

Delivering empathy is the new frontier

From all the customer preferences that are changing, a customer’s need for agent authenticity and empathy is the most difficult one to measure and realise. As a result, the top technology-led initiatives cited by respondents are supporting agent guidance for expressing empathy.  Having the right level of empathy as part of your customer service interaction is really where your business can make the biggest swing from a bad to a good experience.  

Delivering empathy at the right touchpoints of the customer service journey has an additional bonus built in. It creates a better working experience for your employees. They feel successful in delivering an excellent service. 

Offsetting the great resignation is key

The quality and tenure of customer-facing staff makes all the difference between good and bad service delivery. So, keeping your top talent pool engaged through meaningful working experiences is the key to a successful customer-facing team. 

That’s quite simple, right? 

In reality, it is indeed trickier. It is about finding the blend that can optimise customer experience and agent experience. The survey shows that businesses that are successful at this are focusing on two areas: 

  • Intelligent self-service automation to handle the rising number of digital-first interactions. This can provide a more personalised experience for customers.
  • Guidance and knowledge tools that the agents can use to create an individual, empathetic interaction with customers.   

Striking the right balance between automation and human interaction is the big challenge. But intelligent automation done correctly enables superior customer interactions at scale. 

The aims to close the Engagement Capacity Gap is, and should be, remaining a priority. While it’s mostly importantly and crucially beneficial for your customers, it will advance your business in turn.

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