Why RPA-fying your contact center is a CX (not IT) decision
CUSTOMER experiences define a brand. It’s why Apple commands such a premium in the market. One look at their contact center and how they service customers can tell you a great deal about Apple’s CX strategy.
In terms of IT or infrastructure, Apple definitely has a strong core and an intelligent, automated system to support staff at its centers engaging with customers.
Apple’s operational flow, however, seems to be driven by CX and customer needs rather than pure IT. It’s a strategy that all companies looking to provide a good CX should follow.
In today’s world, businesses understand two very important things about contact center experiences:
- Customers expect to have a great experience when requesting for help or support before, during, or after a sale, and
- Using robotic process automation (RPA) makes it easy to deliver on their expectations because it enables staff to focus on what matters — the customer.
As a result, most businesses looking to drive efficiencies in their contact centers and deliver a better CX, as a result, are looking to deploy RPA solutions.
RPA can immediately help customer service agents become more efficient because it enables them to focus their energies on solving real customer queries rather than doing administrative tasks such as filling up request forms and updating databases.
However, using RPA could also be counterproductive if companies don’t think about the CX in advance.
Say, for example, RPA is deployed to serve the next customer in line more quickly by using an artificial intelligence (AI) solution right out-of-the-box to convert speech to text, and copy fragments of the customer’s responses to the CRM. Doing so would save the agent some time and help serve the next customer in line more quickly.
However, the RPA deployment doesn’t do anything to directly improve the CX of the customer. It might shave off a few seconds but could be other areas of the contact center process that could benefit from being automated first.
Further, an important part of going the RPA route that companies need to focus on is that RPA is a great tool by itself but it can definitely be augmented with other out-of-the-box or custom-made solutions, including chatbots and AI-powered text to speech solutions.
An intelligent chatbot, for example, could take in a few lines of input from the customer and then leverage RPA to fill in the CRM and help the customer service agent serve the customer more efficiently without asking for the same information twice.
While the reality is that customers aren’t happy with the experience they are provided with when dealing with a contact center, businesses are aware of the problem and taking steps to remedy issues they can spot.
In time, business leaders, especially those that put CX first when (re)-designing their contact centers, will be able to deliver better experiences and delight customers.