Episode 3: Omni-channel Through Email & Chat

September 24, 2020

| TTx Talks

TTx Talk is a video podcast, with your host, Nate Petry – TTx VP of Sales.  Nate has conversational interviews with experts in their respective fields.  On today’s episode, Nate is joined by Aaron Clark – TTx Technical Account Manager.  Nate and Aaron head back to omni-channel to take a deeper look at two specific channels; email and chat.  Email is one of the most used forms of communication in business today, making it important to a company’s success.  While chat is not as common it is still just as import.  Listen to today’s episode to get an in depth look into omni-channel through email and chat.

How can omni-channel help alleviate struggles with email?

With omni-channel, we are able to treat email like a phone call and apply a set of rules; which can be as simple as defining a group of agents to reply to those emails.  This gives you options; rules that can be applied, categories for emails, skill sets of your agents to decide who can best handle a certain email.  With omni-channel there is now clarity, this opens up the the availability to reporting analytics.

Where does chat fit in the business model?

Chat, in an omni-channel environment, gives agents and customers another form of communication with a quicker response time.

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TTx Talk Episode 3 Transcript

Nate: Good afternoon and welcome to TTx Talk episode three, I’m Nate Petry, VP of sales.  This is Aaron Clark, Technical Account Manager. Thanks for joining me again.

Aaron: Yeah thanks for having me again Nate.

Nate: So in the past, we’ve talked about omni-channel and how that relates to our business. And we’re much more than just a voice company, um, and in call centers, things have changed, right? And it’s all channels that are important to a customer engagement. So today we’re going to focus on two of those channels. Um, and the first one is email. So what’s the struggle that companies are having with email and how can omni-channel help alleviate that?

Aaron: Call centers around organizations that receive inbound, communicate through email to something like that, uh, you know, a group mailbox or a shared inbox. And so that’s one of the biggest hurdles that companies are having a difficult time with getting over is how do we take, how do we take that inbound email and organize it in a way that can be automated, uh, that gives visibility to, uh, the users or agents that need access to that mailbox.  So a lot of organizations are literally just creating a shared inbox, uh, all these emails coming inbound to that shared inbox, and then you’ve got agents or users that all have visibility of that same inbox.  And so you run into issues like how, uh, how do I know what email has been viewed? Um, how do I know who that’s assigned to, uh, some organizations go through a lot of pretty complex processes or workflows to organize that with, uh, creating different sub, uh, sub folders within that environment, one per agent or one per status of where that email sits.  And then on the other side is once, once we’ve actually responded to that email, how do we know that has been responded to, how do we know that, um, uh, the quality of that response? There’s no, there’s no visibility that supervisors have, when we think about bringing out into an Omni channel environment, uh, what we can do is treat it very similar to how we would treat an inbound phone call, where we can, we can take and apply a set of rules.  So it could be as something as simple as defining a group of agents that are responsible to handle those emails, we can define how in that group of agents we want to route, which agent did we prefer to, uh, to answer that email. And so now we can apply some rules and, and, um, categories and even skills to be able to best handle those emails and let the system essentially route, uh, we can wait that, you know, so if, if there were a lot of calls in queue, maybe we want to hold back on the email, uh, in slower periods, we have that email start funneling into that group. And on the backside of that with, with visibility, with reporting, with analytics, the same type of marketing analytics…

Nate:  It’s all about the analytics.

Aaron: It’s all about the analytics and it’s no different. If you have the right tool set, it’s no different reporting on email than it would be reporting on, on inbound phone calls and in an omni, in a true omni-channel environment, not only can we do reporting on that, but we’ve got quality control, or we could actually go in and see those interactions that agents are having through email and see those responses. If I, you know, maybe if you get an email and you respond to it, and then, you know, somebody that same customer sends another email later on in the day, I might go back to, I could have it go back to you, but maybe it comes to me and I would be able to see your response to that customer.  So there’s a lot more visibility when it comes to that.

Nate: And we see it all the time. People are struggling with email, so if you’re struggling with email and how that can be an effective channel, your customer engagements, we’d love to have that conversation with you.  The other channel that’s really important, um, uh, along with voice and email and other social media is chat. So people are struggling with that in a different way than email, their email is, is, is in the business model today. Where, where does chat? What is, what are people doing with chat? And what’s the place for chat?

Aaron: Yeah, that’s, that’s a more difficult one. Um, you know, some companies don’t have it at all. And so trying to figure out what, what can we do with chat? Should we be considering chat? Um, if, if, if you don’t have chat right now embedded on your website, I would highly encourage you to consider doing that because let’s face it in today’s society it’s, it’s a digital communication age. You know, people are still going to make phone calls, but considering things…

Nate: Quicker response.

Aaron: Quicker response. If I have a quick question, I, you know, being able to just jump on a website and do a, do a chat is highly beneficial.  Uh, and we’re not saying, you know, that you have to move everything to chat. Uh, there are certain, there are certain requests and issues that might come in that are, are better suited for the phone. But what we can start looking at is those, those simple, quick mundane tasks that really clog up the queue, the phone queue, and start moving those to chat and chat you know, if you train up agents the right way and they become skilled enough, they can handle multiple chats at the same time. They can, they could even begin on a chat while they’re talking to somebody on the phone. And what that does is it starts clearing that phone queue, and it allows those more complex, uh, lengthier phone conversations to be had.  The organizations that have chat that are already doing that, a lot of them are not doing it in an omni-channel environment, and they have their own third party chat app, which is fine.  Um, but it, it creates this, um, difficult to manage experience for end users for the agents.  Where they’re going into their phone application to handle calls, then they’re jumping over into another application that handled chat, uh, to another application that handles email and so when we bring chat and email from all into that into one routing engine, one omni-channel environment, it’s just one single pain of glass that agents can log into and handle all of those calls. So if you have chat, right, if you already are engaged, if your website is already engaged with website chat, we’re not saying you’ve got to get rid of whatever chat application you’re using. You can still use that in an omni-channel environment. You just connect it to that platform, allow it to do the routing, uh, assuming that it’s got a proper API’s and capabilities to do that for bringing it all into one engine and have a much more simplified experience, both from the customer standpoint, but also internally with agents.

Nate: Yeah. And like everything, not all chats are needed to be built the same or, or have the same functionality, but we have the experience here at TTx to talk through that and our range of customers that are doing it differently, it might be a co-browsing feature. It might be AI that’s needed into it. It might be simple agent assist, but the whole idea is that chat is a very good form for a lot of companies, uh, as an omni-channel customer engagement tool. And we’d love to have those conversations with folks. Yeah. Great. Well, thanks for joining us today. Thanks everyone for watching. and we’ll see you next time.

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