RedAwning, a U.S.-based vacation rental properties company, had a well-defined problem statement — optimizing its existing contact center operations. With thousands of bookings every month, the company was looking to offer quick and seamless services. It turned to Amazon Connect (a cloud-based contact center offering) to deploy Scarlett.

Scarlett, a virtual assistant with Artificial Intelligence (AI), uses automatic speech recognition and text-to-speech features to ‘converse’ with callers. It helps them book trips and change or cancel their reservations. Since its launch, Scarlett has dramatically reduced call wait times, enabled faster resolutions of issues and decreased the call load for human agents.

Research indicates that the global cloud-based contact center market is expected to grow from USD 6.80 Billion in 2017 to USD 20.93 Billion by 2022. Let’s deep dive into the factors driving this growth.

It Costs Less to Do a Lot More

Setting up an on-premise contact center is expensive – it requires significant upfront investments in equipment, licenses and IT. The renewal of licenses and hardware upgrades every few years add to the cost.

Cloud-based contact centers have a pay-as-you-go payment structure that ensures there are no unpredictable costs. Avaya’s ‘Cloud for BPO’ offering, for example, does not require any upfront payments.

By adopting enterprise cloud solutions for contact centers, apart from saving millions of dollars in operating costs, companies can also plug revenue leakage.

Amplifying Customer Delight

Legacy contact centers run on old technologies that cannot support newer channels such as mobile app chats, social media or videos. Customers’ expectations are clear - faster response time and informed answers without having to repeat their queries.

Cloud-based contact centers can help companies meet these demands. New channels can be added using communication Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Analytics-led insights can then be used to deliver context-rich, personalized customer experiences. Also, since there is no centralized ‘workplace,’ agents can work remotely to offer round-the-clock customer support.  

Vodafone Shared Services were battling customer service issues in their on-premise contact center. Fragmented systems and inefficient workload distribution were adversely affecting their customer service. The shared services team used a cloud-based solution to add new functionalities – such as additional channels for support – to deliver consistently high levels of service. The results were impressive – a 15 percent jump in productivity gains was achieved.

Responding to Seasonal Peaks at Scale

Cloud-based infrastructure makes contact centers extremely scalable. They can rapidly expand to handle peaks during holiday seasons and scale back during other times. No additional investments are required toward infrastructure or management costs to handle the peak loads. This allows companies to optimally manage their budgets, employees and technology usage.

U.S.-based call center company AnswerConnect was looking for a cloud-based solution that allowed seasonal scalability without any financial impact. Amazon Connect enabled the company to scale up / down in response to call volumes while keeping the company’s remote workers connected 24x7.

Cloud-based contact centers offer enough opportunities for businesses to re-define their customer service strategies / approaches. Before making the transition to the cloud, businesses should evaluate their existing business models and map them with the future direction they wish to take.

If they are clear about maximizing efficiencies at lower costs, cloud-based contact centers are raring to deliver on that promise.  

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