It’s the question that every company wants answers to: What’s the best way to communicate to customers? Some people would argue that email communications are a no-brainer while others would defend the ease of social media platforms — there are even proponents of a good, old-fashioned phone call.
For our Repair Team, led by Operations Manager Ashley Justman, that seemed to be the wrong question altogether. Instead, they wanted to know how best to communicate with customers. And that’s when they started using Cisco Webex to collaborate with customers during the repair process.
The TelNet Repair Team is made up of a group of Technical Support Specialists who can investigate a trouble ticket and quickly identify the root cause. Their expertise allows our customers to focus on their own business, rather than the technology that supports them. But proper investigation often requires more information.
After recently adopting Webex as our internal communication platform, its potential for customer communication became obvious. The team decided to test it out with a few customers to see if it would simplify the process and make engaging with customers more efficient. Spoiler alert: It did!
So how does this communication method work in practice? It’s actually pretty simple. The Repair Team creates a “Space” in Webex that’s dedicated to a particular customer, and an invite is sent directly to their email inbox, inviting them to collaborate with the team.
If the customer is already utilizing Webex, they’ll simply be added to the coordinated Space where they can chat, meet and share files. And if they don’t have Webex, they’ll be prompted to sign up for a free account. They can then join the Space through their browser or download the mobile or desktop app.
At that point, all back-and-forth communication lives in a single hub, where everyone can contribute and collaborate in real-time. As Justman said, “Directly working from a Space allows more on an in-the-moment experience for both the Support Specialist and the customer.”
Justman described one recent exchange with a customer who requested a same-day meeting. Because they had been working together so frequently in the Webex Space, no formal invitation with participant lists and call information was needed. The meeting location was simply implied, since the conference room is built right into the Space.
During the repair process, every moment is critical. Using Webex to collaborate with customers has dramatically cut down on the back-and-forth between our team and our customers. It’s an easy way to connect with customers that eliminates the need for lengthy email chains, games of phone tag and clunky conference bridges. (And it proves that the team is made of actual human beings, and not robots!)
“This method of support is still in its infancy,” said Justman, “but so far the interactions have been great. I think we’re all human in the end, and communicating in Spaces really shows that side of our technical support operations. It’s pretty hard to come across as a ‘repair robot’ when you have access to emojis, gifs and real-time chats.”