The call center industry has evolved significantly since the 1980s. Most of the significant changes have occurred within the last decade but more drastic changes are expected to come within the next few years.
To be able to know which inbound call center provider can work with a fast-paced changing industry and meet business needs and customer expectations, an awareness of these changes is needed.
Here are some key changes that we believe will shape the future of the call center industry:
1. Call centers will be providing multilingual and multichannel support.
Since most call centers provide service for global companies with global customers, it is expected that call center providers deliver service that caters to multi-lingual customers as well. Major contractors would be leaning towards providers that can provide multi-lingual solutions to their clients.
As service delivery moves beyond phone (voice) channels towards e-mail, chat and the increasing trend of using social media channels – businesses need to fill in the need to provide service to customers in every channel. Call centers will expand their service delivery channels and provide multichannel support.
2. Call centers will be integrating mobility with existing capabilities.
Integrating mobility with existing call center capabilities is imperative with the explosive use of smartphones today. Web-based customer service should also make its presence through smartphone apps on mobile devices or risk losing revenue.
Businesses should also see the advantage of going mobile as such devices provide call centers with real-time contextual information, such a data about the location of the customer, his account information and service history. These data play a big role in analytics.
3. Developing a great corporate culture will be the key to success.
Staff attrition has been a perennial problem and continues to cost revenue for call centers. Building a corporate culture is one of the key steps in helping curb the attrition rate. Studies have proven that corporate culture plays a big role on employee engagement, customer services and ultimately, profitability.
4. Call centers will employ advanced analytics.
Analytics is a trend that is going to have a high impact on all industries today. Call centers must adopt this trend to better understand customer needs and behaviors.
Since call centers will be offering multichannel support, they will be dealing with a lot of data that capture critical information on preferences, loyalty, service issues and customer value. Call centers will be wise to transform their enterprise not only as call centers but as customer insight centers as well, offering data analytics services to clients as well.
5. Call centers will experience huge technical advances.
These technological advances will transform how companies and their customers connect, interact and respond with one another.
Virtual call centers will rise as centers do away with the need to have agents all in one physical, geographical location. Cloud enterprising will continue to be the thrust of call center providers, as a solution to the need of providing multilingual support.
The IP-Based Session Initiation Protocal (SIP) will also transform call center operations by reducing cost operations as it will integrate the phone with the computer – removing the need for a landline phone to do answer voice calls.
6. Call centers empowers customers through self-service.
Call centers will empower their customers with the tools needed to find their own solutions to their issues. Due to technology, IVR systems can be embedded with advanced speech recognition that will let customer interact with the systems instead of pushing buttons.
Customers, through NLP (neuro-linguistic programming)-based Knowledge Management, can receive resolutions automatically, without the need to reach out (or talk) to an agent.
7. Call centers are seen as value-adding partners not just suppliers or vendors.
Gone are the days when call centers are just seen as a cost-saving option for a business, treated as suppliers, vendors or sub-contractors.
Call centers today, the good ones that businesses should partner with, fully understand client processes and be able to evaluate and improve them. Their goal is not only to deliver real economic (cost-saving) options to clients but to deliver on quality and productivity as well.
Call centers should no longer just mechanically apply client procedures to customer service but really understand their client’s business – their strengths and weaknesses, challenges and advantages – so that they will be able not only provide service but become a partner in delivering business to its customers.
Call centers are no longer chosen one their ability to deliver low-cost service but are chosen on whether they can add value to the overall customer relationship experience of the business.
The Call Center of the Future
Today’s businesses know the importance of investing on improving customer relationships. This strategy requires minimum investment but a maximum gain.
The call centers of the future will undoubtedly transform and improve customer interactions by providing fast, accurate and reliable customer information and resolution across all channels, available in different languages. With advancements in technology, call centers will be able to keep up with the increasing demand of quality customer service delivery and still be able to reduce cost operations and call center procedure complexities.
Having a reliable contact center is a vital aspect of a business regardless of the industry they belong to. It must have several communication channels where customers can freely address their concerns and queries regarding the company’s products and services. With our results-driven solutions, you can expect your contact center to deliver the best responses your clients are looking for. Learn more!