Key Considerations When Evaluating Contact Center Solutions

Author: Nayana Reddy | Network Telephony Engineer

Omnichannel customer interactions have revolutionized the call center industry, previously dominated by telephony. The rebranding to contact centers introduced a niche of new technologies and changed the way businesses communicate with their customers.

Organizations are continuously trying to achieve increased customer satisfaction and understand the benefits of investing in advanced cloud-based contact center solutions. Along with the key advantages of cost benefits, flexible technological scaling, enhanced integrations and dynamic staffing decisions, cloud contact center solutions also provide ancillary applications such as social media interaction, data analytics and work force management that further enhance their serviceability.

While evaluating the best contact center solution to fit their business needs, organizations need to understand the markets they cater to and leverage on technology that can marry their business processes to provide a well-knit solution.

A thorough understanding of how customers communicate, how many interactions are generated in a timely basis, how well the interactions are being addressed and what insights are generated from this data is vital. It is important for the solution provider to ask the right questions to tailor the perfect solution.

BullsEye Telecom’s market research and insight research via partner interactions shed light on the primary requirements for a robust contact center solution. Gartner and Forrester reports unanimously capture the following standard functions that organizations consider while deploying Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS):

  • Blended (inbound & outbound) channels
  • Omnichannel capability queuing calls, emails, web chat, video, SMS and social media
  • Automatic Call distribution (ACD) with skills-based routing for efficient voice call distribution
  • Interactive voice response (IVR) systems for defining call routing and treatment
  • Support for virtual and remote agents
  • Business process integration with CRMs, helpdesk tools, e-commerce applications, chat solutions etc.
  • Enhanced real-time, historic and scheduled reporting to track customer relationship and agent productivity
  • Semantic and sentiment analytics for speech and text analysis
  • Work force management and engagement tools such as gamification that support staff retentivity

While most of the players in the CCaaS space provide the standard recommended features, it is my personal recommendation that the decision makers choose the right service provider who can address those challenges undermined by glorified technology. The biggest challenges identified for CCaaS deliveries as per our insight research are:

  • Nightmare with custom integrations for home-grown CRM tools, often involving high cost in professional services and implementation times that seldom provide desired results
  • Multi-pane and multi-portal interactions for agents that introduces chaos and reduces work efficiency
  • Multi-vendor approach for network, UCaaS and security solutions that need enhanced coordination as opposed to going with a single provider who can offer all services under a single umbrella
  • Incompatibility with legacy systems that are deeply rooted into the customer network and need transitioning into latest technology over time
  • Inadequate training and support during initial implementation

It is imperative to provide a holistic solution to accommodate legacy, current and futuristic technological demands to have a sustainable and evolving CCaaS solution.