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Call Centre Integration with CRM

August 15, 2017

Call Centre Integration with CRM is a relatively new technology. To understand it’s impact on today’s business world we must first look at the history of CRM.

Since it’s humble beginnings more than thirty years ago, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology has improved the customer experience exponentially. CRM allows businesses to easily access customers details and history, revolutionising customer relationships, improving efficiency, and as a result productivity.

Initially, CRMs were really only available to large companies and therefore beyond the reach of most businesses. There are now CRM solutions for every size of business and they are recognised as a cornerstone for any successful enterprise.

The Rise of the Cloud Based CRM

Cloud-Based CRM pioneers such as SalesForce, Microsoft (Dynamics) and ComCast were instrumental in creating affordable, accessible solutions. Users were no longer reliant on being connected to the same network and therefore didn’t even need to be in the same geographical location. The ability to be logged in on any device, including laptops, tablets and mobile phones was revolutionary. Gone are the days of bulky, expensive software requiring an entire team of IT experts to install and maintain.

Man in airport using mobile phoneToday’s Customers Demand Omnichannel Communication

Telephone calls are only one of many methods by which customers choose to contact agents, especially in today’s high-tech world. As the new generation of Millennials make their impact on the economy, businesses should embrace omnichannel communication more than ever. The rise of web-chat, SMS, email and social media is set to continue. This demand has given rise to true call centre integration with CRM and the modern Contact Centre Solution.

Call Centre Integration with CRM can intelligently route any form of communication to the agent best equipped to deal with that enquiry. Integration with CRM technology also allows customers to contact agents however they choose. The CRM integrated contact centre presents agents with the customers details and account history in real-time, all through a single interface.

The Top 10 Must-Haves For True Call Centre Integration with CRM

For the most effective level of personalisation, a modern call centre integration with CRM should therefore provide :

1) OmniChannel

As outlined above, the next generation of customers expect to choose how they contact agents – in fact, they demand it.  A recent study showed that only 6% of Millennials chose phone calls as their preferred communication channel. Offering a wide range of channels to customers is now an expectation, not a luxury.

2) Click to Dial & Screen-Pop

The very minimum feature benefit of Call Centre Integration with CRM is the ability to click-to-dial a contact, and getting a screen-pop of the callers details when they call you. This saves so much time and makes for efficient and informed customer interactions.

3) Customer VIP Services

Identify your VIP or ‘Gold’ service customers in your CRM so that when they call, the contact centre solution identifies their status. The system will then advanced them to the front of the queue or direct them to their dedicated service agent.

4) Gatekeeper Service

Identify customers and block them from a particular service. For example: a customer with an outstanding bill calls your service team so the call is automatically diverted to the accounts team. The system automatically ‘pops’ the customer’s account record and payment status to the service agent who can swiftly remedy the issue.

5) Fast Track Services

A great call centre uses IVR, prompting the caller to enter certain details about their call before it is forwarded to an agent. This might include their support ticket number, or the nature of their request. All the information is retrieved and popped to the customer service agent as the call is transferred, saving valuable time, improving the service and customer experience.

6) Engaging Across The Entire Customer Life-cycle

Call Centre Integration with CRM enables business to engage and track their customer life-cycle from marketing through to servicing. Using a CRM solely for inbound leads or requests ignores the technologies ability to maximise on outbound sales. A CRM that has the capability to feed prospect information to an outbound system therefore opens up a whole world of marketing and ‘inside sales’ opportunities.

7) All Customer Interactions In One Place

The CRM database should be the only repository for customer data, including that related to customers’ contact with the organization.  A great contact centre solution stores the details of interactions with your customer in the CRM. This would include when the interaction took place, who with and how long. Call centre integration with CRM can even provide links to the actual voice and screen recordings.

8) Monitoring Tools

Analytics within the CRM allow a business to accurately monitor interactions with customers. True business intelligence allows the analysis of all metadata through the CRM, such as when; what channel; products sold; how many; problems solved etc.

Centralising data within the CRM negates the need to transfer information between systems, alleviating the risk of data quality degradation. Analytics take place within the CRM, because it contains customers information and historical data and as a result reporting is more accurate and detailed.

9) Voice Analysis

There have been great advancements in voice analytics technology (through voice-to-text transcription). This has enabled businesses to effectively monitor and run reports on voice channel interactions.  The technology removes the need for supervisors to manually inspect interactions due to automatically pushing data straight into the CRM. This in turn allows efficient data-mining or real-time monitoring, offering insights into key attributes such as customer sentiment, call drivers and agent effectiveness.

10) Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) takes Voice Analysis and CRM to the next level. It enables organisations to automatically analyse the huge amounts of data collected through voice interactions. Accessing key metrics from previous communications presents a valuable opportunity. The artificial intelligence utilises this information, automatically selecting the most appropriate agent. The AI can also guide the agent on the right questions to ask, the right products to pitch etc. In a recent study, 43% of respondents said they believe customer support will benefit the most from AI*

A modern Call Centre Integration with CRMIt is clear from IDC’s forecasts that AI adoption is about to begin in earnest.”

Source: IDC’s AI/CRM Economic Survey 2017

The technology is also effective in providing automated support through chat-bots. Questions are answered before being put through to an agent, therefore improving the user experience consequently greatly improving agent efficiency.

Conclusion : What Does Call Centre Integration with CRM Really Offer?

Call Centre Integration with CRM offers an effective and economically viable way to engage with customers through whichever channel they choose. As a result, the technology offers a way to truly understand customers behaviours and individual needs through efficient analysis of multiple communication channels. Call Centre integration with CRM allows agents and managers to analyse the past and predict the future, enabling a level of engagement never before possible.

Organisations unifying customer experience are able to drive a significantly higher level of customer satisfaction and in addition increasing revenues.

* Source: IDC’s AI/CRM Economic Survey 2017