‘Contact centre’ is somewhat of a confusing term for many businesses. A solution designed to help a business’s customer-facing operations, contact centre technology has often gained a bad rap amongst smaller businesses. While their functionalities can clearly improve a business’s customer service, contact centres have often (and incorrectly) been considered the sole domain of large organisations – those that could afford the investment necessary to reap the benefits of such a solution and had the IT resources to do so.
Unfortunately, while smaller businesses might understand the value of such a solution, the expense usually associated with it makes it an unattainable option, a risk not worth taking. But what if this wasn’t the case? What if any business could benefit from a contact centre to improve their customer experience – without breaking the bank or requiring extensive resources?
Truth is, contact centres don’t need to be complex and expensive solutions anymore – smaller businesses can benefit from it just as much as bigger businesses.
It’s time for all businesses to embrace the modern cloud-delivered, customer-focused contact centre, regardless of size or number of agents.
Why does your SME need a contact centre?
In today’s digital economy, competition is high, and customers want more from your business. With a world of choices at our fingertips, we can move on from brand to brand in a matter of seconds – one bad experience can lead to the loss of a customer, which means getting it right is critical.
Customer demands have changed quite drastically over the past years: speed, convenience and personalisation are high up on customers’ top priorities when it comes to customer service.
The expectations of an immediate response have increased significantly in the past year and 60% of customers value the ability to resolve issues quickly as the top aspect of good customer service experience.
On top of that, customers want to connect with businesses on whichever channel they prefer, without having to repeat themselves or getting transferred to multiple agents.
And if you think your customers’ happiness doesn’t have a direct impact on your business – think again. 52% of customers would pay more for a speedy and efficient customer experience, and businesses that focus on an experience-driven strategy see one and half times more revenue growth year on year than those that don’t.
Especially due to the pandemic, with shop doors half-closed and consumers adapting their interactions to this new reality, ensuring universal availability, and providing a first-class CX is critical.
Clearly, your business can’t afford to rely on the standard business phone system, or even obsolete, on-premise call centre capabilities with limited features to provide better customer experience – it’s time to embrace the future of customer service: Contact Centre as a Service (CCaaS).
What is CCaaS?
Running an efficient contact centre is hard, especially when you don’t have extensive IT resources, nor the budget to get them. Thankfully, just like customer demands have changed, so has the technology to help you meet them.
Contact Centre as a Service (CCaaS) is a cloud software deployment model that enables organisations to implement the technology they need to meet customer requirements while reducing IT, integration, and support costs. Cloud contact centres make interactions through various channels accessible from virtually anywhere, with minimum capital expenditure, lower initial acquisition costs, and flexible contracts.
The adoption of CCaaS is growing at an incredible pace, with Gartner predicting that by 2022, CCaaS will account for roughly 50% of preferred adoption models in contact centres. While this is great news for consumers, who will get a better experience all around, it’s not as great for any business that hasn’t jumped on the CCaaS train yet.
What are the business benefits of implementing CCaaS?
There’s one universal truth in technology: on-premise hardware is expensive. It requires extensive capital expenditure to deploy and specialist skills to manage it – not to mention the cost of upgrading when it becomes outdated (which in this day and age, it happens quickly and often).
On the contrary, with CCaaS there are no financing costs and no major hardware to purchase, as it’s completely cloud-delivered. This means you can implement the solution quickly and without added complexity. Updates and new features are also available immediately, without the need for specialist IT resources to help implement them.
Flexible and scalable
The current business climate is unpredictable. One day your business might receive thousands of customers’ calls a day, while the next there might be none. As an example, healthcare providers and government organisations saw a dramatic increase in call volumes as a result of the pandemic – a spike that will likely go down as things go back to normal.
CCaaS makes it easy to cope with the ups and downs of unforeseen circumstances by ensuring the flexibility and scalability to increase or decrease the number of agent seats according to seasonal demand. This doesn’t only ensure your customers always get the best possible experience, but it also helps you save costs by only paying for what you really need.
Top-notch customer experience
Customers want their issues solved quickly, efficiently, and conveniently. The latest technology in contact centres allows you to do that – but as we’ve mentioned before, it’s complicated and expensive to implement the latest features with obsolete systems.
CCaaS allows you to improve your customer experience and your first contact resolution with an advanced set of features, often included at no extra cost with your solution. From offering different, yet interconnected, communications channels, such as voice, email and chat, for your customers to get in touch; to have an advanced queue management system and extensive data – CCaaS will turn your customer experience into a success and will keep your customers happy.
Contact centre technology is not just for large businesses anymore – SMEs can, and should, benefit from the latest customer interaction capability if they want to stay competitive and retain customers.
By investing in a CCaaS solution, instead of simply looking at ways to cut costs, SMEs can go from just surviving, to fully thriving.
A cloud-delivered, experience-driven contact centre solution can give you the competitive advantage you need to succeed by reducing IT, integration, and support costs; implementing advanced and evolving feature sets; and providing simplified, quick, accurate and connected customer interactions on multiple channels.