Why Self Service?
Have you ever tried to buy or change a plane ticket over the phone? Only on waiting times on the IVR, it can take from 30min to the hour: just to know that your request isn’t possible or to sort out your issue in a matter of minutes.
Have you ever needed the most simple and generic information regarding opening hours of your ‘favourite’ shop [or service provider] over the weekend? Peculiar opening hours and there’s always a day throughout the week that it is closed. It is precisely that very day that you’ve decided you needed to go just to discover what you’re not expecting.
Wouldn’t you like to make your own tailor-made orders whether it’s food, house appliances or furniture? I’m sure you already do, and if you don’t you should prolly give it a shot. It always comes in handy 🙂
That’s self service or at least a few reasons why it came to be: but it covers much more.
Where can it help today? 3 Business Examples:
Retail: your grocery shopping from the tip of your fingers to your home. Or simply returning a broken product.
Example: the brand i use in a regular basis for online grocery shopping in Paris. Use case: Laura ordered nice bottle of wines for the upcoming celebration that she’s planning. The problem is that several came out broken. She will be able to handle a good amount of this process via self-service. Which is great, she won’t need to repeat herself several times as her request escalates along the potential processes.
Solution showcased: one of my favourite ones for customer support. Zendesk Help Center.
Bank: from building a custom loan for a very specific need to getting an appointment with the right expert.
Example: a fake brand meaning it could actually be your Banking Service Provider any day of the week.
Use case: Pablo is a Digital Journalist & an Aurora Bank customer that needs to purchase gear for his next documentary.
Pablo will need a loan from his bank. He will leverage his bank Customer Community Portal to find out about the loans provided, understand how it works and gauge other customers’ opinion on this very topic via articles, feeds, conversations. He will also have a full vision and “control” over the cases he has opened with his Banking Provider.
Utilities: from electricity bills to ‘proof of address’ document requests, or simply looking for answers about energy consumption.
EDF is the organisation that handles electricity in France. Here are screenshots coming ‘live’ from my account. You may notice on the upper-right-side the presence of “Laura”.
Laura is a “virtual assistant” or what it is commonly known these days as “bot”. It sounds much more trendy this way. Laura provides me all the information i need regarding my account, upcoming payments, documents i should print for third party paperwork.
Another “look & feel” for customer self-service in a rather “humanised” type of chat-conversational way. Solution showcased behind the scenes: one of my favourite French Tech Startups, Do You Dream Up.
Why is it happening?
General information does not need a human ‘intervention’ [from the company] to be successfully provided to your clients and prospects. The State of Service Report 2015 by Salesforce shows that 39% of millennials check a company’s FAQ first when they have a question, showing a clear preference for finding answers on their own.
So please, use your staff for key & critical issues, empower them to help customers when these ones cannot help themselves and by doing so, make everyone feel great. As for the rest, provide a great self care experience. 🙂
What business impact can it bring?
37% cases resolved by the means of providing customer self-service. This is fantastic. Think of companies managing huge volumes of calls, emails, live chats, social media interactions. The math is simple.
A quick business case for Aurora Bank. Imagine it currently deals with 500k Email-cases per year at ~10€ / Email Cost. That is a 5M€ / Year Email Expense. By enabling the right Customer Self-Service strategy and tools, this company could be saving nearly ~2M€ per year on that very Email Expenditures as ~185k Emails would be held & dealt by the Community & Self-Care.
48% faster time to market in product or service improvement by the means of Communities. This is one of favourite outcomes: the ability to align Customer Feedback and Product Teams to work for instance on a new launch or to simply discuss ideas for the “next best thing”, by creating and cultivating a collaborative eco-system on the Digital Communities.
[Ebook: 10 ways Community Cloud Transforms Business by Salesforce].
In a nutshell
By enabling both Customer Self-Services & Communities for your organisation you will be able to provide better and smarter user-experiences for both your customers and your company. There are obvious ROI in doing this. As a the cherry on top, and as a consequence, you’ll allow your staff to focus on what’s most critical, relevant and strategic.
Finally, Self-Service can take many forms and already the most impressive and next best Self-Care experiences are to be provided by the Bot Revolution.