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Social Media May Mitigate Negative Word-of-Mouth Criticism, Says CFI

CFI Group's Call Center Satisfaction Index examines the increased use of social media to comment on the call center experience.

Social media may be blunting the negative impact that word-of-mouth criticism has across industries -- including financial services -- says CFI Group. In its fifth annual Call Center Satisfaction Index, the provider of customer feedback management solutions looks at the increased use of social media to comment on the call center experience.

The study says that while a bad experience with a call center may increase the odds that someone will tell others, the number of related positive posts on social media sites seem to be outweighing the number of complaints in volume.

"What we are seeing is that if you have a bad experience, you post it once on Facebook for all to see and then you're done with it," said Terry Redding, director of development and delivery for CFI Group, in an explanation of the report. "By the same token, we are seeing good experiences posted in the same way. In fact, we’ve observed that positive comments generally outweigh negative ones almost as a rule."

The study also looked at general customer satisfaction with call centers and asked people to rate their experiences based on a number of factors, the highest score being 100. In the financial industry, customers rated their overall customer satisfaction at 77. They rated the demeanor of the call center representatives as the highest-scoring category, giving it an 85 for elements involving courteousness, friendliness and professionalism. Financial customers rated the contact process, or being able to explain their issues, as the most important element of customer satisfaction.

Across industries, the study shows that all centers that can provide first-call-resolution and minimize call transfers generally score much higher than ones that don't.

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