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  • Writer's pictureMark Slatin

Customer Service Megatrend: Activating Unstructured “Dark” Data to Orchestrate CX and EX


Imagine calling in to add a child’s vehicle on your insurance policy only to discover that something you thought was resolved, wasn’t?


You’ve called in several months prior and someone helped you change an error because a previous auto accident was incorrectly coded as your fault. Unfortunately, the person on the phone has no line of sight to the previous conversation and can only see it still coded as your fault!


Obviously, that would mean much, much higher premiums. You feel a rush of emotions flowing through your body. You notice your throat tighten and blood pressure rise.


You thought you had already corrected the problem when you spent an hour sorting through the phone tree and getting an underwriter who had the authority to fix the original error.


Now it seems like you’ll have to start the battle all over again. You consider the hassle of shopping for another carrier but you still need to get this cleared up before you can pack your bags.


Departmental "silos" (caused here by a breakdown between the silos where customer notes were taken) are often the root cause of customer friction.


Collecting customer data from around the enterprise to avoid customer friction described here was a top priority of CX professionals just a decade ago.


According to a recent study by Forrester, there’s been a shift accelerated by the pandemic.


A key finding suggests the activation of unstructured “dark” data Is driving CX And EX orchestration. The question is no longer about collecting enough data — it’s about

ensuring that the data is usable and liberated from company silos to create new

streams of value.


The report also finds that in response to the COVID-19 crisis, 52% of companies accelerated

their AI adoption plans. In 2022, being “data driven” must become more than just a

slogan — the next wave of business transformation will hinge on activating “dark” data

(data that organizations collect but do not effectively use) to drive differentiated

experiences for both customers and employees.


An example of this “dark” data includes conversations recorded at a contact center that can be transcribed and assimilated with other data.


Customer data is often locked within company silos, which makes it difficult to deliver meaningful and personalized customer experiences.


In 2022, companies will combine data in new ways to unlock opportunities for AI to deliver anticipatory and highly personalized customer experiences.


For example, when customers call in, contact centers can greet them with an AI bot that will predict the reason for their call and find the best path to resolution. Marrying speech data with customer contact data will allow companies to do root cause analysis; a customer calling multiple times for the same issue is likely a process problem, not an agent performance problem.


Forrester’s researchers offer a warning: “A word of caution: Solving these problems is about more than just selecting the right vendor. Data-fueled products require close collaboration between design and data science teams to deliver effective and intuitive user experiences.”


In other words, the technology used to improve the customer experience can actually backfire if it doesn’t begin with a deep understanding of the customer’s journey that is then followed by a technical solution. Human centered design still very much applies but the promise of connected, rather than siloed responses from a consumer's perspective, is encouraging.


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