Guest Post: The Moral Obligation of Voice

I read this post in West Interactive’s Blog about What Can we Learn From Voice and I thought it would be very interesting for you to read it.  I tweeted it, but also asked Gregg McMullen if I could repost is as a guest post.  Thankfully, he said yes… enjoy.

Before there was a contact center or a notion of customer service in the cloud, there were inbound and outbound telemarketing centers. Over 30 years ago, these telemarketing centers were the leading technology in customer interactions, using “technology” such as rolodexes and carbon copy forms.

Since then, companies have evolved their voice support channels, developing high-tech, efficient solutions for solving customer inquiries and issues. Focusing their strategies on voice support, over 70 percent of companies use a single toll-free number as their primary customer care point, and voice still holds the highest percent of resolution.

This mature customer support model has created a blend of technology and human capital to balance the highest quality and cost efficiencies for customer care. The voice channel relies on a stack of integrated components, such as IVR routing and automation, speech technology and intelligent call routing, as well as robust desktop tools and highly trained customer care representatives.

But, as technology advances and customer expectations change, we are seeing a strong emergence of customer interactions in the social media and mobile spaces. One could argue that, as they relate to customer care, these technologies are very much in their infancy. However, they are likely here to stay.

As companies begin to build customer contact strategies around these new and evolving channels, one has to ask, “Does voice have a moral obligation to share its experiences with and even extend its 30 years of learning and technology to the social media and mobile worlds?”

New channels like social media and mobile could learn a lot from voice. The traditional contact center suite of technology and services has everything it needs to reach out and pull these customer interactions into a mature, proven, successful model.

One thought on “Guest Post: The Moral Obligation of Voice”

  1. I clicked on the post anticipating reading about the ethical challenges that accompany voice-to-voice engagement for brands, but was a tiny bit disappointed to find the moral obligation in question was whether folks with expertise in voice channels should share experience with those in social channels.

    Would love to hear discussion about the “other” moral obligations of voice:
    The obligation to train, empower, and enable the people serving as the point of contact and face of the brand to truly help and support their customers
    The obligation to learn from social channels
    The obligation to explore the ethical and cultural impacts for offshoring or onshoring voice services – and what those may mean for the customer, the shareholder, and the larger communities affected

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