Reasons to Switch to a Cloud Contact Center, Part II: Stay relevant without a large initial investment
By: Chris Recio, Director of Contact Center and Advanced Applications
This post is part two of a 5 part series of reasons why you should switch to a cloud contact center. Up next: providing flexible contact options for customers, quicker deployment and increased speed to market, and improved date and systems integration. Click back here to read part one: increase flexibility and stability.
The technology in the contact center industry is changing rapidly. Contact centers today look a whole lot different to how they did back in 1995. In fact, many employees would hardly believe the change if they didn’t see it with their own eyes.
Rapid developments in technology are great. They allow contact centers to better serve the clients and customers much more effectively and efficiently. But the changes also make it hard for contact centers to remain a relevant and suitable choice for clients. In the past upgrades in technology have only been possible with large upfront investments. But not anymore. With cloud-based solutions, contact centers can remain relevant without large investments; and it is one of the most persuasive reasons to switch.
The importance of staying relevant
Having been in IT and the contact center space for a significant period of time, one of the primary obstacles I’ve learned for remaining relevant with technology is the cost of the initial investment. While most operations strive for a three to five-year cycle of a technology refresh, I see quite a bit of legacy and out-of-date technology on contact center floors across the country. This legacy technology holds back operations for many contact centers on multiple levels.
Even today, I run into many contact center operations that are just now beginning to understand the value of the screen pop. Not every contact center has had the luxury of staying relevant, and those that do, are far ahead of their competition in being able to meet the customer demands for technology options. The option is clear: remain relevant and upgrade or die.
New technology can be expensive
Often, replacing legacy technology to support current customer trends and requests requires a significant upfront investment in new technology. This is either through the acquisition of bolt-on technologies to integrate with legacy platforms or through a complete system replacement. In both cases, there is significant cost and energy that must be put forward in assessing and procuring newer technology. And if something happens and that new system is no longer needed or not suitable, there is very little you can do to recoup your costs.
As a general rule, I am not a fan of bolt-on applications that seek to leverage newer technological options as a plugin to legacy platforms. The result is always the same: reporting is often contained across multiple systems requiring contact center managers to pull data from more than one system and then merge the data together for a single operational point of view. If not this, then there is a significant amount of professional services and customized reporting that must be taken as part of the acquisition, at an expense, and oftentimes the result is a frustrating process for both the contact center supervisors and the data analysts.
Cloud contact centers need little or no upfront investment
But if you choose to move to a cloud-based solution, all of these issues and costs aren’t a factor. Many cloud-based options today offer an all-in-one solution. Some are more advanced than others, but the result is a cleaner experience, providing advanced options that allow any operation to slowly ingest the options available to them, all without the need for heavy upfront investment costs.
That’s because many cloud providers offer a pay-as-you-go model, with a significant price break for annual contracts. These monthly fees, rather than a large up-front investment, don’t just cut costs, they also give contact centers flexibility in choosing what teams to migrate and when to migrate them. If they suddenly need more agents, the technology can be supplied instantly. The net result: a low-cost, low-risk option for most contact center operations and a great reason to go cloud.