Technology is making customer service a strategic asset: Salesforce State of Service Report

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96% of Indian service decision-makers believe the experience a customer has with a mobile worker is a reflection of their brand.

Salesforce, the global leader in CRM, released its 2019 State of Service report capturing insights and trends from service agents and decision makers worldwide to determine their biggest challenges and priorities, the changing role of customer service agents, the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) on the future of customer service and how mobile workers fit into modern customer service.

Highlights:

• 93% of decision-makers in India say their company’s customer service must transform in order to stay competitive
• The use of AI and Chatbots by customer service teams in India is projected to increase by 90% and 118% respectively, over the next 18 months.
• 85% of Indian decision makers are making significant investments in agent training
• 94% of service agents in India say they have a clear path for career growth at their job.
• 69% have increased mobile worker headcount over the past year
• 78% expect to increase mobile worker headcount next year.

 

Technology is redefining customer standards and making service a strategic asset. The biggest challenge for Indian businesses is keeping up with changing consumer expectations. In India, 93% of decision-makers say their company’s customer service must transform in order to stay competitive. Improving service technologies is a top priority for these decision makers followed by upgrading workforce skills and lastly revamping processes and workflows.

The service agent of today is increasingly tasked with building relationships and driving revenue. They are swapping their mundane tasks for challenging, high-value work. 89% of agents in India said their roles are more strategic than two years ago and executives increasingly understand that customer service transformation requires an investment of time, talent, and resources. 85% of Indian decision makers are making significant investments in agent training and 94% of service agents in India say they have a clear path for career growth at their job.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is viewed by decision makers and agents alike as a strategic advantage to customer and employee experience. AI adoption is nascent, but is set to soar as more teams turn to chatbots, text and voice analytics, and other use cases. In India, the use of AI and Chatbots by customer service teams is projected to increase by 90% and 118% respectively, over the next 18 months.

In addition to being more closely aligned with departments across the organization, service is moving beyond the call center as customers embrace an array of digital channels. 88% of service professionals in India say their organization is seeing increased case volume through digital channels.

The expanding mobile workforce is driving new revenue streams and brand differentiation. Arming mobile workers with the same capabilities as their office-based colleagues is viewed as key to this evolution. 96% of Indian service decision-makers believe the experience a customer has with a mobile worker is a reflection of their brand. 69% have increased mobile worker headcount over the past year, 78% expect to increase mobile worker headcount next year.

Sunil Jose, Senior Vice President and Country Leader, Salesforce India, said, ‘India is a unique nation, a country of a billion proud people, who are young, growing economically, and more aware than they have ever been. Today, we find ourselves at a significant point, as we emerge as a global economic and political power. It is difficult not to be excited about the potential of the Indian consumer. Businesses are realising that service can drive elevated customer experiences, differentiate brands, and drive new revenue streams. As a result, service leaders are investing in their people, processes and technology to drive nothing short of a transformation’.

‘Today’s consumer is at the centre of digital experience provided by businesses. Our clients now expect similar intuitive interactions and efficient solutions at their fingertips built on a platform of trust. Further, as custodians of clients’ wealth, we are expected to respond in real time to changes in financial markets. We are defined by the experience our customers have with us and I believe technology is the key differentiator. It has helped us deliver solutions and experiences that are customer-centric, dependable and responsive’ said, Anshu Kapoor, Edelweiss Head – Private Wealth Management.