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The Top 5 Must-Have Features for Building a Robust Customer Engagement Strategy, Part 2

By Chris Recio, Director of Contact Center & Advanced Applications

In our last blog posts, we have been discussing and outlining my Top 5 Must-Have Contact Center Options for building a robust contact center operation, while simultaneously paving the way for expanding your customer engagement strategy.

Here are the final 2 of my Top 5 Must-Have Options when selecting a contact center solution.

Fully Documented Open API

Regardless of any solution’s capabilities, your chosen solution should provide a well-documented and open API. While most solutions today do provide an API, it would be important to at least review the extent to which you have access to data and analytics, manipulating contact center options and features in real-time, and basically accomplishing anything within the application, outside of the application.

I often use the API to create processes that extend beyond a system’s capabilities, at least from the UI point of view. There are plenty of use cases where the so-called “product” does not quite meet the needs of specific client needs. In those cases, I almost always will use the API to create a process that meets the specific needs.

It is absolutely impossible for any contact center solution to meet the needs of every use and every specific use case. However, having access to a well-documented API gives the organization a great foundation for meeting the needs of clients on many levels.

As support providers, we often must be creative in meeting the needs of clients. Having an open API allows us to think outside the box and provide the right solution for the need. You’d be surprised at the many different wants we’ve created solutions for clients leveraging the tools within the applications coupled with API requests to meet the needs.

Outbound Campaigns

Lastly, but certainly not at all last, the need for outbound campaign processing. When I use the term “outbound campaign” many will immediately think of a dialer solution. That is not always the case.

Today, outbound processing does include the typical telephone call. But, as we stated earlier, telephone calls are the most ignored communication today, tracking at an upward of 70% or more.

Any outbound solution should provide SMS as part of its native process. This is so common today that I would be hard-pressed to procure any solution that did not have a native SMS outbound process.

Adding to this, campaigns should provide some level of email and/or survey processing. With the right frame of mind and flexible solution, it is possible to create outbound surveys and email campaigns within a typical dialer process. The key is in the Rules engine and Data Access process of the dialer.

What I want in a dialer is the ability to run a web service before committing the “call” so to speak. I want real-time injection capabilities. I want real-time table field manipulation.

With the right infrastructure, we can use a typical dialer to do much more than it was intended, given the aforementioned options mentioned a moment ago.

Final Thoughts on Contact Center Solution Procurement

The Contact Center today has taken its rightful place as the epicenter of every business and operation. Daily, I speak with CEOs, CIO, CMOs, and other key stakeholders about their contact center operations. Their focus is on creating great customer experiences, increasing brand loyalty, and of course customer retention. A business cannot continue to grow without successfully providing great experiences for your clients.

Choosing the right contact center solution for your long-term customer engagement strategy is critical for your success. If you are looking to expand the contact center operations of your business into a much larger customer engagement strategy, be sure to include the above-mentioned options as part of the greater plan.

After all: It’s Not What the Solution Can Do – It’s what YOU CAN DO with What the Solution Can Do