Customer needs are constantly evolving.
Continual improvements in technology and service mean that the benchmark for excellent customer support is perpetually reaching new levels and businesses must stay ahead of the curve to meet customer expectations.
One way to achieve greater customer satisfaction and retention is by adopting a more collaborative approach to your customer support.
In this article, we'll cover:
- What is a customer service collaboration tool?
- Key benefits of customer service collaboration tools
- Examples of customer service collaboration tools
- What are the best collaboration tools for customer service teams?
- How to choose the right collaboration tool for teams
- Why is RingCentral the best collaboration tool for customer service teams?
- The integrations that customer service teams need
What is a customer service collaboration tool?
Customer support software enables support agents to build better relationships with their customers. Whether it be by offering omnichannel communications, so customers can choose their preferred means of contact, or an intelligent ticketing software, like Zendesk, that enables better visibility of customer data, using the right tools for your customer support teams is crucial.
When it comes to online collaboration tools, well-chosen software solutions can be hugely powerful. Helping to streamline your internal teams’ collaboration processes, a good customer service collaboration tool will also significantly enhance the journey for your customers and other stakeholders.
Key benefits of customer service collaboration tools
Effective team collaboration becomes much easier with the right communication tools in place.
Well-chosen communication tools can benefit a broad scope of businesses. Whether you’re a global enterprise with remote teams and disparate offices or a small business looking to provide a better customer experience, effective collaboration could be the key. Here are our top three benefits for better collaborative software:
- Providing a better customer experience
Delivering quick responses that are customised and personalised to each customer, means you significantly improve the customer journey. This leads to a better sense of customer satisfaction and longevity.
- Driving agent success and engagement
Empowering your customer support agents with the tools that help them to streamline their workflows and collaborate more effectively, could help you to foster an environment of productivity and progression, could help you to attract better talent, and reduce turnover.
- Seizing the opportunity to scale
Customizable collaboration tools give businesses the chance to grow in accordance with their customer requirements and evolving needs. A well-chosen collaboration tool allows you to develop a customer-centric strategy and build better agility into your future plans.
Examples of customer service collaboration tools
Customer service collaboration tools don’t have to be used to communicate externally with customers, they can also be used to liaise with other stakeholders and employees. This means it’s important to choose a platform that allows for different channels to suit different types of contact.
Here are some of the key channels your customer service collaboration tools should feature:
Quickly becoming the channel of choice for many consumers, messaging apps such as WhatsApp have shaped the way we communicate in recent years.
Tapping into the convenience of such apps, customer support collaboration tools have been designed to allow consumers to contact their favourite brands and businesses in the same way that they would chat with a friend.
The traditional channel we know and love, phone support remains a popular channel for customer queries and is a good channel for resolving customer issues in real-time. Allowing agents to present a more human element to their service, call centre features such as intelligent call routing, call recordings and monitoring allow your support team to be more reactive but also proactive, and strategic.
Email, much like phone support is a core channel for many businesses’ customer service. Historically, many businesses have used email as a primary way to communicate with their customers and it remains a channel of choice for many customers wanting to reach a support agent without speaking to someone in real-time.
Quickly becoming one of the most popular channels for solving customer queries in real-time. What’s more, live chat allows customers already on your website to quickly fire a question as they browse or use your business’s mobile app. Advancements in technology have meant businesses can save time and money on resources and make use of chatbots to deal with customer interactions around the clock.
Knowledge base software
Your knowledge base software, online customer portal or forum channel can also be used as an effective customer support channel. With more of a self-service approach to delivering a better customer experience, support teams can save time and resources while empowering clients and stakeholders to resolve their own queries and issues.
Customer relationship (CRM) software
Using a CRM, such as Salesforce, helps businesses to centralise communications with their customers. This can help to significantly streamline your workflows enabling agents to message, phone, and email customers without having to waste time switching between platforms.
To allow a truly seamless customer journey and friction-free experience for agents to efficiently communicate and collaborate, businesses need to adopt the right technology to get a view of all customers across all channels in a single platform. Providing a customer’s historical data is crucial when it comes to customer relations, so being able to access the context of every customer contact.
What are the best collaboration tools for customer service teams?
For any effective support department, great teamwork is key. RingCentral is designed for efficient team collaborations at the core, helping agents deliver more collaborative customer service and a journey that suits the individual needs of each customer.
Enabling support teams to get real-time help from other agents within the team, means your staff can resolve tricky customer issues quickly. Integrating with solutions such as Zendesk, employees can monitor tickets efficiently and use a single platform for all their customer support needs. Allowing agents to jump straight on a call with their customers directly from the mobile app, store FAQ documents or scripts and support guidelines, RingCentral even offers unlimited video calls so you can deliver a personalised, human element to your customer journey.
A popular platform for customer support teams for its ease of use and customisation capabilities, Zendesk allows businesses of all sizes to build seamless customer journeys and access all channels easily for greater productivity of their own agents.
Zendesk’s Agent workspace empowers agents by providing all the tools they need to help them collaborate and deliver customised responses to their customers on any of their chosen channels, all from one unified dashboard.
Sprout Social is a reputable social media management and monitoring tool designed to help brands to optimise their brand. The platform allows agents to oversee engagement, sales, and general monitoring as well as customer support elements to deliver their social media strategy from one centralised location, to enable more connected communication workflows and task management between respective social media teams and agents
Another popular social media tool, Hootsuite’s platform and dashboard interface supports integrations for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube. Revered for its intelligent scheduling features, Hootsuite also allows agents to post, and monitor content across multiple social platforms from one accessible dashboard.
Mailchimp’s email marketing platform and marketing automation functionality have become a core part of many marketer’s toolkit in recent years. The easy-to-use templates allow businesses to generate, design, automate and send customised communications to customers, partners, employees and other stakeholders and monitor the success of each campaign using intelligent tracking features.
With intuitive integrations such as Zendesk or other customer support software, teams can target specific customer segments and achieve better customisation, making the customer journey more streamlined and easier to monitor for your customer support teams.
Slack has quickly become one of the most popular software tools for internal instant messaging communications, but the tool can also be used by internal customers or partners to seamlessly access support from IT, HR, or a dedicated customer support team.
When the platform is integrated with dedicated customer service software, Slack also allows agents to communicate more efficiently, collaborating faster with their team internally to resolve tickets and inquiries. Integration with AI-powered bots would also allow stakeholders to obtain a self-service approach to their own queries, without using too much resource time.
One of the most reputable CRM systems in the industry, HubSpot enables users to fully manage the relationship with their customers, helping guide them from the point of a potential new lead to a long-standing client.
HubSpot’s broad range of solutions are designed to suit any business size and model, covering the three core pillars of sales, marketing, and service.
The HubSpot service hub is dedicated to aiding support teams in managing and monitoring customer issues using the ticketing-style format. Their popular features include ticketing, live chat, chatbots, team email, and a dedicated conversations mailbox.
Zoho Desk is a context-aware customer support software designed to help business teams arm themselves with necessary customer knowledge and deliver a smoother customer journey from start to finish. Offering dedicated tools for sales, marketing, email, accounting, HR, collaboration, finance, and general business intelligence, Zoho Desk is particularly popular for its help desk software, which allows agents to easily manage and close customer support tickets with a context-centric approach.
Jira Service Suite
Jira’s help desk software enables IT or support teams to benefit from a number of off-the-shelf integrations with platforms to provide a bespoke service desk environment that suits the nature of their client base or users. Adapted from the original Jira software, their dedicated service suite helps agents by making project management, tracking and collaboration much easier in a more friction-free online environment.
How to choose the right collaboration tool for teams
Good collaboration depends on the tools you use and the way you use them as part of your company culture and team ethos.
It’s important to make sure you choose the solutions that fit well with your strategy, the type of customers you serve, and allow your team to scale according to demand.
RingCentral’s collaboration platform allows your support team to collaborate internally while integrating with all your customer support solutions to help you deliver friction-free communications for your employees and your customers.
Why is RingCentral the best collaboration tool for customer service teams?
With a platform that allows you to share files, conduct video conferencing and communications such as live chat all in one platform, users benefit from the ability to access all the information they need to deliver customer satisfaction from one unified platform.
The RingCentral platform is designed for ease of use. The intuitive interface allows agents of all abilities to adopt and familiarise themselves with all features quickly and efficiently.
The open API allows you to discover, install and build off-the-shelf or customised integrations with your other key marketing and customer service tools to empower agents to take advantage of all your indispensable functions from one centralised location.
3. Secure & scalable collaboration
The RingCentral platform offers your agents much more than just a phone system. Built to be an integral part of your business infrastructure, our platform offers seven layers of security, keeping your business and customer data safe while allowing a flexible foundation to scale your operations in the long term.
4. Designed for agent productivity
Our unified platform is designed for optimising productivity. Providing a user experience that lends itself to streamlining agent’s workflows is a crucial aspect of empowering employees and improving your team output.
5. All-in-one workspace for customer service teams
Our holistic range of features provides the perfect virtual working environment for customer support teams, whether they are based in the office or at home.
Message team members for real-time answers
Instant messaging allows you to secure answers or a different point-of-view on customer challenges from your colleagues.
Meet your teams in one-click
With unlimited video calls, you can get valuable face-time with your fellow team members from wherever you are using the iOS, android, or desktop app.
Unlimited file sharing and saving
Whether it’s saving a product manual or a video training file for onboarding new agents, RingCentral allows agents to benefit from all the documents you need at your fingertips.
Support customers or clients anytime, anywhere
With our intuitive mobile app, in addition to RingCentral’s desktop version, your agents can jump on a call, address tickets and even video call from wherever they are in the world.
6. With plans and pricing that meets customer service teams needs
Our comprehensive pricing covers your budget, whether you’re a global enterprise of a small local business looking for a better way to support your customers.
Discover RingCentral solutions
Uncover some of the key elements that make RingCentral a popular choice for businesses looking to streamline customer support.
Our video conferencing feature allows colleagues to connect face-to-face or personalise their approach to customer support.
Cloud phone system
Moving your phone system to the cloud allows your teams to benefit from intelligent call routing, call recording, and monitoring your metrics all in one place.
With skills-based routing, agent management and real-time insights empower your contact centre agents and allow you to provide immediate, well-informed customer service every time.
The integrations that customer service teams need
Bringing your customer service tools together gives the control back to your customer support team. Here are some of the key tools that your customer service agents might need at their fingertips to deliver an exceptional customer journey:
RingCentral Pulse™ for Contact Centre
RingCentral Pulse allows your team to monitor key stats and address customer issues in real-time.
Import your tickets from Zendesk into the RingCentral app and monitor your customer support from within one unified platform.
Post updates and messages from your ServiceNow account straight into your RingCentral team chat.
Calendars integration means you’ll never miss an important meeting. Pull your events and alerts from Google or Microsoft Outlook calendars straight into your RingCentral team chats.
With a Userlike integration, your teams get notified each time a new Userlike event is launched so your teams can quickly respond.
Originally published May 21, 2021, updated Jul 23, 2021
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