How Technology Improves Empathy in the Enterprise Contact Center

Pete Humes's profile picture
Pete Humes Head of Content

Customer expectations may be evolving at a record pace, but some core ideas never change.

Empathy and a strong human connection rank as top priorities for customers. People want to be seen, heard and understood. If they have a problem, they want it solved.

Empathy is more than problem-solving with feelings – it involves connecting with customers on a deeper level, recognizing their emotions, and responding with understanding and care.

In customer service, companies that prioritize empathy foster stronger connections, build more trust, and encourage lasting customer loyalty.

Why Build an Empathy Strategy?

Empathy is more than a soft skill; it's a strategic asset. Customers who have a positive emotional experience with a brand are much more likely to become repeat customers.

There’s also a tangible impact on the bottom line. As studies have shown, companies that excel in delivering empathetic customer experiences grow faster than their less empathetic counterparts, often by significant margins.

According to research published in the Harvard Business Review, the top 10 companies in the Global Empathy Index in 2015 increased in value more than twice as much as the bottom 10 and generated 50% more in earnings.

Another recent study found that companies that excel in customer experience (CX) outgrow their competitors in revenue by a factor of 2.

Technology Can Facilitate Empathy

Technology is often associated with automation and efficiency, but it can help call center agents arm themselves with a deeper understanding of any given customer's emotions and needs. It helps them focus on the person behind the problem.

From AI-powered sentiment analysis to advanced communication channels, there are technologies that help agents better understand and connect with customers on a human level.

Empathy Tool #1: Informed CRM Systems

Every customer has a history. But nobody likes rehashing the past and customers get frustrated when a company’s memory comes up short. Customers need you to understand where they’ve been to help them get where they want to go.

Advanced analytics and customer relationship management (CRM) systems allow businesses to gather and understand vast amounts of customer data.

Empathy Tool # 2: NLP and Sentiment Analysis

What if your agents knew going into a service call not only what the issue was, but how the customer was potentially feeling?

Reading emotional tone is crucial to providing solid CX. Natural Language Processing (NLP) and sentiment analysis technologies enable organizations to assess the emotional tone and sentiment behind previous customer interactions.

Empathy Tool #3: Omnichannel Communication

Today's customers expect seamless and consistent experiences across multiple channel options. The advent of advanced communication channels such as live chat, social media, and chatbots allows for real-time and continuous engagement.

Empathy Tool #4: Multimodal Generative AI and Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) technologies and emerging multimodal generative AI offer exciting possibilities for empowering agents to provide immersive customer experiences and make the unspoken spoken.

Leverage Empathy to Build More Personalized Experiences

There are lots of stories about companies that have gone above and beyond to deliver exceptional service.

Zappos is famous for being obsessed with customer satisfaction. Their tales of the "best man's shoes" and the "10-hour service call" have become CX legends.

And the way online pet supplier Chewy emotionally connects with customers is making lifetime fans, melting hearts and raising the bar for corporate empathy.

But while those examples certainly give companies something to aspire to, the best first step is improving your customer experience.

One big key to that is personalization. Make your customers feel like people from the start and it will work out much better for everyone in the end.

In building SightCall VISION, our goal was to create a service solution that feels almost effortless.

Our thinking is that a more visual platform delivers a much better customer (and agent) experience and gives your team the tools to embrace a more empathetic kind of customer service.

We believe that:

By embedding empathy in customer service strategies, enterprise companies can create more personalized, engaging, and satisfying experiences, leading to increased loyalty and advocacy.

Got two minutes? We can show you how SightCall VISION works...

Next Up