To anyone following the cloud technology industry with even a passing interest, it should come as no surprise that cloud-based call centers are growing in popularity. Cloud technology is a multi-billion dollar industry and is transforming the way companies manage IT departments. The proliferation of vendors offering PBX systems in the cloud should be another clue of this trend to anyone paying the slightest attention.
What’s not immediately apparent is why call centers are adopting the technology and more are following suit. A recent survey by Magnetic North, a U.K.-based call center solutions company, seems to have uncovered some of the reasons for this movement.
The survey cited managing the customer experience across multiple channels as the largest challenge in the upcoming year. A look at the insurance industry demonstrates how critical consistency across different channels can be. Imagine the problems that would arise when information from an insurance company’s website conflicted with information from a customer service agent. The potential liability would be astronomical. A traditional PBX would be ill-equipped to address this problem, since it only handles voice communications.
Technological limitations do not only hamper a call center’s ability to provide consistency across multiple channels but also in several other areas as well. Multimedia support and compliance are necessities in a modern call center environment.
Many of the other remaining reasons for the growth in cloud-based call center technology parallel the reasons why businesses choose to move to the cloud in general. Just as the typical corporate IT department benefits from the cost savings from moving to the cloud, call center departments also benefit. Not having to maintain hardware and software as well as deploying upgrades to an on-premises system has enticed many to choose the cloud.
A recent Frost & Sullivan report shows that in North America, the cloud-based call center market is at $1.4 billion and growing at 11.6 percent annually. This rate is nearly double the rate of growth for on premise call centers, which was 6.1 percent annually. Clearly the market preference is shifting towards cloud-based call centers. It’s easy to see why, given that the technology is more flexible enough to meet the market’s demands in 2014.