This blog was originally published by Telecom Reseller.
As call centers have evolved into contact centers serving multiple communication channels, legacy technology systems have increasingly faced maturity and obsolescence. Contact centers need to enhance the multi-channel customer experience by evolving with modern technologies, but today there are more choices for the decision maker. How do you decide among the options–a new on-premises system, a managed cloud service, or a CCaaS (contact center as a service) solution? Here’s a quick guide to cloud migration and eight selection criteria for identifying the approach best suited for your enterprise.
1. On-Premises Contact Centers: This is probably what you have today–a premise-based contact center system managed and maintained internally. You paid for the hardware and software and have to manage it. Whether your system is up-to-date or needs some improvement, many enterprises have been working with the same vendor for years and may not have analyzed the market for a replacement.
2. Managed Cloud Contact Centers: A managed cloud contact center uses a “multi-instance” platform. The provider implements an instance of the same premise-based system in their own cloud data center environment. Each customer receives its own virtualized software instance on shared hardware. These contact centers offer a flexible and scalable alternative to premise-based contact centers. Benefits include:
3. CCaaS: Contact center as a service uses a “multi-tenant” environment. All customers share a common (single) software instance deployed on the provider’s own network service platform. Benefits include:
These definitions have caused confusion for two reasons. First, the terms have evolved and shifted over the years. Second, the term “cloud” can be applied to both approaches #2 and #3 above, so the term “cloud contact center” often needs more explanation.
So, why should you transition your contact center to cloud technology? Enterprises are increasingly moving away from premise-based communications infrastructure, because upgrades can deliver significant competitive advantages. The return on investment (ROI) can be very positive and total cost of ownership (TCO) can be lowered when compared to on-premises systems. For instance, one Masergy customer saved $2.9M after moving its global communications and contact centers to the cloud.
The following factors have a significant impact on overall costs:
Additional benefits include:
The chart below provides eight factors for comparing the three types of contact center solutions. Use this chart when presenting your initiative for executive approval.
|Cost per Seat||High||Lower||Lowest|
|Cash Flow||High CAPEX | Low OPEX||Lower CAPEX | Higher OPEX||OPEX Only|
|Size/ Seat Flexibility||Up not Down||Depends on Software Used||Variable Up and Down|
|Scale||Limited||Limited||Change with Traffic Variations|
|On-Premises Technologies||Software + Data Center + Access Network||Software + Access Network||Access Network|
|Ease/Speed of Implementation||Slow||Moderate||High | Fast|
In the end, modern technologies and providers should enhance your customer experience. Use this as an opportunity to improve customer satisfaction, first-contact resolution, holding times, and agent utilization. Preparation is an essential step for cloud migration readiness. When assessing the next version of your contact center, follow these steps:
When the provider values the customer experience and has the staff and experience to deliver a seamless cloud migration, success will come easily.
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