Driving a seamless digital transformation with voice of the customer improves CSAT by 17%

Customer Feedback Unplugged: How voice of the customer improves CSAT by 17%, revenue by 18%

As part of our new Customer Feedback Unplugged video series, I sat down with Jennifer Passini, Ph.D., director of experience consulting at NICE, to talk about the significance of voice of the customer (VOC) in supporting digital transformation.

We delved into topics like omnichannel strategies and how her team has helped organizations use VOC insights to reshape customer experiences as part of a digital transformation initiative.

Below are some of the highlights of our conversation. You can watch the full video here:

Customer Feedback Unplugged video series

Using VOC to understand omnichannel customer journeys

Most companies realize that their customers are using multiple channels to interact with them. Omnichannel is about delivering customers similar or the same experiences in different channels.

Jennifer noted that digital is customers’ channel of choice when they want to be self-enabled to create their own experience, but they do have some specific expectations for what a digital experience should be (she details what different demographics expect from digital self-service in this blog article).

So, to start understanding the omnichannel journey, companies need to understand the customer journey from each channel perspective, as well as how the various channels interact.

Voice still touches 73% of all customer interactions

It’s important to remember that despite the rise of digital channels, voice remains vital. A Metrigy study found that, “voice still touches 73.1% of all customer interactions, either initially or as an escalation from a digital channel.” And in fact, voice/phone remained the top interaction channel as of the end of 2023.[1]


Meeting customer expectations for self-enablement

There are many instances where customers anticipate that they are going to be able to leverage one channel, so they will choose their channel of preference to do that.

There are other instances and experiences where customers go into it realizing that there's a good chance that they will need to use multiple channels, particularly for complex tasks, or actions with companies that have complex products and services.

When we’re talking about digital transformation and digital channels specifically, it's all about customer preference and expectations.

Meeting customer expectations for self-enablement

Elevating self-service digital experiences

Jennifer noted that it’s important to meet customers where they want to be, instead of where you want them to be. You can use VOC insights to inform the building of ideal digital self-service experiences and to improve digital experiences to better meet customer expectations.

For example, the NICE consulting team helped a bank use VOC to inform their digital transformation by focusing on experiences calling into the contact center and in-person branch experiences. They also analyzed the experiences and VOC holistically using the analytics tools in CXone Feedback Management.

As Jennifer noted, “We're not just focused on measuring within channel interactions anymore. We're measuring intents and customers’ expectations, and the things that they are hoping to achieve, as well as whether things were resolved or acceptable to them.”

Think about all the times that you call a contact center because you've attempted to do something within a digital channel but couldn't—then you provide post-call feedback. That's not really feedback about the contact center, at least not most of it. Most of it is about the fact that you tried to leverage a digital channel, tried to be self-enabled, but you couldn't.

As we think about VOC across omnichannel experiences, we're really measuring something more broadly than just experiences within a channel. Today, we're really focused on understanding experiences both in a channel and across channels.

How integrated omnichannel VOC insights help improve CX

How integrated omnichannel VOC insights help improve CX

To gain valuable insights, an omnichannel approach to VOC requires a new way of thinking about first contact or first call resolution (FCR).

Going back to the above banking example, it was important that they looked at contact center feedback from a reason for the call perspective and how many of the calls were about something that customers couldn't do successfully within a digital channel, such as a password reset.

Instead of just looking at FCR, organizations have to look across the omnichannel and say, how many steps did the customer have to go through to complete this? How many channels did they need to use, and why? If something takes multiple contacts and it's creating a negative customer experience, through VOC, you’ll know. Typically, customers will say: I tried to do this myself and couldn't.

Looking at negative sentiment or negative feedback in any channel is important for understanding how you can best support digital transformation and improve customers' digital journeys.

Omnichannel for interactions and feedback

Metrigy: Customer Insights & Analytics 2023-24 global study of 579 companies (2024)

Digging into why customers use multiple channels

Another costly digital transformation sticking point that the bank uncovered was that 20% of their contact center calls were to check account balances—something typically easy to achieve through online banking.

So, they needed to determine two separate but related issues:

  1. Whether customers simply weren't transitioning to the digital channel
  2. Why customers didn't trust the balance information within digital channels and felt the need to call

Through feedback, the bank learned that customers didn't trust that their balances were being updated when they used online banking and they were unclear about when deposits or expenses would hit their accounts.

With that insight, the bank worked on improving communications so that customers would feel confident reviewing their balances in a self-enabled digital channel. Today, the bank continues to leverage contact center feedback to improve their digital offerings and empower customers’ self-enablement.

Taking action on feedback is the key to success—nearly 40% of companies don’t

Gathering feedback is one thing; analyzing and acting upon it is another. Metrigy found only 61.5% of companies take some action from the feedback they have gathered. A VOC program delivers maximum ROI when it drives impactful change and business results.

By taking action on customer feedback at scale, CX leaders are able to continuously improve customer experience and the digital channels used to support their customers—based on data that incorporates their preferences, as well as the results of omnichannel interactions.

Successful companies achieve 18% higher revenue with VOC

What can success look like? Metrigy also found that successful companies—those that saw higher-than-average improvements through VOC programs—achieved tremendous value by leveraging customer insights, including:

  • 18% higher revenue
  • 7% lower operational costs
  • 17% higher customer satisfaction (CSAT) ratings
  • 24% gain in agent productivity

Successful companies achieve 18% higher revenue with VOC

Watch the full video interview with Jennifer Passini, and get your organization on the path to delivering VOC-informed, ideal digital experiences for your customers with 4 best practices for implementing digital omnichannel feedback.

[1] Metrigy: Driving Customer Success with Voice of the Customer Programs (2023)