Keeping Customers Waiting Leads to Call Abandonment, Lost Revenues, and High Staff Attrition Rates
The amount of time callers wait in a queue before being connected to an agent has a strong and demonstrable effect on customer satisfaction or frustration, as well as impacting on call abandonment, lost revenues and high staff attrition rates. The 2022 UK Contact Centre Decision-Makers’ Guide by ContactBabel points out an increase of the average speed to answer to an all-time high of 106 seconds, fueled by the difficulties some call centers are still having related to the pandemic and its effects.
At the same time, customer patience shrinks, with 43.0% of contact centers reporting that most of their customers will abandon if they’re left in the call queue for only one minute.
The impact of long wait times on customer satisfaction cannot be overstated
In a world where customers expect quick and efficient service, long wait times can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction. Customers may abandon the call, leading to lost revenues for the business. Additionally, long wait times can lead to high staff attrition rates as employees become demotivated by frustrated and angry customers.
To avoid these negative consequences, businesses must prioritize customer service agility. This requires an open, collaborative culture that breaks down departmental silos and brings together teams to work together to solve customer problems. It requires new skills to handle specific types of interactions, more flexible processes, and supportive systems and technologies, including cloud-based and collaborative solutions, as well as empowering omnichannel self-service options.
But it’s not just about reducing wait times. Having a clear customer service strategy is fundamental for ensuring a great experience for the customer.
Here are top 4 recommended factors to implement when it comes to providing excellent customer service:
1) Put First Contact Resolution (FCR) at the heart of your approach. Solving any problems quickly and effectively is essential to achieving high customer satisfaction levels. Achieving high FCR rates helps consumers and businesses, which can be done with a modern IVR. Eliminating the need for customers to make multiple contacts to resolve their issues is a clear signal that a business values their time. Done well, it can turn around negative opinions and boost customer loyalty, as well as increase efficiency by reducing contact volumes.
2) Harness and then leverage customer feedback. Harnessing and making use of feedback to enhance the customer experience should be a core tenet of every company’s approach to customer service. For example, if you are using Genesys Cloud CX, you can easily boost it to become a master at using customer feedback by using plugins to extract insights and improve the experience it delivers, something that every business can adopt.
3) Be easy to do business with. Valuing your customers’ time is essential. This leads to offering features such as one-click shopping, as well as learning from customer behavior to drive effortless experiences, for example, using purchasing and browsing histories to recommend relevant products.
4) Prioritize customer service agility. Businesses must prioritize service agility. That requires an open, collaborative culture that breaks down departmental silos and brings together teams to work together to solve customer problems. It requires new skills to handle specific types of interactions; more flexible processes and supportive systems and technologies, including cloud-based and collaborative solutions, as well as empowering omnichannel self-service options.
Long wait times can have a significant impact on customer satisfaction, call abandonment rates, lost revenues, and high staff attrition rates. Businesses must prioritize customer service agility and implement the recommended factors to provide excellent customer service. This will not only lead to happier customers but also more motivated staff and increased revenues.