Today’s telecommunications industry is increasingly competitive, with customers continuously looking for lower prices, better network coverage and more value-added services. With so many Telcos in the market offering similar products and services, one often asks, “What makes a customer choose one provider over another?”. The answer is often customer experience or CX, as it is referred to. Let’s look at how digital transformation is causing a shift in customer experience management within the industry, the challenges associated with this shift, and our top tips for overcoming these.
The Importance of Customer Experience Management
To understand how customer experience management is changing the industry and challenging you as Telcos to adapt current business models, we first need to understand what customer experience management is. According to Gartner, the definition of customer experience management (CXM) is the discipline of understanding customers and deploying strategic plans that enable cross-functional efforts and customer-centric culture to improve satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy.
Digital transformation has changed customer experience management over the last few years. The acceleration of digital technology has provided several innovative tools to help you as Telcos deliver a better customer experience to customers. In this way, Telcos are able to utilise CXM technologies to track and oversee customer interactions throughout the customer lifecycle. This technology is also being used to provide insights into customer segments, purchasing habits, and customer behaviour to improve efficiency and operations and give customers more visibility and control while ultimately providing them with more value.
You may be thinking, is CXM really that important, to a Telco’s business? The answer is yes. This is because the more value you as a Telco add to a customer’s life, the better the customer experience, which builds customer loyalty. This directly results in boosted revenue. This is because the return on investment is relatively higher for Telcos with an outstanding customer experience as these customers are less likely to churn. This is a significant benefit since the cost of acquiring new customers is higher than retaining current customers. Loyal customers are also known to spend more on products and services and refer others to the provider, which enhances profitability and increases revenue.
In this way, CXM is vital to a Telcos success. Some will even go as far as to say it is the foundation for success and profitability. That said, customer experience management is often thought to be easy to manage, but this is often not the case. You as a Telco know that there are many challenges related to maintaining an excellent customer experience which affects the overall business.
The Challenges Telcos Face when it comes to Customer Experience Management
With customer experience playing such an essential role in a Telcos’ success, it is critical to get it right. For Telcos, several challenges are standing in the way of creating excellent customer experience management. These include:
- The use of legacy infrastructure and technology – many Telcos still use outdated legacy processes and software that do not cater to the business’s CXM needs. For example, there is a reliance on manual processes and systems, like utilising call centres instead of self-service platforms. This often takes added effort for a customer, which increases frustration.
- Lack of customer tracking and data – Telcos today are not utilising the innovative tools and technology at their disposal to collect and analyse customer data to find their customer’s voices. Without this insight, you cannot provide services, offerings and experiences that meet customer experience expectations or solve customer problems causing them to churn.
- Being unable to meet customers’ communication needs – customers are looking for more ways to connect, interact and engage with service providers across various digital channels. Many Telcos find meeting this need incredibly difficult as they do not have the technology to support this kind of omnichannel communication approach.
Each of these elements significantly affects you as a Telco and your ability to cater to customers’ needs and expectations, dramatically impacting a customer’s choice to stay loyal or move to a competitor that they feel offers them more value and better customer service.
4 Top Tips to Improve Customer Experience Management
Now that we have identified the challenges holding Telcos back from excelling, let’s look at our top 4 tips for improving customer experience management.
Omnichannel Approach – with customers being more tech-savvy than ever, they expect to be able to engage and interact with their Telco service providers across several different digital channels. Customers want the ability to interact through various touch points, requiring you as a Telco to have an omnichannel approach to deliver consistent support across digital channels. This approach would utilise technologies that include chat services, chatbots, virtual assistance, SMS and more.
Understanding customer expectations and needs – customers today are looking for convenience, support, easy accessibility, and fast and efficient customer service. Digital technology is key to measuring the success of Telco’s customer experience efforts. Knowing what you as a Telco are doing well and what customers are not happy with provides an opportunity to improve and develop new ways to satisfy customer needs.
Utilise Analytics and Data – they say data is power, and in today’s digital world, they are not wrong. By using big data and AI technology to track and analyse customer data, you as a Telco can find valuable insights. These insights will provide information related to customer segments and satisfaction levels, which will enable the development of measures to improve customer experience.
Invest in the right self-service technology – self-service platforms are essential for CXM in these digital times. This innovative technology provides Telco customers with more control and visibility over their services. As a Telco the immediate benefit of this is improved customer experience, enhanced customer satisfaction, cost savings as well as reduced administrative burdens
There is no doubt that customer experience management in this day and age is essential to the success of a Telco, especially within a market as competitive as the telecommunications sector. Customer experience management keeps customers loyal, which results in a decrease in customer churn and an increase in ROI. Many Telcos today are not equipped to provide customers with an excellent customer experience because they rely on outdated technology, legacy processes and systems that no longer meet customers’ needs and wants. With the right technology in place, you as a Telco can personalise a customer’s experience and provide them with more control and visibility over their services, thus improving their overall customer experience. With the right CXM technology in place, the sky is the limit in terms of CX.
Give Full Control To Your Corporate Customers
Learn how our Corporate Customer Self Service (CCSS) solution allows MNO’s and MVNO’s corporate customers to control their own contracts and alleviate unnecessary support queries in this free white paper
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.