When we mention ‘contact centre software’, many people conjure up an image of a large call centre with dozens of people in booths with headphones on. In reality, this software can help a range of organisations – not just call centres – deliver exceptional customer service, even if they don’t have a dedicated room full of people on headsets.
Unfortunately, the term ‘contact centre software’ can be a little misleading, and discourage some businesses from reaping the benefits of this amazing technology. To clear up the confusion, we’ve created a quick guide to help you identify if and when your organisation may need a sophisticated cloud-based contact centre software solution, and the benefits it can deliver.
Seven scenarios when contact centre software can help your business
The most obvious answer is when you establish a dedicated customer service team; however, that’s not always the case. In fact, any organisation that has staff regularly interacting with internal and external clients can significantly benefit from a cloud-based contact centre software solution.
Your organisation needs cloud contact centre software if:
- You have five or more people performing customer service functions over the phone or by email or webchat, even when they work in different departments
- You are about to launch a self-service platform for customers and want to integrate this into your customer service process
- You are struggling to handle call volumes and correctly route callers to the right people, causing you to lose sales and frustrate customers
- You want to enhance your customer service capabilities but don’t have any data to help you identify where you need to improve
- You need the ability to maintain a consistent level of service when staff work from home during periods of interruption like lockdowns or natural disasters
- You want to make it easier for staff to access customer details, securely process information and record interactions in a CRM or ERP while they are talking to customers
- You need to provide exceptional service on a limited budget
What types of organisations use contact centre software?
Organisations in the following industries all require a systemised and automated way to provide over-the-phone and mobile customer service:
- Local government authorities like councils that offer a range of services to their residents
- Not-for-profit organisations that provide physical services to the community
- Medium-sized B2B and B2C retail companies who want to deliver an excellent customer experience
- Education institutions with multiple faculties who need to manage seasonal peaks in calls from parents, staff and students
- Financial institutions who work within complex security and regulatory processes to deliver multiple products
- Healthcare providers seeking to improve patient care and efficiently maintain administrative records
- Tourism and hospitality businesses who take bookings for various experiences
- Multi-disciplinary businesses, e.g. wineries that provide hospitality experiences, run events and manufacture and distribute their own products, or sporting clubs that offer memberships and hospitality experiences
- Medium to large organisations with internal Help Desks who need to provide rapid assistance to employees
The benefits of investing in contact centre software
The most significant benefit you’ll reap is increased customer loyalty and satisfaction resulting from a consistently positive customer experience.
You’ve likely had firsthand experience of the impact that customer service can have on your business – a positive experience can mean the difference between a glowing recommendation to friends from a loyal customer and a crushing review on google from a former customer.
This is because call centre software uses technology to provide a fast, streamlined customer journey. For example, contact centre software allows you to place customers in a queue while they wait, offer a callback, or direct them to a self-service option or webchat. This provides a more positive experience and delivers more sales than using your old phone system’s voicemail which 80% of callers will refuse to use.
Furthermore, call centre software uses interactive voice response (IVR) and automatic call distribution (ACD) to direct callers to the right person to solve their problems. This offers a better experience than putting a caller on hold while finding someone to help them (or worse, transfer them multiple times around the organisation).
Using contact centre software allows you to provide a professional service from the moment you answer a customer’s call, improving your organisation’s credibility, building trust and confidence in your customers.
Investing in a contact centre software solution also improves your business in several other areas:
- It improves productivity and efficiency.
- Contact centre software facilitates workflows that can resolve queries and process orders more quickly.
- Staff have all the information they need in front of them with screen pops and external data lookups, reducing the time and effort required to process requests or resolve issues.
- Omnichannel communication where a staff member can send the customer an SMS, email or links to self-service mid-call, rather than at separate times.
- It offers comprehensive reporting to facilitate better decisions: The software collates data from each customer interaction so you can assess trends and customer needs before you make costly decisions to hire more staff or change processes/functions.
- You can easily support staff to deliver excellent customer service: Recording and listening in on calls and using data about call handling times can help managers coach staff on dealing with specific issues and training new staff.
- It helps you manage peaks and troughs in call volumes: the instant scalable nature of cloud-based contact centre software allows you to increase or decrease your capacity to handle calls and change workflows. This is particularly useful if your organisation runs annual or seasonal events, manufactures products specifically for certain times of the year, or operates a university or school with specific enrollment periods and term dates. Contact centre software also provides instant coverage when you experience spikes in call volumes without warning, by automatically queueing more calls than normal and by allowing more staff to process calls if they’re available.
- It allows you to offer multiple connected support channels: connecting your phone system with a self-service portal, mobile apps, email and web chat help you serve customers in a way that suits them.
- It can improve your employee’s job satisfaction: making it easier to serve customers and knowing that they will only receive calls relevant to them makes their roles much easier and more enjoyable.
- It protects business continuity: a cloud contact centre solution allows you to provide a consistent level of customer service during extreme weather events, power outages or pandemics. All they need is a laptop and an internet connection, regardless of your staff’s location.
- It can protect sensitive organisational and personal data security: government agencies and banks use cloud contact centre solutions for this reason – data is kept safe, and customers can make payments securely.
A leading AFL club with ageing technology struggled to handle massive bursts in membership renewals at certain times. They needed a modern, omnichannel system to cope with highly variable call volumes, webchats and payments, using disciplined workflows.
We rapidly configured and implemented Premier Contact Point to provide a cost-effective solution which delivered:
- An advanced inbound solution with omnichannel capabilities
- IVR avalanche to provide effectively “unlimited” inbound call capacity
- Web Callback option to enable members to request a callback
- Rapid implementation of a cost-effective “pay as you go “facility
- Class leading real-time and historic analytics and reporting capabilities
As a result, the club improved its capacity to handle membership renewals and increased sales from an optimised membership drive workflow. Their planning also improved with better insights into call volumes and timing.