The Key to B2B Customer Service Excellence is Internal Collaboration

September 21, 2020 | 3 minute read
Molly Ambrogi Yanson
Senior Product Manager, Global Marketing, Oracle CX
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Your customers have already completed their digital transformations. One only needs to look at today’s grocery-delivering robots to realize how quickly consumers embrace new technology to satisfy their thirst for instant gratification. While some businesses are quick to capitalize on these new innovations, many are struggling to keep up with their customers’ ever-evolving expectations. In fact, in an Oracle survey, 82% of customers report having disappointing experiences with brands. This is especially true for B2B organizations.

According to McKinsey, B2B customer experience index ratings significantly lag behind B2C—a gap that will grow as B2B expectations match their B2C counterparts. Why? For many B2B organizations, the pace of digital transformation is slowed by the very way we work.

How the pace of B2B digital transformation can be slowed by inefficient work processes

When your B2B customers have a question about their accounts, they want the answer quickly. Conditioned by B2C brands, they’re used to getting answers in seconds. And their job performance might hinge on that information. “As a result, they aren’t likely to tweet at you or search for a resolution on a FAQ page,” explains Danette Beal, Oracle B2B Service’s senior product manager. “Instead, they may pick up the phone to call the person they have a relationship with—the account or sales rep they met when they began doing business with you.” Therein lies the trouble.

The person who answers that phone call might not have access to the context needed to respond to the client at the drop of a hat. So they rely on the tools they have—email, phone, and messaging—to get those answers from their colleagues. But these tools are inherently slow and don’t provide the instant gratification your customers are looking for.

How to deliver superior B2B customer service experiences

To deliver excellent B2B customer service experiences, effective businesses empower their internal teams with digital collaboration tools. Everyone at your company plays a different yet vital role in nurturing customer relationships, but they don’t always have a 360-degree view of each account. By providing your internal teams with modern tools, they can seamlessly communicate with coworkers across lines of business—from sales and field service to parts, warranty, contracts, and billing.

In the latest 20C release, Oracle Sales and B2B Service integrated Slack collaboration software into the agent experience. Slack is the leading channel-based messaging platform used by millions to align their teams, unify their systems, and drive their businesses forward. The Slack platform helps break down the walls between siloed business units, encouraging faster digital communications between teams. This allows companies to resolve customer inquiries faster and with richer context, and to personalize interactions regardless if the customer is a top account or new account.

Traditionally, customer service requests were stuck inside the agent desktop. Conversations via email, phone, or messaging weren’t easily recorded as part of this experience. Now, they can be within Oracle’s CRM. When service request (SR) agents use Slack’s collaboration software as a communication channel, they can add additional details to the account.

Information captured by digital collaboration tools like the Slack platform can provide leadership with insights about which knowledge management articles need to be created or updated, or how to better train team members in the future. When combined together, this information can indicate customer health. During the course of the contract, a customer might give many signals about their unhappiness with a service or product, but because they interact with a large number of team members those clues may go unnoticed. By interpreting these signals, service teams can proactively work to ensure that the customer renews before their contract is up.

Internal digital collaboration is key to building account relationships

With internal collaboration tools, every team member can respond to a customer inquiry armed with updated knowledge and a 360-degree view of each account. As a result, customers can begin to shift their trust in and reliance on one relationship within the company to the entire business. By providing reliable, consistent, and personalized communications, B2B companies can begin to digitally transform and consumerize their experiences while fostering deeper account relationships.

To learn more about delivering collaborative and brand-building B2B customer service, download the latest Intelligent B2B Service eBook.

Watch this brief video to see how you can create engaging, self-service customer experiences with these new innovations in Oracle Service.

Molly Ambrogi Yanson

Senior Product Manager, Global Marketing, Oracle CX

Montana-based, Molly is an outdoor enthusiast and never too far from a mountain peak or river. At Oracle, she works on the CX Global Marketing Team, inspiring other CX professionals with storytelling. She's passionate about addressing the challenges today's businesses face, and loves highlighting their success. She's also busy researching the next groundbreaking trend impacting consumers, companies and CX professionals alike.

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