What is better for your business: traditional or virtual customer service?

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In a time where everything has become so digitized, companies must decide whether to embrace change or to stick to traditional customer service. The Industry’s digitization had been gradual, but it has picked up speed over the last few years, specially during the pandemic where companies had to rely more heavily on digital tools. This has led to the question of whether new age methods will fully take over the traditional ways of doing business.  To understand better, lets compare how they both relate in the security space.

 

The main difference between traditional customer service and digital customer service is the medium through which the customers are encountered. While traditional uses human interaction of some sort like over the phone or in person, digital customer service uses bots or automated systems to interact with customers.

Traditional customer service still plays and important role in customer service, a survey showed that 70% of customers would rather speak to a customer service representative than to engage with a digital customer service rep or chatbot (1). In the security space, one important aspect of human interaction customer is that it allows for adaptability when reacting to customer’s urgencies. It also gives the customer a peace of mind knowing that there is a person on the other side handling the situation. A customer representative can detect if there are any scheduling or staffing errors.

Having a fully virtual approach to your business operations brings its own kind of value. Allowing for transparency between company and customer, there is increased access to many methods of communication allowing the two sides of a transaction be in lockstep throughout the process. Some companies have adopted creating temporary project sites to allow the customer to be up to date on progress as well as hold both sides accountable.

Having a virtual approach also allows for more flexibility for employees as well as clients. In large part due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of remote workers has increased by nearly 90% (2). This trend does not seem to be slowing down as Forbes estimates that by 2025, 70% of the workforce will be working remotely five days out of the month at least (3). This allows for increased flexibility when completing tasks and communicating with clients and coworkers. An example of this is the surge in people using video conference and telecommunications tools such as Zoom who saw three hundred million users each day in the 2020. This also means an increased need for cybersecurity and encryption when sharing files, communicating and transactions.

Examples and value propositions aside, we are still set to answer the never-ending debate over what is better: a traditional or virtual approach. Do you risk being left behind by going fully traditional? Do you risk losing the human connection by going fully virtual? The answer….both! The relationship between traditional customer service and the digital age is not a mutually exclusive one, but a unified front. Having only one approach to customer service and operations limits what it is you are able to do as a company and how you can service your customers. But we leave the floor open to you… which approach do you think is best?

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