A row of call center representatives smile as they use their computers and speak to customers over their headsets.

Advanced call center technologies continue to grow and evolve so quickly. From digital transformation to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping up with call center technology is the key to: 

  • Improving operations;
  • Increasing sales;
  • Boosting productivity;
  • Eliminating inefficient processes. 

From conversation artificial intelligence (AI) to real-time guidance, from omnichannel support to improved analytics, new technologies and future trends can help you challenge old ideas and solve future problems. Call center technology trends help your sales team close more sales, boost your prominence as a business leader, and reduce your call center agents’ issues. 

Let’s take a look at which trends can skyrocket your business into a successful future.

First Call Resolution 

First call resolution — the ability to handle and resolve requests on the first interaction — is one of the most important customer service metrics. According to the analysts at Hubspot, 33% of customers are most frustrated by having to wait on hold, and 33% are most frustrated by having to repeat themselves to multiple support reps. Keep an eye on these call center technologies and trends to enhance your first call resolution rates:

  • Real-Time Guidance: This contact center technology analyzes conversations in real-time, suggesting prompts and solutions that empower your customer service reps to solve pain points in the first contact.
  • Integrations: Be sure to explore advanced call center tech that integrates with your current systems, especially your CRM. This creates smooth and seamless database updates, which help your sales team move customers further through the buyer’s funnel.

When you implement new call center technology, you not only improve customer satisfaction, but also employee satisfaction. Many employees report higher job satisfaction when their employers emphasize new technologies and take a digital-first approach. 

Digital-First Approach 

When building your digital-first approach, look for tech that can help eliminate agent mistakes, improve processes, and show your customers that you value their experience, such as:

  • Omnichannel Support: Use statistical dashboards and advanced analytics to get real-time insights on customer experience on a variety of platforms — all in one place.
  • Contact Center Automated Trends: Empower your call center agents to improve their QA scores by making personal connections with customers through automated service processes. 

A digital-first approach helps you stay competitive and relevant. Most importantly, however, this approach shows that you are also prioritizing customer satisfaction.

Customer Satisfaction Prioritization 

It’s easy to see why customer satisfaction should be a top priority. 95% of consumers say that customer service is essential for brand loyalty, and 60% of consumers report having deserted a brand and switching to a rival company because of poor customer service. . In addition to that, e-commerce sales have surged during COVID-19, increasing by $244 billion, or around 43%, since 2020. That’s why it is crucial your call center technology makes your customers feel cared for as people, not as purchasers. Call quality monitoring and real-time QA are two effective and efficient ways to help every customer feel valued.

With call quality monitoring software, you can not only explore words, phrases, and tones that boost customer satisfaction, but also avoid the ones that tend to have a negative impact on the caller. Using real-time QA, call center agents can focus on ways to improve their conversations with real-time coaching, QA, and insights. This helps make sure you don’t lose the opportunity to make a sale or provide immediate, excellent service.

Integration of AI

Artificial intelligence is the foundation for many processes, especially in customer service. It provides machine vision functionality, which helps call centers, like those in healthcare, on video support chats. With features like speech recognition and natural language processing, AI analyzes data by looking for patterns and, essentially, learning from the results. Some of the easiest AI to implement and most effective for performance include interactive voice response (IVR) and conversation intelligence.

Interactive Voice Response (IVR) 

Help your call center agents quickly resolve your customers’ pain points with this call center tech that guides callers through a self-service menu. Using automated prompts, this AI can often help customer solve their own issues. For those that need additional assistance, they will be transferred to a customer service agent who can quickly address the issue thanks to the info collected by the AI at the beginning of the call.

Conversation Intelligence

Conversation intelligence uses AI software to analyze speech or text, helping companies improve customer experience and boost their bottom line with data-driven insights. Analyzing customer service agents’ conversations in real-time, conversation intelligence delivers guidance to call center agents — the real-time, on the call, with prompts for words, phrases, tone, speed, and more. By analyzing customer feelings, needs, and intentions, this advanced call center technology benefits almost every revenue-generating department in a company.

Increased Social Media Engagement

When a customer is unhappy, they may tell a few friends not to use your company. When a customer feels frustrated, dismissed, or treated unfairly, they will want to tell the world — and now, because of social media, they can.

Many businesses make the mistake of seeing social media solely as a marketing tool. However, you can use social media to show how you empathetically address complaints and value customers. You can get ahead of issues, share videos explaining the details of new products, and build deeper relationships. Automated call center technology can help you:

  • Monitor your brand’s online reputation by tracking keywords and specific sentiments across multiple platforms and content streams.
  • Answer inbox questions and use self-service options to provide the right call routing.
  • Schedule posts, comments, and replies in advance to keep content fresh and updated.

Plus, increasing your social media presence will also give you a whole new slew of customer analytics to consider. The more data you have, the more you can better understand both current and potential customer needs.

Improved Analytics

When it comes to data, most customer service teams are used to getting feedback after the call has ended. While that certainly can improve future performance, what if you could improve current performance — in the call as it is happening?

Analytics help improve customer satisfaction by using data to make informed decisions about your processes and strategies. Call center technology can provide a great deal of opportunity, but few as in-the-moment impactful as real-time speech analytics. Real-time guidance can show reps when they are making mistakes and how to correct them in the moment, saving time, money, and most importantly, the customer.

Self-Service Offerings

With COVID-19 many customers discovered they preferred to do more troubleshooting on their own. This is where self-service technology can be useful. IVR, chatbots, microsites, online booking/scheduling, and other digital service products can help satisfy customers while decreasing call volume.

It’s important that you test any self-service offerings with actual customers before you launch and create a plan for continuous testing. Many customers end a call in frustration when they cannot reach a customer service representative, so it’s important that your self-service offerings help — and not hinder — customer satisfaction.

Omnichannel Communication 

Your customers are on every online platform and they expect their brands to be there, too. Call centers need technology that empowers them to be responsive on multiple platforms, from email to social media, calls to texts. Omnichannel communication software gives your agents the chance to connect with customers across all channels in one convenient platform. You can both resolve issues and track customer interactions to inform future communications.

The evolving world of call center technology is fast-paced, to say the least. Stay on top of these trends by staying connected to thought leaders, groups, companies, and influencers. Follow customer service tech blogs, listen to podcasts, sign up for emails, and join groups on LinkedIn — don’t let profitable future trends become missed opportunities.