Contact Center Pipeline January 2023 January 2023 - Page 45

STRATEGY
• The solutions can be accessed by agents , supervisors , support staff , and offices from anywhere with a reliable broadband internet connection . This makes it easy for businesses to maintain a global presence without needing multiple on-premise contact centers .
• Cloud-based contact centers are more reliable than on-premise solutions since they are not reliant on a single physical location . If there is an issue with one data center , businesses can switch to another with little to no interruption in service .
Contact centers must look at the services ' prices and the other features each service provider offers before committing .
Still , some contact centers may want to move to the cloud gradually , just in case something doesn ' t fit well , such as integrations of specific components with their CRM , and have a way to return to the legacy on-premise solutions as a backup plan .
Further , some centers may research solution vendors that can salvage some of their existing on-premise solutions .
The best decision on whether and how to go to the cloud will vary depending on each call or contact center ' s situation . However , taking the time to carefully consider options will help ensure you make the right one for your organization .
OMNICHANNEL CONTACT CENTERS
As the world becomes more connected , customers expect to be able to reach out to companies through their preferred channels . This could be through messaging , social media , chat , phone , video , or even in person . And companies are starting to take notice .
More and more contact centers are adopting an omnichannel approach . This means that they are offering customer support through multiple channels , thereby providing a better customer experience ( CX ), as customers can choose the channel that they are most comfortable with .
DEATH OF THE TRADITIONAL CALL CENTER
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the trend toward remote work , likely leading to the death of the traditional call center .
Agents adapted to , and for the most part , liked , the new-found freedom of not having to commute , especially in the evenings , nights , and on weekends and holidays .
When I took calls and worked the last shift , just a handful of us in the call center walked to our cars at night . It was a bit scary because the panhandlers lurking behind the pillars would suddenly jump out .
AS THE WORLD BECOMES MORE CONNECTED , CUSTOMERS EXPECT TO BE ABLE TO REACH OUT TO COMPANIES THROUGH THEIR PREFERRED CHANNELS .
However , with remote work , folks are in the safety of their own homes . They also can save on gas and reduce commute time . We had an agent who drove at least two hours one way to get to work ; now , she doesn ' t have to do that and loves it .
The rise of the virtual contact center is quickly taking its place . This new contact center allows agents to work from anywhere ( WFA ) worldwide , which significantly benefits businesses .
The traditional call center was based on having a physical location where agents could come to work . This was often in a large office building with hundreds or even thousands of other agents . The cost of running a traditional call center was high regarding the rent for the physical space and the necessary equipment .
On the other hand , the virtual contact center is based on having agents WFA in the world . This could be from their homes , co-working spaces , or anywhere else with an internet connection .
There are many benefits to the virtual contact center . One of the enormous benefits is that it allows businesses to expand their customer base globally . With agents worldwide , companies can offer customer support in multiple languages , which is a massive benefit for businesses that want to expand their reach and grow their customer base .
Another benefit of the virtual contact center is that it gives businesses more flexibility . With agents working from home ( WFH ), companies can offer customer support outside regular business hours . This is a great benefit for businesses that want to support their customers 24 / 7 .
Equally , if not more critically , the WFA contact center especially enables businesses to overcome commuting distance limitations on the size of labor pools .
In this era of the Great Resignation and shrinking workforces , businesses cannot afford to restrict the supply and availability of high-quality potential employees . Especially these workers want to WFA .
Critically , a virtual contact center enables businesses to provide essential customer information and support and facilitate business when disasters threaten and strike , saving lives .
Customers may not be aware that a fire or a tornado hit a traditional call center . They know they can ' t get through and are understandably upset .
But an earthquake in California will not harm an agent WFH in Colorado . Similarly , neither will a hurricane hitting South Carolina force an agent in South Dakota to evacuate their home .
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