Earlier this year a family member was diagnosed with stage four lung and bone cancer. They passed earlier in September. I am sad that they are no longer here, but I am glad they are not in any more pain. As anyone can attest, cancer sucks. As such, I have also had to spend a lot of time calling and dealing with call centers. I bring this up not for you to feel sorry but for me to share my story with call centers. To be 100% honest, I would not have written this blog having not worked in this space or for Five9. Having become more aware of call center technology while learning more of the direction our company, I felt that telling a story was a great way to see this space from the end customers perspective and to understand the more human aspect of what our technology can help solve. I also feel it is the best way to empathize with our end customers and to discuss the improvements we in the industry need to make. In a sense I believe it is our corporate responsibility. When my family member passed, there were numerous companies I had to contact to straighten things out and understand policies and processes. When talking to the various call centers who handle these types of affairs every person I spoke to was amazing. The first thing they did was greet me with a warm welcome while expressing their condolence. They also told me that they would do the best they could to help me find answers. Overall dealing with the service reps was great. What wasn’t great was waiting on the phone for 30+ minutes just to talk to a person (Side note fact: we had to on hold for EIGHT hours with Social Security). That wait time sucked. I am waiting on hold, tied to a phone, unable to do anything. There were and are so many better ways for me to be spending my time. Overall the customer service was great. I couldn’t ask for better treatment. The agents and reps were friendly, helpful and genuinely good people. The technology enabling these individuals on the other hand needs to be improved. Why did I have to wait on hold? And for so long? I can see a few minutes but 30? An hour? Eight hours?? That’s just ridiculous. This is why Five9 wants to do our part in creating better, more human experiences in the call center. For me, it’s about fixing wait time. Customers shouldn’t wait on hold. We (people) only have so much time in this world. So why should anyone have to wait or be put on hold? I joined Five9 almost a year ago. I am still new here but I have really been impressed with the passion and direction of the company. Since starting I have gotten the feeling that the people of Five9 put a deeper purpose into our work. I have also come to realize that our team cares greatly for our customers and our customer’s customer. As we are all a customer’s customer. This is why we have the purpose of looking to fix the some of the most common problems we all face. We only have so much time in the world and none of us want to wait on hold, especially when it comes to dealing with a call center. There are so many technological advancements (Web Call Backs, AI enabled IVR, intelligent routing, agent assistance, etc.) that can help create better customer service experiences and get your customers off the phones faster. We might not be able to help end cancer, but we can at least help end waiting.
With over 15 years of experience in digital media, Paul Cowman heads up the demand generation team at Five9.
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