UK CONSUMERS RISK LOSING MILLIONS DUE TO THE HIDDEN ‘COST OF HASSLE’

From not returning faulty goods or cancelling unwanted services to leaving account information out of date, our fatigue when considering contact with companies could be costing millions.

Whilst one-in-three [1] admit to avoiding contact with companies whenever possible, research reveals that 77% of organisations see reducing customer effort as a top priority [2].

According to customer service software specialists Inisoft, top irritations for customers include [3]:

  1. Having to repeat your complaint to multiple people (58.40%)
  2. Being placed on hold repeatedly during the call as staff check details (40.40%)
  3. Feeling like the person you’re speaking to is reading from a script (32.00%)
  4. Not feeling that the person you are speaking to has the authority to fix the problem (31.70%)

Inisoft has also identified the worst offending sectors – those with the highest ‘hassle factor’, based on independent analysis from PleasePress1.com, the leading call centre analysts.  The data is based on tens of thousands of visits to detailed maps of call centre menus hosted on the pleasepress1.com site.  Scale and complexity of phone menus coupled with the frequency of search terms gave an indication as to those businesses causing the most frustration.

According to the analysis, the worst offenders in 2017 include local councils, electrical retailers, airports, travel operators and insurance companies.

In a recent survey by Kura and the CCA (Contact Centre Association), only 8% of contact centres are actively measuring customer effort.  This is everything from the length of processes such as automated phone menus and online forms through to the complexity and likelihood of a first-time result.

On average, contact centre agents spend 15% of their time looking for data across internal systems to address customer needs [2].  This would cost a 300-seat contact centre £1.24million each year in unnecessary costs.  The same report reveals that companies that implement a successful Omni-Channel programme have achieved a 77% customer retention rate.

“The research reinforces the vital link between customer effort and loyalty.” said Oonagh McBride, the Head of Inisoft.  “Unfortunately, whilst improving the customer journey is a well-worn phrase, very few are implementing any measurement of effort.  It’s clear that companies who can work efficiently across channels are rewarded with customer loyalty, enhanced agent productivity and lower costs. The effort required to work with your brand is a critical measure and will determine, to a large extent, your successes or failures.”

Inisoft is a specialist software company providing software solutions that are focused on meeting the needs of contact centres, economic development bodies, financial services organisations and further education colleges.  Inisoft is owned by Kura, an independent market leading contact centre outsourcer.