Blog Coveo Insights

How to Preserve the Human Element of Customer Service

Posted by Ed Shepherdson on November 7, 2013

HumanNew technology is designed to make our lives easier. But in the realm of customer service, new technology and personalized service are often at odds with one another.

How did this disconnect happen? For one, jaded by bad experiences, many consumers believe that service technology automatically implies a lesser level of humanity. This leads many brands to describe their support operations in terms of a customer’s ability to interact with “real people” when they have a question.

Technology and humanity are designed to work together. But it takes a new way of thinking – one that puts equal priority on both personalized customer service and advancing technology, allowing both to advance in tandem. Read more and comment »

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When “Undercover Boss” Comes to Customer Service – A Knowledge Management Challenge

Posted by Ed Shepherdson on October 8, 2013

Many within customer service know the knowledge management challenges that service agents face on a daily basis. But oftentimes, these challenges don’t make their way to the executive level.

If you’ve seen the TV show “Undercover Boss,” then you’ve seen this disconnect before: executives go undercover within the operational levels of their businesses, only to find that the principals touted from the corporate HQs are far removed from ground-level operations. The bosses find themselves shocked by the lack of execution, leading to widespread organizational changes.

With that framework in mind, I issue a challenge to customer service VPs of support, services and success – spend more time on the floor with your people. Read more and comment »

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From FCR to Right-Time, First-Time Resolution? Just a Hop…

Posted by Esteban Kolsky on July 8, 2013

Whenever I broach the topic of First Call Resolution (FCR) there are two debates that kick off almost right away: first, what is first call (contact in the modern world) resolution? What do we identify as a call? What do we identify as a follow-up call? What timeframes do we use, and what gaps are needed to make sure we are dealing with different calls?

The second issue is why call (or contact) and not interaction; why do we discriminate against any non-service call (or contact) and why don’t we focus on those as well? The function performed in the interactions that are not service-related should matter equally in a world driven by experience continuums.

Both debates have very strong opinions on all sides of them (there are as many definitions of what constitutes a first call as there are organizations tracking the metric).  There are issues of latency, time-spent, time-lapsed, and gap-in-between to address all the different interactions, and there are interactions that are not necessarily customer service-focused that need a quick resolution – so how can we provide an answer to all of them? Is there a better metric? Read more and comment »


Improving Customer Service with Knowledge: A Solution Worth Watching

Posted by Diane Berry on March 18, 2013

CRM_WatchlistIn the knowledge management for customer service industry, we have an ever-present problem – a recent Argyle study of customer care executives found that only 15 percent of organizations had access to the information they needed to solve cases faster and more efficiently.  Knowledge, knowledge everywhere… and not a drop to understand.

Switch gears:  Paul Greenberg is an industry analyst and ZDNet blogger whose CRM Watchlist is an annual roundup that recognizes companies that are changing the future of CRM technology for the better.

We were honored to be named to the Watchlist for the second year in a row. Read more and comment »

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Mining for Gold: Search Technology Finds Knowledge Amid the Data Chaos

Posted by Ed Shepherdson on March 6, 2013

Customer ServiceCustomer demand for high-quality support continues to grow, as customers have raised the bar for every interaction with support organizations. This comes as a result of the plethora of information available to customers on the Internet, combined with an increase in competitive choices and product complexity. Given this situation, it is imperative that support organizations at least be on a level field of knowledge, or the customer will lose trust. This means that support executives need to be armed with not only the right data, but the right insight.

These executives know there is value in all the data and metrics they collect, but identifying this value using legacy tools has proved frustrating, if not impossible. CRM, multichannel and telephony solutions typically include strong operational reporting, which is useful to determine a top performer for a certain metric, or to measure organizational performance by key performance indicators. But what is missing is the ability to consolidate, correlate, access and analyze data across multiple data sources, identifying linkages and trends, enabling root-cause analysis, and providing insight to allow better understanding for better customer engagement.

Many point solutions have attempted to solve the challenge of information access with built-in search. However, the sophistication of search embedded in many software solutions, while rising, cannot connect the dots across the increasingly social enterprise.  Advanced unified indexing technology not only provides access to much-needed analytics, but it is leveraged by agents to significantly impact performance metrics. By having collective knowledge about the customer, as well as their products, support cases, and more, agents can more quickly solve customer challenges the first time, improving resolution time and customer satisfaction across phone, web and email channels. Read more and comment »

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