COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. and REDWOOD CITY, Calif., March 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) in partnership with LiveOps, a cloud contact center and customer service solutions provider, today released the 2015 report, "Own the Moments! Understanding the Customer Journey." The report reveals that only 53 percent of organizations have a formal customer satisfaction program, and that 74 percent actually admit to preventing their front line from providing the best possible customer experience possible despite the fact that customer engagement and loyalty were identified as important priorities for all respondents. Report findings were derived from the responses of more than 400 surveyed professionals from virtually every role and level in contact centers and customer service organizations. The report highlights issues related to low engagement between customers and agents, while also providing tools for understanding the customer journey as a whole. For more information and to download the full report, visit: ubm.io/customerjourney.
To truly be best in class, organizations must effectively leverage their talent, technology, and metrics to proactively anticipate and fulfill customer needs and expectations. The research dives into the challenges, strengths and opportunities that exist for organizations working towards perfecting their customer journey. The report organizes these aspects into five key moments - the essential points at which agents can delight customers and often define a brand. These moments are opportunities for organizations to seize or 'own' in order to yield the greatest possible customer experience:
Moments to Empower: The customer service agent owns "the moment," and has the greatest impact on the customer experience as they drive the initial interaction. Yet despite the recognized importance of the agent, nearly 75 percent of those surveyed knowingly hinder their team from providing the best customer experience. 62 percent of respondents cited the agent as the most critical touch point of the customer journey, while only 14 percent empower their agents to provide top-notch customer experiences.
Moments to Inspire: Improving employee/agent training ranked as one of the top issues that contact centers wanted to overcome. A majority of contact centers do not empower their agents to their fullest potential, resulting in low employee engagement and customer satisfaction.
Moments to Excel: 98 percent of respondents agree that real-time information is vital; however more than one-fifth of organizations have zero visibility into basic information such as contact history. Failing to equip agents with the correct tools and latest technologies results in the loss of insight into the basic information needed to provide proper customer service.
Moments to Enlighten: For the first time customers are fully in control, as a result, companies are rushing to utilize performance data to successfully fulfill the needs of their customers. Many organizations claim customer satisfaction as a top priority, while only half have an actual Customer Satisfaction Program in place.
Moments to Delight: Alarmingly, nearly 80 percent of respondents felt that their customers are not extremely engaged with their company. As a result, customers view their relationship with such organizations as disposable. Putting customer satisfaction at the forefront of organizational goals is imperative to improving engagement and securing customer loyalty.
"The first step in understanding, as well as improving the customer journey is honesty," says Justin Robbins, senior analyst for ICMI. "Organizations must be willing to be truthful about the state of their centers, and have the guts to stand up for what is right and necessary to eliminate factors that keep them from providing excellent customer service."
Additional key findings from the report include:
42 percent of contact centers do not investigate the root cause of repeat customer contacts
Less than 25 percent of organizations have a C-level "customer experience" leader
The metric of greatest commonality among survey respondents is Abandonment from Queue (68 percent), yet this metric also topped the list of "least effective" metrics.
Identifying a customer having an issue in real-time and conducting proactive outreach would greatly improve both the one-time customer experience and the full customer journey
"LiveOps knows that customer service isn't just one of a brand's primary differentiators, it's the only differentiator that matters with increasingly vocal and influential consumers," said Ann Ruckstuhl, chief marketing officer at LiveOps. "When it comes to customer service, people matter. Creating a great customer experience requires brands to have full insight into the customer journey across all channels and the ability to address each customer's needs in real time."
Own the Moments! Understanding the Customer Journey provides organizations with information vital for understanding the customer journey and providing the best service possible. To view the full report please visit: ubm.io/customerjourney. Media can obtain a copy of the report by contacting the ICMI PR team at [email protected].
About ICMI The International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) is the leading global provider of comprehensive resources for customer management professionals -- from frontline agents to executives -- who wish to improve customer experiences and increase efficiencies at every level of the contact center. Since 1985, ICMI has helped more than 50,000 organizations in 167 countries through training, events, consulting, and informational resources. ICMI's experienced and dedicated team of industry insiders, trainers, and consultants are committed to helping you raise the strategic value of your contact center, optimize your operations and improve your customer service. ICMI is a part of UBM plc (www.ubm.com), a global events-led marketing services and communications company.
About LiveOps LiveOps is the global leader in cloud contact center and customer service solutions. More than 400 companies around the world, including ProFlowers, Ideal Living, Murad, Aegon, Salesforce.com, Symantec, Royal Mail Group and Amway New Zealand, trust LiveOps' technology to enable effective multichannel, social and mobile interactions with their customers. LiveOps' award-winning platform has processed more than one billion minutes of customer interactions and managed operations for the largest U.S.-based cloud contact center of 20,000 home-based, independent agents. With more than 14 years of cloud experience, LiveOps is the partner of choice for companies wanting to migrate to the cloud. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, LiveOps supports a wide range of industries, including financial, health care, insurance, retail and high tech. For more information visit http://www.LiveOps.com.