Focus on the People, Not Just the Tools
The global scale of COVID-19 has affected companies and customers around the globe. Consumer inquiries have swelled to unprecedented volumes and customers are looking for guidance.
No sector has been spared. Businesses, government agencies, higher-ed, and other organizations continue to struggle to keep up with the unexpected influx of calls, with some customers waiting on hold for hours. Meanwhile, companies have had to balance the need to staff contact centers with protecting their agents by sending them to work from home or granting them a leave of absence.
The Execs In The Know article highlights how technology has enabled companies to achieve that balance. Instead of putting pressure on stressed agents to answer more calls, many of whom are working from home for the first time, companies have turned to digital channels and implemented chatbots to boost agent efficiency and deflect phone calls altogether.
The asynchronous nature of messaging allows agents to handle up to 7 conversations at one time vs a 1-to-1 phone call. Meanwhile, chatbots eliminate calls by providing consumers answers to frequently asked questions that didn’t need a human agent to answer. If a human agent is needed during the conversation, customers can be transferred to a live agent.
Chatbots are especially useful during spikes of high demand of any kind. Rerouting calls with long wait times, deflecting calls from the IVR, and capturing customer information to expedite conversations, are scenarios playing out for companies that have implemented the right tools to deal with large fluctuations.