13 Jan CCaaS Predictions for 2022: Major Trends to Consider
Since the pandemic, countless pieces of crucial business technology have been gradually shifting into the cloud. For many companies, the migration began with collaboration and communication tools. Soon, as demand for exceptional customer service began to grow, the contact centre began transitioning into the cloud too.
Contact Centre as a Service solutions (CCaaS) are now some of the most important tools companies can have to ensure a positive CX (customer experience) for their clients. What’s more, these tools are essential in maintaining business continuity, at a time when agents might not always be able to answer calls and make them from the same workplace environment.
As the value for CCaaS accelerates towards an estimated value of $10.6 billion by 2027, there’s a good chance you’re already planning your own contact centre upgrade. If so, here are some of our top predictions for how the market will evolve in 2022.
1. The Contact Centre Becomes a Relationship Hub
For some time, companies have largely regarded the contact centre to be a solution for dealing with immediate service or sales problems. This led to a strategy of “reactive” customer service, rather than proactively adapting to the needs of the customer.
Fortunately, the evolving CCaaS environment can enable companies to move away from this practice, with access to better end-to-end views of the customer journey. Omnichannel cloud-based contact centres can track valuable information about the customer and their interactions with a brand from one platform to the next. The more crucial data the team collects, the more they can learn about the needs and expectations of their audience.
Extensive analytics tools, mixed with artificial intelligence systems capable of highlighting relationships and patterns human beings might miss, should lead to endless potential for more meaningful, personalised experiences.
2. Customer Expectations will Continue to Evolve
Today’s customers are more empowered and informed than ever. They know companies have the ability to track their interactions and learn more about them, so they expect more personalised and relevant experiences as a result. Additionally, because customers know you have a range of ways to interact with them in a digital world, they also expect faster, more efficient service.
Around 59% of customers say they will hang up within ten minutes of being placed on hold – placing more pressure on agents to act fast. While your human agents can only accomplish so much on their own, the right CCaaS can help them to keep up with expectations.
Intelligent routing strategies designed to send customers either to the next available agent, or the most suitable agent for a specific issue can reduce the risk of your clients waiting around for too long. Many companies are even beginning to implement self-service tools and virtual assistants, so customers can seek out answers to their own questions if they’re not willing to wait for help.
3. More Channels will Emerge for Conversations
Part of the evolving expectations of customers in the modern contact centre links to the growing number of channels and platforms clients are using to connect with companies. Today’s consumers have a host of ways to reach brands they want help from, whether it’s sending a text message, writing a comment on social media, or accessing an online chat app.
Text-based forms of communication which eliminate the need to place customers on hold and reduce some of the social awkwardness associated with phone calls are particularly popular among younger customers. As we move ahead into 2022, it seems likely that a higher number of companies will continue to implement text and messaging tools to appeal to this trend.
At the same time, some companies (particularly those in the B2B environment) are exploring video as a tool for customer service. Video can help to add more context and meaning to conversations in the contact centre. Whatever channels you’re going to be using for your team, it’s worth making sure you have an end-to-end strategy for omnichannel tracking in place.
You should be able to share context from one channel to the next easily and give your customers the opportunity to switch to a new platform when they feel their current option isn’t solving their problem.
4. Empowering Agents will Be Essential
New channels for communication, rising customer expectations and a growing demand for remote and hybrid work opportunities all point to the same thing – a need for more empowered agents. As the call center continues to evolve, business leaders will need to ensure they’re investing in the right tools and services to empower their agents.
Virtual assistants and chatbots within the CCaaS could help with this, automating various repetitive tasks which would otherwise consume valuable time in a contact centre agent’s schedule. Another option will be to integrate more tools into the CCaaS space, so that employees can spend less time moving between applications to find the information they need.
Modern contact centre agents will need access to everything from CRM tools to service tickets to ensure they’re staying ahead of client expectations. In 2022, contact centre managers and supervisors are also likely to turn increasingly to virtual coaching methods to help keep their staff as productive as possible.
5. Security Will Continue to Evolve
Finally, as the contact centre and the way we communicate with customers continue to evolve, the strategies companies use to preserve the safety, security, and compliance of the contact centre will transform too. Companies from all industries will be looking towards CCaaS vendors for more innovative solutions for protecting data and teams.
This could mean using more secure connections with remote working teams, to reduce the risk of problems between the business network and the end-user connection point. It could also mean the overall security practices we use in the contact centre change too. For instance, many CCaaS vendors are now experimenting with voice biometrics and language recognition as a replacement for old-fashioned security questions, to reduce the risk of fraud.
Whatever your strategy for security, business leaders will need to be prepared to prove their commitment to privacy and compliance when connecting with customers.
Which of these predictions do you agree with, and what trends do you feel will be driving your decisions for 2022 CCaaS technology?