The true mission of a customer contact center is: Profitability . Stop; read it again. The mission of a customer contact center is its contribution to sustainable corporate profitability. Everything about the center needs to be directly connected to that mission.
A customer contact center, be it about service or support, is about generating two kinds of profitability – direct profits from immediate conversion of contacts to additional sales, and indirect profits from the retention of customers who will buy again from the company, plus customers that will encourage their friends and connections to become customers as well. Those senior management teams that acknowledge that reality and manage accordingly stand a chance of success. Those that get bogged down in examining operational details about the distribution of the knowledge inventory through the contact center are missing the point.
Dollars and Sense
A good salesperson can accurately describe the sales process from the initial meeting to closing the sale. They know their mission. They know about customer acquisition costs — they can tell you what the costs are for each step and for the total, and how much profit that customer will bring. That’s the basis for the sales forecast, the pipeline. To keep the customer contact center similarly focused, there needs to be a new set of metrics that identifies customers who seek support, how well their issues got resolved and what purchases occurred after such contacts. The new metrics will reveal how poor customer support leads to fewer customer purchase events just as it will show how good support leads to a profitable ongoing relationship. Sales gets credit for making a sale, it’s essential that the customer contact function get credit for profits from keeping customers.
It’s About Time
It’s time to end the confusion over the role of your customer contact center. It’s time to design and implement a profit-driven management model for service & support, and to tune the contact center to deliver the right results. If your center is off-purpose, I’m here to help you get back on track, to evaluate mission, attitudes and available tools, and to work with the team to play for profitability and maximum customer retention rates.
To find out how your company’s customer contact center can become an optimized profitability and customer retention engine, please join Mikael Blaisdell & Associates for a complimentary Office Hours session.
Understanding Contact Center Operations
The Strategy of Effective Customer Support
- Aligning for Effectiveness
- The Customer’s Metric
- The Redefinition of Customer Support
- The Broken Customer Support Group
–The Customer Retention QuickStat