Unified communications for contact centers Header


The day-to-day activities of a call center are busy — even hectic — and of course essential for ongoing customer relations. Installing a smooth, well-maintained process makes all the difference between retaining satisfied customers or losing them after a frustrating call.

This makes it all the more important to have seamless, efficient, and intelligent communications tools for your call center. The right tools ensure your call center is effective at resolving customer concerns, your agents are properly informed and trained, and each call gets routed to the right agent for the task presented.

Any reliable communications platform should go above and beyond just providing clear calls. A cloud-based, AI-powered unified communications solution supercharges your call center’s staff into a ‘dream team’ of customer support specialists while providing upgraded accessibility, scalability, and insights into every interaction.

How does unified communications improve your call center? Let’s begin by taking a look at the different aspects of a unified communications solution and the resulting benefits for a call center.

Unified Communications for a Call Center

Unified communications empower and enhance call centers in every way — from improving ease of use for agents to providing a better customer experience.

With the right unified communications solution, bring the different elements of communications tools together. Unified communications mean that calling, messaging, video, and call center tools are all available from a single, streamlined platform for ease of accessibility and use.

Overall, this helps make ‘Unified Communications as a Service’ (UCaaS) solutions an effective tool for call centers, even more so than traditional ‘Contact Center as a Service’ (CCaaS) solutions in many ways. In fact, the improved efficiency from a unified communications solution can also save call centers money. According to the 2020 CX Study by Nemertes, call centers that moved to a single unified communications solution saw a 26% reduction in operating expenses, making the transition a boon to both efficiency and expenses.

A Unified & Seamless Solution

When customers reach a call center, they might be calling by phone, sending an email, or even texting. Sometimes a call might even need to switch between them, like a text conversation moving to a voice call. With different solutions existing in the same workflow, multiple holds and transfers hinder efficiency as agents juggle too many tools.

Not so with a unified communications solution. The unified platform means everything the agent needs is in one place, and switching between them is seamless. It also means that call controls are identical across functionality, providing ease of use for all forms of communication. Agents can switch from using the platform for regular business calls to using it as a call center hub without missing a beat and with no need to learn new controls.

Should a company need to add more agents or an entirely new call center, it can do that from a unified communications solution in an instant. Agents who were assigned elsewhere in the company onboard in a matter of minutes as they’ll use the same platform that they’re already familiar with.

Alternate between calling, messaging, and video without missing a beat. The customer will continue to receive the help they need without having to wait, all because there’s no need to switch to a new system or device.

Voice Intelligence (Vi) By Your Side

Dialpad offers a key feature that many unified communications solutions simply cannot: Voice Intelligence (Vi). Voice Intelligence is an AI-powered technology delivering insightful analytics to empower call center agents both during and after calls. With more than 1 billion minutes of voice calls analyzed, recent tests revealed that Voice Intelligence achieves greater accuracy in speech recognition than competing technologies such as Google’s alternative.

It creates a real-time transcript during every call, allowing agents to see conversations appear on-screen as they talk while also receiving automated, live coaching.

Real-time transcripts provide several benefits to call center agents, including allowing them to focus more on the call and less on their notes. Agents aren’t forced to switch back-and-forth between note-taking and active listening since Voice Intelligence’s transcriptions handle capture every word and detail. This enables agents to be more focused on the call to foster better interactions with your customers.

Voice Intelligence provides training and coaching for call center agents when it matters most, courtesy of live sentiment analysis and the ability to identify keywords. This means that if a customer is growing frustrated, Voice Intelligence will alert the manager and allow them to take appropriate action. But you’re able to automate live coaching, too. If a customer asks a question the agent maybe doesn’t have deep knowledge about, Voice Intelligence will identify the subject and instantly pull up relevant information to answer the question quickly.

If an agent is talking too fast, using too much jargon, or talking over the caller, Voice Intelligence alerts the agent to recalibrate. It turns even an inexperienced agent into an effective communicator in the middle of a call. All of this occurs in real-time to ensure each call goes well and agents learn in the moment, not afterward when it’s too late.

Call center managers are able to design real-time assist (RTA) cards — when Voice Intelligence identifies specific words or phrases, they’re instantly displayed for the agent to gather relevant instructions or information.

Voice Intelligence uncovers data-rich insight and analysis after a call, and call center managers may leverage this information to develop coaching strategy or overhaul customer-facing resources such as a Help Center or any FAQs. You’ll always know exactly the trends unfolding to understand why customers reach out and what takes place during interactions with them.

You may be wondering then: why use agents at all? The simple answer is that humans provide a sense of empathy and create connections that chatbots just can’t. Virtual agents can provide simple answers, but they can’t listen to a customer’s issue and say “I understand your frustration, and I’m going to do everything I can to resolve this for you” with sincerity. The person-to-person connection, when augmented by AI, improves customer satisfaction and drives higher CSAT and NPS scores.

Voice Intelligence equips agents with the ability to satisfy customer needs efficiently and maintain an essential level of human connection that builds trust between a brand and its customers.

Scalability: Add Agents Instantly

The demand put on a call center often changes in an instant, whether seasonal trends necessitate an increased workforce or an unexpected issue results in a flood of customer queries. Call centers need to be able to scale to meet the new demand, which can be a time-sensitive task.

Having a unified communications solution makes this a simple issue to resolve. While an on-premises solution requires additional hardware and lengthy onboarding for employees, a cloud-based platform allows for swift scaling to add new agents as needed without investing in cumbersome, expensive hardware.

Call center managers can repurpose or promote regular employees in Dialpad to call center agents. Since a unified communications platform uses a common interface, there isn’t a learning curve as agents pick up on the controls.

While training an effective, knowledgeable call center agent takes time, scaling and adding new agents is assisted by Voice Intelligence. It streamlines the onboarding process by providing prompts and training in real-time during the call, empowering agents to provide the knowledge and assistance your customers need. Transcripts, RTA cards, and moments ensure agents are always performing their best.

Once the call is over, Voice Intelligence further assists new agents by isolating critical points and providing analysis so call center managers get a holistic look at the center’s performance. Using Voice Intelligence as part of your call center provides these key insights to improve performances for new agents while making scaling and onboarding a quick and smooth process.

Integrations

One key aspect of a unified communications platform is that it’s, well, unified. This refers to not only its communications features but also other solutions that are necessary for day-to-day business.

Any reliable unified communications platform should integrate with the CRM platforms commonly used. These integrations allow customer service teams to quickly switch to the unified communications platform without needing to learn new CRM solutions, enabling faster adoption and a seamless transition.

With the integrations, agents continue accessing key customer service tools and information, such as customer information, purchase history, and so forth. These are vital for offering service that meets the customer’s needs so that agents provide informed guidance rather than gathering the same information over and over again.

Providing a personalized call center conversation helps form better connections with customers. Thanks to CRM integrations, a unified communications platform can help provide that personalization while enabling clear and seamless communications across all channels.

Security & Reliability

No matter the size of your call center, it’s important that all your technology remains accessible and your customer data remains secure. This means you need a communications platform with strong security and proven reliability.

There are a number of security guidelines that communications platforms like Dialpad can and should be compliant for, such as GDPR compliance requirements for features like retention policies, data subject access requests, and individual consent mechanisms. Cloud-based platforms can also join the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) Security, Trust and Assurance Registry (STAR) to demonstrate their security.

In the case of Dialpad, security is assured through GDPR, Privacy Shield, and SOC2® Type II compliance and CSA STAR membership. Most Dialpad products are also compliant with HIPAA Privacy and Security Rule Requirements once a Business Associate Agreement is signed.

Enterprise customers can set their own data retention policies to ensure no data is held longer than they want, whether it’s meant to be removed, archived, or anonymized afterward. Call center admins can configure call recording settings according to any applicable laws, including in-call indicators and automated prompts to alert customers the calls will be recorded. Dialpad also offers analytics and export capabilities for sensitive data, so call centers will be able to control where their data goes.

A key benefit of the cloud is its impact on reliability. Through the use of multiple data centers, multi-tenant architecture, and split cloud architecture, cloud-based platforms like Dialpad can ensure consistent uptime, so that call centers never have to worry about going offline. In fact, Dialpad recently announced a new 100% uptime Service Level Agreement so Dialpad Enterprise users can stay connected at all times on their CCaaS and UCaaS solutions.

The last thing a customer wants is to reach out to a call center only to find it’s unavailable. With a cloud-based UC platform, that can become a fear of the past.

An Agent’s Day With UCaaS

To understand how a unified communications solution can help call centers, let’s look at an agent’s day. This agent, who we will call Andy, has just started working at the call center. When he logs in, all the communication tools he needs are available from a single platform, so he can message his managers, take calls, and conference with coworkers without needing to open multiple applications.

The first call of the day comes in. Thanks to the integrations with his CRM system, any pertinent customer information connected to that number gets pulled up so he can see what the customer has purchased before.

As Andy talks to the customer, Voice Intelligence automatically transcribes the conversation in front of his eyes. At one point, he begins talking too quickly, so he gets a Voice Intelligence notification suggesting he slows down. Once he does, the customer becomes more attentive and understanding of the situation.

Then the customer asks about issues with a product Andy is unfamiliar with. Before he can start searching for more information, Voice Intelligence is there with the information he needs. It turns out this is a recurring question the admins have noticed, so they set up a Real-Time Assist card to help. Andy can answer the question without missing a beat and the customer ends the call satisfied.

Later on in the day, Andy has a company meeting to attend. He works remotely, so he logs in to the video conference through the same platform he uses for all his other calls. Not only are the call controls the same, but the meeting also has automatic notes via Voice Intelligence. During the meeting, he volunteers to follow up with a partner about an upcoming product.

Once the meeting is over, all attendees receive an email with the key information highlighted. It includes an action item reminding Andy to follow up with the partner, as well as important notes on the next steps they discussed during the call.

Throughout the day, Andy is able to take calls, contact coworkers, and manage his workflow from a single unified platform.

Analytics

When the call is over, call center supervisors and managers are able to access analytics to understand and improve their workflow. Since the call center uses a unified platform, this includes information from multiple aspects of the call center’s operations.

What times were the busiest for the call center? Heat maps can indicate what times agents were most engaged, including times of the day and days of the week — if Mondays and Fridays busier than Tuesdays through Thursdays, or if customers tend to call after working hours, the heat map will let you know.

Voice Intelligence can also isolate and analyze individual moments. How many times did customers mention a competitor? How often did a specific issue arise? The analytics dashboard will help call center managers identify and understand these recurring moments so they can be addressed, whether they need to add new real-time assist cards or include new training.

Dialpad Contact Center’s admin dashboard is designed to be clear and easy to use, so managers can get an overview of their operations at a glance. This is designed to help with resource planning, gauging productivity, and understanding call center volume, so managers can optimize their call center operations.

Get Started with Unified Communications for Call Centers

Without good communication, call centers are of little help to organizations or customers. A unified communications platform can provide call center agents and managers with a complete suite of communication tools, the scalability they need for any situation, and intelligent analysis for each call to enhance productivity and ensure a smooth ease of use.

With Dialpad, call centers will be able to empower their communications with a universal, easy-to-use platform, AI-powered analytics and real-time assistance, and integrations with many of the top CRM solutions.

Try Dialpad’s free 14-day trial to discover how a unified communications platform empowers your team, reduces operating expenses, and provides your customers with help from real agents supported by Voice Intelligence.

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