With so many ways for customers to connect with businesses these days – email, chat, social – does anyone still pick up the phone and call?
Despite the increase in online self-service, customers still prefer to speak to a live agent for support. According to Microsoft, 1 in 3 customers say the most important factor in providing a good customer service experience is speaking with a knowledgeable and friendly agent.
So, how has the humble call centre phone system evolved to meet the needs of today’s savvy customers? With all of these emerging communication channels coming into the mix, businesses are realising the importance of an omnichannel approach and the need to add new functionality to their call centres. And it’s becoming essential in order to keep up with customer adoption and demand for a better and seamless customer experience.
The importance of having a modern call centre phone system
Gone are the days of businesses outsourcing their customer service to call centers abroad to save money. With cloud call centre software, businesses are no longer restricted to basic and expected features, making it easier and more cost effective to deliver great customer service.
With capabilities that can integrate chat, analytics, CRM and other business tools, call center agents can provide an immediate, personalised response to customers.
Not only does this boost customer experience and satisfaction, but it also simplifies call centre operations and the demand on IT within the business.
Teams can also have meaningful collaboration across your entire call centre. The wealth of data that is now available, provides new real-time insights into individual and team performance, which enables improvements for the call centre and operators.
What defines a great call centre?
Businesses operate call centres or contact centres to give their customers a way to get in touch. When customers call to ask a question, voice a complaint, or request help, call centre operators guide them on finding the best solution. A call centre agent may handle both inbound and outbound customer interactions.
Where once it was just restricted to receiving large volumes of customer phone calls, today’s modern call centre phone systems now integrate phone calls, emails, social media messages, live chat and more.
How does a cloud based call centre work?
A traditional on premise call centre involves physically present employees, sitting alongside each other, answering calls via a landline phone system with local routing servers. It requires having to maintain legacy hardware and software inhouse, which is usually managed by an internal IT team.
Cloud based or virtual call centres are thriving right now because they eliminate the need for cumbersome hardware and maintenance. Instead, cloud based phone systems use VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) technology to send inbound calls to agents over the internet. They answer calls and the information is then recorded via CRM software, ensuring customer data is centralised and accessible to everyone in the cloud.
With a virtual call centre, operators aren’t restricted to being stuck in a physical office space. They can be working from home and still offer the same level of customer service. For a company, it also means they can scale seamlessly in multiple locations. You typically pay per user for access to virtual cloud hosted call center software.
Benefits of a cloud hosted call centre
What makes a cloud based call centre more attractive than an on premise call centre solution?
Unlike on-premise solutions the installation, set up cost and timing is minimal. You can launch your call centre in minutes and reduce the chances of downtime. With no hardware to maintain, there’s zero maintenance at your end, and growing your team is as easy as a few clicks. Plus, you can stay at the top of your game with the latest technology, as upgrading your system doesn’t require swapping over expensive equipment.
Cloud call centre features
With a cloud based call centre, there are many useful features you can deploy. Some of the common features include:
Interactive voice response (IVR)
An IVR is an electronic menu that guides callers, so they can be connected to the right operator. Customers navigate through various options to make a selection on their phone by pressing the number that relates to their request. The result? Satisfied customers, operators that can always be reached and more productive staff.
Call recording allows you to record and store phone calls as audio files on the server, which is useful for monitoring and training. Something to keep in mind here is that the storage requirements for call recording can be large, which is why cloud hosted systems are better suited for this function. They make it easy to upgrade the size of your storage space without having to buy new hardware.
Call centre monitoring and analytics
This is an essential for any call centre. Some of the best systems provide real time statistics, letting you know what’s going on in the call centre as it happens. Historical reporting allows you to compile hourly, daily, weekly, monthly and annual statistics for detailed analysis and performance.
H3 CRM integrations
Your software should help your team work faster and more efficiently. And that’s where having CRM capabilities can save lots of valuable time, and also provide a better customer experience.
Sometimes operators will need support during a call. When dealing with a difficult customer on the phone, having backup from another senior operator can help turn things around into a positive experience for the customer. With whisper technology, a third party can join your conversation and discreetly offer support unnoticed.
A great way to reach new customers and sell your product or service is with warm calling. With this function, you can quickly reach out to prospective customers who have already shown an interest in your product and have previously been in touch with you.
Nexgen call centre phone system specialists
For more reasons to switch to the cloud, or to find out if upgrading your call centre system to a cloud based solution is right for your business, speak to the phone system specialists at Nexgen today.