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Financial services overhaul customer service

US - Who would have thought the meltdown in financial services could fuel the overhaul of the industry's customer service departments? Actually, it's just one of several factors driving companies to put customer service initiatives on the fast track in pursuit of compelling business advantage.

The subprime mortgage crisis is changing the face of many financial services organisations, where stock prices are dropping and competitive pressures are surging. For these companies - and the rest of the industry - customer service improvements hold the promise of competitive differentiation and customer retention.

Now, the challenge is how to finance those improvements when the state of the market dictates cutting costs, not increasing them. The challenge is amplified by the state of IT in most financial services companies. For many, Y2K projects were the last technology update. These IT departments are trying to wring more value out of technology that's eight to 10 years old.

Moving customer service offshore is no longer an option. Companies have either done it or read the horror stories of competitors that have. Bottom line, most companies lose customers when they outsource customer service and retention. The money saved is outweighed by the costs of customer defections.

To deliver superior customer service that builds customer loyalty and provides a competitive edge, most financial services companies will turn to call centre and contact centre technologies. Of course, technology can be implemented several ways, some more efficient and cost-effective than others.

Read the full article here.

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