Call centers have traditionally been viewed as cost centers. Money was poured in, but rarely resurfaced. As customer service centers they were awkward and often — tone-deaf. Never a fun experience for customers but tolerable, things have only gotten worse. Driven offshore to reduce rising office and labor costs, call centers are now the site of absolute customer dread. Not only do customers usually call after they have exhausted all other options and are near the breaking point of patience, now with offshoring they may be greeted by long hold times and people who are not familiar with English idioms or American cultural nuances. Customers call frustrated and often leave the call even more frustrated. Then, there’s the task of repeating crucial account information even after it has been entered into the phone while on hold. However, there are now ways to circumvent these issues and to transform a call center into a contact center and then — a profit center.
Remote Workers Make Offshoring Obsolete
There is good news. Offshoring may become obsolete as remote working gains traction. Using UC tools that make remote working convenient and accessible for anyone, a call center can easily cut costs while using experienced and English fluent North American staff. Call Center staff can also easily work different shifts starting from anywhere in the country. Being able to receive calls from a phone that is not anchored to an office location transforms call centers into roving centers of expertise. Office costs are mitigated or eliminated by having employees work from home offices.
Personalize Customer Contacts with UC
Unified Communications apps can also optimize customer service by adding a personal touch to each interaction. It’s now possible to know the name of a customer and their account history before any introductions. Also, full contact center capability is available through tools like chat, Interactive Voice Response (IVR), Interactive Text Response (ITR), screen pops, and video conferencing. Customers can choose to chat live with an agent instead of using a voice call. The accessibility and ease of these options can make contacting a contact center agent a breeze instead of a burden.
WOW Customers with the Right Tools
Today social media increasingly plays a role in how we think about a business. Feedback about a service or item purchased can be instantaneous and relayed anywhere in the world to a global audience. With the stakes higher than ever, companies are looking more closely at contact centers and how they can expedite customer service before a complaint is made. In fact, excellent customer service, putting the customer first and foremost with each transaction made from a contact/call center can be the cornerstone of a business model. It can be foundational to how that business soars beyond the competition. Zappos is an example of a company that puts customer service first and foremost and uses the contact center to its full capacity as a profit center. Their mission to “wow” customers through excellent customer service has made them nearly legendary. With UC, that kind of efficiency above and beyond, is open to any company willing to acquire the right tools and use them to their full potential.
Upsell with Ease
Another way that contact centers can provide value is by upselling customers and offering new services based on information gathered in calls or chats. Using each contact as an opportunity to not only provide amazing customer service but to find out what the customer wants and needs in the future, is an excellent use of Unified Communication tools. Customer service becomes a starting point for profit – not an ending point for burdensome costs.
We would love to connect with your company and help you optimize your customer service and sales with the latest UC contact center tools. Do contact us here at streamWrite to find out more!