Welcome to a world full of virtual communication!
Well, I am old school, I prefer picking up the phone, punching in a few numbers, and talking over a voice call with my loved ones. I even use my phone sometimes to call the contact centers in case I particularly need to rant about a bad product or service. I may almost belong to the baby boomer generation, but the millennial generation is way too fast. Looking around today in 2020, when practically everybody is connected in the virtual world, it definitely makes sense for the contemporary organizations to amp their game and have reliable unified communication tools to be in constant touch with millennial- generation employees, clients, customers, and media alike.
Collaboration in contact centers
A large part of businesses have contact centers these days, and unified communications (UC) easily help close the gap between the external and internal world. Yesteryear’s call centers, now formally known as contact centers, form a large part of a lot of companies and serve as the frontline interface for the consumers. The UC tools used in these contact centers give the familiar feeling of collaboration and inclusion.
Now when the consumer is active, practically 24 hours a day, via email, text, webchat, and social media, it is more than our duty to deliver impeccable service. The multiple contact centers and follow-the-sun (24/7) strategies seem to work for many.
Today, we plan to cover a lot of ground on contact center unified communication and some of the real-life challenges faced by organizations.
The contact center unified communication feature paraphernalia comprises voice, mobility, email, instant messaging, desktop sharing, directory services, and video.
Remember this movie- ‘The Pursuit of Happyness?’ In the movie, Will Smith has to chase down each of his single clients for a mere appointment to show a portable bone density scanner. Had he been living in our era, he could have easily scheduled an appointment over an email, telephone, VoIP (voice over internet protocol), or a video call to display his product, saving a considerable amount of time, effort, and resources in the given time.
Challenges and antidotes
We have come a long way from the time that movie was released. Let’s delve into some of the challenges faced by today’s contact center peer group and the UC (unified communication) benefits to overcome them:
Integration + service quality challenge: Howsoever we advance, integrating and managing multiple UC tools is a task. Besides them, dealing with a number of vendors and their service quality is another pain point. A lot of trial and error may be required in the process to finalize an appropriate vendor to help smoothly sail through the UC journey.
The call center software, invariably, needs to be combined with the CRM (customer relationship management) application. And with the boggling number of UC tools, platforms, and vendors available, the service quality definitely might be at stake in some cases.
Antidote: Use UC tools such as the Cisco Customer Journey Platform that can easily be amalgamated with Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Zendesk, and Oracle CRM applications. Additionally, look for a single point of contact for service delivery that gives real-time management and visibility of the entire domain of assets, apart from overseeing security policy compliances across the wired and wireless network.
Handling an empowered consumer challenge: Today’s consumer is fast and internet savvy, and who has an answer ready even before the contact center representative gets to the problem question. In case the consumer’s query isn’t resolved sufficiently, there is a grave danger of losing him to the competition.
As per West Cloud Research, 72% of consumers switch to a competitor product if the contact center agent is not able to comprehend and resolve their query adequately.
Antidote: In such a scenario where the contact center rep is dealing with empowered and overtly intelligent consumers, he constantly needs to be in touch with his tools, technologies, and fellow colleagues for instant answers. The UC tools such as West Cloud Contact and West Cloud Contact Pro come in quite handy. These tools bring agility and empower the call center staff with call handling and reporting tools. Only excellent customer service and empathy may prove to help gain the loyalty of the ‘smart’ consumer. Also, offering multiple communication channels and the assurance that the consumer is appropriately listened can make all the difference.
Maintaining operational efficiency at optimal costs challenge: Money and revenue are on everyone’s mind. And why won’t it be? Organizations today grapple with the perennial problem of delivering operational efficiency at reasonable costs. Some of the major expenses for a company may include monies spent on maintaining data quality of consumers and appropriate training of the contact center reps. After all, investing in the team’s skillset pays off big in the long run.
Antidote: Cloud-based hosted unified communication services and solutions aid in improving operational efficiency and slash costs in nearly all contact centers. These services are software driven, making the features offered infinitely customizable to meet the dynamic needs of businesses, clients, and employees. For training and quality purposes, the call and screen recording UC tools, such as Dubber and Red Box, act as conduits for better feedback mechanisms for employees and, consequently, consumer satisfaction.
Contact centers hold a lot of potential, and what is a better way than using unified communication tools to enhance the quality of your products and services, and, in turn, dial up the loyalty quotient of your consumers.