Customer support in 2022

Customer Support is an ever-evolving space that is always worth giving priority to.

While doing your best to provide an ideal service as a software company, the customer support available to your users is something that can always stimulate growth and trust.

Now more than ever, customer support's role becomes significantly more apparent. The COVID-19 pandemic is an event that caused significant disruptions across a wide range of industries, exposing many areas that had been built on weak foundations.

There is hardly any industry that didn't see the majority of their businesses struggle during the advent of COVID-19.

Incidentally, customer support was also majorly hit by this disruption, and many companies could not keep up with the demand from customers. Nowadays, even though the pandemic's peak has passed, we are still seeing the reverberating effects of a poor reaction to customer demands.

In 2022, companies must meet customer expectations, not just because it drives success but also due to its inevitable role in an organization's survival. That's where digitization comes in. Although the concept was already a significant point in many software companies, many organizations still failed to realize the gravity of its importance.

Recently, it was reported that 75% of customers perceive modern engagements enhanced their customer experience. Digitization addresses many pain points and treads some dangerous lines for the ideal customer experience.

This article will look at some industry-reviewed trends in 2022 that are important for customer support. By providing a deep dive into these essential areas of a multifaceted concept, we hope to provide some essential takeaways to your company's customer support across the board.

A wider customer expectation gap

The customer expectation gap is the difference between what your organization can provide and the expectations that customers demand from your service.

Today, that gap is more alarming than ever, with 67% of customers admitting to the rise in their standards for customer expectations. It is no secret that people are more demanding in this digital age.

A world that encourages the rapid adoption of new companies and trends means that customers feel like they have more options than ever. Therefore, your value should be something undeniable in the eyes of users.

You might not have the automatic power to be perfect for every customer. Still, there is a way to address the effects of this trend in your organization, and that's looking at solutions.

Provide self-service to your customers

Investing in automation can work out exceptionally well for your organization, but it's also vital that you don't get too caught up in it. Customers should still have an avenue to reach out to a human customer support agent easily.

The important thing is learning how to strike a proper balance between customer support through automation and the personal experience of speaking with an agent.

Some companies put all their eggs into the basket of automation, making it difficult for their organization to have an essential human touch to the experience.

If you've ever dealt with modern software companies extensively, you've probably run into those websites with endless FAQs and Chatbots. Sure, they have an encyclopedia detailing the pain points that you may run into, but creating an endless loop for a simple problem can quickly become an example of frustrating CX.

Companies will be faced with challenges concerning flexibility

Today, companies are faced with the difficult decision to let go of employees due to the challenges faced dealing with the effects of the pandemic. However, a primary concern lies in these companies targeting customer support employees in these layoffs.

This sets a bad precedent because support is not a cost-saving tool for budget cuts. Looking to survive in 2022 will require critical thinking skills to address these problems without using customer support as a scapegoat for challenges.

If you intend to be an organization that recognizes the importance of customer support, you should learn how to do more with less. Thankfully, some options can work well if you look closely.

Set up periodical assessments of customer support efficiency

There is no better way to figure out the validity of your CX without consistently checking the data and establishing a dialogue with your team. Other than the regular general meetings that all employees are mandated to attend, your company should also develop a vital avenue of communication between management and support agents. 

Because they are employed to be in charge of most of the customer-facing aspects of your company, the input your agents are capable of providing should not be undermined in the pursuit of profit.

If your company is struggling with efficiency, it is crucial to develop a process that works for most of your employees. A good customer experience is something that employees can primarily inform, so you should balance human support with automation.

Yes, avenues for chatbots and other automated systems should be present. Still, your human agents will better understand the moments in a good CX when human interaction will be valued more.

The extensive number of tools utilized by organizations will begin to overwhelm their employees

Today, customer support teams are met with an array of tools that feel jumbled up together for their novel features rather than a sense of coherence. Rather than prioritizing the newest buzzwords or next-generation features, your organization should emphasize tools that are integrated towards the strengths of your team and existing resources.

As a software company, your primary form of revenue lies in digital experiences. Therefore, the foundation upon which everything is built needs to be as solid as possible.

Choose the tools that provide the best integrations to your company

Knowing the skills that your team already specializes in will help shape your tech stacks. The chatbots, report functionalities, and communication tools are all worth looking into for efficiency with the rest of your company's resources.

Additionally, it would help if you did not get too hooked up in tools. At the end of the day, you're a company with employees, so automation and over-reliance on technology can backfire to become a limiting factor in your growth and flexibility with customer support solutions.

Employee burnout will be experienced on a larger scale

The pandemic has taken a toll on many workers across many industries, but the employees who work in customer support will be feeling the effects of work drain over the coming years.

With more emphasis being placed on the role of support agents, it is now a glaring issue that demand has gone up, but there is nothing for support agents to fall back on. In recent years, 74% of employees indicated their experience with being likely to burnout.

Make the environment exciting for employees

In the eyes of many organizations, customer support seems like a dreadful activity where an agent deals with an endless stream of angry users complaining about a bad customer experience.

However, this does not always have to be the case, and employees can avoid dealing with different people stating the same issues by investing in automation and self-service options.

Once automation helps get a lot of the fluff out of the way, employees will be open to a more mentally stimulating challenge than a frustrating one. Additionally, the importance of fair work hours cannot be understated, especially in a customer-facing job that affects CX.

Companies will lose track of the personal factor in customer experience

While it's nice to see your user base increasing and the numbers grow into thousands, hundreds of thousands, and so forth, it becomes easier to lose touch with the individuality that exists within those numbers.

70% of customers report that customer support is an important factor that affects their purchasing decisions. This is an obvious fact that affects customer experience, so your company should always remember these strong associations customers make with good CX.

Humanize your customers with empathetic responses

Developing your organization to create a habit of supporting empathetic behaviors both internally and in support interactions will be integral to having a natural response across your CX.

It is a habit that requires prioritization to be developed. Additionally, your company should be engaging in ethical solutions to problems so that employees will be more inclined to believe in the value they provide to customers.

Sustaining that empathetic muscle requires developing processes, leadership training, and a genuine belief in the goals to realize a better customer experience. Once all is said and done, we are all speaking to humans on either communication.

Keeping up with customer support trends in SaaS industries

It's hard to keep up with the latest customer service trends. The customer service landscape is constantly changing, and it can be hard to keep up with the latest trends and technologies.

In order to provide the best customer support possible in 2022, companies will need to offer self-service options and keep up with ever-changing customer expectations.

Additionally, organizations will need to carefully select their tools and make sure they are integrating well with other systems.



Author

Emma Bakh

CX Manager

Contributor