Enabling staff to engage through a Community platform

How do you value your Helpdesk or contact centre staff’s time? Asking service representatives to handle the simplest to the most complex issues is costly because there are many more simple interactions than complex ones. Finding an alternative to agent-assisted interactions on every occasion is worth the time and effort.

Organisations want to have their staff resolving high value-adding issues all the time, yet the reality is that across all interactions there are a lot of low value-adders. The simpler issues happen again and again and can absorb a lot of time to resolve.

What can you do about this to help your staff work on the most skilful and fulfilling work? Ideally you would find a way that your customers or staff could share their questions, knowledge and outcomes with others to bring about a searchable approach and possibly self-resolution. This requires more than a knowledge base or FAQs sheet can provide. There also needs to be a solution that is more productive than simply routing enquiries by skillset, team or service agent to create a first level service, second level service, and complex support team etc.

Ideally it would be best if your suppliers could lead your organisation on this issue. Business partners that you are already working with could add value in this way if they have more efficient, more advanced systems and tools than your business and so you could leverage them and capture value for your organisation.

“Finding an organisation who can lead in this way sounds obvious, but it requires willingness to innovate.”

Gaining access to industry-wide knowledge and skills is a better way of supporting your team, such as a Community provides. Relying on a Helpdesk as sole support for your staff or customers could become an outdated approach, because it is one dimensional in nature. Logging issues for one person to view and respond to fails to leverage the skills of all staff or users on the team or in the Community, and so is the highest cost approach. Many organisations with a global focus have understood this already, and are investing in Community platforms that all users can search, add to, and also answer, with moderation from a highly skilled expert team. It is a great way of engaging members of a Community to raise and discuss their issues. They can also search what they’re interested in, not just what they need to resolve. In this way, the most skilled staff in your business and your supplier’s can be used optimally to moderate and/or resolve, and your staff engagement might possibly increase as well.

Looking to the future, ask your suppliers if they offer a Community platform or just a Helpdesk to support your business. If the answer is the latter, the added cost must eventually fall back on your company due to the less effective means of providing solutions, service, and resolution for your organisation. Rather than being task focussed, look to a Community platform for greater engagement overall.

Giles Potter is Director of Great Outcomes Ltd.

Giles Potter: @gdcpotter

Google+: google.com/+gilespotter_greatoutcomes




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