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Channel taking steps to improve customer experience

CompTIA has found that resellers are starting to get on board with improving customer experience strategies to remain competitive

The channel has started to take steps to improve its customer experience (CX) levels in order to ensure users can have a raft of communication options with partners.

Customer experience has become one of those areas that has become a differentiator for resellers with some getting behind the omnichannel approach while others lag behind.

Some in the channel have used partnerships as a way of boosting their CX expertise with Connect Managed Services and G3 Comms merging last month, with the joint business stressing it was now in a stronger position to deliver unified comms and customer experience (CX) technology.

In June CX intelligence firm Calabrio picked up workforce management software player Teleopti as it took steps to add more muscle to its offering, with Tom Goodmanson, president and CEO at Calabrio, pointing out that without the technology customers were often left with a "cold interaction".

Gartner has also added its thoughts around the importance of CX, stating that 89% of companies are now viewing the experience they offer customers as one of the key metrics they compete on.

Following those developments CompTIA has surveyed the channel to find out what the response has been to improving CX and it has found movement from most to improve their offerings.

The industry organisation found that two thirds of channel firms had made changes to their customer experience with 30% having adopted an omnichannel approach. Many revealed that to get into that position they had trained staff to deal with customers and made some hitres around marketing and social media roles.

“The customer’s demand for flexibility is the primary driver prompting companies to examine their customer experience practices,” said Carolyn April, senior director, industry analysis, for CompTIA. “Clients want to deal with their technology providers on any device they choose, at any time they choose.”

But CompTIA found that around 40% of firms were sticking with the traditional aproach and were at risk of being left behind by competitors.

“Companies recognise that having difficulties in attracting new customers and in keeping the ones you have is not a sustainable business model,” April said. “They acknowledge the need to create more customer-friendly options for engagement and to improve the actions they take to measure the success of their efforts.”

“The biggest challenge to enhancing the customer experience is a lack of resources, both financial and staff, especially among the small companies that make up the large majority of the channel,” she added “Companies feel they’re doing the best job in technical support, which is not surprising given that many channel firms are run by individuals who are technologists first, and businessmen and women, second."

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