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5 smoking hot contact center trends

  • 4 min read

What if you could transport a person who was born in the 90s back to the year they were born and see how they would react when faced with a 20-minute line at the post office to buy stamps. Back then we also thought it was perfectly in order to wait on the phone for 10 minutes, to order a form that would land in our physical mailbox a few days later.

At work we found the information we needed in folders that were in our own or a colleague’s bookcase or in a filing cabinet or archive. And you don’t have to turn the clock back particularly far to go back to a time when we thought we could design and build the perfect IT-system that would solve all our problem.

Today we live in a time that requires constant optimization of the contact center. To stay competitive, the customer experience needs to improve continuously, such as offering to meet the customer in the channel of their choice. To achieve that we need flexible, agile, and scalable systems that enable automation and solutions with AI, and that communicate with each other as a part of an ecosystem.

1. Self-service is standard

We have seen a rapid development of self-service applications, and in the future the customers will be able to manage even more tasks on their own. And not just simple ones, such as ordering a birth certificate or schedule an appointment at the hairdressers, but also tasks that are carried out in several steps.

2. A more complex reality for the agent

The trend clearly indicates that the agent’s workday will be a lot more complex in the future. Partly due to the proliferation of self-service applications, leading to the customers only getting in touch when they have a problem they cannot solve on their own. Partly due to robotization that eliminate out routine procedures from the agent’s workday, such as cutting and pasting information from one system to the other, or opening the right application at the right time.

The agent’s new role is about problem solving and they both need the right tools and personal skills to succeed.

3. Fast answers require information strategy

To solve the equation of growing volumes of information, and customers who demand answers quickly, we need an information strategy and use smart technology to store and share our information.

Norwegian Entur who manages customer service and ticket sales for four train operators reduced their average handling time by 23 percent by implementing a smart knowledgebase.

The bank SEB also took control over their information by working in a structured way and applying new technology.

4. Integration

To make the most of the digitalization with automation and robotization, different systems need to communicate with each other in a secure way.

If you want more inspiration from others who use integration opportunities to create new innovative solutions, we suggest that you read the article about E.ON. Among other things, they have a specialized chatbot who reuses IVR-logic to help customers who want a respite on their payment.

The Swedish Police’s contact center (PKC) also highlights the opportunity to increase the level of service by integrating different supporting systems. An example is that information about a caller’s position can be mapped against data in other systems to create a complete image of the situation.

5. Contact Center as a Service is the future

Today there are cloud-based contact center platforms (CCaaS) that are as robust, and offer the same functionality, as traditional on prem solutions. Cloud services make the implementation faster and easier, require less maintenance, and you pay for what you use. CCaaS also provides a higher level of flexibility, scalability, and agility, which is something that proved tremendously useful during the pandemic.

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