Contact Centers dominated the conversation at Enterprise Connect this year as the track hit the main stage for the first time. The panels tackled questions like: how has the contact center become an agent of change for enterprise digital transformation? How can customers prepare for migrating to the cloud? And what’s the next wave of innovation in the contact center?
With all this in mind, we’ve listed 5 takeaways from the event. Check them out below!
Delivering an Omnichannel CX
The importance of customer experience (CX) can no longer be ignored. It has become one of the key service differentiators in the modern global economy. So, it’s no surprise that it was an underlying feature throughout Enterprise Connect, with a mainstage session focused on how engagement is leading the enterprise comms conversation.
Over the last few years, customer interactions have transitioned from single channel call centers to omnichannel contact centers utilizing cloud, AI and social channels to optimize the customer journey and encourage repeat or ongoing business. As the number of digital interactions with customers continues to rise, CX has never been as important for businesses to successfully differentiate themselves.
Adoption of cloud comms
The expansion of cloud along with the growing consumer trend towards on-demand apps shows there’s a real need for contact centers to provide a ubiquitous and seamless experience for their customers.
Many businesses with legacy infrastructure today are still running their contact center on old technology that struggles to keep up with how their customers communicate. In doing so, they risk coming up against a growing list of problems that could actually impact their customer’s satisfaction. From the ‘Contact Center face off’ panel at EC19, it was clear that when it comes to the cloud, one size certainly does not fit all. Some businesses want to build, add-on or be able to extend their current offering.
Yet, we expect more businesses to push towards providing a modern contact center that can meet (and even exceed) the rising expectations of their customers. Any businesses that are planning on building their contact center will need to find a provider that can solve their communication headaches with underlying infrastructure that enables them to access markets all over the globe, scale to new business demand, as well as cut the cost of their comms.
Moving in Real-Time
Unsurprisingly, Artificial Intelligence dominated the conversation at Enterprise Connect and we’re tipping AI to start making a real impact this year. In fact, in a study by Aberdeen, CX leaders ranked AI as the number one technology business plan to adopt in 2019.
Our expectations as consumers have changed. We no longer tolerate downtime or disruption with our communications and expect our apps to work seamlessly without a hitch. Contact centers need the ability to respond to their customers in real-time. As stated in an AI session panel, agents can’t handle every question that’s sent through to them, AI is needed to help them keep track of incoming interactions.
With new interaction channels being released, updating on-premise solutions can become impractical. The integration of value-added services like AI can enable the real-time monitoring of customer and agent conversations and remove the limits on traditional core contact center functionality.
From inbound to two-way voice
At EC19, there were a number of voice-related updates including Poly phones becoming compatible with G Suite, and AWS’ Chime voice capabilities. No matter how digital we become as a society, the telephone is still a widely used communication channel.
By implementing a two-way voice solution, contact centers can accommodate their consumers’ growing appetite for simple communications and bridge the gap between themselves and the customer, wherever they are. Research has previously shown that voice is still the preferred method for consumers with complex queries that they feel are unsuited to channels such as SMS or IM. We expect a lot of businesses this year to transition from solely inbound to two-way voice in order to deliver an omnichannel customer experience that drives satisfaction levels and enhances communications with their customers.
Emerging Social Channels
Customer experience is leading enterprise communications. Companies are looking to break down barriers between the contact center and the business, all with an eye on delivering the best possible results for customer engagement.
While chatbots and social media platforms might not replace a good old fashioned phone call with a human, they are enhancing CX and saving businesses precious time. According to Deloitte, customer interaction via social media will go up to 9% in 2019, with Gartner stating that by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationship with the enterprise without ever interacting with a human. There’s no doubt that as these technologies continue to grow, we’ll see an increasing opportunity for streamlined operational efficiency within contact centers.
Want to create the best possible contact center platform? In our latest Ebook, we delve into the different strategies available to you once you decide to move your contact center to the cloud and explain how a CaaS approach gives you the best mix of cost saving and control over your comms so you can deliver:
- 45% cheaper communication costs and new revenue-generating opportunities
- Omni-channel marketing initiatives that deliver improved CX
- New functionality for products and services