How Millennials' Expectations Are Changing Contact Centers (Video)

Learn more about call centers and the customer experience at the next SpeechTEK conference.

Read the complete transcript of this clip:

Allyson Boudousquie: Interestingly, 46% of people will use self-service channels. You see that graphic at the bottom. That number will even go up if a transaction is deemed by them to be easy. What's my balance? Where do I send a payment? But when it gets hard, that percentage drops, and not only millennials, but anyone in a service environment or anyone of us will look to agent-assisted channels as well as voice interactions, direct telephone interactions with a call center, as a way to get those difficult transactions serviced. So, people prefer to handle things on their own up until the going gets tough. We're still seeing that telephone agents are still top choice for hard issues.

When you see what we define as easy versus hard, Convergys does a huge research study every year, and we actually go out to our clients' clients and do this really big survey where we're asking clients that only had interactions within the last six months. So we're getting a pretty fresh snapshot of the consumer trends and behaviors, and the channel most often used from an easy perspective is chat. Chat has gotten better. People have figured out now to staff it. The latency is better. They're not putting 10 chats per agent anymore. You're getting a response time on there, and people have gotten better about managing and they will adopt it.

But for things that we're deeming hard, for whatever reason, all these calls become complex at some point, the customer effort tips over. A customer effort, which is individual and can be individual by generational, by generation. How each generation would define what it makes it hard or the patience that they have for an interaction, they tip over at some point. They are then looking to either jump a channel to see if I can get service in another channel, or I'm just trying to zero out or just get service with a customer ... with an actual call center, with an actual live body.

Let me tell you something. If I'm traveling in India, and I have been on a two-week business trip and all of a sudden my business card quits working, the last thing that I want to interact with is a self-service channel. I don't care what you're chatbot. I don't care if you're virtual assistant. All I know is that I want my credit card to start working immediately, and so how do I get that service as quickly as possible. So these are the frames, the frameworks that we are looking at when we're looking at service. So you're looking at, as millennials is a large portion of people we have to service, and then you have to think about what happens on the other end of that.

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