Did you know that 44% customers use social media to voice their dissatisfaction with your products? 57% of customers prefer to search online for customer service solutions. The worst part is that 60% of companies don’t respond to customers via Social Media, even if they are asked a direct question.
Although social media integration into the contact center is still a new idea for government agencies as a core channel of customer interaction, commercial enterprises recognize this as a way forward. DMG Consulting, a contact center analyst, predicted that within five years the number of relevant social-media interactions would be equal to the number phone interactions. With 70 to 80 percent of these interactions being service-oriented and needing attention, it will be an increasingly popular option.
Why should government agencies adopt a social media contact centre strategy?
Reason #1 – Citizens are social creatures for a long time.
Four years ago, Facebook was a nation of 400 million people. It was a rare growth phenomenon. It now has over 1 billion users and illustrates the government’s potential to transform public services. According to research by Yankee Group, 70% of citizens want social media interaction. Research from other industries also shows:
73% of public sector organizations believe that digital engagement and social networking can help to reduce efficiency. 19% of public sector employees believe that social media can be used to provide customer service.
Citizens are now taking control of the dialogue about government service delivery. They flagged issues and suggested possible solutions that could complement the agency’s knowledge and insight. The digital perimeter of an organization is now more important than traditional touch points like face-to-face, voice-only, and over-the-counter service. Agencies cannot afford to fail to invest in these interactions.
Some government agencies rely on their marketing and communications department to manage citizen engagement. As the potential social interactions with government increase, it becomes more difficult for ad-hoc approaches to monitor, filter, route, and respond to social channels. This will make it too overwhelming for a marketing department to manage. This makes it even more important for government to seamlessly integrate multimedia, social, and interactive channels into their contact center, where the critical mass of citizen interaction skills, resources, and resources reside.
Reason #3 – Social in the contact center is more efficient.
Although it took over 10 years for email management to become mainstream in the contact centre industry, it will be less than five years before social media becomes a standard channel. It can be used just like any other customer interaction channel.
Social media can be brought into the call center using the same routing engine and reporting database as agencies currently using for voice, email, and web chat channels. Contact centers are built to handle large numbers of contacts quickly and effectively. It can be more efficient to use an adequate number of agents or a pool to address social media, especially as the volume increases. Agents in contact centers also have the skills to interact with social media. Agencies can make use of existing investments in technology and processes to create a single point of contact for all citizen interactions. This will avoid inconsistent customer experiences.
How it works
Social media allows citizens to comment on government services, engage with others, ask questions, and voice their opinions. Agencies can use automated monitoring tools to identify and collect comments. These comments are then categorized, prioritized, filtered, and sent to the contact center routing engine. This will route the comment to the most appropriate agent. The agent responds to the comment by using knowledge tools and response templates. Contact center managers can also access tools to provide historical and real-time reporting, which can be used to provide key customer service metrics.
Many citizens have expectations about government customer service response times, whether they are fair or not. Integrating social media into government agencies’ contact centers improves customer service and speeds up interactions. It also reduces costs. A socially engaged contact centre can improve agencies’ relationships and save time and money. This is the future for unified communications.
June 2016