Nowhere is the adage ‘The Client is King (and Queen)‘ more on display than in the contact or call center industry. Contact centers rely tremendously on comprehending the various trends that affect their client communications, which ultimately results in customer satisfaction. Owing to the ever-changing nature of customer relationship management and strides in technology, call centers need to incorporate efficient strategies that will enable them to optimize their operations. Given these steady winds of change, it is expected that contact center technology trends 2016 will vastly improve processes and call center departments can be placed in a position to contribute manifold to revenues of an enterprise. Here are the predictions for contact center technology trends for 2016.
Multi-channel, the way to go
Gartner, Inc has predicted that over the coming years customers will manage as much as 85% of their business relationships without human interaction. This will force businesses to divert a considerable portion of their revenue stream into multi-channel call center solutions to meet this need. This will help your call center agents connect with customers via their preferred method and will result in higher customer satisfaction marks. It will serve well for companies that are reluctant to spend monies towards this end to realize that customers who prefer automated self-services have doubled to 55% in the last five years. Already we have witnessed a significant reduction in call waiting time across different centers as larger numbers of customers are connected and served through automated channels such as phone, live chat, social media and email. Therefore, call agents will find themselves donning a new role as they will be called upon to focus on callers with complex inquiries or challenges that cannot be serviced through more automated systems.
Necessity to look Cloud-wards
Reduction in overall cost is one of the main objectives of almost every enterprise―but it is no longer the dominant driver. Ever since many contact centers turned to the cloud, they have been thrall about the innumerable benefits it offers, such as:
- Faster deployment
- Flexibility and scalability
- Ease of managing remote agents
According to recent surveys, 18% of call centers will be cloud-based by the end of this year. Gartner further suggests that in 2016, more than half of the Global 1000 companies will store sensitive customer information within the cloud. Therefore, companies will increasingly adopt virtual call centers due to improved security and efficiency.
Workforce Optimization to the Fore
The more efficient a workforce is, the more improved their customer relationship management. Translated, it means higher revenue for the company. Businesses are currently in the process of attempting to optimize their workforces by adopting the latest technologies. In the months ahead, enterprises are expected to leverage metrics to improve their call centers activities. Last year, a small chunk of businesses amounting to barely 31% took an active interest in monitoring customer interactions to assess quality, a report by Forrester Research stated. However, this number is skyrocketing this year, thanks to state-of-the-art virtual call center software features that allow companies to target, monitor and improve key performance indicators (KPIs); view standard metrics in real time and ensure industry regulation compliance. The contact center data generated will help boost quality management by enabling companies to pay attention to issues such as skill deficiencies in their systems or respective agents. This year is therefore touted as the one in which new parameters will be set for the cream among call centers to race ahead by utilizing effectual strategies and technologies.
The Rule of Big Data
Today, service leaders have more customer data than ever before. Among other tools, surveys, social media, and speech analytics have aided in the collection of enormous amounts of information, resulting in less clarity in what the data actually says. Increasingly, companies are trying to understand a 360-degree view of the customer by combining together customer feedback data with their existing CRM systems. The key to revealing new insights that would have otherwise been hidden is by truly understanding what you’re looking to achieve first, without being overwhelmed with the analysis. The American market research, analysis and advisory firm, International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that the market for Big Data will reach $16.1 billion in 2014, growing 6 times faster than the overall IT market. With that in mind, Data Scientists have become more desirable since it’s the management and use of all this data that will be the key differentiator. Ultimately, businesses need to find more ways to connect the mix of structured and unstructured data, helping them to better address the needs of their customers.