Customer support demand is always growing larger and larger. As your customers expect more and more from your business, it’s likely that your business will be hard-pressed to deliver speed and quality service that meets their expectations. When a business runs into sinking quality issues, they naturally look to expand their support team, however this isn’t always a viable solution.
Luckily, your business isn’t stuck between a rock and a hard place – with the proper customer support software, your support team can improve efficiency and satisfaction without increasing headcount or ballooning costs.
Bad automation can hurt your business
Before diving into what automation can do for a support team, it’s important to differentiate the good from the bad and the ugly. There are some automation solutions and initiatives that companies invest in that actually fail to address rising support demand, and instead they end up only exacerbating the issue.
These automation tools tend to have poor routing or self-service options, and only pile up the tickets or frustrate customers.
It’s integral to always take a demo of a solution and pick it apart. If the automation capabilities don’t meet your standards, there is a solution that will.
How proper automation tools improve support teams
An ideal automation solution provides a variety of tools for your support team to work with, and doesn’t focus on just one problem area. Here are 5 major elements that a great automation tool provides:
Tickets need to be instantly sent to correct teams and agents without worrying about them becoming insurmountable piles or moving down wrong workflows. A good automation tool not only prevents a support team from being overworked and overwhelmed, but it also improves the chances for positive customer experiences – as well as cutting down response and resolution times.
Typically the greatest threat to a support team’s success is sheer volume of tickets – the greater the amount of tickets the greater the chance of a loss of cohesion, service quality, and customer satisfaction. Failure to properly implement ticket deflection, that is solving customer problems without them needing to submit support tickets, is integral to the success of a customer service team.
In order to adequately reduce agent involvement and deflect tickets, your software needs to be able to route specifically flagged tickets to a knowledge base, or other such self-service center, so customers can resolve issues by themselves. Deflecting routine tickets directly reduces an agent's workload so they can prioritize more complex matters and provide greater quality service.
Ensure SLA requirements
In the case that your business enforces certain service level agreements (SLAs), you need to be empowered by your support software to configure settings that meet those requirements.
If you can’t assign triggers, customize ticket properties, or alter routing rules to fit your agents’ work styles and needs, then your business is hamstringing your support team. But if service needs are met, then your support team is able to ensure that customers stay happy.
Any businesses strongest assets are their teams and the people that make them great. Your employees are likely experts in their field, cornering them off into silos can only hurt performance. The more minds meet, the better the ideas (except for maybe in the case of Lost’s writers room).
Drive collaboration within and across your teams with internal chats, multi-agent ticketing, and forums. If you make communication between different departments simple, agents can find information they need quickly and reduce time to resolve.
As I briefly touched on in the ticket deflection section, self-service is a no-brainer. Support teams can easily reduce involvement in simple tasks by providing customers the means to find resolutions on their own quickly. Key ingredients are a knowledge base, community forum, or automated chat.
Automation increases support efficiency
The former core pillars of automation tools were only touched upon briefly, and there’s an oceanic depth to each of them. Ultimately it’s up to a business to decide which support software they will face the tide with, and some of those solutions may very well sacrifice quality in some of these core areas.
But if your customer service team needs a ship that will get you to your destination and beyond, be sure to shop for only the very best customer support platform.
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