In our work-from-anywhere world, team collaboration is every contact center manager’s top priority. But the reality is that support teams are often siloed from important departments, expertise, and technology. Service agents toggle between too many tools while managers lack a complete view into workloads and performance. This prevents teams from delivering fast, quality customer support.
There has to be a more human, collaborative way.
That’s where Slack for customer service comes in. It’s designed to connect teams and mobilize the entire organization to better serve your customer. The result is faster case resolutions, higher agent productivity, increased customer satisfaction scores (CSAT), and a transformed customer experience. Here’s how it works:
Slack is more than a messaging tool. It integrates with Service Cloud to bring service teams a collaboration platform where they access valuable customer data, key information, and cross-functional partners for faster resolutions.
“With Slack for customer service, we’re now able to connect customer service across an entire company — from customer support agents to product engineering, DevOps, security teams, and other departments,” said Clara Shih, CEO of Service Cloud. “In today’s remote and hybrid work reality, customer-facing teams need to be able to easily communicate and collaborate with operations and incident management functions to rapidly problem-solve, resolve complex issues, and unleash the full productivity of the organization.”
With Slack for customer service, we’re now able to connect customer service across an entire company.Clara Shih, CEO, Service Cloud
Consider these four ways to use Slack for customer service:
Quickly help customers with an AI-powered knowledge base
The majority of service agents (63%) still struggle to balance speed and quality, according to our latest State of Service report. One key reason: most work across multiple systems to access experts and knowledge.
63% of service agents still struggle to balance speed and quality.State of Service, Salesforce, December 2020
With Slack, agents tap into a collective knowledge base, without having to work across multiple screens. Work in Slack happens in channels, a home for all the messages and files related to a specific team or topic. As teams work through complex issues together, a searchable knowledge base grows.
The predictive search function uses artificial intelligence (AI) to show the most relevant and helpful content to resolve cases, including knowledge base articles, logged files, and past resolved tickets. Over time, AI and machine learning (ML) understand the types of searches that your service agents perform to provide the most helpful information.
Solve tough issues by case swarming with Slack for customer service
Seventy-seven percent of service agents say their role is more strategic than it was two years ago. This includes handling more complex cases. However, the answers to complex issues are not always available in your knowledge base.
Slack connects your service console with the rest of your business so that experts come together to solve problems in real time. This sets off the case swarming process (also referred to as intelligent swarming, or incident swarming).
Say a high-value business customer has a complicated request to split the shipment of a large order to multiple locations over time. The service agent pushes a request into a Slack channel for cross-functional partners, subject matter experts, and managers to swarm the case. They set up a quick discussion to get on the same page and document the steps to resolve the case. When teams take a collaborative approach like this on Slack, the customer has a faster, better experience.
One of the unexpected benefits of case swarming is accelerated agent training. This is especially important in a remote work environment, where agents can’t huddle in person at the office. Less experienced service agents and highly-skilled experts come together to solve cases in real-time. Service agents access previously siloed expertise and acquire new skills on the job.
One of the unexpected benefits of case swarming is accelerated agent training. Less experienced service agents and highly-skilled experts come together to solve cases in real-time.
Provide personalized service to key business-to-business accounts with Slack
Impersonal, one-size-fits-all service no longer meets customer expectations. Just like in our consumer lives, today’s business customers expect service to be tailored to their needs. But business-to-business (B2B) issues are more complex and may require an entire ecosystem of internal and external partners to resolve.
Quick collaboration between all these parties is often a challenge. With Slack, you can transform the way you work by moving out of siloed conversations. Rather than having to chase down contacts and answers, the service team loops in the right experts — other departments, as well as external partners and vendors — in a single, shared, secure place. Customers can bring their tools, documents, and people with them, creating a new avenue for stronger customer relationships.
For example, take the case of a vending machine company. A corporate customer calls the company to report that one type of candy bar keeps getting stuck. Nothing changed with the vending machine, nor did the customer change their candy offering. The agent brings an expert from the candy company into a channel in Slack Connect — a place for connecting with people outside your company — to figure out what’s going on.
The partner explains that the company recently changed the packaging size of that particular candy bar. Next, the partner shares recommendations for similar products that would easily fit the vending machine. The agent relays this information back to the customer. Then, the agent documents the steps to help other agents handle similar requests. The agent goes one step further to help customers who may face similar issues by proactively alerting them to the packaging change and replacement options.
Provide proactive service during incident management
The unexpected happens. Whether it’s a security breach or power outage, service teams need to handle large-scale incidents on the fly.
Slack provides a single place for service agents, engineers, and whoever is analyzing the root cause of the incident to come together. In Slack, everyone has the information and tools they need to take action as quickly as possible so customers get answers fast. That moves service from reactive (answering customer questions when they reach out) to proactive, which involves sharing key information with customers before they realize that they need it.
“Using Slack unlocks proactive service — teams swarming and problem-solving on Slack are seamlessly connected with customer-facing teams who can view real-time status of issues and resolutions. This helps businesses proactively inform affected customers before they call in,” said Shih.
Now let’s test what you’ve learned
How to get started with Slack for customer service
Slack for customer service makes your support tools even more valuable by bridging the gap between service and the rest of your company. Instead of jumping to different systems and losing valuable time tracking down the right expert, service agents focus on what matters: your customers. Find out more about Slack for customer service.