📘 The Guide: Choose an ideal omnichannel customer service software
With this guide, you can choose an omnichannel customer service software that is a 100% fit for your organization.
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Serve customers better with a right tool in place!
Are you sure you’re up for choosing the right customer service tool?
Learn 10 key criteria to determine which customer service software would be ideal for your organization.
This buyer’s guide provides practical tips for finding the right customer service software and evaluating the quality of different software vendors.Get your copy now
What you’ll learn in this guide:
🔹 Three main approaches for developing omnichannel customer support in 2022.
🔹 10 criteria to pay extra attention to before making the final decision on the tool.
🔹 A checklist on choosing suitable software for your organization.
🔹 A clear pipeline for organizing a smooth buying and adoption process for your new tool.I want my copy!
Why should you consider using omnichannel customer service software?
In recent years, the customer service industry has changed for good. There are several benefits that favor cloud-based omnichannel customer service software:
You get full control over operations
Customer service software enables you to create all sort of custom reports to analyse and improve the performance, which can greatly influence your business growth.
Customer experience is improved significantly
66% of customers use at least three different communication channels. With the right tool in place, you'll be able to serve them all, seamlessly and in seconds.
Your support agents are happier and more effective
With a powerful cloud-based tool in place, your agents' wellbeing improves significantly. Which results in better performance and commitment to your organization.
Data security and legal compliances guaranteed
With a reliable service provider, all customers' data is stored securely, and your operations fully complies with GDPR and other local regulations.
Here are 10 most important criteria to keep in mind when choosing customer service software for your organization:
1. Customer experience
A key part in providing excellent customer expereince is to have cutting-edge, omnichannel customer service software. To build lasting customer relationships, you should serve the customer with the right expertise in the right channel at the right time.
Similarly, your agents need to have an omnichannel solution that is efficient and easy to use. Agents should spend their time helping customers instead of wasting time with complex interfaces.
Quality customer service software also allows agents to upsell when the opportunity arises. This way customers don’t have to be transferred to another agent if they decide to order something.
2. Interactions, channels and customer journey management
World-class customer service requires utilising all the relevant channels that customers use. The operation should be supported with data-based customer journey management. A data-backed, omnichannel approach enables improving customer satisfaction.
Modern customer service software utilises artificial intelligence to identify customers and classify their needs. With IVR and automatic call and messaging distribution, the software should integrate all messages from all channels into manageable queues for the agents. The interface should deliver the same quality for every channel and combine the different channels into a complete customer interaction history.
Wide-ranging data utilisation also helps agents to identify potentially churning customers and offer them proactive service. Data from sales campaigns, for example, can be used to anticipate customer needs before they emerge. In the best customer service software, customer journey management is so simple that it can be performed without help from technical support.
3. AI and automation
Modern omnichannel software utilises AI to interpret the customer data acquired along the customer journey. Sales campaign data, for example, can be used to anticipate customer needs and to distribute customers to the right agents.
The best chatbots can solve up to 90% of cases. They are also efficient in identifying sales opportunities and in distributing customers to sales agents instead of customer service when that is more beneficial for the customer.
With solid integrations, AI features can use APIs to perform more complex actions, such as changing invoice due dates. 24/7 availability is a major benefit of AI. With chatbots, there is no wait time for simple questions – regardless of the time of day.
When AI performs mundane tasks through decision trees or open questions, agents get to focus on solving cases that require their knowledge, empathy and creativity. This way AI also improves agent satisfaction and decreases agent churn.
To make AI an efficient part of your operation, all the features should become integral parts of your interface. Separate windows that do not integrate with other systems or customer interaction histories are not helpful. It is also good to ensure that you can implement, configure, and maintain most of the features yourself. Chatbots, for example, should not take more than an hour to maintain weekly.
“In the future, it will be absolutely crucial that a customer experiences a seamless transition between the various channels in order for us to create the best customer experience.”
Anita Østerbø, Director of Direktebank Sparebanken VestGet a customer service software guide See LeadDesk Omni solution in action
4. Location independence
Always ensure that you choose a system that is easy to learn, does not have heavy system requirements and has all needed features to organize a remote work.
Agents, management and team leaders should be able to do everything remotely. To efficiently manage a customer service operation, managers and team leaders need complete visibility into agent performance, real-time interaction volume and system status. This way they can make accurate and timely decisions.
Efficient customer service is based on acquiring all the relevant customer data to solve a problem. Integrations with other key systems, such as a CRM, is crucial both in anticipating customer needs with AI and in ensuring that the agents have the means to solve cases efficiently.
The best customer service software providers offer both ready-made and custom integrations. This ensures that the customer service software becomes an integral part of the operation and the data flows naturally through the organisation.
6. Operation, orchestration and workforce management
An efficient customer service team needs software that offers managers and team leaders versatile but easy-to-use features for operation, orchestration and workforce management.
Managers and team leaders should be able to configure and customise the software to suit your specific needs. Adding agents or making changes to queues shouldn’t take you more than a minute.
Customer service needs to react swiftly to sudden changes. For example, in case of a sudden technical failure that creates a spike in demand for customer service, you should be able to move your agents to critical channels in a matter of minutes. In these situations, focusing temporarily on phone calls and chatbot interactions helps you to meet SLAs.
Integrating your customer service software seamlessly with workforce management and business intelligence software supports you in making informed decisions on how to use your agents efficiently.
7. Performance management
In addition to serving the customers flexibly in all channels, quality omnichannel software should also create real-time, easy-to-read reports of all channels. All the individual channel reports should be of high quality and extractable to other systems.
On the management level, having accurate and real-time omnichannel reports supports you in planning your operation and making necessary tweaks. Strategically, the reports can show you the impact of your customer service investments.
8. Human Resources
Good omnichannel customer service software that supports smooth communication both optimises the use of resources and improves agent satisfaction.
For example, agent churn decreases when chatbots handle simple, repetitive cases. AI-based predictive routing gives agents the interesting cases that require a human touch.
As there is a global shortage of customer service agents, it’s beneficial to have omnichannel software that enables blending inbound and outbound. With a familiar interface, your agents can flexibly switch between customer service and sales, working where more cover is needed.
9. Onboarding process and technical support
Customer service teams try to avoid downtime at all costs. At the same time, onboarding new software often involves integrating various systems that might require customisation. That is why the onboarding process for new software must be quick and flawless. You should look for a partner that has a versatile support organisation to see the process through.
Opting for cloud customer service software minimises downtime due to onboarding, as nothing is installed physically. Ready-made integrations make the process simpler. Providing technical support and support material in many languages also smoothens the onboarding process.
10. Security and compliance
Customer service stores and accesses both operational data and sensitive customer data that must stay secure. You should choose a cloud-based partner that decentralises its data. This way there is no way to get access to all the sensitive information in the event of a breach. Integrations are also easier and more secure with SaaS software than with legacy systems.
Your partner should be GDPR-compliant. The partner should also have the necessary ISO and SOC certifications that guarantee reliability. With a reliable service provider that maintains all the software data, you get to focus on your core business.
Pipeline for choosing customer service software
Preparation is key in all internal processes. Choosing customer service software is no different. To support a smooth and efficient buying process, you should:
Analyse the problems you want to solve
What problems do you want to solve with your new ombnichannel tool? Do your challenges align with the industry trends we mentioned at the beginning of this buyer’s guide?
Involve relevant employees to the project
Try to involve as many internal stakeholders as possible early on. A wide consensus in the organisation will provide you with the necessary backup for the buying process.
Identify the software features that are required
You can use the 10 criteria in this buyer’s guide to identify the features your organization would need to have.
Make a clear project timetalble
Devise a comprehensive project plan where you clearly outline the available resources, the deliverables, the expected results and the timetable.