Key insights from Deloitte’s 2017 survey

By Ebrahim Dinat, COO at Ocular Technologies

Customers want businesses to hear them, understand them and appreciate them. This is one of the key insights reaped from Deloitte’s annual Global Contact Center Survey for 2017.

Mirroring some of the thought leadership content shared by Ocular Technologies this year, the survey says that listening to customers is vital to contact centre success, and that the ways in which we’ll be achieving this going forward are changing.

For instance, one of the key insights from the survey was ‘less voice, more options’, and respondent feedback here shows that:

1. Chat and messaging are expected to grow from six to 16 percent;

2. Thirty one percent of all respondents expect to be using video chat within the next two years for an average of eight percent of their interactions;

3. Social media is emerging as a mainstream medium for customer service and is expected to grow from four percent of customer interactions today to nine percent in 2019; and

4. Outside of complex queries, contact by phone is expected to fall from 64 percent of interactions today to 47 percent in 2019 – no surprise to those who have predicted its demise but interesting in that, in as far as where these users will migrate to, there is not yet a clear winner between chat and social.

Industry-specific trends show that social media use is expected to grow 120 percent from 11 percent today in the energy and resources sectors, with 46 percent of financial services companies planning to offer video chat capabilities by 2019.

Deloitte says that overall, the growth in social media listening and text analytics could be due to lower costs and improved quality of contact centre technologies, specifically in customer experience management solutions, that enable them.

The fact is, customer experience and the contact centre’s need to refocus on it, featured heavily in this year’s survey. Eighty percent of respondents state that improving customer experience is the most important strategic objective and driver of investment for them right now. Only three percent of those surveyed consider revenue to be a primary focus in their centres when compared to customer experience.

Further, 66 percent of respondents recognise accuracy and quality of information as the most important customer experience attribute for future interactions with contact centres.

All respondents say that they are planning to invest in emerging technologies. Specifically, more than 50 percent name advanced analytics, voice of the customer (VoC), new channels, routing solutions and robotic process automation as being focusses.

We’ve said it before and, if Deloitte’s survey is anything to go by, it seems we’ll keep saying it; contact centres are going to need to differentiate their customer service by listening better and there are solutions available now that will help them quickly adapt for long term success in this arena.

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