As we head into 2014, the majority of organisations will be re-focusing their efforts to improve their customer experience delivery, in an attempt to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty levels.

Analyst firm Forrester has recently released its predicted top trends for customer service in 2014. We have summarised the following points as key development areas highlighted for organisations to focus on.

  1. Provide a consistent omni-channel customer service – whilst voice is still the primary communications channel it is quickly followed by self-service channels, chat and e-mail.
  2. Align mobile strategies, technology investments and user experience across functional groups.
  3. Formalise agent actions through BPM tools – helping to streamline service delivery, minimise agent-training times, ensure regulatory and company compliance, and control costs.
  4. Explore the power of proactive pre-purchase and post-purchase engagements – i.e. invitation to live chat
  5. Complement the power of knowledge management solutions with generated content from; forums, virtual agents, analytics and social listening.
  6. Predictive analytics will continue to be developed to recommend agent “next-best actions” – recommending the right content and agents to connect the customer to based on behavior and data.
  7. Move towards more holistic measurement programs for communication channels and touch-points.
  8. Simplify the agent workspace – automating tasks to increase agent productivity and personalisation.
  9. Leverage SaaS customer service solutions – increasing business agility and speed of deployment.
  10. Improve data quality and data governance – a cornerstone of good customer service.

An organisations ability to respond to customers questions instantly, across whichever channel they chose, at whatever time they chose, will have a major impact on a customer’s perception of their brand.

‘Omni-channel’, ‘multi-channel’ or ‘cross-channel’ are buzz words we repeatedly hear in the world of customer service and having the right technology in place to ‘join’ customer communication channels together to enable an organisation to reduce departmental and channel silos will be pivotal.

In order for organisations to maximise their potential to deliver on Forrester’s top trends – consistent customer service, improved customer satisfaction through more personalised and pro-active engagement, and optimisation of productivity and service delivery – a solid multi-channel customer service strategy is required.

Helpful white papers you may be interested in: