Enabling Self-Service Technology – Its ROI & Empowerment, for CFOs, CIOs & CTOs: ROI for Beginners

There are obvious benefits when organizations can empower users to perform tasks that would otherwise fall to an employee. Organizations see a clear return on investment, which we will dive into in this series, but it’s important to know that users also benefit. 

To show you how return on investment (ROI) and user empowerment go together, we’ll also highlight some real-world examples. Learn why self-service technology is advantageous to organizations like yours, then see how it works in real life. 

Time Savings with Automatic Routing

One of the first benefits your organization will see from self-service technology is time savings. Everyone who works with users knows that requests can take time, especially if they have to be routed continually to various people or departments. 

Now imagine a self-service system in which users can put in their tickets or service requests, which are then automatically routed to the appropriate contact person. There’s no need for your staff to pick up requests that have nothing to do with them. Instead, details are routed to where they need to go right away, saving time and getting issues handled correctly the first time.

Quick Submission

With a self-service system, users of the portal can quickly submit details of their requests using nested drop-down categories and options. This means there are time savings on the customer side as well, which is perhaps more important than you might think.

According to a Microsoft report, customers want their issues resolved the first time and don’t want to repeat the same information across various channels. In fact, 58 percent of the customers surveyed said they have stopped doing business with an organization due to poor service, including having to repeat themselves. With quick submission and automated routing, everyone is happy on both sides of the screen. 

Rapid Resolution and Incentivized Response 

Along with time savings and quick submission, when you implement self-service technology, your organization should also see a rapid resolution of requests. There are performance metrics and similar safeguards built into eWorkflow features of portals like our own. These safeguards include features to promote accountability, meet service level agreements, and handle audit integrity. It is easy to see that things are working correctly — and easy to take action if they are not.

For end-users, this ties into the benefits of quick submission and automatic routing of requests. Your customers can rest assured that the help they need will come to them with little delay, and oversight to ensure it. Customer service is improved, which means customer satisfaction is improved.

An MIT Sloane paper highlights how important transaction speed is to customers, with a strong influence on satisfaction for the end-user. They note commonly used self-service technology that is designed to improve response time. That tech includes passport kiosks at airports, registration renewal kiosks at the DMV, and self-serve mail kiosks at post offices. These are physical self-serve portals, of course, but the benefits apply broadly. 

On the organization’s side of things, you now have data that shows you how your staff are handling issues. This means you can praise and incentivize responsiveness to service requests backed by actual data. And, if it turns out that requests are not being handled as well as they could be, you will have data on that as well.

Real-World ROI

Arrowhead General Insurance Agency implemented a self-service phone system, freeing up customer service representatives to focus on complex needs. Customer hold times decreased significantly, allowing the company to help more people faster. Naturally, customer satisfaction jumped up with this change, as people no longer had to wait endlessly or repeat themselves to numerous agents.

The ROI is clear: thanks to the speed and rapid resolution self-service technology allows, Arrowhead has more than doubled its volume of business. Better yet, they managed this growth without having to scale the number of customer service representatives. 

In another situation, a Canadian municipal utility determined that simple calls for moving in or out or changes in contact information could be handled with self-service technology. Bill payments, account history questions, and wanting to sign up for automated payments also fell into the category of self-service. 

It worked — within a year, the company exceeded portal registration goals by 110 percent, with a 20 percent increase in self-serve use. The company also saw cost savings, with a 65 percent reduction in call center traffic freeing up operational funds. See how we can impact your organization for the better with GroupLink Self-Service PortalWorkflow Process and Incident Tracking, and GroupLink for SafestSchools. Each of these platforms offers excellent eWorkflow, work from home, and IT service management capabilities.

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