Need-to-Know Info for Selecting Ideal Contact Center Software
August 06, 2012
By Allison Boccamazzo
, TMCnet Contributing Writer
So you’ve made the decision to begin operating a contact center, but perhaps the hardest part is yet to come – settling upon contact center software. Call centers implement a variety of software for a number of reasons – from boosting productivity to gaining deeper customer insight to improving the overall quality and efficiency of their services.
Depending on the type of contact center, software can differ drastically, and an alarming number of individuals are lost as to this next critical step in the process. Whether you’ve just entered the call center market or looking to revamp your existing software, here’s everything you need to know about ideal forms of contact center software.
Inbound Call Centers:
Inbound call centers normally utilize interactive voice response (IVR) systems or an automatic call distributor (ACD). An ACD system distributes all inward bound calls evenly among all available call center agents. So every time you hear the infamous, “Please wait one moment while your call is being transferred to the next available assistant” message, this is most likely what you’re interacting with. This system is preferred by many because it is comparatively easy, significantly improves customer wait time, and prevents agents from being overwhelmed from overload of customer inquiries.
IVR software, on the other hand, automates and collects basic information from callers while omitting the need to speak to a human being for basic, routine calls. When you hear, for example, “Press one for x, press two for y, please enter this information,” you’re interacting with a voice automated system intent on navigating the entire inquiry process without any live assistance.
Outbound Call Centers:
Outbound call centers have been shown to benefit better from predictive dialer software, and any kind of call center can benefit from customer relationship management (CRM) software and customer telephony software.
The predictive dialer software works for outbound call centers by allowing telemarketers to save time and boost work-efficiency by working unlike a regular autodialer, which only dials the number for the agent. A predictive dialer is pretty self-explanatory in that is can only connect an agent to a call when it is answered by a live person, therefore, agents need not spend any time on calls that are not answered, are busy, or are disconnected and go straight to voicemail. In other words, it’s predicting the best possible outcome for each and every call. This software has even been shown to improve agent efficiency by 300 percent.
On the other hand, PC telephony software is used to integrate the center’s PC and phone systems – all which improve customer service by reducing overall call times. CRM software also helps to provide a smoother end-to-end customer service by better organizing, automating, and synchronizing a spread of business operations, according to this Wise Directory article. PC telephony software is typically used for sales, but can also be integrated for tech support, customer service, and telemarketing purposes.
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Even more, 8x8 was recently declared as the “clear leader” over several reputable competitors providing communications services during 2011, as reported by Frost & Sullivan in a recent July 2012 report, “Analysis of the Hosted IP Telephony and UC Services Market.”
There you have it – the proof is in the pudding. Now go explore what today’s leading provider of VoIP and unified communications services can do for you today by clicking here (you can thank me later!)
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Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli