A few years ago most consumers would refer to a call centre – a term which reflected the fact that the majority of brand interactions centred around voice calls.
Today, thanks to the surge in digital communication across the world, most of us have instinctively switched to contact centre. From Facebook posts to Twitter, SMS, email and fax, the list of possible interaction channels between the brand and customer goes on and on. Contact centre really is the only relevant phrase to use.
But this is just the beginning of the change. Deeper shifts are occurring within the communication sphere, and many of them are illuminated by our evolving understanding of common industry phrases such as inbound, outbound and, perhaps most importantly, the blended contact centre.
Now that the act is in effect, companies must have a strong grip on their customer interactions, information flow and document management. When disputes arise with customers, it is up to the company to provide full records of the interaction, whether that be in the form of a contact centre call recordings, email interactions or [...]
Exceptional customer service is the holy grail of business. Communication and marketing teams around the world focus on this key element, and yet as much focus as it receives, exceptional service remains elusive at best, and frequently highly problematic for many organisations. One of the primary reasons for this is that the inter-play between technological [...]
While social media is grabbing the headlines there are equally dramatic changes currently occurring across the world in the way groups of people are collaborating and working together. These changes should be throwing up many interesting communication questions for corporate decision makers. A massive number of collaboration tools exist at every level of economic activity. [...]
Successful migration to a consolidated communications infrastructure begins and ends with successful communication.
This sounds like a simple statement, but it carries with it many layers of complexity. Internal communications, the lifeblood of any organisation, is the first mission-critical factor.
It should incorporate staff at every level, from security workers through to maintenance, marketing and those operating at executive level. While companies believe they are on the right internal communications track, anyone working regularly within the space will be able to testify how many still get this basic idea very wrong.
Communication technologies have the power to dramatically shape company performance, and if the bottom line is shaky there’s little doubt the contact centre can make a positive contribution to turning things around. But within this context, many decision makers get caught in the tactic trap – changing and re-changing various elements of the contact centre [...]
Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) has long been targeted by the South African government as a major source of employment growth and skills development. Thabo Mbeki repeatedly called attention to BPO as an employment driver, and the Zuma government has followed suit, launching an industry incentive programme in February which hopes to create 30 000 jobs [...]
There has been a great deal of hype recently around cloud computing, which promises to transform traditional contact centres into nimble, flexible and affordable systems geared to cope with a fragmented multimedia communication environment.
Thus far, however, South African companies have been slow to shift to the cloud, with bandwidth constraints a key issue.
Bandwidth is an important factor in utilising cloud services effectively. In South Africa bandwidth is very expensive, but new cables are increasingly coming online and the context is changing pretty fast. Most decision makers are, as a result, weighing up the benefits of cloud-based services.