Automation is the single most desired feature for modern call centers. Practically no other business area can benefit from automation in quite the same way.
The big (and completely un-hidden) benefit is cost reduction. That’s what most leaders are really interested in when it comes to automating call center services.
But there are plenty of other, less obvious benefits. They’re the ones we’re going to look at now…
#1 Improved customer experience
Automation doesn’t only make life easier for your business. It also has huge benefits for your customers.
There are dozens of CX-boosting use cases for customers. For example, CTI automatically identifies incoming callers, cutting down the time they spend in IVR.
(It also means they don’t have to go through every old letter and email looking for the dreaded Customer Reference Number…)
With automation, it’s easy to provide customers with top-shelf services like virtual queueing. If you want to reduce hold time of an inbound call center to almost nothing without recruiting extra agents, virtual queueing is how you’ll do it.
Or what about automated outbound SMS? There’s nothing simpler than sending customers an SMS to confirm account balances or booking details. But although it’s simple, it can be incredibly useful to customers – and is almost guaranteed to prevent some repeat calls!
#2 Better agent experiences
It’s no secret that call centers have trouble retaining staff.
Here’s the problem: you want any new hire to be a ‘people person’ – someone who communicates well with your customers.
But it turns out that much of an agent’s job is data entry. Very few people are a natural fit for both elements of working in a call center!
How does automation help?
Data entry is actually very easy to automate. We already talked about CTI – if your system already knows who’s calling, it can automatically record that information in your CRM.
That’s just one example from dozens. Let’s summarize – you can automate the boring stuff agent’s don’t want to do! That leaves them open to focus on real and meaningful interactions.
(And that will push up your agent retention… everybody wins!)
#3 Cleaner data
The number one problem with data entry is human error. On the other hand, it’s virtually impossible for an automated system to mistype or otherwise change the data it’s replicating.
So once the bulk of your data-entry is automated, your data will get ‘cleaner’. There are fewer user errors to worry about and – crucially – data can update instantly across every one of your systems.
Here’s a fairly standard example: a customer calls about an ongoing issue which the agent is able to resolve.
Without automation, the agent has to update the call log, and close the Helpdesk ticket and make a note on the CRM.
With automation, the agent needs only to close the Helpdesk ticket; the CRM and call log replicate that data automatically.
#4 Far more flexibility
Flexibility is the single most important feature of a successful call center.
Call centers stay flexible by reviewing and updating their core processes – but there’s a problem.
Changing processes means retraining staff. That’s tricky to arrange, time-consuming and generally very expensive.
But what about processes that are largely automated? They must be easy to update?
Well, they should be… but it all depends on how you approach automation. Bizarrely, under one quarter of contact centers collaborate fully in the design of their own processes.
That’s why call center planners are increasingly turning to No-Code automation to bring process control back into their own hands. With no coding required, they can create and update their own processes as needed. That injects an enormous amount of flexibility!
#5 Highly personalized services
It’s strange but true: the more you automate services, the more you can personalize them.
Think about it; with automation, you can modify each service you provide to each customer based on your existing data. Take call routing. You can route callers more effectively if your ACD retrieves data from other systems on current Helpdesk tickets or orders.
At the other end of the call, you can create automatic follow-up actions like outbound SMS messages or emails – again, tailored to their known preferences or data in your systems.
You can even get proactive (or pre-emptive) by automatically making contact with customers who have known issues.
This can be as simple as sending supporting content along with purchases for new customers.
(AT&T do exactly this, sending new customers video content to ensure they understand their bill.)
And don’t forget cost savings!
I know, we already covered the big cost savings from automation. But it’s worth pointing out that each of these additional benefits – cleaner data, happier agents, more loyal customers – also bring huge financial benefits of their own.
And that is what makes automated call center services the most desired feature for modern businesses!
babelforce is a global cloud communications platform focused on No-Code integration and automation. It allows non-technical people to build even the most complex integrated processes for customer-facing teams, particularly in the call center.