What Does 'Customer Self-Service' Mean, And Why Is It Desired?
The rise of cloud computing software and the shift towards remote work has significantly increased the daily support tickets assigned to service representatives. So often, they’re repetitive inquiries that agents need to respond to repeatedly, wasting time and potentially leading to customer frustration.
However, with customer self-service, it’s possible to give some relief to representatives and allow them to focus on more complex cases without compromising the quality of support consumers expect.
Customer self-service—what is it?
As its name suggests, customer self-service refers to a model of support where customers are given all the necessary tools and information to address their concerns, such as online knowledge bases, automated chatbots, and IVR systems, to name a few. Often, these solutions do away with the need to connect customers with live agents, thus, reducing the workload of the support team and allowing people to resolve fundamental issues quickly. It even enhances various aspects of a business. One such example is software access and licensing. Robust software monetization platforms often have self-service features that enable customers to immediately access software by activating licensing without the need to go through a multitude of processes, enhancing the experience as a result.
Why is it desired?
There are many reasons why more and more companies are adopting customer self-service options. After all, they offer more benefits than the more traditional channels of support. Here are a few.
- Improved customer experience. Many are under the impression that most consumers still prefer to get support from human representatives. Still, the data says otherwise. Studies have found that many customers would rather have self-service options instead of having to call support agents. In fact, over ninety percent would likely use online resources like knowledge bases if they were available and could address their needs, as they don’t want to have to wait in long queues and holds to get their issues resolved.
- Lowered costs for customer support. Since support teams won’t need to handle many tickets, self-service models may significantly reduce costs. For example, if a comprehensive knowledge base or FAQ can cut down service tickets by fifty percent, a business will likely see its yearly costs on customer support halved.
- Quicker resolution times. There’s no denying that skilled technicians can be a lot more efficient at addressing service problems compared to chatbots. However, if you consider how much time it takes for callers to be connected to an agent and the entire troubleshooting process, it can be much slower than you think, especially during peak call times. With self-service, it’s possible to shorten resolution times and keep agents free to handle other cases. When you get down to it, reading knowledge bases and documentation is faster than having to call the support number, wait in a queue for available agents, and potentially get disconnected.
It’s easy to see the appeal of self-service options for both companies and consumers. Beyond the fast resolution times and lowered service costs, it can provide customers with round-the-clock support. While it’s unlikely to replace human representatives any time soon, self-service options can improve the customer service experience of a business and strengthen its relationship with its customers as a result.