The advancement of software solutions has strongly impacted the operations of call-centers and other businesses of the 21st century. In an inbound call center, a team of agents and their team leader resolve customer inquiries and offer customer-care support to businesses. Some businesses retain a team of dedicated agents who answer to an incoming volley of questions from customers. However, several businesses now outsource this task to professional call centers. By outsourcing, companies reduce their overhead costs while ensuring a quick and efficient service. However, it is not easy for a call-center to answer thousands of customers queries despite a large workforce. To resolve this challenge new and innovative inbound call center software solutions can help.
The intelligent features of inbound call center solutions include predictive dialer system, intelligent call-routing system, analytics and speech-recognition system that helps the staff to manage workflow efficiently. If you seek a solution for your company, read on to find out which software will exclusively fit your needs.
Types of Call Center Solutions
There are two different types of call center software solutions – on-site and cloud-based solutions – that you can use to resolve your unique business challenge.
On-Premise Software Solution
The on-site/on-premise software solution is installed and runs on the local data center of a company, rather than a remote facility. The organization is fully responsible for the installation, maintenance and upgrade of the software and hardware peripherals. Often, referred to as “shrinkwrap” software, the on-premise software solution gives the organization/entrepreneur full control over the configuration, upgrades and system changes as needed by the business. However, it involves high upfront cost, takes longer to install, and the hassle to self-maintain the data center.
Cloud-Based Software Solution
The cloud-based software solutions often referred to as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is hosted on the vendor’s server and accessed via a web browser. SaaS is the most commonly used cloud computing technology that offers access to a specific application to multiple users. Microsoft Office 365 suite is a good example of SaaS. For a monthly subscription, users can access MS Office products conveniently.
Theinbound call center softwaresolutions on the cloud provide scalable features to the users with a routine upgrade. Thus, you pay only for those features that you want, gain access to the application from any remote desktop, and protect your critical business data with stringent security measures. The Cloud-based solutions also relieve the data-centers from the task of routine maintenance.
Salient Features to Consider During Selection
Whether a business selects on-site solution or a cloud-based solution, it is prudent to evaluate features before making a choice.
Availability of ACD Software
The Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) software can catalog the messages and calls. This system can also route/distribute the calls to the agents as per their experience and skills or depending on the question asked by the customer.
Managing & Monitoring Queue
To optimize caller’s experience and satisfaction, it is essential for an inbound call-center software solution to perform multi-channel routing. The ACD can efficiently manage the callers in queue and can quickly get the agents who have the skills to assist the waiting callers.
Integration with CRM
The integration of ACD with the CRM is critical because only a seamless connection can enable the staff to quickly and efficiently answer the calls. The agents get real-time access to the customer profile, which allows them to customize their calls and resolve queries. Such an interaction adds value to the services rendered by the agent and strengthens the brand image of the company.
Scalable IVR Features
Advanced inbound call center solutions have a collection of APIs that integrates with a diverse array of third-party applications to build intelligent IVR systems. A hosted IVR solution enables a customer to go through an AIVR (Automated Interactive Voice Response) unit. In this unit, different types of pre-recorded audio or voice-prompts may guide a customer to select a preferred service. Thus, an AIVR significantly reduces response time for both the customer and the staff.
Essential Capabilities to Consider During Selection
It is not enough to learn in detail about the features of inbound call center software solutions. It is equally important to learn about the different tasks of a software solution at the time of selection. An efficient solution is supposed to perform five different types of tasks flawlessly.
Task 1: Effortless Capability of Handling the Calls
An efficient software solution seamlessly integrates the company’s phone number or receive multiple virtual phone numbers. This system should also enable an agent to effortlessly manage all calls, such as receiving, holding, muting, forwarding, ending or recording the incoming calls.
Task 2: Effortless Capability of Routing the Calls
The Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system makes it possible for a call-center software solution to forward the callers to the agents who have skills to resolve their problems. Further, the solution should inform the callers about the availability of agents to optimize their experience.
Task 3: Seamless Contact Management
Efficient inbound call center solutions should monitor and record every interaction between a call-center agent and customers. This feature enables an agent to access customer profile and offer personalized assistance. A call-center software solution that seamlessly integrates with various CRM systems and tracks the interaction history with the callers increases the efficiency of the staff.
Task 4: Effortless Capability of Tracking Performance
A premium call-center software solution can monitor the overall performance of an agent and business productivity. The call-monitoring feature enables the executives to listen to every conversation between the clients and agents. On the other hand, the performance-monitoring feature allows a software solution to deliver analytics, such as the average waiting time in a queue or the duration of each call.
Task 5: Multiple Channel Connection
To optimize the callers’ interaction, an efficient software solution enables the agents to connect to all callers via multiple channels.
- This exclusive feature enables a call-center agent to establish face-to-face communication with the clients to verify identification, to share content or to resolve problems via video chatting.
- Web-chatting is another way to resolve the callers’ problems.
- Agents can send messages directly to customers via SMS.
- Many latest call-center solutions enable users to add social-media channels. This medium has become a popular channel for agents and customers to interact.
To optimize your customer interactions and agent performance, businesses must assess these factors before deploying on-prem or cloud-based inbound call center software solutions.
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