Three Cheers for Automation in Contact Centers! [Helping Agents Do More With Less]

Contact Center

Let’s be honest: automation is everywhere – from manufacturing to 3D printing and from banking to contact centers!

Speaking of automation in contact centers, it’s greatly helping the support agents handle more customer calls effectively to provide better customer service overall.

In this guide, we’ll dive deep into how exactly automation is streamlining contact center operations by empowering support agents with powerful tools. Let’s get started.

What is Automation in Contact Centers?

Automation in contact centers refers to the call center features that help automate particular tasks, such as routing an incoming call to the right agent. As more people are using technology for communication, the service industry is growing rapidly.

But businesses are seeking a way to cut down their contact center costs since a large workforce is needed to handle lots of customer calls every day.

That’s where automation comes in – the automation features help contact centers manage more customer calls with fewer human agents. Plus, these can improve support efficiency, reduce wait times, and provide a better customer experience overall.

Top Applications of Automation in Contact Centers

Below are the top ways automation in contact centers helps them manage customer service more effectively.

Conversational IVR Systems

A Conversational Interactive Voice Response system is a widely used automation feature in contact centers. It’s a computer-based technology that lets customers interact with a contact center using voice commands.

These systems can automatically handle simple tasks like account balance inquiries and bill payments to reduce the number of calls that must be handled by a human agent.

They can also automatically route calls to the right department or agent depending on the customer’s needs, resulting in reduced time spent transferring calls between agents.

Self-Service Portals

Self-service portals are another popular automation feature in contact centers. These are web-based systems that let callers access their account information or perform tasks related to their account without needing human assistance.

These portals can automate various routine tasks like account management, bill payments, and order tracking. Since they can handle a high volume of requests, they help reduce the number of human agents required to handle those calls.

Moreover, self-service portals can scale with your business needs to help you handle more requests during peak periods and fewer during off-peak periods. Lastly, you can personalize your self-service portal for each customer to provide them with a tailored service.

Automatic Call Distribution

Most contact centers nowadays use automation call distribution (ACD) to streamline their operations and reduce wait times.

This technology automatically routes incoming calls to the next available agent according to factors like skill level, language, or customer priority. It can also track and record the performance of agents to help you identify areas for improvement and training.

Chatbots

It’s not uncommon for online businesses and websites to use Chatbots to handle a large volume of customer conversations simultaneously, without needing a human agent.

Chatbots are programs that simulate conversations with human users. They help customers with simple queries like answering frequently asked questions to decrease the workload of your human agents.

Chatbots can also provide ​​a wide range of self-service options like account information, billing history, and order tracking to improve automation as much as possible.

Since they can handle a high volume of requests and reduce the number of human agents needed to handle those calls, they also help with cost savings.

Automated Reporting and Analytics

Automated Reporting and Analytics are an effective way to collect data on customer interactions and make decisions accordingly to improve your customer service. Depending on your call center software, these features let you track various types of data, including call volume, wait times, and agent performance.

Using this data, you can identify areas where your call center operations can be improved to streamline your call center processes. Similarly, you can determine which agents are doing well and which ones need additional training or coaching.

Workforce Management

Last but not least, workforce management is another highly useful automation feature widely used in contact centers. It involves optimizing staff scheduling and forecasting to ensure that the right number of agents are available to handle call volume at any given time.

The workforce management feature optimizes staffing levels based on historical and real-time data on call volume, wait times, and agent performance to ensure that incoming calls are answered promptly.

Wrapping It Up

To sum up, automation plays a big role in contact centers by increasing support efficiency and improving the overall customer experience. Automation tools like Interactive Voice Response systems, Automatic Call Distribution, and Workforce Management help contact centers manage lots of incoming calls with reduced pressure on human agents.

Plus, automation in contact centers allows for better data collection and analysis, helping you make educated decisions to improve your customer service operations.

Since the benefits of automation are becoming more apparent, we’ll likely see an increase in the use of automation in contact centers along the way!

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of The World Financial Review.