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Helping Hands

3 Steps to Effectively Reduce Your Ticket Backlog in Customer Service

We'll show you how you can use simple tricks and smart tools to efficiently reduce incoming emails in your customer service ticket system.

Caroline SchnettlerSophie Rodriguez Flechas

February 16, 2021 · 8 min read

Customer service is a field which often raises challenges. Even companies that have been successful in the market for many years, are often overwhelmed with customer service. A lack of technology and structure, combined with a low budget for customer service lead to an accumulation of more and more unresolved tickets that can no longer be handled by service agents.

With this customer service customers must endure a very long waiting time, while in the worst case scenario, the company loses those dissatisfied customers to the competition.

Nearly every customer service has to deal with the following challenges:

  • Too many tickets come into customer service
  • There is a deficit of skilled agents and those existing service agents are not appropriately supported
  • only few processes are automated and the manual labor is too high

In this article we want to show you, how you can reduce your customer service with some simple changes.

1. Decrease incoming tickets

The first step to reducing the accumulated tickets in customer service is to ensure that fewer tickets are coming in. To do this, as much information as possible must be made available to customers on the website. This way, customers are able to get help even before they send the message to customer service. They also have the possibility of searching for a solution to their problems by themselves.

In order to effectively reduce incoming messages via the contact form or a support email address, there are a few factors that need to be considered. It is important to offer customers a clear and structured help page. Separating information into different categories helps customers to systematically search for a solution. The most crucial step is the correct layout of the help page and the FAQs. Customers have to find them quickly and easily without having to search. If the customer does not find an appropriate answer to their question on the help page, there should always be the option of contacting the company’s customer service.

Updating the help page continuously

Up until here, it is quite easy to apply the steps presented before. Unfortunately, it happens more often than not, that companies do not update the FAQs on their websites and only post general questions. As soon as a company adds a new product or promo (e.g. discount codes or sales) and the help page is not updated, there is an increase in traffic to customer service.

These updates can be a challenge, if more than one department is responsible for the creation and distribution of the new information. Because of this, it often happens that the information does not arrive on time or at all to customers, and service agents have to answer the same question over and over again manually. Clear and simple processes guarantee that new questions and topics can be regularly added.

Dynamic help pages with OMQ Help

In order to make your help page even better and help you implement a perfect help page, we have developed OMQ Help.

Our goal is to guide the customer to the right solution with self-service procedures. To do this, we developed an artificial intelligence that understands the customer requests no matter how this is formulated. We integrate OMQ Help on your help page and analyze the customers’ questions as soon as this is typed into the input field. Artificial intelligence finds a matching answer that is shown to the customer in real time under the input field.

OMQ Help reacts dynamically to the current behavior of customers. Questions, that being frequently asked, appear right on top of the FAQs. The current “top 3 question” are always shown under each category. So, when new products or promotions are launched and customers have had a particularly large number of questions about them, these are displayed in the top questions. Customers can thus find a suitable answer without having to search for it. In addition, autocomplete helps guide customers to the right answer when they enter their query. Up to 80 percent of customer queries are answered on the help page before they are sent.

2. Support service agents

Customers, who could not find an answer on your help page or who have an individual problem, can send a message over the contact form to customer service.

At this stage, it is important to support the service agents, so that customer requests can be answered faster and more structured. One main issue in customer service is that there are not enough qualified agents because there is a shortage of staff. Because of that, it is even more important to ensure that the existing agents are well-trained and have the same knowledge.

Agents, who do not have access to all the service knowledge, must ask their colleagues for the correct answer before they can give a solution to the customer. Customer services processes are then constantly being interrupted, customers receive wrong answers repeatedly and must for a long time wait, which harms both the quality of the service and the customer satisfaction.

Standard requests burden the service

In most cases service agents must spend a majority of their time answering standard inquiries again and again with the same solutions. These requests are responsible for the backlog gathering tickets constantly. Although the answers are always the same, handling them manually requires a lot of time. Customers expect nowadays faster answers and a 24/7 service. When customers are dissatisfied, there is also a higher chance for them to post their complaint online. Therefore, long waiting times or wrong answers can lead quickly to negative reviews.

Requests with one mouse-click solve - with OMQ Assist

In order to be able to relieve service agents even more, we developed a product, with which service tickets are answered automatically. OMQ Assist is a plug-in that integrates into existing ticket systems. OMQ Assist provides ready-made email templates to support service agents in answering inquiries. When opening the ticket the OMQ AI reads the e-mail automatically, understanding the intentions of the customer and suggests immediately a suitable solution.

The service agent selects one of the suggested answer options and creates a complete response mail. To do this, text modules are used and can be inserted directly into the e-mail to be sent immediately.

3. Comprehensive automation

As already said, simple standard inquiries such as „I forgot my password. What can I now do? “ make a large part of service inquiries. The answer: „Clicking it on this link, in order to put your password back.“ is the same for every customer. In order to be able to automate processes in customer service, a company must analyze which questions do the customers have and which are they asking the most. If the answers for these questions are automated, the service agents do not have to intervene in the process any longer nor answer the emails manually.

The central knowledge base matches the answers

The central OMQ knowledge base is the heart of our technology, which collects and distributes the service knowledge. It learns with help of artificial intelligence over all channels and becomes more precise with each inquiry. The system uses feedback from both customers and service agents.

In order to find out which questions are most frequently asked, our team performs a data analysis. With a half-automated process it analyzes which questions or topics are being most frequently asked. Questions that are not yet in the knowledge base, are then discovered and added afterwards.

This new information is immediately available in all supported channels, because all OMQ products are linked to the central knowledge base. This means that all communication channels are supplied with the same service knowledge

Interactive questions solved with the Automator

Other questions that are also cluttering the backlog, are the „interactive questions”, that require an action from the service agent. These are, for example: address changes, cancellations or information on the order status. In an analysis with our customers from the E-Commerce industry, we found that approximately 40% of the questions must be answered interactively.

With the OMQ products you can answer both recurring and interactive standard requests automatically. We developed the OMQ Automator to support service agents, so that they do not have to do the same action over and over again to answer interactive questions. With the additional functions of the OMQ Automator you can answer recurring interactive questions automatically. As soon as a customer enters his question about the order status, the intention is recognized. The Automator then offers to look up the order status for them and asks the customer for all the relevant information. The action is carried out automatically and sent to the customer. The manual answer by a service agent is not needed.

OMQ - More than one AI solution

With this simple tips and some adjustments you can already effectively reduce the number of incoming customer inquiries:

  • Design your help page to be clearly visible and keep the contents clear and updated.
  • Ensure that your service agents are always up-to-date with the latest knowledge and that it is managed centrally.
  • Consider the automation of the service processes, in order to finally empty their backlog.

Beside OMQ Assist (ticket system) and OMQ Help (help page), our AI-based software offers further solutions for different communication channels, such as: E-Mail, contact form and Chat as well as Messenger.

Our team is not only open to help you find the best software for your needs but can also improve your knowledge base with our data analysis. If you would like to know more about us or request a demo click here, we are happy to assist you! :)