The modern contact centre is changing. As customer expectations evolve, businesses are under more pressure to deliver a smooth, seamless experience through whatever channel the consumer favours.

Therefore, the tools they put in place to manage this need to evolve as well. Modern call centre solutions must do much more than provide a smooth, reliable experience for users getting in touch by phone – they need to support customers across every channel. Here are five key features that every up-to-date call centre needs in order to achieve this.

1. Smart call routing

Even though other channels like instant chat and social media are becoming more common, the phone is still at the heart of most contact centres. But no-one likes waiting in queues, or having to go through multiple menus in order to reach the right agent when they call in. Therefore, smarter routing and queuing systems that can use predictive tools or artificial intelligence to redirect people quickly and accurately are a must-have for any cloud-based contact centre management.

2. CRM integration

Customers want their issue sorted quickly, but according to research from Ovum, they believe it will take up to five interactions to resolve a problem. To improve on this, effective integration with CRM functions can be hugely useful, as it not only gives agents a complete picture of any previous contact and what has been done so far, but can also provide direct access to the tools they need to answer any queries on the first interaction, thereby exceeding consumers’ expectations.

3. Seamless Omnichannel Contact Centre

Ovum notes more than half of consumers will use three or more channels when contacting a company, so they must be able to move between these seamlessly, without any delays or need to repeat information. For example, when a chatbot tool reaches the limits of its capabilities and passes over to a human, this should ensure the agent can pick up exactly where the bot left off, in the same window, with a full record of the conversation. Or, once a query has been resolved, any followup emails should reflect exactly what has been done.

4. Improved automation

In the years to come, it’s estimated that up to 85 per cent of customer experience interactions will involve some type of automation. This can come in many forms, such as the chatbots or intelligent call routing mentioned above. But automation tools can also be used to spot issues before they occur, allowing firms to be more proactive in how they deal with customers and free up contact centre staff from mundane queries to focus on more complex tasks.

5. Analytics tools

Finally, contact centre solutions that include comprehensive analytics can offer businesses much more visibility into their operations. They can, for instance, offer a full view into the omnichannel customer journeys, letting you see what channels they use, where they switch between them and where any bumps in the road are occurring. Smart analytics services also help you build more efficient call routing solutions, anticipate future problems and levels of demand, as well as improving the quality of information available to your agents. 

Learn more about the future of the contact centre and the technologies you’ll need to make it a success in our new white paper.

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