Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Why is multi-channel communications increasing?

Why is multi-channel communications increasing?

I met with a customer that has multiple groups within the call center.  The purpose for each group is to manage separate languages.  This call center supports more than six languages to help potential customer purchase their products and services.  However, for some customers to make the final purchase they must finalize the purchase through email in English.

When accepting orders or making purchases it is important that both sides understand what is being ordered.  This is when culture can cause challenges with translations.  Slang or colloquialism can create problems when used in a conversation with someone that does not have the same cultural background.  Often those who speak only English get frustrated when trying to work with someone that does not speak English as their primary language.

From a business and customer point of view the goal is to have a transaction that is clear, concise and accurate.  Therefore, finalizing the order through email is done to eliminate the miscommunications that can and do occur over the phone.  So why English and not the customers native language?

This contact center works with customers from all over the world. Both the agent and the customer speak in English because it is the only language that both speak.  But neither is fluent with English and they do their best to communicate.  So to conclude the business the customer must email their request to the business and receive an acknowledgement in return.  Forcing the customer to conclude their business through email is never meant as an insult to the customer. It is a method to protect both the customer and the vendor.

This contact center uses Voice, Email and Chat to communicate with customers.  These communication methods are used so the business and the customer are able to transact business.  There are many reasons for multi-channel communication sources and language and cultural differences are one of them.

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