Man in customer service department wearing a headset and smiling while speaking to a customer, because he can see the full history in Dynamics 365.

Technology fit for total customer service in 2024

The delicate economic landscape as well as global lockdowns have contributed to an elevation in customer expectations and businesses, membership organisations and charities must work harder than ever to gain loyalty and create advocates. Measurement is crucial if an organisation wants to improve its service levels, become truly customer, member, or donor-centric and provide ‘total customer experience’. Service is being utilised as a core business value driver and the model is proving to provide a significant return on investment; so much so, Gartner predicts that 60 per cent of large enterprises will use total experience to transform their business models by 2026.

To put customer service first, the first step for an organisation is to ensure its technology is fit for purpose. Here we explore four ways in which the right software can boost satisfaction and ultimately the bottom line.

 

Being where your customers want to be

According to Smart Insights, 90 per cent of social media users have communicated with a brand via a social channel and 63 per cent expect companies to offer customer service via social media channels. This is a huge opportunity for organisations to offer a precise, empathic and quality service experience and benefit from illustrating high levels of service levels to others in the public domain.

Within Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Service, there is an Omnichannel for Customer Service add-on, which allows customers to engage on their preferred social media app or channel, including Apple Messages for Business. When agents can respond using the customer’s channel of choice, it drives brand engagement, creates a positive experience, and builds customer loyalty.

 

Offering an effective self-serve option

High numbers of customers will be happy to search for the answer to their problem themselves first, whether in a knowledge base, customer portal or online community. If that self-service resource is of high quality, agents have more time to focus on more complex issues and together this will drive customer satisfaction.

In addition to the above-mentioned self-serve customer service channels, chat functionality has become increasingly popular and smart organisations are taking advantage of integrated technology that is powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). Wait times and related customer frustrations are reduced and fast issue resolution can ensure a customer remains a customer. AI solutions that are built into a business’ software architecture – like Copilot – are becoming ever more efficient; Gartner anticipates that chatbots will become the primary customer service channel for roughly a quarter of organisations by 2027.

 

Knowing your customers as individuals

When a customer contacts a service department, they want to be treated as an individual and increasingly they want a personalised service. The right technology allows organisations to know their customers and histories as well as understanding – and appropriately responding to – sentiment in real time. To truly put the customer first, data should be utilised within a proactive customer care strategy and information must be accessible to agents quickly. A personalised service strengthens loyalty and research from Epsilon found that 80 per cent of consumers are more likely to make a purchase when they are given a personalised experience.

Group of people who work in customer services at their desks using Microsoft Dynamics 365 to get to know their customers better.

 

Giving teams the tools to thrive

When an agent is finding it difficult to execute their role, can’t quickly put their fingers on the information they require and isn’t happy, the customer can tell. Not only is the customer more dissatisfied but that team member is more likely to look for a job in a more modern service department. Service agents can be empowered with the right technology, and importantly they can continue to learn and develop their careers. AI technology can analyse and present knowledge to assist with a conversation in seconds, for example, summarising similar cases and offering successful resolution steps.

Platforms with an open architecture and no-code/low-code development capabilities offer the opportunity for organisations to continually transform customer service departments through in-house innovation. Team members can develop professionally and learn new skills while the time and cost of ongoing development for the business or charity can be dramatically reduced.

 

If your organisation is looking for AI-enabled cloud software like Microsoft Dynamics 365 that captures every customer interaction and makes them available in customer profiles, ready for agents to access with a click, we’d love to hear from you. Please complete our call back form and one of our experts will be in touch.