Adjusting to Millennial Customers for Your Contact Center
Millennials are now the largest represented demographic in the workforce. They are comprised of 53.5 million people in the US workforce and make the bulk of the spending, business transactions, and customer service requests.
What does this mean for contact centers?
It means a paradigm shift is in order because providing the best customer experience depends entirely on catering and adapting to your customer’s needs.
The call center industry began in the 1960s and the first call centers serviced the Baby Boomer generation, a demographic that grew up using the telephone. While this trend would continue for several decades, modern technology developments had an entire generation grow up with instant messaging, mobile phones and the internet. The millennial generation is far more comfortable with online customer support through their mobiles rather than traditional telephones.
Here are several key points you need to consider when making adjustments to your contact center to better serve millennials.
Millennials Want an Omni-Channel Experience
Millennials are immersed in the digital world and expect to be able to reach your company through all the fronts: SMS, live chat, email, voice, or social media. You’ll need to have an agile contact center capable of engaging on all these fronts.
Pay special attention to online services. Microsoft’s 2016 global report shows that 65% of millennial customer service interactions are initiated online. It’s important to keep the website up to date, with FAQs and resources to get them the answers they need fast.
Provide Them with theTools They Need
Not only do they initiate customer service interactions online, millennials increasingly prefer doing things themselves instead of talking or interacting with other people to resolve their concerns.
There is a study citing that 40% of millennials prefer self-service to human contact. In addition, 70% of customers expect a self-service application available online for them to resolve concerns themselves.
Fast and Accurate Response is Essential
The expectations of this generation are also much higher than their ancestors’ expectations. A study from Desk.com shows that 25% of millennials expect a response within 10 minutes. When they ask a question on any of your contact points, a response must be ready within ten minutes regardless of whether it is from a live person or an automated system or you risk dissatisfaction with the customer experience.
Furthermore, their multi-channel expectations are much more sophisticated. When talking with a live agent or going on live chat, 78% of millennials expect you to have their information up and ready when they start the call or chat. They are quite savvy with today’s technologies and know that this is something contact centers can provide. Stepping up to their expectations is key in remaining competitive.
Older generations are used to hearing canned responses that give the expected courtesies from a business. The millennial generation is a little different. Scripted responses feel like you aren’t really paying attention and are just giving lip service. Instead, this generation of customers wants an informal conversation that feels real, as if they were speaking with a friend and not a business. They do not want to feel like they are being treated as a business transaction but as somebody who matters on a more personal level.
This means that your agents need a different kind of training from the traditional scripts and lines which call centers have been using for decades. The canned responses might be okay coming from a chatbot but not from a real person.
Be Ready to Step Up
The traditional training to deal with the Baby Boomer and Generation X customers should still be in place, but it’s increasingly important to know how to deal with the millennial generation. While not every millennial can be put in the same box, these guidelines are born from quantifiable market research into the kind of service that appeals to this new generation.
If you keep these things in mind, servicing your millennial customers should be a lot easier. Do remember that while the majority of your customers are going to be millennials, not all of them will be. It is still important to adjust your interac