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Work From Home Contact Centre Solutions – if it sounds too good to be true, it’s because it is.

Customer Experience Technology work from home
Customer Experience Technology work from home

Disclaimer – We are huge believers in the absolute necessity for modern businesses to have a world-class cloud contact centre solution. What we aren’t as keen on is seeing marketing campaigns during Covid-19 purporting to be able to solve all your work from home contact centre agent problems in a matter of days.

The critical point is, while there is a short-term requirement to get contact centre team members working from home (or at a minimum, having the option to do so if needed), making knee-jerk decisions to solve short term problems is likely going to lead to a poorer customer experience (CX) over the medium to long term. We’ve observed organisations that made short-term tech decisions to plug a gap (i.e., getting call recordings for the WFH solution) starting to plan for how they’ll wind them back once the Covid-19 emergency is over. Even worse, it is impacting their ability to execute their strategic call centre technology transformations.

The good news is that these mistakes are avoidable. By making intelligent moves now, businesses can solve both short term challenges and set themselves up to make a quantum leap in how they engage with their customers in the future. The not so good news? It isn’t going to be as quick and simple as those seductive (can we say irresponsible?) marketing pitches suggest.

Let’s clear up a few misconceptions. Call centre team members working from home isn’t a new concept. It’s been contemplated and tested for years, and there are reasons (many, in fact) that it hasn’t taken off at scale.

Firstly, contact centre environments are complex! They typically deal with sensitive customer data and require close support and monitoring of agents to ensure a consistent and high-quality CX is delivered. These factors don’t vanish when a team member works from home. In fact, additional problems arise, like the speed and stability of internet connections, monitoring a remote agent workforce, remote technical support, and team building. If businesses don’t implement systems and processes to manage these risks, they’re treading on dangerous grounds.

Secondly, contact centre technology transformations are challenging! A typical contact centre technology stack is rooted in legacy. These systems aren’t usually designed to support remote contact centre roles or a typical work from home environment. We’ve noticed a lot of makeshift “hacks” to make them compatible. These might relieve pressure in the short term, but they add considerable “tech debt” that will become a hindrance when you attempt to transform your contact centre technology.

If you’ve reached this point in our piece, we hope to have convinced you to pause and reflect on the decisions you’re making. So, here are the key considerations we believe you should ponder to make informed remote contact centre decisions that lay the foundation for future customer experience delivery success:

  1. Consider your medium and long-term customer engagement strategic goals – and opt for solutions that further that journey. Do you envision supporting Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)? Intelligent IVRs with speech recognition and synthesis? PCI compliant IVR payment solutions? This is a chance to tap into these capabilities. Notably, the best Contact Centre as a Service (CCaaS) providers offer flexibility without prolonged commitments or extended implementation lead times.
  2. Do a WFH trial with a leading CCaaS platform select your ideal, long-term CCaaS provider and trial with a team segment. The essence of successful innovation is experimentation. There’s no better time to swiftly test leading cloud-based contact centre technologies.
  3. Pick the right implementation partner – You don’t have to start from scratch. Opt for an implementation partner to guide your decisions and quickly set up a trial, and then accompany you through your CCaaS migration journey. Ensure you select a partner with the requisite experience and capability.
  4. Optimise your operating model – Work From Home (WFH) solutions focus as much on people and processes as on technology. Consult market leaders, like us at TSA, who have acquired valuable insights on making WFH models effective.

At TSA, our collaboration with AWS has enabled us to roll out successful solutions for clients, powered by Amazon Connect. A prime example is our partnership with Australia’s foremost provider of early childhood education and care. The platform we crafted, using Amazon Connect, allowed us to transition their entire contact centre team to a WFH model within a day, maintaining impeccable functionality and customer experience. Platforms such as Amazon Connect, founded on WebRTC, eliminate the need for conventional on-premise network and telephony infrastructure to deliver exceptional, secure voice capability. We delivered consistent functionality and quality assurance without incurring extra developmental costs. Combined with an optimal operating model, effective personnel support, and advanced remote working tools, we achieved an exemplary WFH solution.

We’ve been assisting numerous clients in swiftly setting up remote working voice and messaging solutions. If you encounter issues with your existing setups or are merely curious about the intricacies and potential pitfalls of a WFH model, feel free to connect with us. We’re eager to engage in a conversation and share our expertise.

TSA are Australia’s market leading specialists in CX consultancy and services. We are passionate about revolutionising the way brands connect with Australians. How? By combining our local expertise with the most sophisticated customer experience technology on earth, and delivering with an expert team of customer service consultants who know exactly how to help brands care for their customers.

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