In the dark about Customer Experience?

In the dark about Customer Experience?

The clocks go back the last Sunday in October just in time to set the scene of darkness for ‘trick-or-treating’ fun. Halloween will have many of us dress up, pretending to be evil monsters or witches, but 31 October 2019, might haunt us for years to come as this is also the current date set for the UK to leave the EU. And as if the question of if we will leave with or without a deal, or maybe ask for another extension, the slow-burn impact of Brexit on the British economy will be a drag on growth for the rest of 2019.

Today analysts and industry experts all agree that Customer Experience is key to competitive differentiation, driving loyalty and revenue. They write articles and present inspiring keynotes advising enterprises to ‘Put customers at the heart of everything they do’. Shockingly though, Customer Experience is stuck.

According to Forrester’s Customer Experience Index, 2019, 81% of brands measured stagnant sores in CX. No brands made it into the “excellent” category, and 5% of brands saw their scores dip, many being industry front-runners. How is this happening with such a focus on Customer Experience Transformation?

A zombie unicorn?

The world of Customer Experience Transformation is mystifying. Consumer expectations are higher, word of mouth travels faster. Purchasers are more empowered than ever before. Customers no longer base their loyalty on price or product.

As a marketer myself, these days more than often, I get extremely annoyed when I hear buzzwords used just because everyone else use them. Marketers, and experts who are consciously or unconsciously, trying to educate and advise enterprises in their quest to grow their customer base and keep existing customers loyal, are actively participating in creating terminology which is confusing professionals within the Customer Experience Transformation space.

Like the very broad term ‘AI’, Customer Experience isn’t what most people believe it to be. Some think it’s about customer service or customer satisfaction, customer engagement or customer success. The truth is, that the customer experience begins well before a customer is even an actual customer. It’s the perception/impression of a brand, across each stage of the customer journey, e.g. when customers browse a website, receive marketing messages, or when they have to contact a company. It’s these customer touchpoints which impacts their perception of that brand and guide their future decision.

As in any multifaceted activity, whether it’s Customer Experience or mounted archery, it’s worth keeping in mind a perpetual principle:  get the basics right.

Measuring customer experience – the memorable interactions with a brand – usually comprises of feedback, analytics and journey mapping across a brand’s products and services and often falls within the remit of the Marketing team.

However, ‘Customer Experience’ should not be confused with ‘Customer Service’. Customer Service must also deliver enhanced experience, but with one clear goal: To assist customers when they need help. This might happen pre-sales or post-sales at any time, across digital channels, over the phone or in bricks-and-mortar environment. The sole purpose of Customer Service is to meet the expectations of the customer so that they are satisfied with the outcome.

But how can businesses find this perfect fit between horse and horn to make this magical CX unicorn?

Putting some horsepower behind your CX

Customer Service tends to impact customers more than any other department. It’s inevitable that at some point, no matter how good your marketing and branding sets your business apart from your competitors, people will need assistance and they will remember their experience especially if it wasn’t a good one.

Great Customer Service is key to a satisfied, loyal, returning customer base.
Upon asking 1000 consumers “what is good customer service?”, Dimensional Research found the 3 key factors for customer satisfaction in order of importance to be:

  • The problem was resolved quickly.
  • The person who helped me was nice.
  • The problem was resolved in one interaction (no channel hopping).

The conclusion therefore is that customers want quick, friendly and efficient channels to resolve their queries. And customers don’t care about buzzwords like omni- or multi-channel. They only care that they can connect with a business, the way they want to, and when they want to, through the channel that’s easiest and most convenient for them.

While many businesses understand the value of digital support channels like email, FAQ self-service/FAQ bot, live chat or a virtual agent to assist their customers in channels convenient to them, outdated processes, siloed teams and archaic stand-alone IT systems still have customers end up with inconsistent, splintered experiences that drive them away.

To avoid disjointed experiences, Customer Service, and especially digital channels, should be:


Headless horseman?

Synthetix are not in the business of shoving square pegs into round holes. We don’t do off-the-shelf or one-size-fits-all customer service tools. We understand that your business, requirements and goals are unique. Our consultants work with your team to capture business requirements and design a solution with measurable KPIs. We want your online customer service to be successful and that all starts with a great business case.

To awaken your Customer Service form its Sleepy Hollow and to prove how Synthetix can truly transform your online Customer Service why not visit:

Case Studies

Turbulent conditions causing customer service havoc?

Turbulent conditions causing customer service havoc?

Fasten your seatbelt …

Us Brits can always rely on the weather to help us to strike up a conversation. This summer’s record-breaking temperatures had many of us having to commute on overcrowded public transport thinking that hell must be cooler. However, extreme downpours across the UK this week again had many of us facing challenging commuting conditions with trains cancelled, roads flooded and poor visibility slowing down traffic.

And those lucky enough to be on holiday haven’t been able to escape tricky travel conditions either. The knock-on effects of the iconic Thomas Cook collapsing, British Airways and Ryanair strikes has been causing frustration, confusion and anxiety to staff and passengers struggling to contact travel operators in their quest to find the latest travel updates.

The disruption has also impacted contact centre agents, putting them under more pressure, not only having to deal an influx of enquiries but having to deal with stressed customers’ patience understandably low.

‘Winter is coming’

Unfortunately, unpredictable events like these are no longer rare occurrences. And with winter looming we have reluctantly come to expect burst water pipes, flooding, snow and even sink holes which will have thousands of people unable to commute, or without water and sewage facilities.

And it’s not just travel operators and utilities affected by the weather. Emergency services, charities, defence, and retail organisations are all under pressure as the tempestuous conditions continue to disrupt lives. So rather than wait for the inevitable disruption to occur again, shouldn’t businesses be planning ahead to ensure they are able to handle the rise in customer contact as quickly and efficiently as possible? Surely, whilst man and technology cannot control the forces of nature, businesses should be able to control whether customers have a good (or poor) experience at a time when they’re under the highest levels of public scrutiny. Regrettably, this appears to be easier said than done with some well-known brands making headlines, heavily criticised for their lack in keeping people informed.

Knowledge is key

The ability for a business to be able to supply customers with the latest up-to-date information on a situation is key to making the customers experience as positive as possible. Equally important is the ability to respond to their enquiries promptly and consistently across whichever channel they choose to contact them.

Businesses can no longer afford to rely on archaic siloed channels for customer support and experience. As consumers grow more and more comfortable with messaging, AI-powered customer support tools offer the contact centre some dramatic benefits that stretches way beyond customer support.

A travel or weather disruption needn’t be a disaster for your business. The ability to respond to customers enquiries consistently across whichever channel they are on and whatever time zone or time of day, can make all the difference between them sticking with you through rough waters or jumping ship for good.

Are you ready to take the next step towards AI that can deliver quick-win business results?

To learn more about how modern AI-powered technology can empower customers and agents to switch between digital channels, without losing context, why not contact us to arrange a demonstration? Or why not read these insightful resources on using AI-powered customer support tools to deliver enhanced customer experience.

The small step towards AI that can deliver quick-win business results
Sentience AI- Blending Human with Artificial Intelligence 
The explicit link between Digital Customer Service and BUSINESS GROWTH

IPRS Health’s commitment to offer comprehensive online support for clients and patients continues

IPRS Health’s commitment to offer comprehensive online support for clients and patients continues

Award-winning clinical company,  IPRS Health has been the first company of its kind to trial a range of digital customer support tools to their clients and patients to ensure the delivery of consistent high-quality clinical care.

Since trialing the range of Synthetix services, including knowledge integrated across live chat , FAQ self-service  and in their contact centre, IPRS Health have decided to continue mirroring their innovative approach to the rehabilitation of mental health and musculoskeletal conditions with this modern digital technology, giving their clients more options to contact IPRS Health to ensure any queries are dealt with as quickly as possible.

“The contract with Synthetix sees IPRS Health maintain this new and innovative way to enhance the clinical support we provide to our patients, clients and partners. The seamless introduction of Synthetix services to IPRS Health has improved access and ease to options of support,” said Alex Harban, Business Development Executive at IPRS Health.

Sam Widdowson, Business Development Executive at Synthetix said, *”We are extremely pleased to be part of IPRS Health’s ongoing commitment to enhance the rehabilitation process through modern technology in healthcare. We are proud to work with IPRS Health to facilitate the delivery of exceptional customer experience to their clients and patients.”*

About IPRS Health

IPRS Health is an award-winning, private independent clinical company, part of IPRS Group which was established in 1995. Regarded as one of the UK’s leading providers of rehabilitation services, IPRS Health specialises in the assessment and appropriate treatment of musculoskeletal & mental health conditions along with general wellbeing services. IPRS Health delivers physiotherapy and rehabilitation services to a range of corporate clients in the public and private sectors, working with employers, occupational health providers and insurers.

Synthetix joins forces with Gartner

Synthetix joins forces with Gartner

Having been awarded the status of a ‘Gartner Cool Vendor’ in the past, Synthetix felt it a natural next step to have a tighter partnership with Gartner.

As Gartner equips executives across the enterprise to make the right decisions and stay ahead of change, Synthetix feels that our innovative products and services have the potential to change and affect the way in which enterprises engage with their customers, in a significant way.

As a leading innovator in creating multi-channel online customer service software, Synthetix are also known as one of the pioneers for AI-driven Virtual Agent technology, creating Virtual Agents for companies like the BBC, Vauxhall, and Ford, comparable to Siri, Cortana and Google Now, before they became the norm. We believe our suite of conversational AI customer service tools can assist enterprises in increasing customer loyalty, drive revenue and boost customer lifetime value.

Synthetix are excited to converse with Gartner to share valuable insights, gained through our experience as leaders in developing AI-powered customer service software since 2001.

Peter McKean, CEO at Synthetix said, “Our software has helped many of the world’s most innovative enterprises deliver millions of great customer experiences, all powered by our unique, powerful approach to Conversational AI. We’re excited to take this next step with Gartner, who will assist with taking our client proposition to the next level.”

(Friday 13th) Bad luck or bad CX strategy

(Friday 13th) Bad luck or bad CX strategy?

Whether you believe Friday the 13th is unlucky, refuse to sleep in hotel room number 13 or on the 13th floor, our fascination with this prime number might affect the world more than you think.

Not to get too scientific but the fear is very real …

In fact, it is so real that merely one scientific name wasn’t enough. The fear of Friday the 13th is also called friggatriskaidekaphobia or paraskevidekatriaphobia.

Many high-rise buildings, hospitals and hotels skip the 13th floor and did you know you won’t find a row 13 on any Ryanair plane? It’s hard to determine how many people suffer from the irrational fear of the number 13, but the phenomenon has clear economic implications in more than just the property, travel, hospitality and retail industries.

Researchers have estimated that a total loss of £585m is made due to the impacts to sales and productivity on Friday 13th, as many customers refrain from activities such as flying and anxious employees stay home from work.

But triskaidekaphobia (the fear of the number 13) is more rational than we think. According to Saybrook University Psychology Professor Stanley Krippner “People are hard-wired to find meaning in various patterns, connections and perceptions. They need someone or something to blame when stuff goes wrong, and numbers are an easy target.”

Very superstitious, but does it mean the writing is on the wall?

Similarly, bad CSAT numbers or NPS scores might have managers blaming a spell of bad luck- however, most likely these such numbers are the results of not having a clear CX strategy.

The delivery of enhanced customer experience needs both people and technology. While people are the drivers of a good strategy, technology is the enabler. Without people, technology is practically useless, and without technology, scalability is impossible.

Happy agents = happy customers?

Contact centres are amongst the world’s toughest work environments, with agents having to offer support to frustrated customers, thrifty management, and high customer expectations. Customers not only expect almost immediate service through a channel of their choice, but quick and informed responses.

The University of Warwick found that happiness led to a 12% spike in employee productivity, while unhappy workers proved 10% less productive. With agent attrition a real issue for Contact Centre Managers, happy agents are the key to a productive customer service team, which is essential for providing a great customer experience and imperative to the bottom line.

The right, powerful AI-driven technology will support agents, enabling them to handle customer contact through any channel with confidence. User friendly and fast to use – guiding the operator to offer further information or have a set of helpful tools to aid them during the conversation – our Agent knowledge-base tool has been proven to reduce agent-training times and increase conversions, whilst improving the overall customer experience. With a central knowledge-base as the source of information, contact centre agents can see exactly what a customer sees, but with the advantage of having extra information only available to them.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Does your solution empower your customer service team to be autonomous? In other words, have you invested in cloud-based, tailored, dedicated customer service tools with an interface that enables them to do their job in the most efficient and productive way possible?
  • Do your agents know who they are talking to?
  • Can they respond fast and with context?
  • Uncross your fingers**

When agents feel they are equipped to do their job well, they can more easily resolve issues and better maximise customer satisfaction.

And for those businesses worried about their agents being amongst the many people scared to leave their house and commute to work on Friday the 13th or any other day, leaving them struggling to operate efficiently, utilising customer service tools such as Virtual Agents, web chat or web self-service, especially during unexpected circumstances, can allow businesses to maintain high levels of service during peak and off-peak times. Web self-service options and Virtual Agents don’t have phobias. And kudos to those using web chat via agents working from home – an often-overlooked advantage of chat over voice.

And you will be glad to know there is very little evidence to show that Friday the 13th is indeed an unlucky day. Many studies have shown that Friday the 13th has little or no effect on events like accidents, hospital visits, and natural disasters.
We’re going to put on an essential slasher classic and skip the salt throwing, wood knocking and rabbit foot rubbing this Friday the 13th, but if this is not your thing, at least we can assist you in delivering exceptional customer support, irrespective of the date or unexpected spikes in enquiries.

These e-books offer thrilling insight into why it’s best to not keep customers waiting when they could find the answers themselves:
Multichannel Online Customer Service For Dummies 
Virtual Agents for Dummies 

Back-to-School For Delivering The Best Customer Experience

“Back-to-School” For Delivering The Best Customer Experience

The long lazy days of summer are drawing to a close. Where has 2019 gone? September marks the start of Autumn and Christmas, believe it or not, is a mere 4 months away. While summer might be fading, it’s fair to say that ‘Back to School’ shopping will heat up retailer sales figures.

‘Back-to-school’ gets third place for the biggest peak in UK spending after Black Friday and Christmas, offering retailers an early opportunity to profit from the increased demand of school supplies. MIQ’s ‘Back-to-school’ report revealed the total UK spending on back-to-school shopping in 2018 to be £1.63 billion, which was an increase of 11% on 2017 with consumer spend reaching an average of £533 per household.

It also revealed shopping habits. It showed UK parents spreading their school shopping mostly over August in preparation of the majority of UK schools starting in the first week of September. Back-to-school shopping is not one-stop shopping either. The NPD Group found that shopping for school related products took an average of 16 trips. Although the bulk of purchases happen in-store, digital remains a vital part of the equation for retailers as consumers shop around for the best value deals.

Noisier than a school playground

The report captured more than 32 million opportunities for back-to-school retail in July alone with parents searching for deals, both prior to visiting a retailer and while they physically visited the store. With 2019 predicted to have record sales numbers, and new technologies changing customer expectations, retailers with an online presence need a strong digital strategy to differentiate them from the noise and to ensure they don’t lose a sale to a competitor at the point of purchase.
While retailers buckle up for the run-up to peak trading, customer experience transformation should not be put on hold.

Teacher’s pet

Customers are not bound by normal working hours when looking to make an online purchase or to find support. With Forbes stating that 92% of customers cease to do business with a brand because of bad customer experience, it’s crucial to take time to reflect and plan a multi-channel strategy to assist in creating omni-channel customer engagement to ensure, seamless experience across multiple channels.
And although there is a plethora of technologies available to help retailers to meet consumers’ digital expectations and enhance their customer experience, it is important to understand how this software can impact customer engagement, and also the bottom line. This back-to-school list of AI-powered tech and its benefits is a good start for retailers and brands looking to make and maintain a good CX impression to ensure repeat custom.

Explore the list of ultimate tech to improve CX and agent efficiency.

Is your CX in Ashes?

Is your CX going to ‘Ashes’?

Cricket is a game which has given us some of the most iconic images in sporting history, but it’s also very relatable to how businesses compete trying to woo crowds of customers to support **their** team.

After Australia’s cricket test victory against England at The Oval in 1882, an obituary in ‘The Sporting Times’, a British newspaper, stated that English cricket had died, and “the body will be cremated, and the ashes taken to Australia”. Who knew that the English media’s portrayal of these mythical ashes and the quest to regain the Ashes, would become one of the biggest test cricket events in both the Southern and Northern hemispheres?

A Gentleman’s game

Albeit a ‘gentleman’s game’, so much more goes into winning at cricket. Victory is hard work. Top teams know that it’s not just about talent. Cutting-edge sport science, injury management, military-grade physical training and technology that calculates match workloads and detailed anthropometric reporting to monitor a player’s physical capacity all contribute to the winning strategy.

The same can be said for brands that foster a disciplined approach when creating a customer-centric strategy. Focusing on the end game, they understand that consistently engaging customers over multiple, fit-for-purpose channels, creates a lasting competitive advantage.


To the unversed, the leg before wicket dismissal is to cricket what the offside law is to football, however this rule is not as complicated as some people may think. Governed by a specific set of principles, once mastered, it is quite simple to understand.

So how does the LBW law relate to CX?

The broad use of the term “Customer Experience” has led it to become so muddled that many brands are getting stuck. While customer experience is extremely important and the way a customer thinks and feels about a brand’s products or services, customer service transformation, is about delivering the very best levels of service experience whenever a customer wants to contact a company or self-serve answers.
Delivering great customer service is a key principle of creating exceptional CX, especially when the service that customers receive was ranked one of the top 3 drivers for brand loyalty in a recent study by Microsoft.

To deliver exceptional customer experience, exceptional customer service should be delivered every single time a customer needs assistance, in a channel of their choice, consistently and in a timely fashion. And this is where many brands still get bowled out and are stumped when their customers go elsewhere.
Out for a duck

The hard-hitting common customer service mistakes are still made through badly designed website support, think archaic static FAQs, long on-hold call centre queues, and inconsistent information across channels, which not only causes confusion for customers, but frustration to contact centre agents.

And while there is a plethora of technology available that can contribute to enhanced customer service like AI, Chatbots and Virtual Assistants, it is extremely important to not just invest in technology for the sake of it.

It has become increasingly apparent that many channels are being bolted on with little or no consideration for how they are integrated with the rest of the organisation. For the customer, the existence of siloed channels can be apparent in a variety of ways, such as inconsistency in actions from channel-to-channel; different tone of voice; duplication of messaging; or having to start the conversation anew every time it shifts to a fresh channel.

To put it simply: Customers view their experiences with a company, not with discrete channels. They want an omni-present world where they can transition seamlessly from channel to channel, picking up where they left off in their purchasing or enquiry process, with consistent support throughout their journey.

And this is where we can help brands to create simple, quick and effortless service experiences. Since 2001, Synthetix have developed the ultimate tech stack to assist businesses in improving CSAT and agent efficiency. Driven by integrated conversational AI, our suite of self-service and agent-assisted tools add a new layer of intelligence and agility to contact centres.

Our Self-Service Cloud web portal provides answers to your customers’ questions 24/7, using an AI-powered, super-accurate knowledge-base to reduce inbound emails and calls, optimising agent productivity and providing a cost-effective way to automate customer service, sales and support.

And Synthetix Contact Cloud, our complete agent desktop for multi-channel, agent-assisted customer service and support, empowers agents to deliver excellent customer experiences. Powerful built-in AI proactively suggests customer responses, resulting in reduced training times, increased customer satisfaction and measurable agent efficiency gains.

Ashes to victory

A tiny wooden urn, reputed to contain the ashes of a wooden bail, humorously described as “the ashes of English cricket” is supposed to be kept by the team having won the most recent Test series, however today, irrespective of which side holds the tournament, it remains in the MCC Museum at Lord’s.
Cricket is a game of uncertainties when it comes to the Ashes, however, CX and customer support doesn’t have to be.

To explore how AI-driven technology can introduce new value and break fresh ground, download/read these digital assets:

The small step towards AI that can deliver quick-win business results

Sentience AI- Blending Human with Artificial Intelligence

The explicit link between Digital Customer Service and BUSINESS GROWTH

Customer Experience, the AI truth is out there (and it’s closer than you think)

Customer Experience, the AI truth is out there (and it’s closer than you think)

It’s been 50 years since mankind stepped onto the moon and changed history forever. Although many of us will not have been around to experience the momentous Apollo 11 mission unfolding in 1969, even today, this event sparks many emotions, whether that of disbelief or a united sense of achievement. Nearly 600 million people watched and waited with bated breath, hoping for success and the safe return of the Apollo 11 crew.

Although Neil Armstrong was the first man to step on the moon, this epic accomplishment would not be possible without some unsung heroes, a team of more than 400,000 men and women here on Earth, each working relentlessly towards achieving this goal, the perfect coalition of human intelligence and technology.
Just like the Moon landing, the rapid adoption of mobile technology and the growth of the internet has created a new world of possibilities seeing customer expectations rocketing to new heights, rapidly diverse to what expectations would have been over 50 years ago.

Space exploration might appeal to those who are fascinated by adventure, hope and the possibilities it holds, however the same can’t be said about AI with many businesses still questioning the implications of implementing AI-driven technologies.

However, like the space race, businesses must prepare for the ever changing CX landscape or face their customers gravitating towards the competition.

Digital support channels are the unsung heroes of CX. Modest AI-powered solutions are making it possible for companies to move predictable, routine queries to automated systems and leverage cutting-edge analytics to make contextual interactions easier, better and more efficient, freeing up human agents to work on high-level, complex interactions on a variety of channels and in several ways – all while taking advantage of the context and analysis AI provides.

Unlike the unknown universe, AI-driven customer support technologies empower businesses, deliver cost savings, increase efficiency and improve customer experience. In fact, AI-powered automation technologies, can help streamline customer service while delivering a more relevant experience, effectively eliminate silos and help deliver a customer-centric business strategy.

One small step towards AI, one giant leap for Customer Experience

Although human language is extremely complex, full of contextual rules and nuances that we take for granted, the advances in Natural Language Processing today means the complex processing of the NLP system’s back-end is effortlessly encased within a user-friendly interface without requiring users to have technical expertise.

NLU is a supreme AI engine particularly when it’s integrated into services such as conversational Virtual Agents (chatbots), dynamic FAQ self-service, Intelligent Web Form and agent assistance in the contact centre through channels such as Live Chat.

NLU is fast, accurate and can have user effort feel seamless, however for businesses, this AI science can be key to deflecting calls, reducing costs and improving customer satisfaction. Consequently, market movements are already showing strong signs of businesses within a variety of sectors moving towards this type of AI technology to remain applicable and competitive.

How NLU makes sense in the contact centre

NLU can offer a lot more to the modern-day contact centre. As a toe in water into the world of artificial intelligence, when integrated with unstructured data – such as handwritten documents or notes by contact centre agents, text messages, photos and videos – AI-driven NLU can add considerable gains in workplace efficiency.

A contact centre knowledge-base integrated with AI-driven NLU can automate the processes of searching, modifying, and rating knowledge-articles, which not only saves time not having to manually find information, but significantly increase contact centre productivity.

It enables new or temporary agents to serve customers almost instantly with reduced training times and access to instant, correct and consistent information over the phone, during a live chat or through email. NLU algorithms can often contextualise information to find mentions of subjects even when the relevant keywords are absent.

In 2015, Gartner predicted that by 2018, 30 percent of our interactions with technology would be through ‘conversations’ with smart machines. The truth is they were not far off. Advances in text analysis and natural language processing has grown the list of queries that can be answered, and tasks resolved without human interaction. And since 2016, the popularity of using NLU in the form of chatbots to drive sales, qualify leads or to provide customer support, have had analysts forecast that conversational commerce will automate up to 85% of customer interactions.

Back to Earth

Although we’ve travelled and landed on the moon, it’s clear that we are still fascinated by it. It has come to light that Elon Musk approves of a plan spearheaded by Newt Gingrich to offer a $2 billion reward to the first private company to land and settle on the moon. And Newt Gingrich’s plan specifically mentions not only Elon Musk’s company SpaceX, but Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin as well.

But you don’t have to be an astronaut to broaden your skylines, and to hope and wonder. Although there appears to be an AI-uncertainty among business leaders small steps need to be taken towards implementing AI to not get left behind.

NLU’s adaptability and usability make it an ideal first AI step for businesses of all kinds, generating quick win efficiencies in the short run, and more importantly preparing them for more complex AI solutions in the future.

Online customer service flying high

Hello summer, finally!

With schools out for the summer, many of us will be looking forward to a hopefully sunny and relaxing break, whilst the travel and leisure industry prepare for one of the busiest times of the year.

Cruise operators, travel companies, airlines, hotels, booking agents, theme parks: things have changed. The digital world can now offer virtual experiences of what customers can expect. Changes to the way people now travel pose customer service challenges for those in the travel and hospitality sector such as balancing passenger comfort with operational efficiency while delivering a unique experience reflecting the destination.

So how should this sector evolve their customer service offering to deliver true customer-centric experiences? A critical factor will be the use of online technology as it is worth considering how travellers are using technology today. In today’s blog we will focus mainly on air travel, as so many Brits set off on their summer holidays abroad.

Cloud-based self-service technology

Airports today are hubs of technological activity, with travellers using smart devices to stay connected to their flights and self-serve during the check-in process. In years to come we believe the momentum of cloud-based technology will grow and play a critical part in the airport of the future, especially for airlines wanting to offer optimal customer experience to justify price premiums and deliver customer service to boost brand reputation.

Self-service platforms will revolutionise air travel

As a result of mobile technologies, passenger processing has evolved significantly with mobile boarding passes and supplementary offerings through wireless broadband. In addition to helping airlines differentiate their services, online- and bag check-ins dramatically impact on delivering a positive customer experience with travellers not having to queue.

In partnership with airlines, airports have made tremendous improvements to increase communication around flight status and service disruption.

Travellers today expect to know about a flight change even before they arrive at the airport, delivered through text, automated messages, or email. They expect a seamless and efficient service so they can get to their destination faster.

When it comes to technology, most airlines are adapting by incorporating cloud-based web self-service technologies in order to improve operational efficiencies in today’s challenging marketplace. But there are still airlines out there, fearful of changing their online customer service delivery, happy with a dynamic FAQ section or phone number to contact. There appears to be a misconception that customers don’t mind being kept on hold, waiting to speak to a contact centre operator when they require assistance, rather than being able to find answers to their queries themselves via an organisation’s website. However, in a recent survey by Amdocs, a staggering 91% of survey respondents said they would use an online knowledge-base if it were available.

And it’s not just about providing a one online channel where customers can self-serve answers to their queries customer experience needs to be effortless and consistent across multiple channels. Integrated AI-driven channels such as Virtual Agents , Live Chat , Internal Knowledge-base and Intelligent Web Form are all tools that can assist in re-focussing efforts to improve the customer experience.

Why not visit our resource section for more insight on digital customer engagement?