One in a series of "20 Reasons to Host Your Contact Centre in the Cloud"
Arguably the most important goal of a contact center is to provide excellent customer service. Even the most customer-cynical managers generally accept this, since it goes without saying that meeting budgets or driving sales (two other common high-level goals) cannot generally be accomplished by alienating one's customers. It is basic contact center hygiene to at least satisfy (and preferably to delight) one's customers.
What is not so well understood is the role that moving to the cloud can play in improving customer service in contact centers. Most discussions concerning migrating to the cloud tend to revolve around topics like shifting to a variable, operating expense cost basis, improving scalability and reliability, and reducing the cost of maintaining (and maintaining expertise on) many complex technology elements in house. These reasons are all well and good (and are among the 20 reasons we have been discussing), but "improving customer service"? What has the cloud got to do with that?
As it turns out, quite a lot. When you adopt a cloud-based platform for your contact center, such as NewVoiceMedia's ContactWorld, you enable a dramatic new level of flexibility and business agility that can be key to improving customer service. In general, with ContactWorld it is possible to make changes quickly and confidently, and to tweak them just as quickly, in order to respond to emerging customer expectations or to changes in traffic patterns. When making changes requires a business case and advanced planning to slot the change into a regular (typically semiannual) IT change management program, it is essentially impossible to make minor adjustments to routing, voice applications, agent scripts, and other key processes, components, or rules, in response to changing conditions.
In fact, moving to the cloud makes it possible to shift to a discovery-driven, continuous-learning-focused style of managing contact centers, which I discussed previously here. In continuous-learning contact centers, it is crucial to use quick, inexpensive (and low risk) experiments and deep analytics to study what is working and what isn't, and to make small changes frequently so that the impact of the changes can be also quickly understood, assessed, and evaluated against expectations. It is virtually impossible to be experiment-driven, or to react to events intelligently and promptly, if it requires an IT change management cycle to change things.
When you are shackled to a six-month change cycle, running your contact center can be like trying to dock a million-ton oil tanker (they take something like ten miles to stop!). If you hope to learn constantly from your customers, and to adapt your contact center processes and rules to serve them better (while improving costs and driving more sales and brand engagement), you should seriously consider moving at least key aspects of your contact center to the cloud in order to capture the ability to fly (it's much better than crawling!).