The process of selecting the right cloud-based call center software solution is lengthy and time consuming. A Google search, colleague referral, and a few phone calls to vendors will not result a sound business decision. As you begin the search process, it’s helpful to layout a time and resources continuum so that everyone involved understands the kind of time and energy that will need to be invested.
Building out this evaluation and transition framework will help to clarify your business priorities and provide an excellent framework for building the case to partner with outside consultants. Working with an experienced partner is an excellent way to objectively control the time and expense associated with the research, evaluation, selection, and implementation of a new cloud-based call center software solution.
Defining requirements is the most important step of the cloud-based call center software solution selection process. Without a solid understanding of what is needed, it is impossible to make a sound business decision in this regard. First, you must consider the communication channels you offer to clients.
In today’s technology rich world, it’s unlikely that phone-oriented features alone will suffice. Lay out all of the channels you are actively providing service through today and identify any that you intend to consider adopting in the next 5 years. Rate each on its level of importance to your organization and the vendor’s performance relative to that channel. Here are four of the major channels to review:
- Phone (inbound calls, outbound calls)
- Online (self-help, live chat)
- Interactive Voice Recognition
Once you have defined the communication channels necessary for delivery of your value proposition and overall business success, you can work through the feature sets around each that will serve your current needs and support your growth plans. Here are features to review with each channel:
- Predictive Dialing
- Automatic Call Routing (ACD)
- Digital Call Transfer
- Screen Pops
- Call Recording
- Text messaging
- Secure Portals
- Screen Sharing
- Chat Transfer
- Social Media Sites
- Social Listening/Monitoring
Interactive Voice Recognition
- Entries passed to live phone support
- File Transfer
The ultimate question for each channel is whether or not the cloud-based call center software is able to tie them together in a way that enables you to create a unified view of the customer. Do you want to take a multi-channel approach where each communication channel is optimized as a singular experience with data eventually consolidating on the back end? Or do you prefer a more complex omni-channel approach where the channels interact continuously in real-time? Careful management of data from multiple channels is what enables your team to effectively manage overall customer experience.
Once you have clearly defined your requirements, sorting through vendors becomes a fairly straightforward, though time-consuming, task. The first action here is finding vendors to evaluate. Simple searches will reveal a few obvious vendors to consider. What you’ll likely miss are some very robust providers who excel on the solution side without the extensive brand awareness to lure prospects in. Having a robust search process will open up the field to some outstanding hidden gems that may otherwise be missed.
With your list of potential solutions identified, the work has just begun. Without intimate knowledge of each vendor and program, it is impossible to quickly narrow the field to the vendors best able to serve your needs. Precious hours or days can be wasted starting the evaluation process with a vendor only to find that a key need is unmet. Companies that work with these solutions regularly can quickly eliminate solutions that won’t align with your needs, providing you with a shortcut to a short-list of vendors for full evaluation. This is where Outsource Consultants can help you by matching you with the best cloud call center software for your requirements.
Outsource Consultants can find the cloud call center software solution that’s right for you!
Outsource Consultants are call center experts with over 25 years of outsourcing industry experience that have spent thousands of hours vetting and analyzing the strengths and specializations of the industry-leading outsource call center vendors. If you’re considering call center outsourcing, simply call 888-766-4482 or request a free call center cost proposal today and we’ll help you find the solution that best fits your exact requirements.