Case Management and Customer Churn

Just off the phone to my mobile phone service provider and I’ve got to say it wasn’t a great customer experience. To give you some background my mobile contract has expired and I’ve decided to go join the Android house party and ditch the stuffy formal world of Apple. Prior to the call I did some basic market research to compare the deals on offer and found I was able to get the best deal with a different service provider.

During the call I requested my PAC (port authorisation code) which is required to move my number to another provider. As expected the call agent, understanding that I was now thinking of leaving their network said she could offer me some “extra special” loyalty offers to persuade me to stay. In the end the loyalty offers were exactly what I could obtain directly from their web page and I explained to the agent that none of her offers matched or beat competing quotes I had received from other network providers.

In the end the agent unable to match the competing offers available elsewhere or offer something of additional value.  Reluctantly the agent provided me with my PAC number but asked me to wait until after Christmas when they might have something better to offer me.  They’ve now lost a high value customer (iPhone contracts aren’t cheap).

This is a classic customer churn scenario and one ripe for Case Management. For starters the agent was not empowered by her management to offer me anything better than I could find on their web page. She was clearly tied to an inflexible process where she could only offer what was published. She had no access to competitor price data in order to compare her offer with the offer I’d received from one of her competitors. She didn’t offer to pass my case to a  senior manager with authority to make a bespoke offer.

With a Case Management application here’s how this scenario could have played out.

  1. Once contacted the agent should be able to validate the offer I’ve received from her competitors. Case Management solutions must integrate with a variety of data sources both internal and external to the organisation and present this in context to the employee. In this scenario the Case Management would provide the customer agent with not only the customer details and history extracted from their CRM system but also integrate to 3rd party data sources to provide real time competitive data to the agent.
  2. Having validated my competitive offer the agent should try and match or better it with one of their own published offers.
  3. If a match or better offer is not possible the agent should have the authority to decide whether to provide an improved offer to the customer in order to retain them. This decision could be made based on a variety of data made available to the agent via the Case Management System, for example customer payment history, potential lifetime value, other family contracts, demographic data, usage type or potential for upsell.
  4. Should the agent not be empowered to make an improved offer or if the business benefit is unclear the case management application should allow the agent to immediately contact or collaborate with a supervisor (for example via instant messaging) during the call to obtain a rapid final decision on whether to try and retain the customer.

It is well known that it costs more to obtain a new customer than retain an existing customer. Customers are unpredictable and in order to retain customers businesses processes must allow employees to manage this unpredictability. That’s where Case Management can help.