When you think about the future of your contact center, what changes do you predict? Will there be more communication channels, better-trained agents, or increased first call resolution? For an increasing number of contact centers, their executives are picturing cloud technology as part of a plan for improving operations and the customer experience. While cloud-based contact centers are still new for many industries, more and more companies are beginning to deploy them. According to a report written by Ovum, one out of three RFPs for new customers now contains some kind of cloud offerings.
With this trend in contact center technology, how will supervisors and executives react to cloud-based solutions in 2014? Here are some of our observations:
- Security and trust will need to be proven by vendors – Because the cloud is a still a new technology, it’s natural that many customers will be hesitant about using a solution that can be accessed remotely. In order for vendors to win sales for their cloud-based technology, they must prove that their systems can provide a secure and reliable service with limited risk of data breaches or exposures. They also want to see procedures in place to handle any emergency situations that may arise.
- Omnichannel will become a bigger priority – With the expanded capacity that the cloud offers, companies will be able to add new channels to their service offerings. This will appeal to customers who are looking for new ways to contact customer service, such as via mobile and social channels.
- Cost reduction isn’t the only lure for potential customers – While saving money still ranks as the number one driver for investing in cloud services, other factors have also become important to customers. These include improving business processes, increasing IT responsiveness, and supporting new business initiatives such as channel expansion. Customers also like to see that a cloud solution has the ability to transform their contact centers, especially when it comes to long-term growth and expansion. While short-term cost savings are important, they will be of less value if the cloud investment doesn’t improve workforce operations or the customer experience in the long run.
- Companies need cloud strategies in order to succeed – According to the Ovum report, “almost 50% of respondents said they had an overall cloud strategy in place.” However, less than one-third of respondents reported having a governance, integration, or compliance strategy. This could lead to issues later on if the company faces unauthorized data access, privacy breaches, or legal repercussions. In addition, creating a cloud strategy keeps IT employees and executives on the same page when it comes to how the company uses the cloud technology.
- Hybrid cloud models are on the rise – While private and virtual private cloud deployments models remain the most popular options for customers, the use of the public cloud is growing. In their report, Ovum predicts that more businesses will be turning to hybrid cloud solutions which combine private and public cloud offerings. Vendors will have to adjust their solutions’ capabilities to allow for hybrid management in order to remain competitive in the market.
What observations have you made about the growth of cloud-based services, and how do you predict that the industry will change in 2014? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
- Chatbots, Continuity, and a Helping Hand - May 26, 2016
- No Service Is The New Service: Bots, VRM and Delegating To Myself - May 4, 2016
- Facebook, The Commerce Engine? - April 8, 2016