Cloud-based technology and the rise of VoIP have changed the contact center industry into a more ethical, friendly landscape. Confused? Don’t be.
Gone are the days of relying on phone companies and expensive carrier rates to operate your contact center. All you need are three magic ingredients – an Internet connection, the right software and call rates suited to your business.
Don’t let this color your perception of the contact center industry, which remains a colossus of an industry. Globally, it’s predicted to be worth 407 billion dollars by 2022. It employs a lot of people. Millions.
This is not going to change any time soon. Nor is the importance of the industry. According to Deloitte’s Global Contact Center Survey, voice is expected to remain the most prominent channel for customer interaction in 2019, which means the human call center agent remains as important as ever.
So, what will change?
How they’re run.
BPOs and contact centers are leaning away from the practice of offshoring and towards allowing agents to work from home.
A recent report by Frost & Sullivan argues that the home-agent model is rapidly transforming contact center operations. Why? It costs less (no need to pay rent, or buy office furniture), and results in increased staff retention and job satisfaction.
That’s great news for staff. After all, who wouldn’t jump at the chance to work from home? Parents are able to stay home to be closer to their families, and employees can save on commuting costs – especially valuable to those agents who live outside of city centers. But what do businesses get out of it, other than the gigantic cost saving?
Think about it. You get what you pay for. Like freelancers, home agents are more likely to value their employment and view it as a profession as opposed to ‘just a job’. It’s their career and they take a professional approach to their role. And just like freelancers, if they do good work and are reliable, businesses will want to work with them. If not, they don’t get the work. Simple as that.
Forty percent of large enterprises interviewed for the 2017 Dimension Data Digital Workplace report said they already had employees working from home full time; 56% of respondents said they would have employees working from home full time by 2019.
They are able to do this because of cloud-based technology. Software solutions (such as, ahem, our own pay-as-you-use service), gives businesses real-time insight into their agents’ activity, so businesses can keep track on their agent performance, and in the process have complete peace of mind that they’re not haemorrhaging money to staff hanging out at home playing World of Warcraft.
But there is another side to the home-agent model that has even more far-reaching effects. People who never had access to decent work are finally able to provide for themselves. The disabled and the less mobile, for example, as well as retirees.
By embracing the cloud-based contact center, companies are able to open their doors to a whole new pool of skilled and capable workers, and change lives at the same time. Employing home agents suddenly becomes a more ethical approach to business.
Imagine being able to save vast amounts of money, never having to deal with telecommunications companies again, and being able to make a significant difference to your staff’s lives.
And all you need is an Internet connection.
Pretty powerful, we’d say.