A few months ago, I wrote a blog about Unified Communication solutions including some contact center features like music on hold, callback when available, call queues, and routing rules (such as time of day routing or department routing).
I received a bunch of questions about this. First of all, it’s important to remember that what I’m talking about is for small and medium-sized businesses. For these businesses, it’s important to have a contact center, but it doesn’t have to operate like a large agent contact center such as you might find with large airlines.
However, many businesses need a good contact center with dedicated agents, and they need it at an affordable price. And the business needs to make sure it operates efficiently and provides great customer experience. So what does this all mean?
Let’s start with routing to the appropriate person or department. When a call comes in, the call should be able to get to the right place easily. And this means the UC system should have basic IVR functionality.
So now the call is going to an agent, but what does that mean? Is there just somebody sitting in a dedicated cubicle? In today’s work environment, that is not necessarily so. As such, the agent should be able to work remote, so operating with a softphone is a must. And if the agent comes in to work, the agent might need to share a desk workspace, so “hot desking” where an agent logs in and the workstation becomes “theirs” is also important.
So let’s say you call in and get to the right place, but you get put on hold. The UC system should be able to play music, make an announcement about where you are in line, and give you the option of hanging up while “keeping your place in line” and receiving a call back.
And if you are operating a business where appointments are critical to revenue (such as the office of a doctor, dentist, lawyer, etc.), appointment reminders are important. So the ability for the system to automatically call out to people to remind them about upcoming appointments is critical.
And the system needs to be able to record calls for the variety of reasons you can find here.