How Analytics Can Unlock Value for Contact Centres in 2020

2020 will be about analytics, Jonathan Wax from Nexedia tells us why…

Approximately 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are now created every day and it’s estimated that 1.7MB of data will be created every second for every person on earth by 2020. In this context, it’s easy to understand the importance of optimising the application of this treasure trove of data.

Should this be achived through ‘Analysis’ or ‘analytics’ – they’re two well-known buzzwords, but what does each mean? The two terms are used interchangeably by many, but in fact they differ in a few fundamental ways.

Analysis typically involves a detailed examination of a broader challenge or opportunity. In comparison, analytics refers to the technical study of data to uncover potential trends, or to investigate the effects of certain decisions or events.

The ability to explain why issues occur and how to fix or avoid them has become the main point of differentiation amongst customer experience competitors. The insights generated by analytics help businesses to do just that.

Maximising the value of data

Organisations large and small are employing analytics in their contact centres to improve the customer experience—and to great effect. With so much information available, analytics is capable of both transforming operations and delivering tangible business results.

In a world in which the omnichannel experience has become ever more important, analytics allows contact centres to automatically analyse all cross-channel customer interactions and draw actionable insight from this data. The data collected can be used to optimise average handle times, reduce call volumes, decrease hold times, increase first call resolution rates and even predict problems before they occur – all of which improves the customer experience. Analytics also serves the agents themselves, assisting in real-time by providing next-best-action recommendations during problematic customer interactions.

Managers also stand to benefit from the introduction of analytics, which affords them full visibility into trends and performance indicators, as well as helping to identify potential and existing issues and skills gaps. This data can feed into evaluations and training, allowing managers to build out an employee roadmap that ensures meaningful growth and therefore better employee engagement.

Finally, analytics software can also boost productivity by 10-25 percent. The productivity of typical back-office operations maxes out at around 50-60 percent, but analytics changes this by providing a holistic view of operations, highlighting process inefficiencies and suggesting time-saving alternatives.

The future of analytics

The value of descriptive and predictive analytics is already well-documented, but further developments in the field are on the horizon. As the market develops further, prescriptive analytics will come to the fore, providing employees with intelligence on how best to engage with callers to improve the customer experience.

Prescriptive analytics builds upon the foundations laid by descriptive and predictive analytics. It explores how different approaches affect a result and what the best practices are in a specific situation, allowing businesses to automate decision-making.

Prescriptive analytics also offers a way for businesses to efficiently use limited resources, realising opportunities that might otherwise have been out of reach. For example, prescriptive analytics can advise agents of the best next step when dealing with a difficult customer. This advice is based on that customer’s past interactions (via all channels) and the likelihood of him or her leaving you for a competitor. If the chances of that customer switching to a competitor are high, prescriptive analytics might respond by suggesting that the agent offers a discount or refund.

Staying one step ahead of the competition

Analytics offers many benefits, but central to its value proposition is the ability to harness data to understand current and future challenges. Analytics can help businesses uncover concealed patterns in unwieldy datasets, evaluate the performance of certain tools and platforms, and investigate the potential effects of a specific event.

As the competition for customer attention intensifies, the ability to provide an excellent, omnichannel customer experience will become non-negotiable. By equipping their contact centres with powerful analytics solutions, businesses can drive a win-win by leveraging their data to drive value to customers and boosting satisfaction while, increasing their bottom line.