One critical way data and the IoT (Internet of Things) is influencing today’s connected world is by enabling better customer experiences. From servicing machines proactively and reducing downtime to delivering personalized deals and coupons to retail customers, data, predictive analytics, and automation have opened doors to new levels of immediacy, personalization, and convenience. For customers, this can equal a smoother experience and faster, improved service that’s tailored to their specific needs.
For technology suppliers enabling IoT solutions, customer service is key to supporting continued adoption, for instance, by helping customers achieve ROI (return on investment) and by producing deployment success stories. However, new research from Conduent, www.conduent.com, a provider of diversified business process services, suggests nearly half (47%) of technology suppliers’ customers are dissatisfied with the service they receive. Conduent’s State of Customer Experience 2017 also suggests there may be consequences for tech suppliers that continue to dissatisfy when it comes to customer service. For instance, despite all the inconvenience in doing so, the survey says 14% of respondents would be willing to change suppliers if it meant they could gain better customer service.
Technology suppliers can enhance the service they offer by leveraging customers’ personal or company data more effectively. More than three-quarters (76%) of respondents in the State of Customer Experience survey said they provided personal data to their tech suppliers, but 59% say they believe their suppliers don’t know them, suggesting their data isn’t being leveraged as successfully as it could be. Whether the customer is a business, a government or other organization, or a consumer, tech suppliers must find ways to create a tangible value exchange for personal or company data. By doing so, providers gain the ability to improve customer satisfaction and drive brand loyalty.
Transparency and data security are also important in creating the best possible customer experience. When customers know how the data they provide is going to be used to improve the service they receive from their technology suppliers, they will be more willing to offer up this data. Likewise, if customers trust their technology suppliers to keep their data safe, they are more likely to provide the data needed to maximize their customer-service experience.
The IoT is becoming a factor in nearly every industry by helping businesses streamline operations, extract data from machines and other assets, and make decisions based on realtime information. However, in the grand scheme of things, IoT systems are still rather new, and customer support from technology suppliers, including providers of hardware, software, and connectivity, is paramount in driving the success of these connected solutions across industries. If tech suppliers want to not only keep their current customers but also gain new business, while simultaneously helping to grow the IoT at large, they must focus on providing a superior customer experience. Data, when properly leveraged and transparently and securely managed, can help get them there.
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