Data Driven Contact Centers Are Here To Stay

By Chris Recio, Inflow Communications Director of Contact Center & Advanced Applications

As we look back at the trends in Contact Centers in 2015, we may already know this fact: Customer Service ranks high as the number one goal for contact centers.

It’s no wonder that Customer Service ranks high on most all operations. A primary reason customers and potential customers choose to stay or quit doing business with a company due to bad customer experience is a whopping 89%. This is up from 56% in a poll conducted in 2006. Keeping in mind, by the year 2020 customers would rather pay more and get less from a product or business if the customer service experience is superior over another provider.

In 2015, many contact centers continued to seek integration with their chosen CRM. This trend is set to continue as we move into 2016. While a CRM is present in most organizations, many organizations also use alternate applications for housing their customer-centric data – the favorite of in-house data analysts ? business intelligence applications. Regardless of the application, a key factor is that underlying virtually every application is the holy grail of integration: the database. Data allows an operation to bring together many aspects of the business.

Leveraging any information contained within a database offers significant advantages to the contact center, and ultimately, the customer experience.

For example: If a customer calls your business seeking to place a new order, and that same customer is currently delinquent on an open invoice, the caller can be dynamically moved to an agent skilled to cure the back payment while also assisting the customer with their desire to place a new order.

This has an impact on many sides of the operation. First, the business gains control over the account by placing a value on the delinquency, which keeps an eye on the bottom line for the business. Second, the agent has a great opportunity to enhance First Call Resolution by addressing the simultaneous issues with the customer, circumventing the need for additional calls from the customer to make a payment. Lastly, from a customer service point of view, the customer’s needs are being met on multiple levels though one interaction ? definitely having a positive impact on the customer experience overall. Oftentimes, data also allows agents to do more with less effort and time.

While many operations relate to the example above, this is only one aspect of leveraging data already present within the contact center operation and business.

Each industry has its own set of key drivers that might be leveraged in handling a customer interaction. No two contact centers are alike. Finance, loan origination, marketing, healthcare, collections, sales, lead generation ? you name it. The options are endless. Adding to that, many operations now score their customers and accounts with a numeric model ? not dissimilar from a FICO score – and use their BI applications to drive activity and prioritization of accounts by class: VIP, Exec, propensity to buy, propensity to skip, prime, sub-prime and more.

In my experience, nearly 70% of customers I meet are not leveraging data as a key strategy of their contact center operations. So if data is so valuable and pervasive in every company, why do so many contact centers NOT employ this type of strategy?

The answer is simple: a lack of plug-in applications, fear in dealing with an already overly burdened IT Staff or Systems Administration department, concerns for data security, integrity or working with a reseller that simply does not understand the correlation of data to the contact center.

At Inflow Communications, we have always understood the value of data, more importantly, how to use data to achieve results in a contact center. Data is pervasive and the options for data connectivity are becoming streamlined. Fortunately, our implementation and technical teams have been working with the small, medium and enterprise class clients for years, putting their data to great use.

We work with our customers to understand the business strategies and goals first, often at the C-level of executive management. Next we work with the contact center directors, managers, and supervisors to define a solution that meets their needs on multiple levels, especially: improving the overall customer service experience.

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About Inflow

Founded in 1997, Inflow is one of the nation’s top Unified Communications and Contact Center consultants in today’s market. Pioneers in cloud unified communications and cloud contact center success, Inflow is the first company to provide contact center consulting and training focused solely on helping you elevate your customer experience.

With over 200,000 endpoints supported under Inflow’s innovative success programs around the world, Inflow built its brand and reputation around providing unrivaled customer support. Inflow is in Mitel/ShoreTel’s top 2% in global customer satisfaction, and quickly acquiring a top spot with RingCentral, Genesys PureCloud and NICE inContact.

By partnering with Inflow, you can expect the highest level of strategic consultation, execution, and optimization available in the industry.