If there’s one thing I learned from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s that you need to work as a team, a unified front, if you want to overcome your enemies. The movie Captain America: Civil War tells this story better than any other.
While your core business processes probably don’t involve fighting a Colonel from an elite commando unit seeking to avenge his family's deaths, the key message is the same: you need to operate as a team, a unified front, to defeat growing customer expectations.
Customer Experience Must Force Existing Technology to Meet Their Needs
Tension between the IT department and the Customer Service or Customer Experience (CX) department is not exactly uncommon. One of the biggest challenges faced in the CX world is the company’s digital infrastructure. Your internal help desk works in one system of record and sales most likely works in another. The CX team will have to try and force their processes into one of these point solutions. This causes misunderstandings and tension internally, especially if there is a discrepancy in any of these systems and each team thinks their information is truth.
IT Has to Support too Many Competing Programs
This is where IT comes in. All of these business functions, while related, have different needs. There is definite overlap in the information they track, but these teams have different vernacular, processes, and ideas of what’s most important to their roles – and IT has to support all of it. This is a big ask, especially if the teams and technology in question aren’t operating as a unified team.
When there is turmoil internally, that gets reflected to the customer causing frustration on their end and requiring more time and resources from your CX team. Customers don’t want to feel tension when reaching out to your organization, they want to feel empowered and trust that their issues will be addressed promptly and professionally.
B2C Expectations in a B2B World
This is more crucial than ever, as we’re in a time when B2B customer expectations are being heavily influenced by the B2C world. They expect all representatives at your organization to know about any previous engagements. They don’t want to retell their story over and over.
Think about the last time you went to the doctor. You checked in with the receptionist and filled out a few forms, one of which asks you to check a few boxes outlining your symptoms and medical history. Once you got back to your room, the nurse asked you what brought you in and you told her about the symptoms you already checked the boxes for. Then, when the doctor came in, she asked you what your symptoms are, and you had to repeat the same story for the third time in 30 minutes.
This process is frustrating for the patient. If your customers have this same experience when they communicate with you, it’s just as frustrating for them.
The Old Way of Managing the Database Debacle
Some companies will have a person manually enter the same customer information into multiple systems, so all teams will have access to the same details. While this can work in the short term, it’s not a scalable or sustainable practice. This approach is subject to human error—they could mistype information, enter it into the wrong location, miss critical details, or even mistranslate data if they don’t copy/paste.
Plus, bandwidth will eventually be an issue. As your company grows and acquires more customers, there will be more people contacting you. With more people contacting you, your employee will need to enter more information into more systems. This will either lead that employee to look for shortcuts (and risk an increase in mistakes) or you’ll need to hire additional resources to complete the task.
Harness Technology to Create a Single, Cohesive Experience
Alternatively, you can implement a holistic platform for your organization that lets IT support fewer point solutions and still gives CX professionals the functionality they need to be effective. For example, ServiceNow’s CSM solution was designed specifically for the CX team to be able to easily track customer issue resolution across the enterprise. And IT teams prefer to support it, especially if they already use the ServiceNow ITSM platform.
Providing a centralized hub to your organization will increase transparency internally. When your employees have better insight into your customers and their past experiences, they can provide an improved customer experience and head off the “When will my ticket be resolved?” or “What’s the hold up?” questions. It also eliminates the need for busy work, retyping information, and human error between databases since everyone is accessing information from the same source.
You Don't Need Superpowers to Rise to the Challenge
While you may not be saving the world from the destructive powers of sentient alien beings, getting your IT and CX departments on the same team can make a world of difference for your clients. Don’t let a siloed approach to data and outdated technology drive a wedge between your teams. Create a unified front and differentiate yourself from your competition by delighting your customers at every turn.
Start Expecting More From Your Service Desk.
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