I don’t often run across survey data that makes me literally laugh out loud. But a recent — and somewhat cheeky — study commissioned by the CRM platform Insightly had me rolling in my desk chair.
Thirty-one percent of U.S. adults reported that they’d rather wait in line at the DMV than try to resolve an issue with a company or service. A shocking fourteen percent said they’d rather go through the ordeal of getting a tooth pulled. And a trip to the dentist only slightly beat out a month-long stay with the in-laws.
But issue resolution isn’t just a headache (or, ahem, a toothache) for customers. The people on the other side of the phone or chat also dread these conversations. When U.S. business decision makers were asked what they’d rather do than field a request from an angry customer, 44% said they’d prefer the tedious task of entering data in a spreadsheet. A whopping 15% said they’d rather sit next to a crying baby on a cross-country flight. And 29% said they’d rather do literally. anything. else.
So, what’s our path forward towards better customer service interactions?
The consumers in this study hit the nail on the head: 32% said that the most important thing a company can do to make them happier customers is to identify and resolve common issues. Interestingly, only 12% said that 24/7 availability was the answer to their customer service woes. These data points indicate that customer experience improvement initiatives may be a better investment than increasing ongoing support costs.
My advice: Supplement your Voice of the Customer program with journey mapping to get a holistic view of your customer experience and identify customers’ key pain points, needs, and expectations as they try to complete key tasks with your organization.