Is Your Contact Center Falling Short?

January 05, 2016

As if high employee turnover and disgruntled customers weren’t enough, a new study finds that call centers are facing new challenges as the New Year rolls out.

That’s the word from Consero Group, an international leader in creating industry-specific events for senior-level executives. The company just published the results of its look at the call center industry, and the numbers are telling.

“Nearly one in four of those surveyed by Consero, or 24 percent, said their No. 1 goal is to improve Customer Experience,” the company said. But unfortunately just one out of three respondents believes they have the resources to do the job. That could present a problem going forward.

“The greatest impediment was technology and infrastructure,” with 48 percent saying so, Consero noted. “In fact, 78 percent of respondents declared that technology infrastructure in general fails to meet their needs. The second greatest concern is economic and getting the job done in spite of budgetary restrictions, at 22 percent, and senior management buy-in was a close third at 19 percent.”

But there are other issues as well, as call centers try to do more with less.

“About 43 percent of executive respondents answered that the number of contact centers under their operation has increased (with 45 percent staying at the same number), while only 25 percent said outsourcing is a strategic priority,” Consero reported. As such, call centers don’t seem to be getting much help, either from outside or inside their organizations.

“Only 39 percent of executives are satisfied with the training offered to their call center agents,” the survey found. “And only 35 percent rate their call center reps as engaged in the customer experience.”

And even with the advent of omnichannel communications, call centers are still falling short in delivering what customers want.

“Call center executives named phone and email as the top two ways to receive customer feedback (at 37 percent saying the former is the primary channel, and 22 percent saying the latter)” Consero said. “But the problem is that those channels are too limited for what today’s customer’s want.”

As might be expected, it all comes down to technology. “Up to 40 percent of respondents said IT doesn’t meet current needs, and 80 percent said it will not meet future needs, and 40 percent claimed not to have analytics capabilities,” Consero said.

Clearly, the challenge is here. The question is, will the funding be there to fix it?

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