Contact Centers: Choose Your CRM Solution Wisely


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Customer Service is a new corporate battleground. Providing outstanding service is mission critical to building customer loyalty and a long lasting brand. That being said, the cornerstone of every company’s customer service strategy remains the telephone, and the customer service agent.

Innovations in cloud technologies have enabled the seamless integration between telephony and customer relationship management (CRM), making service agents much more productive—starting the “hello experience” with the appropriate information at hand. They are able to quickly review notes and client history, moving the flow of the call toward a solution. When deliberating between cloud-based computer telephony integration (CTI) solutions, consider the importance of these three factors in your decision-making process:

  1. Comprehensive Functionality and Flexibility
    Consider the need for components that can manage both inbound and outbound calling. Blending agent workload and the ability to quickly scale a team should be a key component here.
  2. Extensibility and APIs
    The speed and ease of integration with a central CRM is critical, but there are also many other applications that may benefit from integration. Consider the overall platform, and the ability to extend and customize through open APIs.
  3. Reporting and Visibility
    Reporting and analytics are also essential. A well-rounded platform will sport a full library of pre-configured reports. Consider the ability to bring in CTI data into external reporting or analysis applications, and the opportunity for your organization to optimize performance through improved visibility.

Critical to the success of these initiatives is the tight integration between telephony and CRM. CRM systems like Salesforce Sales Cloud provide a great deal of information and guidance to make every customer interaction successful. However, this information is not fully utilized if the person leveraging the information is not capable of applying this knowledge to the customer interaction. Integrated IVR, VRU, and CTI capabilities ensure that the customer is routed to the correct queue or person to own the interaction.

What happens when you marry the right business process with telephony and CRM integration?
You ensure the right employee, at the right time, equipped with the right information, can make each customer interaction a success.

To learn more, download the white paper, New World of Customer Expectations, which discusses real-world examples of customers achieving results with cloud-based telephony and CRM.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Bob Furniss
Bob Furniss' career has focused on improving customer experiences. As the Director of Bluewolf's Service Cloud practice, Bob leads a team of consultants who works with clients in three key areas: Salesforce Service Cloud strategy/implementation; Social Media strategy and implementation in the contact center; and creating vision blueprints to help companies set a new course for their contact centers in the areas of people and technology. Follow him on Twitter


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