No more customer support frustrations? Meet NextivaONE

“Can you please find a solution to the daily frustrations we have just trying to work together and serve customers?”

It’s a common refrain that Tomas Gorny, co-founder and CEO of Scottsdale, Arizona-based Nextiva, has heard from thousands of different customers over the years.

However, his clients are not unusual in their concerns.

Research shows that the top five challenges and frustrations facing customer service are:

  1. That agents should ask customers to repeat themselves when they are transferred or change channels,
  2. The lack of visibility on the process, the progress of the file and the entire customer relationship,
  3. Inconsistent levels of service quality that customers encounter across different channels,
  4. Lack of proactive communication that could anticipate many customer issues and requests, and
  5. That it takes so long to solve a customer’s problem.

Fascinatingly, the same research also found that when customers were asked to list their biggest frustrations when dealing with customer service, they produced a list remarkably similar to that of business leaders and agents. They also shared the same major frustration: having to repeat information when transferring or changing channels.

As you would expect from a leading player in the field of corporate communications, Gorny and his team spent a lot of time listening to customers and then thinking about these issues. As a result, they were able to distill those frustrations into three actionable pieces:

  1. Employees supporting customers don’t want to use multiple apps to engage with their customers wherever they want to interact. This requires a screen change and may lose data and be inaccurate.
  2. They also don’t want to use many additional applications to communicate and collaborate with their internal colleagues when dealing with a customer issue.
  3. They are also frustrated with the lack of in-app functionality that would allow them to ask customers for feedback on resolving their issues, measure their performance, and track customer sentiment.

Identifying these elements helped Nextiva develop a new app, NextivaONE, which aims to solve these problems and more.

Concretely, the NextivaOne application:

  • Provides a wired and more conversational approach to servicethat is not based on tickets but rather on conversations, regardless of the channel or channels that customers use to get in touch;
  • Facilitates data sharing within an organizationwhether it’s transcripts of interactions, critical files, notes or attachments, so that the essential data needed to serve a customer, at any point in their journey, is available to everyone, ensuring that nothing slips through the cracks;
  • Allows agents to benefit from online coaching so even the most inexperienced agent can solve the most complex query with almost zero learning curve.
  • Makes feedback collection instantly accessible by integrating a customer feedback tool at the heart of their application, so that an agent no longer needs to switch to another application to conduct a customer survey; and
  • Connects agents with their colleagues via built-in internal communication tools that allow agents to avoid switching apps when asking co-workers for help with a customer’s issue and, therefore, minimizing frustration and data slippage.

Thinking about this list, it seems to me that what Nextiva has done is to develop an application that starts from the position of …… if we improve our agent’s ability to do a good job, it will inevitably lead to an improvement in the ‘client experience.

This is echoed by Chris Reaburn, Nextiva CMO, who says, “Our customers want to do the best they can for their customers, and NextivaONE is here to make that easy.” He says this “requires refocusing on the employee experience. Happy teams make happy customers, and making support teams happy is NextivaONE’s goal.”

It’s scary to think that the average agent still uses about 8 or 9 different apps in the age of connected technology to resolve customer issues. However, please spare a thought for the agents who report that they have to use more than 15 different apps to do their job and deliver great customer service.

NextivaOne aims to eliminate the friction, frustration, inefficiencies and errors that come with “frackenstack” systems that many customer service agents have to deal with on a daily basis. It is a step in the right direction.

Joseph P. Harris