Call centers (especially those dealing with inbound customer calls) were greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. As people spent more time at home they made more and more calls to customer service and support agents, many of which were complicated and difficult for agents to deal with. This trend has already begun shaping changes in call center technology and will continue to do so in 2022. Here, four trends to look out for in the coming year.
More Advanced IVR
When customers are calling an inbound call center, the vast majority expect whoever answers the phone to be able to solve their problem, no matter how complex or specific it may be. In order to make this expectation a reality, call centers can deploy a more advanced interactive voice responder (IVR) so that customers reach the correct department immediately. More options in the IVR will also cut down on inert wait time, which means less frustration when callers do reach an agent on the other end of the line.
Integrated Multichannel Communication
While talking on the phone used to be the primary mode of communication between customers and businesses (besides in person), there are more options now—and many customers may prefer to communicate with a sales or customer service rep via chat, email or text message over speaking to them on the phone. In 2022, call centers must be able to cater to these preferences with systems that will integrate different methods of communication and keep them all connected to a central platform.
Takeover of Cloud-Based Software
After spending the better part of the last two years working remotely, many agents hope to continue at least a hybrid work model in the coming year. In order to deploy a model in which agents are working from different places, cloud-based call center software will become the norm in the industry.
Increased Emphasis on QA
For outbound call centers and telemarketing companies, it is increasingly difficult to get potential customers on the phone; and for inbound call centers, agents have a smaller margin of error than ever before. That being said, optimal agent performance is essential at all times—and in order to ensure this, companies need simple, efficient and effective quality assurance mechanisms in place. And not only do they need to be simple and effective, but the more aspects that are automated, the better. Call center software that quickly produces QA reports is vital.
One thing is clear: The call center industry is rapidly changing and CallShaper can help you keep up. To learn more about how, contact us today.