The contact center's role has expanded tremendously in recent years. In terms of both the types of customer interactions that now occur in the contact center and how important that engagement is for the company's broader success, there's no denying that a high-quality contact center is an essential component any of any organization.
It's no coincidence that, along with this trend, businesses are increasingly deploying cloud-based unified communications systems in their contact centers. These solutions offer a number of key advantages that legacy approaches simply cannot match.
Here are three of the most significant benefits that cloud UC-enabled contact centers have to offer:
1. Cost advantages
One of the greatest advantages of cloud computing solutions in general is their low, flexible prices, and this undoubtedly applies to UC in the contact center. On-premise solutions require firms to pay a substantial amount upfront in order to purchase and install hardware. Furthermore, these on-site services demand ongoing maintenance, which drains companies' IT budgets.
With the cloud, on the other hand, businesses can take advantage of the most advanced UC contact center tools available without significant upfront spending. Just as importantly, the cloud shifts responsibility for maintaining these solutions to the service provider, adding even greater cost savings over time.
"Cost efficiency is built into cloud-based UC contact center solutions."
Additionally, companies pay for cloud services on a per-use basis. Businesses do not need to worry about exceeding their capacity during particularly busy periods, nor about wasteful spending during leaner times. Cost efficiency is built into cloud-based UC contact center solutions.
2. One step ahead
Other key benefits these solutions offer is regular upgrades and improvements. As No Jitter contributor and industry expert Aphrodite Brinsmead explained, cloud-based solutions can add new tools and functionality far more easily than on-premise contact center services. This allows for businesses to enjoy continuous upgrades to their UC systems. Without the cloud, such upgrades would be costly, time-consuming and, in all likelihood, irregular.
With this approach, firms can ensure their contact centers remain one step ahead of their non-cloud-enabled competitors. Effectively, the contact center can become an actually selling point and differentiator for such businesses, as well as a key resource for customer support.
3. Happy agents
A less obvious but no less important benefit of cloud-based UC solutions in the contact center is the boost to agent morale they provide. As Forbes recently highlighted, work conditions for contact center agents are a problem for many companies, as employees complain about the amount of stress they deal with on a day-to-day basis. This state of affairs leads many firms to experience high turnover, forcing them to rely on less experienced customer support professionals.
To improve retention rates in the contact center, businesses need to take steps to reduce agent stress and frustration, and cloud-based UC tools can play a major role in this capacity. These tools provide agents with greater flexibility, allowing personnel to choose the right channel for each individual client issue.
This not only accommodates agent preferences to a certain degree, but also allows customers themselves to choose among a variety of communication options, including instant messaging, video conferencing and more. This leads to more empowered clients and quicker resolutions times, both of which improve customer satisfaction. In turn, this high customer satisfaction rate creates more pleasant customer interactions and provides agents with a greater sense of a job well done. It's hard to overstate just how important these superior outcomes will be when it comes to contact center agents' attitudes toward their jobs.
With all of these advantages in mind, it's easy to see why cloud-based UC tools are proving to be so popular in contact centers in every industry.