Article : How To Reduce Costs in the Contact Centre
Every organisation wants happy customers and healthy profits to increase their competitive advantage and drive future business growth. Today’s corporate mantra is "do more with less" and it’s no different in contact centres where every contact centre leader dreams of achieving more either with the same number of people or less - and today it’s possible.
The trick is to take a long, hard look at every process and the types of customer contact received to establish where immediate savings can be made and then evaluate the effectiveness of the technology underpinning the contact centre. Fortunately, the latest cloud-based solutions provide flexibility and scalability while giving opportunities to reduce costs at every turn.
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Seven reasons to go cloud
Here are seven reasons to move to the cloud if you haven’t already done so. And for those who have, here’s a solid business case for expanding your existing implementation:
1. Pay-as-you-go business model – a common misconception about cloud-based contact centres is that costs will spiral out of control. The reverse is actually true.
The beauty of using a cloud solution is that you only pay for the services you use and the number of live agents at any one time. No up-front capital expenditure or annual maintenance payments, regardless of usage, makes it perfect for contact centres with a seasonal business that has peaks and troughs in demand and a fluctuating workforce.
2. Flexibility and scalability – cloud solutions make flexible working models such as home working a cost-effective option. Companies that employ remote agents typically report reduced operational costs because they can increase their staff without impacting on expensive physical space and on-premise technology. And with cloud-based technology calls can be directed to home workers regardless of their location or device.
3. The power of integration – cloud technology allows easy customisation. Users can develop their own bespoke applications without resorting to expensive external consultancy staff. Integration in the cloud also allows easier integration with other critical solutions such as corporate CRM, ERM and other databases. This means that customer records are always available and agents are presented with the right information when they need it – without having to switch between applications. This level of integration empowers agents and empowered agents lead to reduced attrition and recruitment costs.
4. Workforce Management – cloud solutions linked to a Workforce Management (WFM) system enable managers to quickly allocate the right employees, with the right skill sets at the right time, in order to meet service level agreements in the most efficient and cost effective way possible. At the same time, the risk of overstaffing is reduced and overtime is minimised.
5. Self-Service - customers can complete simple self-service transactions such as bank balance look-ups or utility meter readings, providing them with access to services 24x7 without extra staffing or operational costs.
With agent self-service staff can highlight their work preferences, resulting in lower administrative costs and increased agent morale.
6. Automated Payments – customers can pay for products and services at a time and in a way to suit them without agent intervention, confident that their personal details and card information are protected at all times. The deployment of a cloud-based solution is one way of increasing security levels that aid organisational compliance with the best-practice procedures and requirements set out by the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).
7. Web Chat and Omni-Channel – as well as responding to growing consumer demand, the deployment of Web Chat in cloud-based contact centres is proven to yield tangible business benefits. At the third of the cost of a typical phone call, Web Chat can tangibly reduce operating costs and increases productivity by allowing multiple sessions to be handled at one time. Likewise as customers choose new alternative communication channels such as social media and messaging apps they still expect the same level of service. The cloud allows organisations to adopt an omni-channel approach to customer service by utilizing skill-based routing regardless of channel keeping down costs while maintaining service.
Today’s cloud contact centre solutions offer superior automation, advanced self-service and intelligent routing capabilities that boost productivity whilst reducing the need for additional headcount, always an attractive business proposition. It really does pay to move to the cloud and invest in the latest contact centre technology. One reason or all seven, they all lead to a healthy bottom line.
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About Thomas Rødseth:
Thomas has worked in the telco sector in Europe for over 20 years, including companies such as O2 and Telenor. He has a background in managing large contact centres, employing more than 1,000 agents, giving him first-hand experience of trying to achieve operational efficiencies whilst delivering a great customer experience.
Puzzel (formerly Intelecom) builds on 20 years’ heritage. It was one of the first pioneers to develop a cloud-based contact centre. Puzzel also encompasses leading mobile messaging and mobile payments to deliver a flexible and customisable customer interaction platform to meet the needs of today’s omni-channel and mobile environments. Headquartered in Oslo, Norway, Puzzel employs over 130 people who are all passionate about delivering innovative customer interaction solutions for contact centres and mobile environments.
Published: Thursday, January 18, 2018
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