EGain Report: North American Communications Companies Fall Short in Customer Service Through Electronic Channels


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Inadequate service can mean increased subscriber churn, a major issue in down economy

Mountain View, CA (December 10, 2008) – eGain Communications Corporation (OTC BB: EGAN.OB), the leading provider of multichannel customer service and knowledge management software on-premise or on-demand, today published its 2008 international benchmarking report for the communications sector, encompassing businesses which provide services in cable, internet, phone and wireless phone. The report benchmarks and compares email customer service and web self-service offered by premier communications providers in North America (the US and Canada) and the UK. The research found that there is room for significant improvement in email customer service and web self-service in both North America and the UK. However, North America outperformed the UK in email response quality, speed of response and web self-service.

eGain used a “mystery shopping” approach to evaluate customer service performance. Posing as prospective buyers of high-value products and services, eGain researchers contacted leading communications providers through email, showing an obvious intent to buy, and also evaluated the self-service capabilities offered by these businesses. The objectives were to assess the responsiveness and quality of email customer service, the range of web self-service options offered, and the ability to easily escalate to agent-assisted service. The North America research also included other aspects of customer service including interaction channels offered, and multichannel and multi-agent service consistency.

The following key statistics emerged from the study:

• North America findings:
o 20% of the companies simply ignored customer emails
o 45% of the companies failed to respond within 24 hours, a prevalent turnaround expectation for email customer service today
o 45% of the responses were “poor” or “below average” in quality
o 55% scored “above average” or “exceptional” in web self-service but 45% received “poor” or “below average”, showing a dichotomy among the best and worst performers

• North America-UK comparison:
o The UK trailed North America significantly in both email customer service and web self-service
? 73% of the UK sample simply ignored customer emails compared to only 20% in North America
? Only 19% of UK companies received an “above average” or “exceptional” rating in email quality, compared to 55% in North America
? Only 15% of the UK sample responded to emails within 24 hours compared to 55% in North America
? Only 42% of the UK sample scored “above average” or “exceptional” in web self-service, compared to 55% in North America

“Service providers of all types — cablecos, telcos, satellite companies, and mobile carriers — face a mounting dilemma: The number of services that they offer is on the rise, resulting in increasingly complex and disparate customer service needs. At the same time, they want to trim service and support costs by encouraging customers to use Web self-service tools. Above all else, providers must optimize the service and support experience for their customers or risk losing subscribers to the competition,” write Sally M. Cohen and Chris Townsend, analysts at Forrester Research, in the research report “The State of Service Provider Customer Service”, dated March 31, 2008.

“Because of high subscriber churn and relentless product and service commoditization in the communications sector, email customer service and web self-service are key requirements to providing cost-effective customer service in today’s volatile economic climate,” said Ashu Roy, Chairman and CEO of eGain. “It is crucial that service providers invest in robust customer service management solutions that will not only help cut costs but also improve online customer service and unify the customer service experience across all contact center channels.”

About the State of Customer Service in the Communications Sector research
This report consolidates the findings of the “2008 State of Customer Service in North America” and the “2007 State of Customer Service in the UK” research studies. The combined sample consisted of over 240 leading companies, with $250M or more total annual revenue, and included 46 premier communications providers. The full report of findings from eGain’s research can be downloaded at: Additional information on eGain solutions for the communications sector can be found at:

About eGain
eGain (OTC BB: EGAN.OB) is the leading provider of multichannel customer service and knowledge management software for in-house or on-demand deployment. For more than a decade, the world’s largest companies have relied on eGain to transform their traditional call centers, help desks, and web customer service operations into multichannel customer interaction hubs. Based on the Power of One™, the concept of one unified platform for multichannel customer interaction and knowledge management, these hubs enable dramatically improved customer experience, end-to-end service process efficiencies, increased sales, and enhanced contact center performance.
Headquartered in Mountain View, California, eGain has operating presence in North America, EMEA and Asia Pacific, and serves hundreds of enterprise customers worldwide. To find out more about eGain, visit or call the company’s offices: 800-821-4358 (US headquarters), 1753-464646 (UK and Continental Europe).


eGain, the eGain logo, and all other eGain product names and slogans are trademarks or registered trademarks of eGain Communications Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. All other company names and products mentioned in this release may be trademarks or registered trademarks of the respective companies.


eGain media contact:
Connie Pheng
Phone: 650-230-7449
Email: [email protected]

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