The weeks directly preceding and following the New Year are often either the busiest or slowest of the year, depending on your industry. For customer service departments, a pressing challenge is ensuring adequate coverage throughout the holiday season.
As staff request time off for the holidays, managers must arrange workers’ schedules to make sure someone is always available to assist customers. Even with the hiring of seasonal staff, it’s a tricky time of year for the customer service industry.
Why Seasonal Hiring is Flawed
For decades, seasonal hiring has been a given for retailers and customer service departments. Between the influx of new business and the strain of regular staff requesting time off, temporary workers have long filled the gap.
However, having more workers doesn’t guarantee better support. All of those new hires need to be adequately trained on the products offered, how to approach customers, and how to provide a consistent level of service.
Unfortunately, these points are difficult to master even in an ideal setting. The holiday season presents a greater challenge given the rushed onboarding process and high-stress environment. Not to mention the reality of human error. Even if all employees receive the same training, there’s no way to guarantee information retention or the ability to keep calm under pressure.
How Customer Support Automation Fills the Gap
While seasonal hiring has its drawbacks, that doesn’t change the fact that businesses need help this time of year. Customer support automation with chatbots fills the gap by providing uninterrupted service regardless of day or time. Best of all, every single customer receives the same level of service.
An FAQ chatbot helps customer service teams by taking care of simple queries, allowing human agents to focus their attention on more complicated questions and issues. Companies often have a list of commonly asked questions, and can develop ready-made responses for fast resolution.
Providing Personalized Care
In addition to answering customer questions, chatbots can ask questions of their own to get to know the customer. This allows them to qualify leads and provide personalized responses based on factors such as age, gender, budget, and more.
Even if the same customer service representative has helped a customer more than once, they likely won’t remember every detail of each transaction. Through customer support automation, chatbots have access to the full account history to track repeat purchases, returns, preferences, and more. This information fuels future sales strategies.
When prices and promotions change or new products are added to inventory, customer service chatbots simply need to have their knowledge base updated to reflect those changes. It’s a much faster process than training each employee and making sure they fully understand the updates.
Adding Customer Support Automation to Your Process
Adding new technologies might seem intimidating, but with an experienced partner, it will quickly transform your department. Managers no longer have to worry about customers getting ineffective or unequal service, and will have a more complete view of customer behavior. All it takes is adding a customer service chatbot to the process and working with your chatbot provider to get it properly onboarded.
Learn how to incorporate customer support automation into your process.