Help Coming to Partners Struggling with Implementing CX Strategies

Customer experience

… the No. 1 factor to engaging with them versus price. That’s when you’re going to see these small guys really get into the CX game.

RingCentral's John Finch

RingCentral’s John Finch

John Finch: Actually, delivering on omnichannel. It’s a digital-first world now; voice is just a channel. The systems in place today will not support multiple customer touch points or interactions, which will make this difficult to address without a SaaS platform. Being able to handle interactions across channels like social, messaging, in-app messaging — think Uber, messaging from Facebook, Apple Business Chat and Google, as well as voice, email, web chat, etc., all while knowing who the customer is across these channels and being able to provide 24/7 service without hesitation. In come chatbots, AI, tight integrations to CRMs, and an open platform to develop back office routing and customization of these capabilities.

TB: I can tell when channel partners are committed by asking a few questions: Do you have a voice of the customer program? Do you have customer advisory boards? Is your customer service group viewed as a cost center or a revenue generator? Is there someone responsible for CX at your company? What metrics do you have in place to track CX? Based on the answer to those and many other questions, I can very quickly determine how serious they are about addressing it.

CP: Is this as big of a change for these partners as the shift to cloud computing has been?

CA: I think it is, because moving to more of a cloud model and CX sort of go hand in hand, where being able to move into more of an omnichannel approach to how you engage and communicate with your customers is critical. And that’s easy to do with a lot of SaaS platforms. I don’t think one is more important than the other; I think they need to move in parallel.

CP: When it comes to CX, what adjustments have channel providers made to address this?

Salesforce's Tiffani Bova

Salesforce’s Tiffani Bova

CA: It starts with the upfront conversation you have with customers, where you ask them their preferred means of communication. And it covers how they like to receive support. If you’re managing them on a managed services contract, customize the SLA with them as opposed to saying, “Here is our boilerplate SLA that everybody signs,” making sure that it’s customized for that individual client with what they want. So it really comes down to getting to know these clients on an individual basis, which is a good thing for business, period, but In order to be able to tailor how you relate to them, you need to talk to them and find out.

TB: First, this has to start at the top … the C-Suite, any and all leaders must be committed to go on this journey of pivoting from being product-let to customer-led. It can’t be from the bottom up or it won’t work. With every decision a channel provider makes, it should be based on VOC (voice of the customer), CAB (customer advisory boards) or other external customer-based insights. It could even be from …

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