We have said it before, and we will say it again, Digital Transformation is changing every aspect of business, especially where MNOs and the Telecommunication industry is concerned. One of the most significant impacts this technology shift is having is on Customer Experience. Digital technology expands what is possible within this realm and allows MNOs to improve their Customer Service and experience levels with several different techniques that enhance customer loyalty, reduce churn, and ultimately enhance profitability. We unpack these techniques to improve Customer Experience in more detail below.
The landscape of Customer Experience In The Digital Age
Customer Experience, which is also often referred to as CX, is your customer’s holistic perception and view of their service experience and customer journey with your organisation. An excellent Customer Experience fosters brand loyalty and profitability. Many MNOs are turning to innovative digital technology to enhance this.
Technology has the ability to assist MNOs in rethinking their business and operating models to enhance Customer Service. This has become a necessary focus for MNOs due to the increased competition within this market. Customers today have several providers and competitors to choose from and are always searching for a differentiator between providers. Operational efficiency and Customer Experience are two of these differentiators. Both are equally important, but the value of excellent Customer Experience may come out on top in this competitive economic environment. This is largely because the bulk of customers are willing to pay more for a great Customer Experience and better Customer Service.
To provide this kind of service, you, as an MNO, need to understand your customers’ needs and wants, and provide answers to these. There are several different technologies and techniques that MNOs can use to make this possible and reap the benefits of an improved Customer Experience. These benefits include experiencing a decrease in churn rate, an increase in customer engagement, the extension of a customer life cycle, a higher customer satisfaction score, and more customer interactions which allow you to build loyalty. We examine these techniques and technologies below.
4 Techniques Advancing Customer Experience
As mentioned above, Customer Experience should be a focal point for all MNOs because of its ability to drive revenue and profitability. Technology has become central to this and has been incorporated into a number of different Customer Experience strategy techniques that are being utilised to advance Customer Experience from a corporate customer point of view. These techniques all offer varying levels of personalisation and the ability to enhance a Customer Experience, increase customer support, and open the channels that customers can utilise. These include:
1.Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Artificial Intelligence and its capacity for machine learning, cognitive analytics, robotics automation, and chatbots that can take on tasks requiring human intelligence is key to the future of the MNO business model. This technology is also essential for advanced analytics as it can take big data sets and sources and detect patterns and relationships between the data in real-time to develop actionable insights about customer segments and the Telco network.
Telcos can use this insight and information to optimise resources, create and improve efficiencies, limit human errors, predict trends, mitigate risks and more. Such technology will also allow Telcos to monitor the end-to-end network and performance of connected devices, applications, service network components as well as identify vulnerabilities and threats related to security, which if not managed, have an impact on Customer Experience.
2. Channel Integration
Channel integration is also often referred to as Omnichannel messaging and enables customers to switch easily between channels and touchpoints depending on their needs, what actions they want to take and what devices they are using. In simple terms, this technology allows you to utilise multiple channels, including USSD, SMSC, Mobile Apps, WhatsApp Channels, social media, Website portals, and more, from one integrated framework. There is one integration channel working for all the different applications, simplifying the complexity and the functionality of these applications. It is important to note that users and customers today do not only use one channel, they use various channels to connect and engage with MNOs. This is why it is essential to ensure that you are adding value to your customer base by providing customers with the functionality and availability of all of the channels that they may be using, which enhances the Customer Experience.
3. Internet of Things (IoT)
IoT refers to the growing number of connected network devices. These connected devices are opening up a world of opportunities for MNOs to take Customer Experience to new highs. This is largely a result of the rich insights being generated by IoT data. These insights provide valuable information on customer behaviours, device usage, and more, allowing MNOs to continuously identify areas of improvement, especially where Customer Experience is concerned. IoT technologies also enables automation which can be utilised to enhance a number of different operational and customer service elements, through the use of live chat messaging, automated FAQs, bots and more which enhance Customer Experience management and reduce the burden on your customer service team.
4. Self-Service Platforms
Self-Service platforms have become an essential tool used to give corporate customers immediate control and answers to questions in real-time. These platforms have proven more effective than call centres through enabling corporate customers to instantly find the information they need instead of relying on someone. This enhances convenience and allows your corporate customer to do their jobs more efficiently and effectively due to the accuracy of the information they gain and the speed at which they can access it. The results of this are that corporate customers have less frustration and have more control and visibility over elements related to their usage, spend, connectivity, account information, billings, and more. For the MNO, not only does this enhance Customer Experience and satisfaction, but it also saves time and money by reducing administrative burdens.
The above-mentioned techniques and technologies are playing a significant role in improving the overall Customer Experience within the telecommunications industry. However, there is one technique that is proving to be a bigger driver for good customer service. Self-service platforms are making impressive inroads in this sector and are linked with better Customer Experience scores. We examine why in more detail below.
How Self-Service Platforms Improve Customer Experience?
You may be asking why self-service platforms are advancing Customer Experience. In simple terms, these innovative solutions are providing Corporate Customers with more. Extra services, metrics, access to information, reporting capabilities, streamlined processes, ways to ask questions and get answers more efficiently, etc. Today’s self-service platforms also extend beyond a corporate customer mobile ecosystem and connect the dots between your administrative team, IT department, and finance department. This translates to enhanced visibility, optimisation of operations as well as effective spend management. Adapt IT’s Telecoms Corporate Customer Self-Service solution is the perfect example of this kind of solution.
The Corporate Customer Self-Service solution is a cloud-based or on-premise platform which is highly customisable, user-friendly, Self-Service platform that provides Telcos and their Corporate Customers with complete visibility and control of their IT ecosystem in one consolidated place. This solution has been built with insights provided by customer feedback, recommendations, and customer retention in mind.
This Self-Service platform houses all Telco and Technology associated data for their respective Corporate Customer data, both at an individual and company-wide level. There is no need for customers to have individual, disparate software platforms to manage items like mobile spend, bills, cloud, data, asset inventory, and unified communications, this platform provides it all. This solution offers the following benefits to corporate customers:
- More control – this powerful self-service platform provides faster access to information without the need for requests or permissions.
- Informed decision making – this technology provides insight and understanding around real data usage and the cost of all Telco services, which can be used to drive strategic business decisions.
- Enhanced visibility – this solution offers a consolidated, single user experience and a single source of truth which assists in providing your customer with an accurate view of their IT environment and information.
- Accurately predict trends – this platform allows your customer to future-proof their business by accurately predicting trends and the impact of these on their bottom line and overall business, enabling your customer and you to plan effectively.
- Effectively manage spend – this technology provides the insight and data needed to effectively manage and control spend of all technology and telecoms services.
- Manage abuse – utilise this innovative technology to identify and eliminate abuse within a customer’s environment.
This solution has a number of benefits for MNOs and MVNEs specifically, but the most important is that it increases brand loyalty which is a result of customers gaining additional value through more controls and business efficiencies that the solution provides. For the MNO, the knock-on effect of this is that they deliver a great Customer Experience which improves profitability and reduces customer churn.
As technology continues to evolve, we expect to see more and more innovations and solutions be developed which speak to customers’ changing needs and their expectations around Customer Experience and service. We expect self-service solutions to gain traction and incorporate more services that simplify customer’s needs. The development and innovation of Customer Experience solutions promise to be an exciting one, especially in terms of the benefits it provides for MNOs in building customer loyalty, reducing customer churn and enhancing profitability.
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In my 20+ years’ experience within the information technology and telecommunications industry, I have assisted businesses in successfully delivering and managing various technology solutions and consulting projects to a multitude of organisations spanning across Telecoms, FMCG, Financial Services, Banking, Retail, ICT, Manufacturing, Public Sector and Mining. My strength and passion lies in the mediation of technology and business with a focus on successfully integrating software solutions that assist organisations in delivering on their strategic objectives through improved business insight to ultimately improve business performance. At Adapt IT I am privileged to work with an experienced team that is equally passionate about utilising technology to drive business efficiencies specifically focusing on Mobility.