UK employees are wasting two hours each week trying to track down the right information internally, which is in turn impacting the quality of customer service they deliver.
That is the findings from new research by 8×8, which quizzed 2,000 employees in mid-market and enterprise organisations. The study looks into how work is carried out and uncovers the communications challenges that fast-growing organisations face.
The main reason productivity suffers is because 29 percent of people can’t find the information they need to do their jobs effectively on the systems they use.
Fourteen percent said they are not able to locate the right expert internally, while 17 percent say they are held back by information not being shared in a central place.
Employees also say that a few experts within their organisation hold most of the information about the company (63 percent) but they can’t always contact them.
This is impacting customer service teams in particular, with at least two different people required internally to get the right information to answer a single query. This means it takes them longer to answer customer queries (50 percent) and the quality of service falls (52 percent).
Not being able to access the right information has impacted businesses in a variety of ways. Thirty-four percent of employees said they are working longer hours to complete their tasks, while 34 percent reported a ‘slow’ resolution of problems. Inaccurate information was also used, according to 24 percent.
The data was also analysed by age group and organisation size. When asked what channel they would respond most quickly to, millennial workers said email (39 percent), followed by phone (35 percent) and online chat such as Slack (nine percent), but baby boomers preferred phone (50 percent) followed by email (31 percent).
Those in large organisations say the problem has gotten worse as they’ve grown. Almost half of employees (43 percent) say it has become more difficult to reach the right experts internally as the business has scaled.
Collaboration technology makes it possible for expert knowledge to be open to all staff at any time – 71 percent say that this type of tech would help them do their job more efficiently.
Lisa Clark, VP Product Management, Contact Centre at 8×8, said: “Typically, a small portion of a company’s staff holds the majority of the expertise. This isn’t an issue when these employees are available, but when this isn’t the case, staff and customers face potentially difficult situations.
“We can see that employees across organisations are struggling to complete everyday tasks and answer queries because they aren’t able to get the information they need. This is impacting productivity on a massive scale, as time is being wasted scrambling around for answers on systems that aren’t connected across a business.
“By using one cloud communications platform, teams and individuals can collaborate much more efficiently and all employees can access information faster – no matter what channel they use.”
Customer engagement software firm Freshworks Inc. has been named in the Forbes Cloud 100 list for the third year running.
Compilers describe it as “the definitive list of the top 100 private cloud companies in the world”, and Freshworks has moved up the list to number 40, having first entered in 2017 at number 95, before climbing to 60 in 2017.
The Cloud 100 Judging Panel, made up of public cloud company CEOs, reviewed the data to select, score, and rank the top 100 private cloud companies from all over the world. The evaluation process involved ranking companies across four factors: market leadership (35 percent), estimated valuation (30 percent), operating metrics (20 percent) and people & culture (15 percent).
Freshworks CEO and founder, Girish Mathrubootham, said: “Providing simple yet powerful customer engagement software has always been our main focus, and the market continues to embrace our approach. As our 2019 momentum continues, our latest jump in the Forbes Cloud 100 List completes a trifecta of analyst, customer and investor recognition we’ve received this year. Forbes’ just-released ranking comes on the heels of our technology landing in three Gartner Magic Quadrant reports and recognition from peer review platform G2 Crowd.”
As any reader of CXM knows, Customer Experience is a key business differentiator.
Businesses working in every sector, from IT to healthcare to retail, needs to deliver fast, effective, and memorable customer service to stand out from the crowd.
Consumers are fickle, and with positive, memorable experiences now driving their choices over which brands to engage with, they won’t be afraid to shop around if a business fails to meet their expectation.
Yet while CX is a top priority for business leaders, the task all too often falls elsewhere – to the customer services team. Ensuring the drive of the leadership team is mirrored by those on the front line who are interacting with customers first-hand, is critical.
The right technology will empower frontline workers to deliver the best experience possible, even when they’re spanning different geographies and time zones. Without it, the disconnect between a brand and its workers can damage relationships and make it more challenging to attract and retain the best talent to drive successful CX.
What do customers expect when communicating with brands?
Knowing that customers want fast responses and resolutions, here are five ways that cloud communications can better empower customer services teams and deliver experiences that delight customers every time:
1. Access to the right agent at the right time
In traditional on-premises systems, customers must be dealt with by whichever agent is present and available in the contact centre at that time. In contrast, a cloud-based system removes these limitations, meaning that the most experienced or relevant member of the team can be connected to customers even if they’re not in the office
2. Any device, any location
Switching to the cloud means frontline workers can log in and access the same dashboards and communication applications from any location, using any device. This not only opens up a huge opportunity to bring in remote agents, but also ensures that everyone is working with the same information, providing a more unified interaction with the customer.
3. Improved availability
The cloud enables better support of different time zones and language requirements, allowing businesses to expand their skills pool to attract specialists. This support can also make the business more accessible and attractive to international customers.
4. Managing workflows
By switching to a cloud-based system, businesses have the flexibility to bring in remote agents as soon as a queue starts to build. At the same time, analytics dashboards can allow businesses to pre-empt such queues before they even happen, ‘switching on’ additional agents when needed. This feature is ideal for companies with seasonal peaks and troughs where the business requires ‘all hands on deck’ one week then a skeleton staff the next.
5. Consumer-like experiences
Lastly, switching to the cloud ensures companies can provide a consumer-grade experience with ongoing upgrades to keep technology fresh and relevant. This makes it easier for agents to interact with colleagues and customers in a way that feels familiar and easy.
Digital workplace transformation is happening across the business world to support the increasingly fluid nature of modern workforces and an ever-demanding customer base.
In these highly collaborative environments where workers are logging in from outside the office, the seamlessness of cloud-based communication platforms will enable businesses to keep up with this pace of change, ensuring customers always receive the experiences they want and deserve.