Contact Center Solutions Featured Article

Contingency Planning for the Contact Center Should Involve Alternate Work Sites

August 06, 2013

Contact centers, like almost any business, are careful to do at least some contingency planning for business continuity in the event of equipment failures or power outages. But contact centers aren’t like any other business: while time lost from a perspective of employees is troubling, to be sure, lost customers are a disaster. Simply having battery back-up isn’t going to do it. What if an extended power outage keeps the lights off for days, or a storm floods the physical contact center?

For this reason, it’s absolutely critical that a contact center have offsite resources, say many contact center experts. Whether it’s an outsourced partner that can take calls in the event of an emergency, or a hosted, cloud-based solution that allows agents to work from anywhere there is an Internet connection, it’s critical that business entities offering customer support have an offsite backup plan.

“Too many companies think that making provision for IT disaster is enough when it comes to their contact center,” said Steven King, business development manager at South African company ContinuitySA. “IT is certainly crucial, but when it comes to the contact center, there are other considerations, among them your people.”

While many contact center organizations have evolved to a distributed model in which some agents work in one or more facilities and others work from their homes, it’s still not a common scenario. More often than not, companies rely on a single contact center facility that is vulnerable to weather disasters, illnesses or other emergencies. In the event of a shut-down, says King, companies are risking their brands.

“Understand the implications for your reputation and brand. If the face of your company goes down, you will suffer some reputational damage,” he writes. “This will help you to put in place the right level of contingency planning.”

Once a contingency plan is in place, the contact center should plan on testing it at least once every six months: have the agents log in from home or an alternate facility you’ve chosen. Ensure that resources such as Internet connections and workstations are available and will meet the standards of call center quality in the event of a prolonged event.

Finally, recommends King, check with your service providers to ensure that they themselves have a viable contingency plan in place. Since you may be relying on them even more heavily than usual in the event of a call center facility shut-down, it’s critical that their own plans be up to par.




Edited by Alisen Downey

Article comments powered by Disqus

Related Contact Center Solutions Articles

Altocloud Jumps in the Smyths Toys Toybox to Bolster E-Commerce Presence

Those not immediately familiar with Smyths Toys can be forgiven, particularly if they don't live in the U.K or in Ireland, where Smyths Toys has at last report 80 stores to its credit. But Smyths Toys might well be easier find thanks to a new connection with Altocloud, which will bolster Smyths Toys' online presence and make e-commerce that much easier to carry out. [ Read More ]
04/22/2015

US Contact Center Jobs Continued to Increase in the First Quarter of 2015

The number of new U.S. contact center jobs was on the rise in the first quarter of this year, according to a jobs4america report. [ Read More ]
04/21/2015

Xerox in Gartner's Leaders Quadrant for Third Straight Year on the Strength of its BPO Services

Gartner recently announced that as a result of its research and evaluation, Xerox's performance in business process outsourcing (BPO) had placed it in the Leaders Quadrant for that industry for 2014. It marks the third straight year that Xerox has received such recognition. [ Read More ]
04/15/2015

Evariant Delivers More Data Driven Solutions for the Healthcare Industry

With so much information at their disposal, service providers are offering solutions that make sense of all this data while combining different products and services to improve the overall operations of healthcare providers. The new release by Evariant looks to use big data and analytics to improve the experience of patients, physicians and employers with contact center solution for real-time engagement and mobile Physician Relationship Management app. [ Read More ]
04/13/2015

Events

Weekly Live Demo
Contact Center Solutions

Register Today!


Weekly Live Demo
CaaS Small Center

Register Today!