A wholesale approach to customer service sin’t enough anymore, according to a survey of 2,000 UK consumers. Instead, respondents reported a desire for different types and levels of technology depending on the interaction and its importance. Results indicate that businesses are squandering the opportunity to gain a competitive advantage by their current strategic approach to customer service.
The survey was sponsored by communication firm Avaya and contact center provider Sabio. Survey respondents demanded more stringent technology and automation for certain sensitive interactions, but not for all of them. Some 81% reported being comfortable using Interactive Voice Response (IVR) when conducting with financial matters, while 55% of respondents were willing to use voice biometric technology when checking their account balance.
Interestingly enough, 35% of the respondents say biometrics are a viable option for more general, less sensitive utilities such as renewing car insurance. Consumers enjoy the new technology but ultimately there remains a call for personal interaction with human agents for support and assistance in more complex services.
And while consumers enjoy talking to customer service reps, the continued security-related questions can draw the ire of consumers. The survey further reveals that some 60% of organizations are asking for security details unnecessarily, with 50% of consumers reportedly being frustrated with call center agents. To accompany this frustration, there is a noticeable skepticism in transactions involving payments – only 5% of respondents believed speaking to a call center agent was secure, a number that drops to just 2% for overseas call centers.
In addition to Avaya and Sabio’s findings, the report reveals six major insights that best sum up the report:
- We’re only human. Consumers show clear preference for brands that make it easier to conduct identification and verification when making payments.
- Work-arounds. Consumers regularly jeopardize their own personal data security to make their lives easier.
- B+ for effort. Consumers try hard to take care of their personal data.
- Alias-mania. Consumers often try to hide their true identities when dealing with businesses.
- The long number. Consumers are worried about sharing their personal and payments data verbally over the phone.
- Who’s to blame? Consumers are aware that they need to protect themselves from fraud, but feel that organizations – merchants and acquiring banks particularly – should shoulder more responsibility and are the weak link.