Compassion. Professionalism. Diplomacy. Optimism. Over the past year, I’ve witnessed firsthand our front stage teams using an incredible mix of these skills in their support roles for different companies and government agencies.

One example that has really stayed with me took place when our teams were supporting disaster relief during the floods. One of our Customer Service Representatives (CSRs) was talking to a man whose house had been destroyed, his cat had died in the floods, he had his dog under his arm, he was calling from his mobile phone, and he had no money left and this CSR just so beautifully took him through ‘it’s going to be okay, here’s what we are going to do’. It was so masterful and so human, and such an important interaction.

It is moments like these that keep me on the path to finding ways to use technology that free people to focus on what really matters.

Datacom's Stacey Tomasoni headshot
Datacom Connect Managing Director Stacey Tomasoni: "The right technology and solutions can allow your people to spend more time doing the things that make a meaningful difference for your customers."

Focusing our time on the most human tasks

Enabling our people to bring their full attention, compassion and intellect to complex customer interactions and support roles is one example where every minute counts. But there are thousands of other examples where we want human effort focused on the most important parts of their job and not absorbed by low-stakes administrative functions that technology could fulfil.

What if a clinician were freed up to spend more time with a patient who needed more time? What if a claims assessor had the opportunity to focus solely on complicated claims, or to apply data and analytics to pinpoint preventative actions in common accidents? What if a bio-security officer could invest more energy in research and investigation and less on paperwork?

And what would that do to our value proposition as employers in this highly competitive market for talent if, for example, we could deliver on this promise to all our candidates: ‘There is space to bring the best version of yourself to work every day as you are guaranteed to be spending more time doing the stuff you love and working at the edges of your capability. Capability that we’ll ensure you have the opportunity to build on.’

It is a bold promise, but it is what we should all be aiming for if we want the best for our people and our customers.

Unlocking better experiences for employees and customers

Every organisation we work with has goals and ambitions that are unique to their team. But two common goals that we see time and time again are that companies want to empower their team to focus on work that matters, and they want to give their customers really exceptional experiences.

And this is where technology is at its most powerful. The right technology and solutions can allow your people to spend more time doing the things that make a meaningful difference for your customers.

There is no replacement for genuine human connection, so the best use of technology focuses on automating or digitising administrative tasks and more basic transactional interactions, while freeing up your teams to spend time engaging with customers more deeply when it matters most.

What could this freeing up of your people look like in practice? Automating billing and booking processes to free clinical staff to spend longer in face-to-face consultations. Digitising the triage process for customer calls to reduce wait times and direct calls to the right support staff. Creating automated communication and updates on customer enquiries – noting that typically at least 40% of an organisation’s total customer demand comes from follow-up enquiries or “failure demand” as John Seddon labelled this back in the early nineties. All of these are small changes that can shift our people’s focus away from admin and towards work that can fundamentally shift outcomes for our customers.

Investing time and resources in enabling your people to focus on meaningful work matters more than ever right now. Why? We are in a tight job market and people have options about where they work and that is set to continue for some time. Enabling your people to spend time on the parts of their role that make a difference will drive massive improvements in their sense of purpose and emotional connection to their work.

We are also facing increasingly high expectations around customer experiences and engagement and we can only meet those expectations if we lean into the strengths of our people in critical, human-centred roles and use technology to do the heavy lifting on formulaic functions, admin and data tasks, and to enable scale.

Enabling your people to focus on the most fulfilling and impactful parts of their role can change the way they feel about their work and make a real difference in the experiences of your customers.

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