What does digital transformation mean for contact centers?
Digital transformation, the integration of digital technology into all aspects of business and society, and the operational and cultural changes associated with its use, is being seen in contact centers across industries and verticals. Digital transformation of contact centers has quickly become an expectation for prospects and customers who want to interact with businesses according to their preferences, rather than when, where and how an organization may currently offer these capabilities. In many ways, contact centers have been ahead of the digital transformation curve. Contact centers often support multiple digital channels including email, web chat, short message service (SMS)/text, video, WebRTC, mobile apps, co-browse and social media (in addition to voice) in omni-channel environments. Unfortunately, however, contact centers are often left out of enterprise initiatives related to digital transformation.
Beyond the channels available for customer interactions with live agents, digital transformation in contact centers also includes sophisticated self-service capabilities. Powered by artificial intelligence (AI), intelligent virtual agents (IVAs) can resolve many customer inquiries without human intervention, and when an IVA can’t handle the request, they are smart enough to seamlessly route customers to the most appropriate live agent, in the customer’s channel of choice, along with the content of the interaction. And contact center employees are reaping the benefits of digital transformation by off-loading repetitive and mundane tasks, like cutting and pasting information or populating the same data in multiple systems, to robotic process automation (RPA) solutions. These applications can complete routine work items more quickly and accurately than humans, freeing agents to handle more complicated and interesting assignments.