Contact centers have gone through significant change over the past several years, the most significant being the use of cloud based services. These cloud services allow companies extreme flexibility and platform reliability without the hassle of upgrades, maintenance contracts, and slow IT response time to requested changes. These services are now mature enough to handle every aspect of a contact center’s technology needs with out the need of a large IT support team and millions of dollars spent to maintain it.
Tools like inContact, Corvisa, and 8 x 8 can do everything the old legacy ACD systems like Avaya, Cisco, and Aspect can do. I would argue that they can do it easier, cheaper, and you only need to pay for the capacity that you use versus investing for peak volumes. Infinite Green has implemented a few of these new cloud based tools and based on our experience, these tools can be designed and deployed in a fraction of the time that it would take with premise based hardware and software solutions. The same could be said for CRM or service based platforms including Zendesk, Spice, and Salesforce. These platforms contain all the functionality needed to provide a great customer experience including knowledge management, community, reporting, and scripting tools. For other specialty services you may already have running in your operation, these tools also come with pre-built adapters that allow for easy integration with other service based applications.
I remember a time when I was the business owner of a large contact center operation for a fortune 100 company where I was quoted $1 Million dollars and 9-12 months to turn on an outbound dialer on ourcomplex Cisco contact center environment. Not only did it cost me all of my project dollars that year, it still didn’t work by the end of the project. I had spent all that time and resources on something that we couldn’t even get working. Fast forward to today and Infinite Green has had many projects where with a few simple design elements and requirements, we turned up a full suite of integrated channels including outbound dailers in less that 4 weeks and most of that time was spent with change management issues in the operation.
Technology is not the barrier anymore, it is quite the opposite. I would argue that it would take longer to run through a change management cycle within your operation than it would to make significant changes to your contact management or CRM service platform. They are that easy to change. If you haven’t had experience with these service platforms, I highly recommend you check them out. Carve out a small piece of your contact center operation and give them a test drive. Find someone on your team that has some technical skills and is curious about how these tools work. Give them a sandbox environment to play in and give them a month to develop a good understanding of how they operate. My guess is you will have an actual proof of concept up and running with live customer calls in no time and would never even consider going back to your legacy platforms ever again.
Chief Instigator – Infinite Green