There was a time when businesses were anxious about the idea of switching to cloud-based call center software. Perhaps they were afraid of the unknown or handing over control to an outside company. But sentiments have changed.
We’ve blogged about these stats a couple times before, but they bear repeating here: In 2008, only 2.2 percent of call centers used cloud-based software, according to DMG Consulting. By September of 2013, some 62 percent of call centers operated at least partially in the cloud. By 2015, almost no call center will be cloudless.
Some companies continue to operate cautiously, opting for a hybrid solution that combines on-premise and cloud-based software. But there are distinct benefits to going 100 percent cloudless, including a reduction in call center costs. Now that call centers leaders are realizing the benefits of the cloud, 100 percent cloud-based software is poised to be the next frontier.
With 100 percent cloud-based software, you can easily scale the system up or down as needed. Need 100 new licenses? The provider says, “OK, do you need these today?” There’s no hardware to install and no waiting period. On the flip side, you can quickly decrease the number of licenses if there’s a staffing reduction.
With traditional on-premise software or hybrid products, the process is more involved. You’ll have to contact the software provider for additional licenses and the telephone provider for additional phone lines. The process could take weeks, and it will have a much greater impact on your call center costs.
With cloud-based call center software, you’re not responsible for managing hardware or software; all of that is handled by the vendor. Upgrades happen automatically, freeing your IT staff to focus on more important issues.
Redundancy and Working Remotely
In life, redundancy is boring. When it comes to call center software, redundancy is a blessing. With 100-percent cloud-based software, your data is stored securely with off-site and redundant servers. If your local server goes down, there are backups in place that will keep you working.
Cloud-based software also allows agents to work remotely or from home – they don’t need to be in a central office connected to a traditional hard-wired line. This keeps staff in satellite locations connected, and it cuts call center costs by reducing overhead.
Cloud-based software can also keep you working in the event of a power outage or natural disaster. When Hurricane Sandy struck the Atlantic coast in 2012, devastating parts of New York and New Jersey, call centers that lost power were out of luck if they relied on premise-based or hybrid software. Without power, phone lines were down. Call centers that used 100 percent cloud-based software, on the other hand, could allow employees to work from home as long as they had a working internet connection. For those companies, the disaster had less of an impact on customer service, call center costs and the customer experience.
Reduction in Call Center Costs
We touched on this above, but 100 percent cloud-based software reduces your call center costs. The upfront costs are few because there’s no expensive hardware to buy. Pay for only the number of licenses you need – no more. Also, many providers charge a flat monthly fee for each license, which keeps call center costs predictable.
At Kunnect, our 100 percent cloud-based call center software costs $125 per agent per month with a flat deposit of $125 per agent. We believe in being straightforward about call center costs, so there are never hidden fees.