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Industry Perspectives – What Does the Digitization of the Economy Mean for Contact Centers?

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This week as we continue our Industry Perspectives series, we wanted to take a look at a recent Wall Street Journal guest feature by Irving Wladawsky-Berger, a former vice-president of technical strategy and innovation at IBM. According to Wladawsky-Berger, “adapting to the ongoing digitization of the economy, and of society in general, is arguably the most challenging transformation every business is facing.”

What does this mean for contact centers? For starters, it means that consumers have 24/7 access to customer support services, through any channel from social media to phone, chat and email. In response to this, Judy Philbin, of Business2Community, gives us a look into the importance of creating a multichannel contact center within the digitized economy. In order to execute a multichannel system well, Judy offers the following tips:

1. Specialize: It is common for agents to prefer the mode of customer communication that they are most skilled at. Managers should be attentive to whether agents prefer phone, chat, e-mail or social communication with customers. When agents spend more time in their preferred mode of communication, they are often more effective in engaging with customers.

2. Diversify: Some industry studies have shown that letting agents move from one mode of communication to another, from voice to e-mail for example, keeps agent engagement high. When possible, allow agents to handle different types of customer outreach so that they experience less fatigue from one type of customer contact.

3. Training: While agents may naturally gravitate to one form of communication, you must also ensure that they are trained across all of the modes of communication they will encounter with customers. When customer outreach volumes are high, it is critical that agents can handle communication in any mode needed.

Data shows that in the US alone, services make up nearly 80% of GDP. As the economy and business become increasingly digitized, how do you think contact center services must adapt to new changes?

Read more about CC-One contact center performance solutions.

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