The basic purpose of contact centers, whether they are focused on incoming calls, outbound calls, SMS, chat, email, or social engagements, is to provide excellent customer service. Depending on their organizational requirements, contact centers may use various technologies, from simple to advanced.
We've identified the essential contact center solution technologies you should consider for your company. These technologies may assist firms in rethinking how they offer customers better service while using resources more efficiently.
1. Difficulties of Running a Contact Center
2. Technology's Role in Customer Service
3. 9 Key Contact Center Technologies to Provide Better Service
The role a contact center plays in producing income and decreasing expenditures for the business indicates contact center success. Yet, the influence of contact center operations may be difficult to correlate to a company's bottom line. It is complicated to calculate a company's return on investment (ROI) for contact center technology and operations. It considers not only the direct expenses and savings associated with recruiting, hiring, training, and integrating technology in contact center solution but also the "soft ROI." That is, businesses must evaluate the financial implications of intangible benefits brought by the contact center, such as the average 8% above-market sales increase achieved by companies whose contact center operations made consumers feel valued.
Companies confront distinct issues in the evolving environment of the contact center sector, including contact center solvency, customer service quality and consistency, and overall ROI of both insourced and third-party dedicated contact centers. Inadequate desktop technology/tools, high levels of CSA/agent turnover, overly high CSA workloads, poor cross-team cooperation, and insufficient or unavailable performance and accountability tools are the significant challenges to contact center operations. Each concern is an active danger (and an explicit improvement target) for more than one in every six contact centers, with many working to overcome numerous obstacles simultaneously. Furthermore, one in every seven contact centers will admit to having problems with contact channel integration, even though less than one-quarter has adopted an omnichannel strategy by current contact center industry best practices.
Historically, as soon as a new mass communication technology invention reaches the market, firms aim to utilize it to improve customer service quality. The use of technology in contact centers (originally called call centers) started in the early 1950s with the introduction of 1-800 lines (aka Toll-Free numbers). It continued with the introduction of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) technology in the 1970s, online databases in the 1980s, email in the 1990s, live chat and online helpdesks in the early 2000s, social media in the late 2000s, and now the expansion of self-service and AI-powered contact center technology in the 2020s. Although the notion of a "contact center" (rather than a "call center") is still relatively new, each of these technological advancements has pushed call centers closer to becoming contact centers. They built a pattern of customer-centric growth and enhanced multi-channel integration and availability that is now the standard for contact center operations.
Whether remote, hybrid, or office, agents need the most excellent tools to succeed in their positions and provide the best service possible. Here are ten must-have technologies and features to consider when looking for new contact center software.
Not every consumer wants to talk with a contact center representative. In reality, many individuals prefer to have their customer support issues resolved via self-service.
Help desk software enables contact centers to deliver omnichannel customer care. Customers communicate using the means they want, placing less burden on your agents—especially if you provide FAQs through online chatbots.
Customer service teams use help desk software to simplify the incoming ticketing system. They do not need additional software to handle tickets via emails, phone calls, or live chat messaging. All ticket registration takes place in a single location.
Few things are more crucial than security and data privacy in contact centers. Unfortunately, security policy management/enforcement and customer data protection are the top two issues for 70% of contact centers.
In truth, new vulnerabilities are discovered in call centers almost regularly. Cloud-based services may be vulnerable to hacking, agents fail to comply without recognizing it, and data breaches can cost your contact center millions. As a result, consumer privacy, data security, and regulatory compliance are critical to your firm and affect everyone.
You must employ various contact center solution technologies to maintain compliance, security, and data privacy. Call recording tools, QA scorecards, and CRM software may all assist you in significantly lowering your chance of a compromise. It all comes down to creating an audit trail for regulators and your IT department to protect yourself securely.
The appropriate clients must reach the right skilled agents. Because of this, customer routing is crucial. Contact center technology like an Automatic Call Distributor allows you to automatically route incoming calls to agents. Calls may be routed based on various variables, such as skills-based or round-robin. ACD follows the rules and logic you provide and takes care of the rest.
You may reply quicker, prevent queuing, limit wait times, eliminate call transfers, and enhance first call resolution when you have tools to assist you in automatically routing clients to the appropriate persons to serve them.
According to Cisco, 91% of contact centers believe that an integrated omnichannel experience is their call center's most valuable asset. Customers must be able to contact customer support in the manner, at the time, and via the channel of their choice.
However, omnichannel assistance extends beyond just responding to consumers across several platforms. That is the very bare minimum. Customers want a unified service no matter whatever channel they use to interact with your company, so they don't have to repeat themselves if they switch platforms or representatives. Communication through email, phone, and chat should flow smoothly.
Modern contact center solutions contain technology that is essential for providing omnichannel contact center support and maintaining a consistent customer user experience. Any representative working with a client should have access to all relevant client information to provide the service and results as the client requires. Omnichannel must be appropriately integrated with CRM, quality assurance, sales, and other back-end processes.
QA technology is one of your most potent tools for calculating return on investment in the call center solution. When applied effectively, it makes it simple to measure both hard and soft improvements, allowing you to enhance agent attrition, sales, customer churn, debtor days, agent engagement, and training efficacy.
You should be able to monitor, manage, and improve the following with the correct quality assurance technology:
C-Zentrix Admin tool is excellent for keeping tabs on KPIs that measure the success of your contact center's efforts to improve the customer service it provides and increase efficiency. C-Zentrix goes beyond just collecting performance statistics and offers a QA management framework, allowing you to act on every discovery.
Your QA technology should identify patterns and trends so that you may make more informed business choices based on real-time data.
Digital scorecards are one of the most effective methods for assessing your call center agents, customer experience, business processes, and overall contact center performance. They give critical input you cannot get in any other manner, allowing you to uncover contact center trends, identify areas for development, find best practices, and raise customer happiness.
The trick is to employ fully customized scorecards designed just for your contact center. The scorecard should correspond to your company objectives, agent strengths and weaknesses, and the components you consider most important to success—which is why using a scorecard template is a terrible idea.
Instead, your digital scorecards should be created based on your company's goals and the industry in which you operate. Just be sure to include at least four critical topics for frequent review:
Soft skills for agents include communication ability, professionalism, emotional intelligence, problem-solving ability, and trust.
Call Center Processes:
It includes how calls are answered and ended, how the CRM is updated, and how suitable incentive is provided.
Compliance includes identity and validation, credit check processing, and vulnerable consumer security.
It includes how effectively your agents fulfilled set targets, resolved customer issues, followed all protocols, and promoted sales.
Data analytics and reporting are necessary for a thriving contact center. 90% of call centers see customer journey data analytics as an essential contact center task. Therefore, analytics and reporting software are some of the most significant developments in contact center technology.
When running a contact center, it is no longer sufficient for a single manager to monitor staff output and customer satisfaction. However, even if humans keep an eye on things that help, you'll still need a lot more information to operate your contact center properly. Robust analytics that can access in real-time is essential for making rapid adjustments.
62% of contact centers plan to use cloud technology during the next 18 months, as reported by the 2020 Global Contact Center Survey. And in the aftermath of the coronavirus epidemic, cloud and remote-based contact centers have become the standard.
Cloud and remote-based contact centers are more economical for organizations (they reduce administrative expenses) and provide more flexibility. With more flexible working hours, agents may have a better work/life balance, and your contact center is not tied to a particular location. With the cloud, your company may extend across geographical boundaries and time zones to attract a wider talent pool while maintaining excellent customer service.
Mobile functioning is also an essential component. Agents may not always be seated in front of their laptops. That is why a mobile app and VoIP let your agents manage calls and other customer interactions on their cell phones is just as critical. Even if you use this as a backup option, it's a valuable function.
While replacing people in the contact center is challenging, AI and robotic automation may help with day-to-day activities. As a result, more than 80% of contact centers regard bots and AI as critical to their operations.
Artificial intelligence is a technology in contact center solution that assists in understanding your clients' "why and what." What is the purpose of their communication with you? What do your consumers desire? Then, without your intervention, AI handles the simple and uncomplicated demands. It automates the voice or chat conversations, allowing your agents to concentrate on more critical activities.
The idea is to employ AI to supplement, but not to replace your human workers. You should use it to automate everyday operations that consume time and energy but do not need a human touch. Conversational AI chatbots, for example, may assist you in identifying clients and their requirements for better routing and processing.
The future of contact center solutions is intended to enhance customer experience, efficiency, and profitability. It is intended to assist your employees in spending less time on administrative activities and more on the things essential to their success.
There are several approaches to increase the efficiency of your contact center, including omnichannel support, QA technologies, digital scorecards, data analytics, and reporting, cloud software, and AI in the Contact Center. The trick is to use the most innovative contact center technology for your requirements and to stay on top of the newest developments.
If you can use technology to provide them with what they want, you will be successful beyond your wildest dreams.
Author Bio: Akshay