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  • Q&A: Alok Kulkarni, CEO, Cyara Solutions

    960 640 Stuart O'Brien
    Alok Kulkarni Cyara

    In July, Cyara Solutions published the results of a survey it conducted with Frost & Sullivan analysing Operational Customer eXperience (OCX) in contact centres around the world.

    The report highlighted a number of challenges across the companies surveyed, with retaining Customer Satisfaction as the priority.

    We recently caught up with Cyara CEO Alok Kulkarni to ask him about the survey results and his thoughts on the wider contact centre industry…

    What prompted Cyara to work with Frost & Sullivan to conduct research into Operational Customer Experience?
    We wanted to work with Frost & Sullivan because they specialise in CX, digital, and the contact centre domain. They also have global reach, a great database of enterprise customers who fit the profile, and are well regarded in the industry. It felt like it was a natural fit to conduct the research with them.

    What were the biggest issues highlighted by the survey in terms of companies retaining customer satisfaction?
    The survey highlighted that Operational Customer Experience (OCX) issues negatively impacted Net Promoter Scores (NPS) or Customer Satisfaction scores ​by 32% for enterprises. This was a surprise to us as we expected this figure to be much lower. Rapid change and a complex multi-vendor technology ecosystem pose a major challenge to enterprises as they work to assure delivery of flawless omnichannel customer journeys.

    In terms of specific OCX issues that impact customer satisfaction, multiple call transfers (customers having to repeat themselves), or transfer failures (from the digital channels to the voice channel or the call centre) were the major cause of customer frustration behind long wait times.

    What are the biggest opportunities presented by the OCX analysis and metrics?
    The biggest opportunity in analysing and measuring OCX is that it will increase customer satisfaction by proactively detecting issues before customers face them, using automation without impacting customers or having to survey them. ​This is really low hanging fruit. ​The ability to objectively measure and analyse CX will also enable customers to make better buying decisions from enterprises who take CX seriously​ by investing in it​. Those who are better than their peers will be handsomely rewarded.

    Enterprises will be able to treat their customer engagement hubs as profit centres rather than cost centres​ which is how they are mostly perceived today.​

    What technology is going to have the most impact on operational customer experience/contact centres over the next 12 months and why?
    ​The technology involved in linking web chat with voice​ and using AI to increase the containment of more complex interactions is what will have the biggest impact. If you ​analyse the buyer journey, customers tend to go online to do research and since they tend to be time-poor, they prefer to chat with somebody online to quickly get specific information rather than do it by themselves – sometimes the relevant information is difficult to get to or they need concrete documentation to support their buying decision regarding a feature or service.

    Closing large or strategic deals almost always involves a call. The biggest issue is linking those channels together so they can complete the transaction seamlessly rather than have an abandoned cart or a lost opportunity.

    In 2022, we’ll all be talking about…?
    In 2022, we’ll be talking about how AI and automation have completely transformed how business is conducted digitally. AI in particular is a big talking point in the industry now, and we’re seeing a lot of enterprises starting to look at how they can incorporate AI and automation in their CX solution offerings. There’s a lot of potential in these technologies, and I think that by 2022, we will understand just how powerful they are.

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    Stuart O'Brien

    All stories by: Stuart O'Brien

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