The Ultimate in Enabling a Virtual Workforce: Unified Communications and At Home Agents


Serge Hyppolite, VP Product ManagementJet Blue Airlines is famous for it. Amazon does it. So does 1-800-FLOWERS. But do their customers know? Probably not.

For many reasons, including reduced facilities costs; lowering carbon footprints from less commuting; and the ability to hire from a more diverse workforce that includes stay-at-home moms, students, and even retirees; the trend of companies moving contact center agents to work from home has been growing. In large part, the prevalence of technologies like software-based contact center solutions and voice over IP (VoIP) have enabled this shift – making it as easy for companies to manage contact centers within a single site as it is to manage multiple sites, including people at their individual homes – while still delivering a seamless customer experience.

Now, imagine for a moment if your capabilities with at-home agents went beyond just being able to route calls to them, went further than being able to coach and monitor them. Imagine a world where you could communicate with them in real time via instant message (IM) or share desktop screens automatically. What if your agents were able to literally drag a supervisor into a customer call with the click of their mouse to help resolve a given issue? In this world, first call resolution goes through the roof. Customer satisfaction reaches all-time highs. And, agent productivity attains unprecedented levels.

This is the world of leveraging unified communications (UC) technologies for at-home agents. Whether you are doing customer service, sales, or collections, UC capabilities like IM, desktop sharing, and one-click conferencing, make it infinitely easier to interact internally, as well as with your customers. With UC, at-home agents have limitless resources at their fingertips – with the ability to reach out and interact with colleagues and superiors instantaneously in real time – helping to delight customers in a whole new way.

And, we haven’t even touched on how unified communications can reduce infrastructure costs for these at-home agents – we’ll save that for a later day.

UC is a journey that begins with thinking strategically about how your organization could benefit from and adapt to its possibilities.

Do you have work-at-home agents? Have you thought about how you can better arm them to deliver on your brand promise using UC?