Here at Zailab, we are passionate about digital transformation, cloud technology and using innovation to improve CX. Needless to say, there is plenty to look forward to this year in the contact center space.
1. On-demand Becomes In Demand
According to the Contact Babel publication, The Inner Circle Guide to Cloud-Based Contact Center Solutions, on-demand features and licensing are going to be increasingly popular in 2019 amongst both SMBs and enterprise. Not only does this mean software will become an operating expense rather than a fixed one, but it also results in reduced maintenance and capital costs and enables seasonal contact centers to keep their running costs to a minimum.
Cloud applications play a major role here. Not only are they quick and accessible, but they also provide businesses with flexible pricing options and immediate access to features without needing to sign any contracts.
Related: Find out more about Zailab’s consumption-based pricing here.
2. The Agent Reigns Supreme
Despite more and more businesses embracing the cloud and digital transformation, the role of the agent remains key to a contact center’s success.
There is plenty of data to support this claim. 64% of organizations that took part in CCW’s 2019 Future of the Contact Center market study believe customers should always have easy access to a live agent. 51.88% said self-service was perfectly fine for transactional issues, but believed agents should handle the more complex ones.
Respondents were all in favor of using automation to free up agent time to handle more customer queries, so this is going to be a big trend this year. According to ICMI, utilizing emerging tech (such as Robot Process Automation, AI and Natural Language Processing) to empower agents is vitally important in the digital age. By automating the simple, routine tasks, you are leaving the complex problems that require a human touch, to your agents.
This is a trend that’s popping up again and again and again. In its State of the American Workplace report, Gallup states that engaging and empowering employees is going to be key to staying competitive this year.
3. Everyone’s Reaching For the Cloud
73% of organizations that participated in IDG’s 2018 Cloud Computing Survey reported having at least one portion of their computer infrastructure already in the cloud, while 38% said their IT departments felt a pressing need to migrate 100%.
In the contact center industry, cloud migration is becoming the new norm. CCW reports that 45-50% of SMB businesses use the cloud in some way, with larger enterprises more likely to have already adopted. In fact, the BPO industry has been one of the fastest adopters of cloud technology to date, as the cloud lends itself well to quick implementation and the management of high volumes of mobile users.
The advantages of moving to the cloud (whether a small or large business) speak for themselves: it’s cheaper, flexible, accessible and acts as a cost-effective disaster recovery plan.
4. AI Continues To Transform The Industry
According to Dimension Data’s 2019 Technology Trends report, the adoption of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) can potentially save USD 2 trillion in global workforce costs.
The big trend we see in 2019 is businesses doing exactly this – using AI within their organizations to transform jobs, empower employees and drive change.
We have already mentioned how AI can be used to empower agents, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. AI can be used to analyze data, evolve systems and infrastructure and manage services.
If you can, we highly recommend reading Andrew Ng’s AI Transformation Playbook which is an incredible (and 100% free) resource for companies undergoing a digital transformation.
5. On The Personal Front…
We are looking forward to showing off what our cloud-based contact center solution can do at a host of must-attend industry events this year, including Enterprise Connect in March, ICMI in May and CCW in June. The Zailab team is looking forward to introducing all our latest features to the world and demonstrating how to have more rewarding conversations with your customers using our single platform.
Last year we disrupted proceedings with our larger-than-life company mascot – the 18-ton ZaiTruck and this year we have something even bigger planned. All will be revealed in March.
Keep watching this space to find out what surprises we have in store for you in 2019.