Throughout the years, whenever there’s a problem with a product or service, or even just a general question, the answer is typically to contact the call center. This has, much more often than not, meant that callers would be filtered through some form of automated call distributor to reach the appropriate contact.
Callers go through the phone tree, press the appropriate key here and there, and frequently get put on hold at least once before reaching an agent. It certainly isn’t the most efficient option, but it’s how this has worked for decades. Still, few people are filled with joy at the prospect of contacting a call center, and new advancements are making this process easier. Here’s how things are changing.
Call center software
We already saw significant changes in how call centers operate with advancements in software and options. For example, multichannel call center technologies allow businesses to communicate with customers in more ways than inbound/outbound voice. This creates more opportunities for communication through emails, chat services, social media, and more. With cloud call center software, it’s even possible to offer these services faster and cheaper than ever before.
A cloud software solution is a full application featuring an administrator section, system management tools, separate tools for agents and supervisors, as well as web application support. This includes a built-in knowledge base of calendars, event scheduling, and data augmentation. Launching features is a seamless process, and it can be done in a single window, which maximizes efficiency.
Of course, it’s very likely to call centers will continue to move on; this should be especially true once the majority of them have caught up to modern standards. The fact is that, as of now, at least half of business executives feel their support services are lagging behind in their digital transformations. There are plenty of possible reasons for this from a lacking budget to generational divide.
As AI technology continues to advance, it isn’t hard to imagine its potential applications in call centers. An AI program can easily analyze customer interactions and behaviors in order to remember their experiences and products to more quickly efficiently assist them in the future.
There is also the possibility of more options for voice channels, circumventing traditional calls.
This practice doesn’t really exist yet, but neither did online chatting nor social media options when call centers were first conceived. Cloud-based contact centers could even open more possibilities for agents to work with customers from home instead of at a traditional call center.
The more things change
Of course, regardless of advancements in technology, it’s hard to imagine that traditional calls will phase out from business support services altogether. For as long as phones are around, they’ll be incorporated in some way. In fact, the human interaction of a phone conversation is still important for many people. We implicitly tend to trust other humans more than we trust machines, after all.
There’s also the fact that the nature of a conversation tends to change depending on the method. Text chats, for example, tend to be much less personal, even transactional, compared to an in-person conversation or one voiced over the phone. Many also still consider a direct conversation with a human to be the most efficient way of accurately voicing concerns and receiving proper information.
Our best hope is that call center technology continues to make the experience a better one overall, rather than replacing personal interactions. Perhaps in the not too distant future, call centers will hardly resemble the ones we know now.