2017 Contact Center and Servicing Goals
In November/December 2016, DMG
conducted a worldwide survey of contact center and enterprise servicing goals
for 2017. The results of our annual survey are always interesting, but what
makes them useful is that they have proven to be an accurate indicator of company
priorities and investments.
Outstanding Service Tops the Chart
In this year’s study, participants
were asked to select their top servicing objectives from 33 categories and were
invited to write in additional goals. Along with the 4 write-ins, 37 unique
goals were identified in the survey results. As seen in Figure 1, the top 10
contact center and enterprise servicing goals for 2017, in order of priority,
an outstanding customer experience
cost of service
a personalized customer experience
Figure 1: 2017 Top 10 Contact Center and Servicing Goals
Source: DMG Consulting LLC,
What’s New in 2017?
Company servicing goals and
priorities have changed in the past year, although the position of the first
two goals, delivering an outstanding customer experience and improving
productivity, have been the same for the past three years. Increasing and
improving the use of self-service capabilities has increased in importance. DMG
expects to see investments in intelligent virtual attendants and bots, in
addition to enhancements in web self-service capabilities.
Reducing the cost of service
decreased slightly in importance this year, although it’s still a factor that
companies are taking into consideration when making investments. This is an
indication that companies are going to invest in initiatives that prioritize
customer needs even if they do not save money, although many investments that improve
the customer experience also reduce operating costs.
Delivering a personalized
customer experience showed up on the list of contact center and servicing goals
for the first time in 2017. This is an area of major investment for companies and
an example of a servicing goal that may not reduce operating costs but will
improve the customer journey. Companies are finding that their customers expect
a personalized service experience in their channel of choice. DMG expects to
see significant investments to address this objective during the next few
years. Personalization is greatly enabled by analytics, the tenth-ranked goal
on the list.
Reducing customer effort, a goal that
burst onto the enterprise landscape for the first time in 2015, has been
slightly deprioritized for 2017. Companies are doing their best to make it easy
for their customers to transact business, but find it difficult to measure this
goal and therefore are investing in and prioritizing related areas. Enhancing
customer engagement is a more measureable goal, and one that increased in
importance for 2017. This goal is tightly related to improving customer
retention, which maintained the same position as the last couple of years.
Companies are using analytics to determine personalized approaches for engaging
their customers. These initiatives, which should include making it easier for
their customers to take care of business, have a proven correlation to
As companies strive to deliver a consistently
outstanding customer journey for each customer, they are starting to appreciate
the value and benefits of improving cross-departmental coordination. This goal
increased in importance in 2017, and though not sexy, it can pay great
dividends for companies that figure out how to break down organizational
boundaries and look at the company through the eyes of their customers, who do
not care which department they interact with, as long as things get done the
way they expect.
Lastly, enhancing reporting/analytics
dropped significantly in importance in the 2017 list of goals. This is an
indication that vendors are finally listening and responding to the needs of
their customers for better reports and analytics, not that companies care less
about this essential goal. Customer and employee analytics are a necessity for
companies to deliver on many of the top 10 goals in 2017.
The new goal atop the list of
service priorities for 2017 is delivering a personalized customer experience.
Enterprises are realizing that they need to make substantial investments to
make it easier for their customers to do business in order to engage and retain
them. Analytics is key to helping companies figure out how to deliver a
personalized experience. At the same time, analytics can help reduce costs,
improve the customer experience and retain customers, which are also top-10
goals for companies in 2017.