‘Respect your customer’s time and they will reward you for it'

Speed is the top priority for today’s generation, warns Head of Freshworks



Photo: Manish Mishra
Photo: Manish Mishra
by

Waheed Abbas

Published: Thu 25 Aug 2022, 7:29 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Aug 2022, 10:53 PM

Despite significant investments being made into the latest technologies, enhancing employee and customer experiences remain elusive, said Manish Mishra, Head, Middle East and Africa, Freshworks.

“Perhaps the most frustrating challenge for IT and innovation leaders is that despite their best efforts — along with the significant investments being made into the latest technologies — one of the key outcomes they seek of enhancing employee experiences, and thereby customer experience, remains elusive.

A recent Freshworks study has shown that despite businesses in the Middle East and Africa having doubled down on digital transformation, nearly half (47 per cent) of regional employees report that technology issues at work have since increased their stress levels, causing a negative impact on their mental health,” said Mishra.

Freshworks was one of the key partners of the CX Evolve 2022 conference held in Dubai on Thursday. The conference, organised by Khaleej Times, saw the participation of senior industry executives from the public and private sectors.

Mishra added that customer expectations have evolved dramatically in recent years.

“The recent wave of digitalisation in the region has transformed every business into a digital business", Mishra said in a statement to Khaleej Times. "With services now available 24/7, 365 days a year, consumers expect their needs to be served immediately, and all via the channel of their choice.

Speed is the top priority for today’s customers. Respect your customer’s time and they will reward you for it."

Mishra added that there are limitations to how many human customer service resources a business can commit to addressing this customer requirement. “Artificial Intelligence (AI), chatbots, and other human-effort saving integrations are therefore helping reinvent the customer experience in industries ranging from financial services to utilities,” he added.

Mishra revealed that true customer experience success is found by those organisations that are able to recognise that the technologies they invest in are meant to augment, not replace, human agents.

“Employees must be connected to business intelligence in real time that allows them to make on-the-spot decisions that impact the customer experience, and hence the business, in positive ways", Mishra warned.

"Tools, be it hardware, software, or services, are paving the way to success in terms of project delivery, sales, marketing, communication, and a slew of other disciplines."

The Freshworks executive disclosed that conversational engagement is the next big thing in customer experience.

“Consumers are increasingly wanting to find resolution immediately and they want to do it within the matter of a few exchanges with the brand. People no longer have the patience to use a support portal or call up a company and go through IVRs and wait times.

They want to get support through chat and in the channel of their choice, with Gen Z consumers actually preferring bot conversations if it gives them the resolution they need,” he added.

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