The cloud has leveled the playing for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) hoping to compete against Fortune 100 and 500 companies, as well as large enterprises seeking to expand globally. Through cloud-based architectures, software, and services, organizations of all sizes can compete within their respective industry verticals.
However, the burgeoning cloud BPO market may have a grim lining: all the tools, platforms, and apps. It can be a challenge for businesses to not only choose the right solutions for their needs, but also to manage “all the things” once the solution, or, more likely, solutions, have been implemented.
Because of this fact, business owners should carefully evaluate any cloud-based solution, including modern call center technologies, for their integration capabilities. The capacity is paramount. Companies don’t need more tools. They need fewer tools that meet granular needs and seamlessly work together to positively affect productivity, efficiency, and profits.
An illustration can help solidify the idea. A homebuilder doesn’t have multiple types of the same exact tool. While the homebuilder may have a number of screwdrivers in the toolbox, each screwdriver is suited to a specific task. They work in concert to create a frame that will hold up the rest of the structure.
The same is true with cloud-based call center technology. It is a kind of screwdriver to be used in conjunction with other tools for long-lasting, positive impact. Here, we’ll examine five ways that occurs, starting with seamless integration.
Collaborate Through Technology
Silos in any context are dangerous to an organization. If your people aren’t communicating across departments, division and unrest can build. The same situation develops when different technologies don’t share data.
When this happens, you essentially handicap one department from doing its job well. Marketing and sales might have visibility into all the data and insights, but that doesn’t do call center agents much good. They need information, too, in order to meet customer expectations and help their coworkers succeed.
For this reason, you should always seek a call center technology that features API integration. An API that is compatible with a number of leading CRM and ERP tools on the market today allows data to be shared among the three, as well as with pertinent parties ranging from middle and upper management to people on the front lines of sales, marketing, and customer service.
Automate Data Syncing and Management
A related benefit of seamless integration is data automation. If you enter new customer information in the CRM database, it’s automatically uploaded to other connected tools, including the call center platform.
The same rule also applies to updates of existing customer profiles. Regardless of where the customer interaction occurs, the information is input into the relevant tool, then automatically synced with the others. This not only decreases time spent on data entry but also reduces the chance for errors.
Simplify Account Management
With shared, up-to-date data inside the cloud-based call center platform, your agents have a reliable, always-on repository of information. When they log into the software, they see a dashboard customized to them and their role in the organization.
This means a couple of things. First, they have a system that’s easy to use. Second, it’s easy to access. Because the platform is web-based, they can log in whenever – and wherever – they need to. Third, they can answer calls with confidence. When a customer calls into the center, their data automatically displays. If it’s a new customer, the dashboard alerts the agent to that fact, and allowing them to gather needed information.
Fourth, agents can look at reports and assess their individual performance metrics, which gives them more ownership over and insight into their role in the organization. And, the metrics can also identify opportunities for career growth, a factor in keeping employees engaged and satisfied with the workplace.
Increase Agent Productivity
Managers can also use the integrated platform to increase overall agent productivity. This occurs through a dashboard customized to the manager’s role as well as real-time business intelligence (BI). With such metrics, managers can assess individual and organizational performance. They can also correlate them with data from supplementary systems for fast and reliable decision-making.
The cloud-based software can aid productivity in other ways, too. One is skills-based call routing, which ensures the right agent gets the right call at the right time. Another is a blended outbound and inbound dialing mechanism that minimizes downtime by transferring agents from one function to the other. Both features increase not only individual productivity but also streamlines organizational functions.
Improve Customer Satisfaction
A final benefit of the integrated call center is improved customer satisfaction. Customers who don’t have to wait on hold are happy; customers who don’t have to wait on hold and are known by the call center agent are happier still.
The cloud-based call center technology, however, can do much more than alleviate wait times and identify people calling in. It can also be used to automate payment reminders via the customer’s communication vehicle of choice, i.e., email, text or phone call. The platform can also facilitate relevant promotion calls, which can help with upselling purchased products and services.
Integrate for Business Success
With all those reasons listed above, integration is the only logical next step. Integration facilitates and automates the sharing of data; sharing data leads to more finely honed tools; and sharpened tools produce empowered employees. They are equipped to better perform their jobs and to make a difference that affects themselves, their coworkers and callers, as well as the organization.
If you’re wondering what else you should look for in an integrated call center solution, check out our white paper, Top 10 List when Considering a Cloud-Based Contact Center Solution today!
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