Gauteng Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  27 Oct 2011

CONTACT CENTRES: Extending Cloud Computing to the Contact Centre


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A cloud computing contact centre has long been talked about and is rightly seen as the best way forward for small contact centres. Hosted contact centre solutions are the ideal choice for many businesses today. So says Mark Edwards, director of product and services at technology solutions and people resources integrator, Intuate Group, who believes that the extension of cloud computing, via Software as a Service (SaaS) or hosted, on-demand contact centres solutions, is particularly advantageous for smaller contact centres of between five and 300 seats.

“In fact, a recent study conducted by Frost and Sullivan, titled ‘Premise Vs. Hosted Contact Center: Total Cost of Ownership Analysis’, stated that contact centres can reduce contact handling and workforce optimisation infrastructure costs by 43 percent over a five-year period through the leveraging of cloud-based offerings,” states Edwards. “It also says that overall, contact centres can save on costs related to systems and applications, implementation, maintenance and upgrades and telco costs through hosted per-agent, per-month fees.”

A Cloud Computing Contact Centre Can Help ‘Save’

Edwards maintains that employing this type of “pay-as-you-go” technology allows companies not only to eliminate any in-house hardware and software investment, but also related IT infrastructure, maintenance and upgrade expenses. “After paying your once-off setup fee and a monthly licence fee, based on the number of current users, there are no additional hidden costs,” he says. “Hosted or cloud solutions have also hugely improved flexibility. Gone are the days where companies have had to buy more seats, ‘just in case’.

“For the smaller contact centre, one of the most important benefits that a hosted solution can bring is the reduced technical maintenance burden with increased functionality. By offloading responsibility to a technical expert, a company is freed up to focus on its core business and does not need to worry about deploying its own technical resources. Not only this, but a more efficient contact centre helps improve service levels, through the automation of certain business processes and, ultimately, leads to increased customer satisfaction. By routing calls to the most appropriate agent, the contact centre can respond faster and more appropriately.

A Cloud Computing Contact Centre Promotes Productivity

“Furthermore,” Edwards adds, “a hosted contact centre solution helps improve the productivity of the contact centre service itself, enhancing efficiency through integration with other business systems, such as CRM. This enables contact centre agents to quickly access required information when dealing with customers and customer feedback to be inputted into other systems.

“This type of approach makes great financial sense for the small to mid-sized business sector and should be considered by those organisations looking to improve contact centre efficiencies without making huge capital outlays,” he concludes. This therefore proves how many believe that a cloud computing contact centre is the right way forward and can be incredibly advantageous.

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