The global economic crisis of COVID-19 has forced individuals and companies to rapidly change their way of life and work. Many elements of business and life are being tested; in some cases, the next normal may seem very different as new forms of work move into the future.
Organizations are doing everything possible to manage this pandemic: from ensuring an effective response to the crisis, resolving supply chain disruptions, to safeguarding the well-being of their employees by adjusting daily work practices.
The customer experience takes on a new meaning in this context. Leaders often get closer to the CX by creating seamless, tailor-made, customer-friendly trips. However, the needs of users at this time have dramatically shifted towards more essential concerns.
Leading organizations are reorienting their customer experience efforts to meet their users’ primary needs, such as safety and everyday comfort. These actions will demonstrate more than words in a world where companies are betting on the message that “we are here for you”.
By consciously providing empathy and care during this crisis, organizations can build a foundation of goodwill and lasting emotional connections with the communities they serve.
How To Connect More Agilely With Customers In Times Of Crisis
Agility in managing the customer experience is essential. Both the products and the services provided by companies are increasingly marketed. Experience is what makes customers loyal. Therefore, all the needs of the users that are technically possible in all available channels and at all times must be met; Furthermore, with minimal friction.
Recognizing that a good customer experience requires a good employee experience, there are a number of options that companies must consider and implement to continue to be available to their users:
1) Enable Easy And Simple, But Secure Remote Access For All Employees Who Can Telework
Many of the jobs can be done, at least in part, remotely. Employees who can contribute to the customer experience should be able to do so. Business leaders need to help the team bring out the best in themselves. People want to be part of a purpose in normal times and even more in times of crisis.
2) Improve The Effectiveness And Efficiency Of The Remote Workforce Infrastructure
For example, providing teleworking solutions to employees that make it easier for them to do their work from home, being able to access all the company and customer information quickly and safely, through technologies linked to Artificial Intelligence (AI) and digitization that also allow teamwork.
3) Build Autonomous Teams
It is necessary to review company policies to allow faster and more transparent decision-making. People are the greatest assets for an organization. Also, it’s important to take advantage of responsibilities and incentives to make sure employees feel valued.
A good strategy, a flat hierarchy, a tolerant corporate culture, and motivated individuals are the four legs on which an agile organization rests.
Agility is not simply reacting quickly to changing conditions, but also knowing how to maintain that state. A crisis, be it a small production setback or a global pandemic like the one we are currently experiencing, is a perfect litmus test to show the resistance of an agile organization.
4) Maintain A High Level Of Service For Customers
This can be done in two ways: investing in people and investing in technology. Both aspects are important, but what if you can’t invest in people or get enough people? Customers want to interact with humans or with a human-like interface. The only remaining answer is technology.
Therefore, investing in self-service automation technologies is key. The most frequently asked support questions for agents are now ready. With this, it is possible to implement solutions that offer users a human-like interface and that take the burden off the service team to increase their efficiency, effectiveness and confidence.
5) Level The Structure Of The Company
Simplicity is a basic tenet of an agile corporate culture. Therefore, a flat and practical organization structure must be maintained. Clarity about the company’s culture, its processes, and everyone’s role in it will increase the conviction of your employees and motivate them. During a crisis, the whole team has to contribute. Egos and inhibitions have no place.
6) Forge Lasting Connections With Customers
In times of crisis, leading companies are moving from marketing to helping and fulfilling customer wishes to meet their needs. Socially conscious organizations in all sectors and geographies are finding ways to get involved and support their users and communities.
The current COVID-19 outbreak is a global crisis and an opportunity for leaders to support their clients. Leading comprehensively during these difficult times has the potential to create real connections that will survive the social and economic impacts of the pandemic. And large companies should consider it a duty to serve the communities in which they do business.
In conclusion, it is necessary to create brand value and show that the company cares about its customers, as well as considering income as a consequence of positive actions.
AI, machine learning, or other technologies can enable these experiences, but they are only strategy enablers. And strategies are what matter, since they follow the mission and the business culture.
Therefore, organizations must create their vision and mission, elaborate the culture, develop a strategy based on this culture, and make sure that their strategy includes giving back to their community.