Delivering Exceptional Customer Service, Starting with Self-Service

Remember when you had to call a company and wait on hold, minute after minute?

You would listen to a mind-numbing, repetitive tune; looping over and over before getting through to the main switchboard, who would then direct your call…

The frustration of being on hold

Frustrating wasn’t it.

Things seemed to improve slightly when our calls were funnelled through the phone system, by answering ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to a series of closed questions….

Only to end up listening to the same tune for a further 10 minutes because you were following the same path as everyone else.

Honestly, I usually prefer speaking to another human being when trying to get answers to my questions…

Happy Person to Person

BUT there is no denying that a computerised, automated response can often be the most efficient solution to our problem.

‘Just Google it’

How many of us are familiar with the verb – To Google? I would guess most of us.

Google and other search engines are such a big part of our modern life’s.

Just Google It

We find out about; the weather, how to prepare our new favourite dish and how to repair our mobile phone when it’s not working.

Even data that’s nearly 6 years old is staggering!

Google now processes over 40,000 search queries every second on average (visualize them here), which translates to over 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide.

Google Searches

(courtesy of Internet Live Stats)

It’s no surprise that when we need to find something out about a product or service we are receiving, the first thing many of us do is try to ‘Google’ the answer.

The difficulty is, the information we need is not always readily available through Google. It’s in the heads and internal literature of the company providing support.

This is problematic if the company hasn’t got their own company search page, containing all the answers to our questions.

If a company does have this available, it makes the process of customers finding their answers much easier. The irony is, it’s often the cheapest form of support a company can provide.

Cost of Support Image - Forrester

Image Source – Forrester Research

As you can see, self-service is by far the most affordable way to provide a service to customers.

However, this means having a searchable, detailed knowledge base in the native language of the user is going to be necessary. Otherwise, Customer Satisfaction, a more important metric will drop!

Customer Self-Service Portal

Self Service isn’t for every incident and case.

However, a business can save time by removing the simple ones and filtering out the more challenging issues.

This makes it much easier for your staff to provide a thorough dedicated service when it matters.

Self-service really is effective. Add to that, the possibility of interacting over messenger & chat, or via a ticket, which is created in the customer’s personal system, your company will have the ability to service clients quickly, easily and efficiently.

This approach is being favoured by more and more companies. It’s becoming the expected ‘norm’, as Business to Consumer services in our personal lives such as; Amazon, Netflix, Lyft etc set the agreed benchmarks.

When interacting with these organisations, you don’t expect to speak with a person, especially not for most general matters.

You trust that the service will work when you use it and if there are any issues, they’re solvable by using the information they provide over the web.

It’s not always plain sailing

One added layer of complexity is providing support in multiple languages to users positioned around the globe.

For this, the Business will need to employ more people and have the flexibility to provide support in numerous languages.

Can Self-Service can help with this too?

Rather than having one version of the information for all customers. You provide users with dedicated information, modified to suit their specific region and if relevant, the products and services available to them.

This can even be translated and presented to the user in their native language.

What happens if the need is more complex and can’t be solved without agent interaction?

The user could even interact with a centralised team located in a different Country, speaking a different language….

By using translation services, integrated into the support system, users could ask questions in their native language, which can be translated and actioned by the support worker.

Translation Support

This is a very popular method for organisations providing Shared Services to users from just one or several locations.

These aren’t just ideas, they are summaries of systems and processes that are already in use with many global companies.

Like it or not, the world of work and business has changed and will continue to do so.

Technology is changing

It’s important companies embrace the technologies and solutions available to them or risk being left behind.

Self-Service isn’t an overall solution but should be part of your offering that assists in the delivery of exceptional customer service!


An accredited ServiceNow Partner who has been working with the platform since 2010. SPOC is able to assist clients with a full range of services relating to the implementation of the ServiceNow platform, or improvements to existing solutions that have previously been delivered by other companies – Get In Touch