While hosted contact centers have grown in popularity lately due to factors like cost savings and more flexible agent staffing, this was not always the case. In the past, there were in fact a number of objections to the technology that kept it from reaching its full potential.
Over time, many of those hurdles have been overcome due in large part to improved broadband services.
To outline the historical barriers to adoption and the ways things have changed, a Yankee Group (News
) white paper, "VoIP and Lower TCO Will Drive Adoption of Hosted On-Demand Contact Centers," notes that most hosted contact center technology was limited by these objections in the 1980s and 1990s especially in North America.
Warnings over lack of control made enterprises not want to fuss with having to send change requests to their carrier, await response and pay extra for the additional support, for example. Now, hosted IP solutions give enterprises full control by allowing them to log into a browser interface from the Internet.
Integration difficulty was also a concern in the past because of the cost and expertise needed to maintain all the development, testing and maintaining of links. Now, the white paper notes, software suites are pre-integrated - making application and interoperability easier.
Security issues have always remained a concern. In the past this worry kept enterprises from wanting to keep historical data with their carrier. Now, the end user has more control over the hosted contact center and can choose the level of security they need. With a hosted contact center, Yankee Group also said enterprises are getting more updated security than if they ran the systems on premise because providers are more frequently investing in and updating security solutions.
Finally, another struggle in the past that kept the hosted contact center from growing was geographical limitations. It was much more difficult to have a global workforce with agents located in places other than one central office in the past. Now, thanks to IP connectivity this too is made possible and has allowed the hosted contact center to truly develop to its full potential. Today with a hosted contact center, agents can be located anywhere there is a broadband connection.
These advancements have allowed the hosted contact center to become a key choice for many enterprises looking to cut on costs and stay ahead in an increasingly competitive and demanding business world.
Stefania Viscusi is an assignment editor for TMCnet, covering VoIP, CRM, call center and wireless technologies. To read more of Stefania’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi