Three formidable factors are demanding a modernization of the contact center: process automation, a next-generation workforce, and customer expectations. Practically speaking, moving to the cloud allows companies to break free from the limitations of traditional on-premise contact centers, including a lack of customization, hardware and infrastructure concerns and upkeep, expensive maintenance fees, and limited functionality updates.
Read how cloud-based contact centers create a previously impossible customer experience, from industry analyst Sheila McGee-Smith.
Cloud-based contact centers offer rapid deployment, lower fixed costs, scalability, and inherent flexibility. Whether you’ve currently deployed a cloud-based contact center, are in the process of building one, or just considering using one, it’s important to have a plan for the ongoing maintenance of your cloud contact center. Here are 5 key considerations for supporting a cloud-based contact center:
1. Operations: The cloud handles the physical hardware needs and scaling. However, you will need to focus on managing integration dependencies–CRM, WFM, internal systems, and the like. And, you’ll need to focus on applying updates and new features, because they are produced a lot faster for cloud products that run on continuous delivery management (CDM) for new releases.
2. Training: Migrating to a cloud-based contact center comes with some necessary change management. Agents need to learn new workflows, processes, and how to navigate a different UI. A highly customizable experience means you’ll likely need some special training for what you created—and you can’t just rely on the training that an on-premise product, where the user interface was the same for all customers, included. In cloud platforms, you need to update that training content for your users to take full advantage of new platform changes.
3. Customizations: Customizations can be minor or major. You can recreate an entire user experience that is all your own, not to mention integrating with just about any product that exposes some kind of API or external communication point–no matter what the tech might be. In the cloud, platform functional changes are rapid and continuous and can frequently impact your customizations so they need to evolve to be compatible with platform changes.
4. Support: Adoption is the primary obstacle to success with any new platform. Support for your agents and contact center personnel is key. While third-party systems integrators can help resolve platform issues, your custom and integration codes need a way to be supported regularly. We’ve outlined three different support and management models used to determine how much your company wants to be responsible for:
- Self-sufficient ownership – full ownership of the roles is done within the organization;
- Hybrid ownership – some skills are handled in-house while others are outsourced;
- Outsourced ownership – don’t want or need any of the skills in-house and want an expert provider to manage the contact center while they devote all resources on their core business.
If a hybrid or outsourced model makes more sense, then you’ll want to partner with a managed service provider to leverage their expertise.
5. Cost: In particular, staffing needs will be different from those required by on-premise systems. Here is a comparison of the typical staffing requirements for cloud-based and on-premise solutions, plus other costs:
The switch from needing network admins and security admins to cloud ops management and cloud security admins requires different skill sets and knowledge areas.
You won’t need to spin up project teams for annual upgrade projects. Instead, your cloud ops management can handle that ongoing, and you’ll need developers to take care of customization code maintenance and continuous improvements. You won’t have to worry about hardware or software upgrade costs, and telecommunication charges and integration component charges are covered in your recurring licensing and usage agreements.
Want to learn more about Twilio’s cloud-based contact center, Flex? Talk to Sales.