Choosing The Right Call Center Phone System

When it comes to choosing a call center phone system, the two main choices are cloud service or on-site. From there, choices quickly funnel down into features sets. The trend has been to cloud service based phone systems but some companies have specific needs that can only be met with an on-site solution. This article will mainly focus on the many different types of cloud-based phone systems.

On-Site Vs. Cloud

With so many call center phone systems to choose from, it might seem overwhelming in deciding where you should start. However, it's actually very simple. Choosing a phone system starts with on-site vs a cloud solution. On-site installations cost more and must be maintained and upgraded by you. Companies choose these solutions because they have full control over all the equipment and data. If regulations or the highest security are concerns, an on-site install will often be the best route.

Cloud-based solutions don't require the installation of hardware. Desktop phones are available but these are simple, low-cost installations. Cloud service providers charge setup and monthly fees. For this, they handle all of the maintenance and upgrades behind the scenes. It's also very easy to expand the system as your call center grows.

Choosing The Right Feature Set For Your Phone System

Phone system features are broad and the choices can seem endless. The best way to choose a feature set is to go with what you need now to operate the call center. Additional features can always be added within only a few minutes in most cases.

Desktop phones are c in call centers and there are plenty to choose from. A phone with a large screen will help to increase the productivity of reps since they can do more with the phone. These phones also integrate with the call center communications software.

Inbound Call Routing

The software has a very large feature set. Through phone integration, the software will handle inbound call routing. This means sending calls to the right reps. Inbound call routing is handled by an IVR or integrated voice response. IVR works by providing a voice menu of options for users to choose from: for example, "For sales, press 1. For tech support, press 2." That's IVR.

Outbound Call Routing

Outbound call routing is just as important. This type of routing will queue up customers who need callbacks. A customer's information will be sent to a rep who can resolve the customer's problem. The call may also pertain to a sales lead. In this case, it is routed to a salesperson who has the necessary sales skills. When the rep sees the customer's info popup on their screen, they press a key to dial the customer.

Call Management Oversight

Call center managers need to be aware of the activity going on in the call center. This is another important feature of the phone system. It must be able to relay information in real-time back to managers, while also showing what's most important. Managers will often put up a wallboard in the call center for everyone to see. A wallboard is a large screen that shows average customer wait times, calls serviced so far, calls in queue and other related data points. All of this information is coming from the communications software.

Seamless Integration

Seamless integration of various functionalities is also critical. In order to see customer information, a CRM is needed. To see the customer's full billing history, integration with billing software is required. A messaging app is also needed to effectively communicate with other reps and management. All of these various components usually come in a bundle to ensure compatibility and reliability. Without all of this functionality available at each rep's desktop computer, their ability to accomplish day-to-day tasks would greatly decrease.

Below is a summarization of the most important features that a call center phone system should have:

  • Large screen desktop phone.
  • IVR.
  • Outbound and inbound call routing.
  • Real-time display of key metrics
  • Seamless integration of apps such as a CRM, billing integration, and messaging.

Call centers rely on their technology to empower them to be as productive as possible. With 8x8's Virtual Contact Center you get world-class technology and everything your call center needs in one place. Call 1-866-879-8647 or fill out an online form to request a no-obligation quote from an 8x8 product specialist.

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