“I will answer very simply that the Internet will disappear.” When Google’s Eric Schmidt made this statement at the World Economic Forum at the start of this year, it surely caused some commotion.
What Schmidt truly meant was that he foresees a future, where the Internet is all around us, as wearables gain traction and our homes become smarter and more connected. If you thought that contact centers will be untouched with the effect of Internet of Things (IoT), one can safely say that you are terribly incorrect. Nevertheless, you can rather ride the wave of IoT to create disruptive contact centers for new-age customers.
Read on to know what are the most apparent changes that IoT will bring to contact centers in the near future and how your contact center will be impacted:-
- Take Customer Experience Several Notches Higher
These days, customers normally choose to interact on a number of devices, which means an explosion of data for you to analyze and gain key insights. This data if managed correctly can have great value for your contact center, thereby taking customer experience to a whole new level. For example, newly manufactured vehicles come pre-fitted with devices that can track how safely they are being driven. Thereafter, the insurance company can adjust the premium amount once someone chooses to share this data with insurance company’s contact center agent. Moving forward, brands will proactively analyze data after monitoring devices and provide apposite customer service. This will allow brands to identify concerns before they arise.
- IoT will Expand the Realm of Ominchannel
By 2020, the amount of Internet-connected things will reach 50 billion, with $19 trillion in profits and cost savings coming from IoT over the next decade. The rapid growth of Internet of Things has the potential to cause exceptional levels of activity in contact centers. Effectively, it means that IoT will add to the ever-expanding realm of Omnichannel customer support. Hereon, contact center reps will have the ability to connect with customers via any connected appliances, wearables, vehicles, etc. Therefore, businesses will have to adapt to balance a lot and continue providing great customer service.
- All Hail Specialized Experts!
Customer service skills, understanding of products and services of the business, and soft skills – these were the areas where reps were trained until the outburst of data caused by Internet of Things. Hereon, reps will have to develop specialized know-how to meet the growing demand from customers. This specifically means that they will have to gain awareness on malfunction of a household appliance, failure of wearable devices and other highly technical problems. Thus, reps will move on from reactive customer service to a more proactive approach of solving problems.
- Self-service will no Longer be Unconventional
The rapid rise of IoT will lead to expanding the existence of self-service. In the times to come, the need for customers to call contact centers will reduce drastically as smart objects will have the ability to detect their own problems. This will result in significant reduction of call volumes. However, there is something very important that needs to be pointed out here that contact centers might want to focus on. As call volumes decrease, the probability of detailed nature of calls will increase. Thereby, the average handling time and call duration will increase as reps need to provide specific responses after understanding the details of various technical problems.
- New Regulations Should be taken into Consideration
The increase of data sharing from devices, appliances and vehicles will lead to growing concerns on data privacy. There is a need to regulate data access and how data is shared, as multiple devices will now be able to track usage and behaviour. Therefore, you can certainly expect some new regulations to come your way with the rise of Internet of Things. This means that compliance limitations can be placed on our washing machine’s registration number, just like it is done on credit card numbers. Nevertheless, this can take sometime to be a reality and until then, companies can act responsibly to protect customer data and always provide customers the choice of not sharing their information.
How do you think Internet of Things will transform the landscape of contact centers and how should brands evolve with the changes? We would be glad to know your opinion on this subject.