Self Service

Everyone loves self-service, don’t they? Like most people, self-service is my first choice wherever possible. I can’t imagine paying bills or checking my bank balance in any other way.

According to a recent Aberdeen report, 43% of contact centers have already incorporated self-service within their channel-mix with more planning to do this in the near future. This is a clear winner as contact center traffic reduces, leading to efficiency gains, while customers are happy to be able to perform transactions on a device of their choice at a time that suits them. Even the contact center agents win, as they don’t have to deal with the boring, transactional activity and can use their skills to service more challenging and rewarding queries.

So everyone loves self-service until they hear the phrase that makes most people break out in a cold sweat: “Unexpected item in bagging area.” Self-service checkouts are so unpopular that a British newspaper recently ran a “crusade against those maddening automatic checkouts.” That is pretty emotive language, but I think contact centers introducing self-service can learn from this example that you need to ensure that your strategy is focussed on improving customer service while reducing effort—not just on saving money.

Inisoft took a customer-first approach when implementing self-service applications at a number of colleges. We ensured that the applications were quicker and more straightforward than the previous system while introducing additional benefits such as SMS communication. This proves that you can save money while improving your customer experience.

 

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