It's good to talk
I recently read an article in The Marketer titled “It’s good to talk” regarding the state of customer service and how enterprises should be increasing their online presence of user support. The article provided many good tips for readers to actively pursue, such as the importance of being proactive about providing customer support, benefits of enabling a chat feature to decrease call center costs and choosing the right provider. However, it fell short in one very important area—translation.
Providing customer support in a multitude of languages need not be expensive. The tools one utilizes while providing multilingual support can actually help decrease an enterprise’s costs. Take a call center for example. Many support agents are “monolingual,” meaning they must pass foreign speaking customers off to other agents that can properly assist them. This is inefficient, time-consuming, and costly because companies must have staff to support every language spoken by their customers. If the call center began using an automated translation technology, that same call center agent that only speaks one language would be enabled to instantly translate all incoming and outgoing support conversations –such as live chat and emails - with the click of his/her mouse.
Andy Reid, who commented on the article I am referencing noted, “Customer experience is more than talking to customers. It's about communicating with them in their own language to offer the information and services they need.”
The BBC has a dedicated section to fun facts about languages where they’ve concluded that there are up to 7,000 different languages spoken around the world. That fact shows that translation cannot merely be an option for those considering customer service; the diversity of the world’s population makes translation a necessity.