CX is becoming more specialised to tackle ‘people paradox’ 

CX is becoming more specialised to tackle ‘people paradox’ 

A new report by MIT Technology Review Insights explores how global organisations are reassessing their customer experience (CX) workforce and processes in the post-pandemic era. 

The report, Customer experience and the future of work, is produced in association with Genesys and is based on a survey of 800 senior executives as well as in-depth interviews with business executives and experts. The findings are as follows: 

There is a ‘people paradox’ in relation to customer experience staff 

Almost nine out of 10 survey respondents recognise CX as a strategic differentiator of their brand. However, the research also finds contradictory views about the employees who interact with customers on a daily basis: employers are more concerned with the challenge of finding new employees than retaining those they already have. 

COVID-19 has catalysed a long-term shift toward flexible working for contact centre employees 

According to the survey, the remote and hybrid working modelsrapidly deployed during the pandemic are here to stay. More than one-third ofcontact centre employees will be permitted to work remotely by 2024 and a further 23% will be in a hybrid arrangement. 

Remote working has numerous benefits but productivity and culture concerns remain 

More than eight out of 10 survey respondents say hybrid or remote work options allow them to better retain staff by offering flexible schedules. Some 60% ofthem say it lowers staff stress levels and improves their mental health and morethan half find it offers access to brand advocates or those with deeper knowledge.However, many CX leaders also have concerns about lower productivity,inconsistent customer service and a negative impact on culture and collaboration. 

CX work will require a more specialised and technical skill set as well as shifts in workforce strategy 

More than two-thirds of survey respondents expectCX work to become more specialised in the coming two years. The skills they willrequire include data and analytics, customer journey optimisation, specialisedproduct knowledge and emotional intelligence. To develop these high-value skills,organisations should expand the number of full-time CX employees, hire morelearning and development specialists and explore ‘gig work’ models. 

Learning and development is a strategic focus area for improving the CX employee value proposition 

More than two-thirds of survey respondents identifylearning and development as an area of the CX employee life cycle in most need ofimprovement and nearly half consider insufficient learning and development opportunities to be one of their employees’ greatest daily frustrations. 

“A successful CX organisation will ensure that vital ‘voice-of-the-customer’ insights are permeated across different departments to improve their processes and employees understand how the organisation works and what career paths are available to them,” said Laurel Ruma, Global Director of Custom Content, MIT Technology Review Insights.

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