In a world where it can feel as if innovation goes at lightning speed, the reality is that many existing technologies are under-used yet could make a big difference to users. UC is a case in point: many customer-experience (CX)-facing features are included within widely available UC platforms. However, they are often overlooked but could make a significant difference to the CX that businesses deliver.
And, for the channel, there is an opportunity to help those business customers — especially SMBs — by informing them about those features so that user satisfaction rises, the UC solution becomes more sticky, even leads to other chargeable services or features.
For instance, while hunt groups are pretty standard, most small businesses are unaware when an incoming call has been missed, and that could mean they are losing out on revenue. Imagine a missed call from a prospect was for a product enquiry worth £1000; now multiply that by 24 calls a year, and that is £24K revenue potentially missed.
Instead, those businesses could use the simple UC feature — often available on PCs or mobile devices — that flags up missed calls, a team member calls those people back, and then flags them all as ‘called back’. And the reseller gets the kudos for such an easy but effective step.
Beyond hunt groups, Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) helps to stop incoming calls from being missed in the first place. There are two main variants: ACD Lite is lower cost and typically includes a greeting and simple follow-up messaging (for example, “Thanks for waiting, someone will be with you shortly’).
For a business with more extensive or higher-value incoming calls, full ACD includes multiple extras, for example, making it easy to rapidly add more agents into a queue, an automatic offer to call the customer back, and analytics and reporting about call and response patterns.
Bots within the UC system can also play a role in handling incoming traffic, especially from unknown numbers, by screening calls with a few simple questions, such as the person’s name. So, when the call is put through, the agent greets them by name, which is an additional personalised touch and adds to the CX.
Next, how about adding web chat to ACD, giving customers another way to get a quick answer to their queries? At the same time, incoming contact is distributed more effectively and staff can focus on customers who need voice-based human interaction.
Another benefit of webchat is that it can make it easier for small business owners to handle calls outside standard office hours: it is less stressful, at the end of a long working day, to fit in some customer engagement via web chat instead of a phone conversation. Adding automated chatbots to the solution takes this one stage further, enabling businesses to offer customer service 24/7.
Call recording is a configurable feature available within most modern UC platforms but is often under-exploited and seen as something primarily for compliance purposes. However, call recording is a great way to learn more about customer interaction and how to improve it, such as understanding what conversational approaches work best and lead to sales conversion. Call recording can even help motivate staff by effectively educating them on how to improve their performance, or by singling out and rewarding individuals (‘Best customer conversation of the month’).
A final point is to take all these features — how calls and other incoming contacts are handled, call recording and more — and move them to the mobile environment. For an increasing majority of business users, the mobile is their primary work device for communication, collaboration, productivity and, yes, customer engagement. Yet, moving UC into the mobile world is a step many businesses have yet to take despite it being within their reach.
Helping customers to mobilise their businesses is just one of many ways in which greater value from and use of UC solutions to improve the CX can be maximised while allowing the channel to show how they are more than just technology providers: they are trusted advisors.
This blog was published on UC Advanced