According to a recent report by Markets and Markets, the cloud-based (hosted) contact center market is due to grow from $4.68 billion in 2015 to $14.71 billion in 2020 – which is an expected increase of 25.7%. If that alone is not hard evidence of the rapid adoption of cloud-based contact centers, then I don’t know what else is. It’s the attractive advantages and benefits of cloud-based contact centers that make it a no-brainer choice.
However, just like any exciting move from point A to point B in the technology world, there are some key considerations to factor into your planning.
Consideration #1: Make sure your provider can keep you secure
Trying to secure payments across multiple geographic locations via phone can turn into a challenging task, especially if your contact center is capturing customer payment card information over the phone. In an ideal world, when people hand over their sensitive payment information, they expect it to be handled in a secure and professional manner. Ideally, contact centers should use the technology to protect both themselves (and their callers) from the threat of fraud. This can be put into action by making sure card details are not stored in the call center infrastructure.
To solve this problem, it is necessary to ensure that your hosting vendor is equipped with the security needs that fit your company before migrating to the cloud. Generally, there should be a multi-layer protection system set up that should include (but not be limited to) encryption of any stored payment card data, physical security, 24x7x365 surveillance, passcodes, and background checks on security staff. As long as the contact center’s security needs line up with those of the hosting vendor, there is a great sense of ease.
Consideration #2: Ensure employee readiness
When planning your migration to the cloud, it’s important to make sure that your call center agents are well-versed with the impending change. As mentioned above, many contact centers are rooted in an on-premise system which means that they may have a firm knowledge of voice, but adding modalities such as SMS, chat or video may prove to be difficult. The challenge lies in learning how to integrate the old (on-premise) with the new (cloud-based). Agents should be constantly improving their knowledge base for the contact center to succeed in the cloud; if not, time and money will be wasted.
Consideration #3: Have a clear roadmap
As with any new deployment, having a well-thought-out plan ahead of time can save you from any downtime. Obviously you never want to jump into anything too fast without a clear plan or vision in place. Security and employee readiness are just two considerations to take into account. If decision makers don’t have a clear vision for the near (and far) future when it comes to deployment, all efforts will become ineffective.
To sum up the transition, moving to the cloud can be smooth and rewarding if contact centers can ensure security, foster professional development among employees and have a strategic roll-out plan in place. Look to an expert who can help guide you through the process.