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The Millennialization of Customer Service


Presented By: Nuance

 by Lynn Ridenour, Senior Director, Enterprise Marketing    

Millennials, those born between 1981 and 1996, are the biggest generation in history – and every customer service organization is asking how it should treat these 80 million, digitally native customers differently. However, new research commissioned by Nuance Communications shows that this might be the wrong question. 

The reality is that customers, across ALL generations, are calling for a seamless, consistent experience. Millennials are forcing a change in how companies approach customer service – not because their demands differ from other generations, but because they’ve acted as a catalyst for a common standard of excellence. 

This is good news for consumer-facing businesses. It clarifies the importance of customer service and validates investments in delivering the experiences that consumers have come to expect. This “millennialization” of customer service is bringing together the convenience and speed demanded by tech-savvy consumers and the human-like experience required to build strong customer relationships. 

Companies have tremendous opportunity to leverage intelligent automation that provides a digital, human-like experience across all channels that lets them self-serve to meet their needs. However, companies have to make the experience as natural as a conversation with another person. As companies look to reinvent customer service, here are five tips that the research uncovered: 

Offer consistent channel experiences: On average, consumers use at least two communication channels to resolve their issue. This makes consistency key. When asked how often customers receive conflicting information from different channels offered by the same company, more than half (52 percent) say this happens frequently.

Keep simple issues simple: For simple issues, the web is the obvious first place that customers turn. But, the research shows a need for a more dynamic online customer service experience. When asked when they most often contact customer service, the majority of customers (50 percent) say they reach out when they can’t find information online.

Leverage the right channels: The research shows preferred communication channels vary by individual and consumers use multiple channels to answer questions and resolve issues. Make sure your organization is leveraging the right mix of channels to satisfy preferences and meet consumer needs when it comes to solving both simple and complex issues.

Be proactive, but not annoying: As consumers rely more and more on technology to keep track of everything from birthdays to when to get an oil change, proactive reminders are becoming the mandate for keeping consumers on track. But, remember that proactive engagement without context is just spam.

Complete the conversation: Forty-six percent of consumers report they have had an issue because they didn’t receive confirmation of a self-service transaction they completed. Avoid triggering inbound calls to the call center with a confirmation via email or text message.