More technology not always equals better CX

In a start-up and technology focused world, many businesses and organizations look to technology to be the solution to all problems. While I am a ardent technologist, I do not blindly apply technology as if it was a panacea for all types of problems.

Customer experience is a complex beast. Everyone knows how fickle-minded consumers are so organizations stymied by CX issues look to technology as a solution.

Remember when smartphones took off after the launch of the first iPhone in 2007, organizations rushed to app developers to stake a piece of icon on the user’s device. They didn’t care if the app was useful to the user. I had a small team of developers around 2010 and we had requests from many businesses about building apps. While it was good money, none of them could answer my two simple key questions:

  1. What utility, convenience, or entertainment does your app provide to the user?
  2. Would the user access the app regularly or often enough?

I didn’t even ask about updates or content – in the end, many of those apps faded away. Voice IVR was another interesting development. In the era of online, on-demand and mobile centric world, Voice IVR seem like an anachronism. For banks however, it is, for now, by regulations, a requirement. Pressing numbers for your selection is the norm but with Alexa and Google voice systems, that seems like the next step for IVRs.

A major global bank rolled it out in 2018 and every time I’m forced to use it, it becomes a major pain point. The choices were limited, the voice recognition technology primitive. Honestly, the reason I call is because the functionality isn’t available online. The only exception I would give here was if you had lost your bank card or credit card. Of course, with digital payment options, a physical card is also going away soon. A lost card is often critical enough that a phone call makes sense and thankfully, the CX for that with this bank worked perfectly. Any other transaction, and it fails often – resulting in terrible CX.

So, while it’s tempting to take that latest tech and throw it into your organizations toolkit or customer service processes, do pause a moment to evaluate the impact. Better yet, if you’ve actually done a proper Customer Journey map, you already have the evaluation tools to see if the tech would fit or needed more work to fit in.