2015 will be a transformative year for contact centers, as they begin to improve their customer experience with new technologies such as Contextual Intelligence and WebRTC .
Today, there is a growing recognition among contact centers how improvements to customer experience positively impact production and revenue. Merely the idea of having a department called “customer service” implies that a select few people have a relationship with customers – but looking forward, this structure will change. Everyone in the organization will realize how critical a customer interaction can impact a brand and to focus on providing a better experience. Of course, the organizational change that this adjustment in mind-set will lead to won’t happen overnight as it demands a fundamental breakdown of traditional business structures.
Where companies will begin on this transition in 2015 is by re-examining the customer journey – defining what channels their customers use when they source information or when they have any sort of interaction with the business. The first thing to realize is that people don’t just have one isolated interaction with a brand. They use social networks, blogs, web and other channels to research, interact and make a purchase., Mapping the customer journey will allow businesses to understand this process and structure their business around it so they can deliver a better overall experience.
That said, there still need to be moderators to direct customers to the appropriate expert when they contact the business. It is unlikely people will call directly into a technology providers’ engineering department, for example, so companies will need these customer service reps to bridge the gap between customers and the individual parts of their organization. Audio communications devices, particularly those enabled with Unified Communications (UC) technology, will play a large part in supporting this approach. These tools tap into every one of the communication devices workers use today to seamlessly connect all the people within the business and will be very valuable in bridging the gap between office communications and the customer experience.
2015 will also mark “the year of Contextual Intelligence” particularly as more contact centers move over to soft phones. Businesses will see their devices evolve beyond basic audio resources to become intelligent tools that link with their PCs and their software. These tools allow users to know exactly where their colleagues are, if they are available, and connect customers directly to someone that can address their questions immediately.
Finally, this year we will start to see some of the first full-scale implementations of WebRTC. The technology has the potential to reshape customer interactions by allowing a direct connection between peoples’ browsers and the contact center – which allows users to get the information they need from an associate without having to pick up a phone. In other words, WebRTC gives customers the means to redefine the way they interact with businesses.