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How to Manage Customer Expectations with Proactive CX


Presented By: NICE CXone

Does this story sound familiar?  

A parent tells a child to clean their room; the child says they will and goes about their day. But they don’t. A little more frustrated, the parent reminds the child. Yet dirty clothes still litter the bedroom floor.

Finally, at the boiling point, the parent marches the child to the room and watches as they clean it. After a long journey, the task is complete, but the parent is left feeling frustrated, having lost precious time and energy.

What if you flip the script of this story?

The child notices their room is messy and decides to clean it up before going out to play. This proactive action leads to praise from a surprised parent, who now devotes more time and energy to other important tasks around the house.

Now swap the parent for a customer and the child with a contact center.

The customer service journey can be frustrating and time-consuming when a customer must do the work to get results. When customer experience (CX) is reactive, the customer experience relies on consumers to do all the heavy lifting. But when CX is proactive, customer needs are anticipated, and consumers are guided to the optimal result faster and more efficiently.

Customer service expectations are changing, and consumers demand exceptional service in a timely, personalized, and proactive manner. In a 2022 digital-first report by NICE, 95% of consumers revealed that customer service impacts their brand loyalty, citing easy access to digital channels and online self-service as essential factors.

Creating a proactive CX culture that can anticipate consumers’ desires needs three things:

1. Smart self-service

Traditional self-service models are created using a narrative approach, meaning customer service professionals guess which phrases customers might use to express intentions. The narrative technique is reactive, time-consuming, and can often be inaccurate. This leads to poor outcomes and decreased customer satisfaction. Expenses also increase due to using outside resources and management consultants to improve containment.

Smart self-service is proactive, time-saving, and precise. This can be accomplished by using knowledge and data learning artificial intelligence (AI). NICE uses both to discover and predict customer intents from human conversations. This data-driven approach means more precision, new insights, and prescriptions for the best self-service opportunities.

2. Intelligent omnichannel routing

Suppose a customer needs to communicate across multiple channels. For example, they start with a voice call and then want to switch to text or have details emailed after a call. The customer's intent and interaction details should transfer seamlessly across channels without requiring the customer to repeat information or questions when switching to a new channel.

More intelligent interaction routing determines the customer’s communication style and experience preferences. It also identifies the skilled agent with the best-predicted performance for the customer, then directs the customer to the agent, improving their experience and business outcome.

3. Empowering agents with AI-enhanced coaching

AI allows agents to receive in-the-moment coaching with embedded desktop tips based on phrases spoken or omitted, customer satisfaction metrics, and AI-driven soft-skill behaviors. Real-time interaction cues help agents improve customer satisfaction during an interaction. It alters their approach and reinforces the skills they learned in coaching sessions.

CX isn’t the only thing AI improves. Service agents also see a 25% improvement in job satisfaction when working with an AI-powered system. Productivity dramatically increases as well with a 50% jump in operational efficiency.

Like a child who takes proactive measures and cleans their room before being asked, contact centers can surprise and delight customers before help is needed. Providing an incredible CX experience is far more than just a goal; it is a necessity.

If customer service causes friction or is time-consuming, customers notice and might leave. But, if customer service exceeds expectations with proactive self-service and seamless digital journeys, contact centers enjoy intensified loyalty, increased revenue, and happy, delighted customers with every interaction.