If COVID taught us anything, it’s that there’s so much more to learn. We should be open to relearning and re-evaluating business strategies to keep up with change. In customer support and contact centers, leaders should be free to rewrite the rulebook to maximize customer experience strategies to better connect with and serve customers. Along these lines, you may be looking at the positives and negatives of your current contact center software, program, or organizational structure and asking – what works, what doesn’t, and what can we do better? Here are critical questions to consider to help uncover what changes your organization should make sure your contact center is ready for this new paradigm.
Can we continue to support remote operations? Whether COVID continues or it’s a natural or human-made disaster, chances are we’ll all need flexible staffing models that can scale going forward. The beauty of cloud-based contact center software or Contact Center as-a-Service (CCaaS) is the ability to support customers and keep meeting contact center goals well beyond traditional brick-and-mortar offices. Taking advantage of CCaaS and cloud-based remote working tools essentially gives your organization a flexible way to quickly deploy and scale support capacity. These capabilities are significant considering that during times of crisis – including during COVID – customers saw wait times and escalations go up significantly, straining brand loyalty for many. Harvard Business Review found that some companies saw hold times increase by 34%, and escalations go up by 68%, possibly pushing some customers away for good.
Is our contact center struggling with specific issues? Can your current call center software allow reps to interact with customers using social channels? What about offering chat or SMS options? Or does your software include integrations with your CRM platform? Or consider if your current contact center software can help you meet compliance with data privacy standards and mandates like HIPAA. If it doesn’t, or other features are lacking in your current system, it may be time to think about making a change. Often upgrading an outdated contact center system can be more costly than making a platform change, especially if it’s a legacy on-prem system.
What’s the ROI potential if I decide to make a platform change? It’s also important to consider the ROI potential of switching to CCaaS. Part of the ROI equation should include reducing capital expenses and technology investments moving to a month-to-month model where businesses pay only for the software and number of licenses they need. An as-a-service system also frees up your IT team from performing maintenance and hardware and software updates.
There are additional ROI considerations as well. For example, customers are willing to pay more for the experience qualities that matter most to them. According to PWC, 43% of consumers would pay more for greater convenience, 42% would pay more for a friendly, welcoming experience, and 65% of U.S. customers find a positive experience with a brand to be more influential than great advertising. Those findings indicate that customers are craving personalized and high-quality interactions – and a modern contact center can help you get there. Positive and personalized experiences begin with having true omnichannel capabilities so customers can connect in their preferred channels – email, IM, SMS, social media, and video. These multichannel options give your organization a competitive edge and help build brand loyalty.
Does reporting match strategy? If you don’t have visibility into your contact center operations, you may be missing out on vital insights into your customers and business. Or worse, you may be suffering unintended consequences by incentivizing the wrong behaviors. For instance, if ‘integrated coaching’ is your organization’s strategy and now all agents are working remotely, managers may be missing out on these moments (i.e., they have no visibility into who is free to talk). Without these moments, managers may be reverting to structured weekly or monthly check-in calls that tend to reinforce bad habits. That’s because these regular one-on-one meetings focus on the basic metrics, such as call length, or interaction volume, as opposed to modifying and improving behaviors through coaching real customer engagements.
The good news is that integrated coaching, for example, can be done virtually and using tools and reports built into robust content center software. More intelligent reporting can give managers the information they need to have more in-depth conversations with reps. Using video calls to mimic in-person sessions, managers can ask open-ended questions and offer feedback and coaching to meet overall contact center goals.
Do you want help evaluating the pros and cons of your current contact center software? Or do you have other questions about the TCO of a new system or how new omnichannel features can help? Call or email us! At Light Networks, we can help you answer these questions, working through technical requirements, talk about the TCO of a new solution, and more. Don’t wait!
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