What if your ability to improve the customer experience was taken away? Do you think your customers would give you a break because you were restricted from doing the right thing? And are you breaking any laws while trying to engage with customers?
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So many thoughts ran through my head as I attended the PACE Association Annual Conference in Tampa. PACE (Professional Association for Customer Engagement) changed their name from the ATA (American Teleservices Association) in 2012. They changed their name (and focus) to make the shift to address the rapid rate of changes in the contact center industry.
Since most of my operational experience has been in inbound customer service and inbound sales, I rarely participated in ATA (now PACE) events in the past twenty years. Traditionally, most of their members were outbound focused contact centers.
The Contact Center World is Changing…Fast
Over the past few years the lines between outbound and inbound contact centers has been blurred. The rapid increase in customer contact channels and new business models has caused more of a blend of outbound and inbound in contact centers – for the phone and other interaction channels. And this applies to sales, service and support organizations, not just telemarketers.
For contact centers that are most skilled in outbound they know there are requirements and regulations they must follow. For those that are planning to build outbound into their strategy, they must make themselves aware of and comply with the rules and regulations of outbound contacts. And for many industries, the rules are unique and must be complied with otherwise the penalties can be severe.
Are you breaking the law now
This fact became very unsettling to me because I know of several contact centers right now that are probably violating some regulations and don’t even know it. Just like you needing to comply with the notification requirements when you are recording customer interactions, you need to comply with regulatory laws for engaging with customers.
PACE is the place to make sure you get it right. A core mission of PACE is to proactively balance industry best practices with current regulatory concerns around engaging customers. PACE is the only Association that has a complete Regulatory Guide that has become the industry standard when you want to know about Federal and State regulations.
The digital transformation has forever changed the way in which contact centers engage with their customers. But if we’re not careful we’ll be restricted from engaging with customers due to overzealous and vote seeking politicians answering media-hyped drama of failed customer experiences.
Protect the good people
Sure, there are always going to be unethical organizations operating in the marketplace. But it’s important to make sure that we are not penalized as an industry for the doings of some bad characters.
PACE is the only contact center industry association that acts as an industry advocate and that monitors federal and state legislative, regulatory and case law developments on an ongoing basis. They provide tools and education to help contact centers comply and to defend the industry when it’s needed. I came to the conclusion that they have been looking out for our livelihood, even when we didn’t realize it. Thank you!
PACE Association Leadership
The board of directors is the governing body of the association, responsible for the ultimate direction of the management of the affairs of the organization. The board is responsible for policy making, while management team is responsible for executing day-to-day management to implement board-made policy.
Watch my interview with chairman of the board, Stuart Discount at the conference to learn more about PACE.
Become a Member
Beyond their annual conference and other events PACE has several different regional chapters across the United States. Like many associations PACE has different membership levels meeting the needs of everyone. Learn more at: http://www.paceassociation.org/assoc_subscribe.asp.