“It’s so frustrating being transferred from agent to agent before finally connecting with someone who could actually help me.”
In the same way that customers don’t want to wait in a long line, they also don’t want to feel like a hot potato; Passing a customer around prolongs the road to resolution and makes them feel like your customer service wasn’t designed to take their issue into account.
Many companies have a huge design flaw in their CX journey, and it’s that handoffs are taken for granted as an unavoidable part of the job. The status quo in customer service dictates that it can take a few jumps to get customers where they need to go, so team leaders often throw their hands up in defeat. Handoffs are just an occupational hazard, right?
The truth is that every handoff between agents runs the risk of upsetting your customer. And most handoffs occur because existing CX infrastructure funnels customers to a department or agent that can’t handle their requests. The top reasons why these misdirections occur are:
Miscommunication with initial agent/touch point: Whether through an IVR, pre-chat survey, chatbot, or agent, sometimes the wrong question is posed, or the wrong options are presented to the customer. This can misdirect them down a rabbit hole of endless transfers.
Broad and static IVR categories: Giving customers a broad range of departments to choose from sometimes confuses them as they aren’t familiar with your departmental structure. If they choose incorrectly, they may have to start back from square one.
Lack of intelligent routing features: If your channels do not have features that automatically factor in customer data points, you’re leaving too much up to individual agents, and therefore too much room for error.
The bottom line: customers don’t know your internal processes and shouldn’t have to.
There are reasons why your departments are structured the way they are, and why certain agents have different permissions. But it is crucial to understand that from a customer’s point of view, your internal structure is opaque, and frankly, getting in their way. Your departmental structure doesn’t stop customers from expecting you to anticipate their needs. At the end of the day, it’s your job to guide them to a resolution. For this reason, you need a CX infrastructure that leads customers directly to where they need to go, with minimal effort possible.