Several months into the COVID-19 pandemic, customer service organizations are still facing unprecedented operational challenges as customer expectations are redefined. With sky-high demand for technical support alongside widespread safety concerns, we carried out an in-depth study of what consumers in the UK want when it comes to Engineer visits and remote assistance and how the upcoming rollout of vaccines is expected to change consumer sentiment towards remote assistance.
- Demand for technical support is currently very high: Almost three-quarters (73%) of UK consumers have required technical assistance during the pandemic. In a majority (40%) of cases, support was provided remotely – either over the phone (40%), over video call (17%) or with the engineer dropping off equipment and remotely guiding the customer from a safe distance (16%).
- Consumers are uncomfortable with allowing technicians into their homes: Almost three-quarters (73%) would rather avoid engineer visits due to safety concerns unless it’s really necessary, almost half (44%) would allow an outdoor visit only, and almost 2 in five (38%) would avoid the visit in any case.
- Remote Visual Assistance is emerging as a key technology for tech support during the COVID-19 crisis: 18% of consumers who required tech assistance were remotely guided by an engineer using video.
- The vaccine rollout is expected to shape consumer expectations regarding technician visits and affect their brand loyalty: When it comes to providing on-site support in the future, 45% of respondents say they would prefer to know the technician was vaccinated, and 34% said they would allow the visit only if the technician was vaccinated. Almost half (49%) said they would give preference to a brand that encourages their technicians to be vaccinated, but it seems the vaccine may not be enough: 42% of consumers indicated that they would prefer to get remote support and avoid technician visits even after the pandemic
As we move into 2021 with the COVID-19 pandemic, customer service organizations are still facing unprecedented operational challenges. U.S. consumers remain uncomfortable with allowing service technicians into their homes, and no change is in sight despite the ongoing vaccination rollout. One thing is clear: consumers expect service companies to meet their safety concerns during this time and beyond, and these concerns are becoming critical to company loyalty in this new environment.
For full access to the UK survey that explores the changing customer expectations for service delivery due to the COVID-19 pandemic, download the comprehensive report now