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Boosting customer satisfaction while reducing operating costs | Creating a customer-centric channel engagement strategy for Utility companies

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Digital channels are transforming the way customers interact with the services they use. Communications are happening 24/7, conversations are no longer simply one-on-one and consumers are developing a kind of do-it-yourself attitude. In the face of all this, many utility companies recognize the importance of embracing these digital channels, both in terms of raising customer satisfaction and in boosting profitability. After all, these channels cost significantly less to run than more traditional methods such as phone calls. However, simply hurrying the transition of communications from traditional methods to digital methods without proper strategy actually can have adverse impact on customer satisfaction. This is because utilities run the risk of forcing customers into channels they do not prefer and, on top of that, not maintaining continuity of information with the channels they have used in the past.

In order to determine the level of agreement between communication channels offered by utilities and the ones preferred by their customers , WNS DecisionPoint(TM) conducted a survey of over 60 energy utilities and their customers across the US, the UK and Australia regions. They survey clearly highlights a significant gap on the part of the utility companies in understanding their customers' channel preferences and which hold them back from realizing the benefits of a multi-channel approach. Based on this survey, key strategies are determined which utility companies can adopt if they want to be successful in the coming years.

These strategies include:

- Using analytics to gauge customer behavior and predict their current and future needs to increase marketing e¬ffectiveness
- Understanding channel preferences of different customer segments for varied types of interactions
- Off¬ering multi-channel options to customers and interacting with them through their preferred channels
- Providing seamless, relevant and personalized omnichannel experience across channels
- Optimizing omnichannel customer experience for better customer satisfaction and lower cost of operations

To discover more about the power of omnichannel experiences in utilities, read the report at https://www.wnsdecisionpoint.com/our-insights/reports/detail/62/boosting-customer-satisfaction-while-reducing-operating-costs

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Boosting customer satisfaction while reducing operating costs | Creating a customer-centric channel engagement strategy for Utility companies

  1. 1. 00 Wnsdecisionpoint.com wnsdecisionpoint.com Boosting Customer Satisfaction while Reducing Operating Costs Creating a Customer-centric Channel Engagement Strategy for Utility Companies
  2. 2. 11 Wnsdecisionpoint.com Utilities are still unable to leverage multi-channel approach to realize their business goals Customer satisfaction by number of communication channels offered by utilities 73.5 74.6 67.2 66.6 62.0 64.0 66.0 68.0 70.0 72.0 74.0 76.0 Used one channel Used two channels Used three channels Used more than three channels CSATScores (outof100) Sources: 1 - International Customer Management Institute, 2 - Institute of Customer Service Customers are increasingly demanding more channel choices which can potentially underpin their satisfaction A sizable number of utility companies accepted that emerging channels have a great impact on customer service experience and overall relationship management1  Nearly 40% of companies stated that digital channels such as social media, mobile and self-service have a positive impact on response time  Over 30% witnessed a significant increase in customer satisfaction (CSAT), first-contact-resolution, and customer loyalty Yet, utilities have actually witnessed a decline in customer satisfaction when multichannel customer engagement strategy has been adopted  Surprisingly, customers who used lesser number of channels (one or two) to interact with their utility providers were more satisfied as compared to customers who used three or more channels2
  3. 3. 22 Wnsdecisionpoint.com Lack of holistic understanding of customer preferences restrain utilities from fulfilling the objectives of overarching customer relationship management strategy Source: WNS DecisionPoint™ Survey and Analysis There is a wide chasm between customers’ order of preference for channels and those leveraged by utilities to interact with them  To assess expectation vs. reality mismatch, WNS DecisionPoint™ conducted a survey of over 60 energy utilities across the US, the UK and Australia and their 350+ customers Level of agreement and disparity between channels preferred by customers and channels offered to them by utilities* *The scale of agreement and disparity between customers’ preferred vs. available channel options is examined through a correlation derivation Channels Overall US UK Australia Phone Calls Emails Website - Live chat Website - Self service Mobile Website Mobile - Live chat Mobile - Self service Social Media SMS Direct Mail Utilities Outlets Greater than 0.69 Strong Agreement Between 0.50 and 0.69 Moderate Agreement Between 0.25 and 0.49 Weak Agreement Between 0.00 and 0.24 Very Low /No Agreement Between -0.01 and -0.24 Weak Disparity Between -0.25 and -0.69 Moderate Disparity Lesser than -0.69 Strong Disparity Region-wise gap analysis indicates the inability of utilities to understand customer needs and preferences to offer a tailored value proposition
  4. 4. 33 Wnsdecisionpoint.com Using analytics to gauge customer behavior and predict their current and future needs to increase marketing effectiveness Understanding channel preferences of different customer segments for varied types of interactions Offering multi-channel options to customers and interacting with them through their preferred channels Providing seamless, relevant and personalized omnichannel experience across channels Optimizing omnichannel customer experience for better customer satisfaction and lower cost of operations How can utilities have a winning edge? Utilities who are lagging behind should not only begin a shift towards omnichannel model but also optimize customer experience to increase the efficiency of support functions Read full report to find the ways to successfully adopt and optimize omni-channel customer support 3 Wnsdecisionpoint.com
  5. 5. 44 Wnsdecisionpoint.com A credible insights hub for companies looking to transform their strategies and operations by aligning with todays realities and tomorrow’s disruptions. Email: perspectives@wnsdecisionpoint.com Website: wnsdecisionpoint.com @WNSDecisionPt WNS DecisionPoint WNS DecisionPoint

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