From a business point of view the benefits are moving to the ‘cloud’ are huge – but how does this affect the customer?

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Calling a contact center can be a frustrating experience, and not one that many people look forward to. It’s therefore not surprising that many calls end with customers simply hanging up in frustration. This unpleasant end result is usually due to some failure on the part of the call center – whether it is issue of being under-staffed, under-trained, under-informed, or simply that the technology isn’t up to task.

With more contact centers moving to the ‘cloud’, industry experts have long been debating whether this move will do more than just save money and actually improve customer service. A recent study by Aberdeen Group seems to prove this. Its research found that call abandonment rates were lower in cloud contact centers compared with traditional call centers, with just 4.5% of calls abandoned.

Why Do Customers Hang Up?

There are many factors that lead to the customer hanging up. This unbearable frustration can be a result of being on hold forever and a day, or being transferred around the office like telephone line tennis, or even speaking to an agent who is unable to deal with your problem.

Having an out-of-date call center system which potentially irritates all your existing customers could be a costly mistake. Even if your products and services are unbeatable, bad customer service could damage your business. Research has shown that it is 6-7 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an old one.

So, Why Do Customers Stay on the Cloud?

Clever Call Routing

Bringing cloud computing to your call center allows you to easily embrace new technologies and improve the way your calls are handled. Intelligent contact routing not only allows you to prioritize your calls, but to direct your callers to the right agents to deal with their problem.

For example, you could choose to deliver your best customers to your most senior customer advisor – ensuring they remain loyal, happy customers. Or, if you have a service-based business, you could prioritise customers whose contract is soon up for renewal. An excellent service just at the right moment could be enough to win their custom back.

This technology also allows you to direct callers to the department they are likely to need, based on the agent they last spoke to.

Efficient Service

There is no doubting that cloud call centers are more efficient. These changes, which are great for your business, also greatly improve customer service.

Cloud call centers are dynamic in the sense that they allow you to expand or scale down depending on demand. This process is made simple by cloud technology as you no longer need an office to house your agents – you can take on extra homeworking staff.

If your office is full to busting but the calls keep on coming, you can employ staff to work from home without the financial risk of renting out another office. Workers connect to the server via the ‘cloud’ and can take calls and access your databases and software from the comfort of their own homes. Remote working is becoming increasingly popular and many employees would love the opportunity to work from home.

Your ability to adapt on demand should ensure that there are always enough agents to answer calls, which reduces waiting times and keeps customers happy.

Helpful Messages

Another new technology available with cloud call centers is the ability to target messages to waiting callers. Hopefully your waiting times will already be low but just in case there is a queue, these messages can soften a frustrating situation.

These are not one-size-fits-all messages; instead each message is tailored to suit any information you might have about the caller, their query or their purchase.

It seems cloud call centers have the ability to keep businesses and customers happy, with a more efficient and adaptable service. Customer contact centers have entered the cloud and I don’t think they’ll be coming back down again anytime soon.

How do you think customer service is improved by cloud technology? Share your thoughts below.