Is every minute of your customer call accounted for?

Posted on: May 31st, 2017 by Art Barger

When it comes to call center efficiency, it’s all about having every minute accounted for. What you do with the time you spend helping customers over the telephone channel has a direct impact on your customer journey, how callers feel about your brand, and ultimately, your overall business profits. If your call center agents are spending their time doing something other than resolving customer issues or strengthening your relationships with them, then they’re doing just the opposite. And that will cost your bank on multiple levels.

Consider the customer journey. By the time a customer picks up the telephone to talk to a bank rep, they’ve likely run into a problem they can’t resolve on their own. Posing that problem to a live person who can walk them through the process not only reassures them that the problem has been fixed, but it’s an opportunity for your bank’s frontline ambassadors to build confidence and goodwill with your customers. And there’s nothing more valuable to your bank than treating your customers right.

When the phone starts to ring, what’s taking place? While contact centers are often contracted to answer the phone within one or two rings, that can be five seconds or longer where the customer is simply waiting for your IVR system to pick up and instruct them to choose from a number of options on a menu tree. This can take another 10 to 20 seconds. From there, the call is routed to the appropriate operator. At this point, the customer has been on the line almost a minute and still hasn’t talked to a live person. Keep in mind that when customers call they just want to speak to someone and get their problem resolved as soon as they can.

By the time a customer reaches an agent, they’re relieved that they can finally get to the issue at hand. But for many bank contact centers, this is where the authentication process begins. Instead of being greeted by a friendly telephone agent who immediately begins addressing the customer’s needs, they start interrogating them with a series of personal questions. These knowledge-based authentication (KBA) questions are meant to identify the caller so the agent can validate who they are talking to.

In today’s banking environment, however, there are a few problems with using personal information to identify customers.

First, because of stolen or mishandled information it’s not a valid credential for verifying customers. Second, knowledge-based questions can take up 45 seconds or more, which can extend the customer journey to around two minutes without having the customer’s issue addressed at any point. Now that’s a problem.

But what if your telephone system could begin authenticating customers the moment the phone rings? How much would that improve the time it takes to validate your callers? And what if you could do it without asking a single question? How much would this improve your customer experience?

The TRUSTID® Physical Caller Authentication solution does just that. By automatically and invisibly verifying the caller as the phone is ringing, it can be immediately routed to an operator. With the call already verified, there’s no need for agents to interrogate callers over the phone. Instead, they can begin working with the customer to fix their issue right away.

Using more of your agents’ phone time resolving customer issues, rather than interrogating them, is more efficient for problem-resolution and can strengthen your profitable bank-customer relationships. By automating the authentication process, every minute of your customer calls are dedicated to their needs. In the end, making sure every minute of your customer journey is accounted for can pay off for both you and your customers.

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