We have previously introduced Findability by Findwise, involving solutions that make optimal use of search technology to support and strengthen the business of our customers. In a series of blog posts we will present how findability solutions can be deployed within different parts of your organisation. Initially I will focus on how efficient implementation of search technology, by a good customer service search, can improve your customer service offering.
Ultimately, the goal of most customer service interactions is to increase customer satisfaction and thereby improve customer retention in a cost efficient way. In times when the amount of available information increases by the minute, one key success factor is to provide both customer service agents and customers with quick and easy access to relevant information. A findability solution based on state-of-the-art search technology and optimised along the findability dimensions will fuel your customer service search offering in two primary ways:
- Improved support to customer service agents
- Improved online customer service
Improved support to customer service agents
While more traditional customer service interaction solutions tend to be based on a knowledge database, that needs to be built and maintained, a Findability solution is more dynamic in its nature and is based on a dynamic search index created by the already existing data residing in corporate systems. In other words, the solution makes optimal use of existing information and systems to support customer service agents in accessing relevant information. The positive effects are illustrated by the case study below.
Case study: Telecom call centre
Findwise implemented a findability solution at a call centre for a large Swedish mobile operator. The solution introduced the powerful ability to search in the most important information source, which previously only had been accessible via tree-structure navigation.
The graph below presents the result of a test performed by the call centre agents to evaluate the new search function. The test encompassed a number of tasks in which the agents compared using the search functionality to the traditional navigation, in terms of both level of difficulty and time consumption in finding desired information. The graph shows that the agents found the search function very helpful, making the information both easier and less time consuming to find.
The most evident effects of improved support and information access via search technology are:
- Reduced handling time
- Higher first time resolution
- Reduced Tier-2 escalations
- Increased customer service agent satisfaction
- Increased agent productivity
- Less training needed to introduce new agents
In a white paper, Google has also pinpointed, and quantified, the above benefits of implementing a Findability solution in call centre operations, in this case fuelled by the Google Search Appliance (GSA) search platform. For example, Google states that handling time can be reduced by up to 20% on average and that is it possible to save up to 25% on training costs for each new call centre agent. The full article is available here.
Improved online customer service
Naturally a Findability solution can also improve your online customer service offering. Below I have outlined three solution elements that will help drive customer self-service and thereby deflect issues from being forwarded to the customer service organisation.
Improved search functionality
As in the case of agent support, a powerful search functionality that provides relevant information from all required sources in a user-friendly way will increase the ability of customer self-resolution.
Personalised user interface
Using the power of an enterprise search platform you can customise the self-service experience, in a dynamical way, to the individual and the incident to simplify and speed up the process of finding answers.
Self-service can also be fuelled by providing a relevant and updated FAQ section. The information can be made dynamic and include answers to the most recent questions by using both query log information, i.e. what users are searching for, and call centre comments as input to the FAQs.
For many enterprises, self-service is seen as the solution that can provide customers with the support they need while significantly reducing customer service costs. However, self-service must do more than just cut costs. When customers perceive self-service as simply a means to shift interaction costs onto their shoulders, it can reduce customer satisfaction. Customers need a self-service experience that provides them with higher levels of interaction convenience and information availability, faster issue resolution and more personalised interactions. A Findability solution including the above elements provides that.
The most evident effects of an improved online customer service offering gained from the use of search technology and search analytics are:
- Less number of incoming calls/e-mails
- Increased customer satisfaction
- Increased browser- to-buyer conversion rate
- Increased knowledge of user interests and behaviour (to fuel additional sales)
Visit our website to learn more about findability solutions that make our customers truly benefit from state-of-the-art search technology.