Contact Centres Lagging Behind in Adoption of Integrated Multi-Channel Systems Call Centre Clinic News (press release) 1st October 2013: Organisations across the country are scrambling to meet customer demands for 'multi-channel communications,' by...
|Scooped by Jamshaid Anwar|
Last year, in an opinion survey of UK Contact Centre Leaders, 70% of UK contact centres said that the best technology model for them to handle multiple communications channels was a single multi-channel communications system (MCCS). However, just 9% had actually implemented one. Now in 2013 the adoption rates of single MCCS have jumped from 9% to 27%. In my opinion the survey highlights many good points but does not really address the CIO’s role and the strategic outlook to where the contact centre fits into a digital/ omni channel contact strategy.
Having worked as a consultant for many of the U.K Telcos advising on their contact centre technology & operations for the last 17 years, I have seen the evolution these Telcos have gone through and it should be noted that Telco’s have been front runners in adopting a single MCCS and as a result they have embraced the benefits this brings. Other sectors have much to learn from the Telco MCC journeys.
I believe that the I.T department is often the obstacle to having a single MCCS in many cases this stems from a historical trend of defragmented IT strategies on which corporate contact centre infrastructures and systems are based. There has been a lack of joined up thinking by most CIOs mainly due to the lack of understanding of what a fully integrated solution looks like from a business perspective. Quite often they have no understanding of the challenges the business transformation / Contact Centre Managers face from: contact centre recruitment; how procurement policies and their supporting systems fit into workforce management planning, how a lack of integration between marketing campaign systems and the WFM/WFO process results in the work force adherence gap, challenges with staff retention and impact of systems on average handling time to what this means to the customer experience. I have witnessed a client that used multiple systems for each call when only dealing with a single channel where salutation and customer ID &V data was replicated more than once in a single call (not unusual in organisations of low maturity even if they have impressive revenues).
This trend of a defragmented approach to building the corporate contact centre infrastructure and hence operating model (the latter due to constraints of the technology the business has been given by I.T) has created a huge challenge in obtaining meaningful operational data and an even bigger challenge on getting a single view of the customer. These organisations will lose ground against their competitors that have a strategic infrastructure using single MCCS. Organisations on a single MCCS are now a step away from becoming an Omni-Channel organisation probably resulting from a joined up Digital strategy catering for customers that have embraced the digital revolution thus allowing their customers to make the ‘Martini Contact’ - any time any place any-where. These organisations will now be collecting and seamlessly integrating the correct business and technical data to support their contact centre managers in the areas of: procurement, HR, work force management, operational reporting and CRM where there is a true single view of their customer.
Those that have already reached the required level of maturity will be ready to face the challenges of ‘Big Data’ while the rest are still struggling with ‘Small Data’.