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benefits of contact center unified communications

On the Customer Journey Platform Blog we just completed a seven-part series on Contact Center Unified Communications based on survey results from Aberdeen Group’s September 2017 research on “How to Maximize Customer Satisfaction: The Role of Communication & Collaboration.” Below are summaries of each blog in the series, what those study results mean for your contact center and how Contact Center Unified Communications can help you meet your business goals.

What is Contact Center Unified Communications?

In the first blog, we explored what is Contact Center Unified Communications and what makes it “unified.” When you take omnichannel contact center communications and combine it with all the capabilities of enterprise unified communications (voice, mobility, presence, email, instant messaging, desktop sharing, directory services, and video), integrate them, and provide a single user interface, your contact center communications become unified. With this integration, your agents can collaborate on-demand with others in the contact center and enterprise to resolve customer issues in real-time.

Goal: Allow everyone and every team to collaborate across multiple devices and multiple platforms to decrease the time agents spend looking for the answers they need and increase their productivity.

Why Contact Center Unified Communications?

In the second blog in this series, we looked at how and why Contact Center Unified Communications can benefit your business. In short, Contact Center Unified Communications is a tool that best-in-class companies use to attain year-over-year improvements in their customer satisfaction rates, as shown by these statistics:

Year over Year Annual Improvements Best-in-Class All Others
Customer Retention Rate 83% 53%
Customer Satisfaction Rate 29.8% 1.3%
First Call Resolution Rate 19.1% 1.2%
Average Handle Time (decrease) 16.5% -6.0%
Agent Utilization 13.2% -1.2%

Goal: Better contact center performance

Why Customers Love Contact Center Unified Communications

In the third blog, we discussed how making unified communications an integral part of the agent experience helps improve agent responsiveness which is why customers love Contact Center Unified Communications. Unifying workflows across channels and systems improves agent productivity, enhances agent effectiveness across channels, and creates consistency in communication.

Goal: Provide the best possible customer experience

Contact Center Unified Communications Best Practice

Next, we looked at the survey results from the perspective of Contact Center Unified Communications best practices. These include empowering your contact center agents with timely and relevant insights, and enabling them to create follow-up tasks through their desktop. Another crucial best practice is retaining contact data when transferring between agents. Monitoring communications is another best practice that helps best-in-class companies attain maximum results. Lastly, making unified communications an integral part of the agent experience creates collaboration between contact center agents and the rest of the business, which benefits everyone.

Goal: Improve customer care and service metrics

Contact Center Unified Communications Best Practice Technology

After discussing best practices in the contact center, we explored how businesses with Contact Center Unified Communications are more innovative than their peers in implementing contact center best practice technology, and how that benefits their business.

Key Supporting Technologies 
Technology Adoption Rate (n=422) Companies with Contact Center
and UC Integration
All Others
Desktop analytics 76% 30%
CRM 75% 34%
Knowledge management 72% 26%
Single sign-on to multiple applications from agent desktop 65% 26%
Enterprise social collaboration tools 59% 17%
WebRTC 59% 15%
Enterprise search 56% 18%
Call recording 73% 37%
VoIP 71% 31%
Contact center and CRM integration 59% 23%
Unified agent desktop 57% 19%

As you can see in the above graphic, best-performing call centers implement a number of innovative technologies, including desktop analytics, integration with their Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application (e.g., Salesforce, ZenDesk), knowledge management, single sign-on, enterprise social collaboration tools, and others.

By implementing these innovative technologies, the research shows that these high-performing companies help their agents find the right information quickly, and help them collaborate with everyone in the business to meet customer needs efficiently.

Goal: Adopt technology that gives contact center agents everything they need to be more productive and improve the customer experience

Contact Center Unified Communications Challenges

In the next chapter, we looked at the other end of the spectrum, the Contact Center Unified Communications challenges companies face if they don’t have it. The research study shows that companies without Contact Center Unified Communications face many challenges, including:

  • Lack of systems integration
  • Keeping up with empowered customers
  • Delivering omnichannel interactions

Goal: Avoid these common contact center unified communications pitfalls

Three Contact Center Unified Communications Building Blocks

In the penultimate blog, we looked at three Contact Center Unified Communications building blocks that will improve your bottom line and provide you with a return on your investment. These are:

  • Make unified communications an integral part of the agent experience
  • Unify workflows across channels and infuse with data
  • Monitor communications for quality and performance

Implementing these three building blocks will give your contact center agents one application that provides them with the tools and information they need to support the customer. Agents will be able to provide customers with a consistent and unified experience across channels and devices. Monitoring contact center activity in real-time will allow your supervisors to identify issues, address them, and focus on continuously improving contact center performance.

Goal: Give your customers an improved experience with better first call resolution and customer satisfaction

Contact Center Unified Communications Will Help You Achieve Your Goals

If your goal is to improve your customer experience and your agent productivity, which in turn will improve your bottom line, the research shows that integrating unified communications into your contact center systems will help you achieve those goals.

To learn more about the Aberdeen Group research “How to Maximize Customer Satisfaction: The Role of Communication & Collaboration:”

About the Author

Rich is a member of the Customer Journey Platform marketing team. He has built a 25-year career in Silicon Valley bringing new B2B cloud and on-premise software technologies to market including contact center systems, Big Data analytics, Business Intelligence, interactive development environments and web application servers. He has held sales, product management, product marketing, solutions marketing, partner marketing, GM, VP and CMO positions.