Not so long ago, the majority of contact center products were primarily on-premise installations (like most other types of business software). But nowadays, cloud-based software has taken center stage and all the major vendors in the market have online offerings. However, a handful of large players in the market still have on-premise versions available too.
For example, Avaya has both an on-premise deployment of their IX Contact Center and a cloud-based ‘Contact Center as a Service’ (CCaaS) platform. Cisco* also offers cloud-based on-premise contact center deployment options.
There are also still several companies hanging onto on-premise deployments or considering adopting one. This post will walk through the 7 biggest benefits of transitioning to cloud-based contact center software to help you convince any on-prem stalwarts that cloud is the way to go.
These benefits include:
- Reduced costs
- Faster implementation
- Increased scalability
- Greater Security
- Ease of Remote Working
- Improved Customer Experiences
- Increased in agent productivity
Why Switch to a Cloud-based Contact Center Solution?
#1 Reduced Costs
One big benefit of deploying a cloud-based contact center is cost savings. On-premise products typically have large, upfront licensing fees, as well as additional maintenance and upgrade costs. Lack of these fees helps make cloud-based contact centers more affordable for any size business.
The monthly or annual subscription costs associated with running a cloud-based deployment are generally much lower than the cost of purchasing, installing, and maintaining an on-premise contact center. Another cost-related benefit is that the administrative burden of updating the software is usually handled by the vendor providing the software.
This means less work for your business, allowing you to save costs in terms of labor time required to fully manage your contact center solution.
For this star-up employee, the price of Talkdesk’s cloud-based contact center was a major decision factor:
“Talkdesk is the perfect software for start-up companies due to its cost and its brand appeal. It is perfect for making inbound and outbound calls… We went with Talkdesk because of its cost and its potential to be a major player as a call center software.”Christopher M. | Fraud Operations Analyst | Financial Services
#2 Faster Implementation
Because on-premise contact center software is installed on local servers, it can take months to fully implement and deploy. On the other hand, cloud-based contact center solutions can be set up much faster since users will be accessing the software online. Getting your contact center up and running in a matter of weeks, rather than months, means agents will be able to start making calls and having conversations across other digital channels sooner.
Many vendors that sell cloud-based contact center software also offer implementation services or support. This can help implementation run even smoother, speeding up time to value for your new contact center solution.
For this reviewer, the ease of implemented and deploying Genesys PureCloud allowed their company to reduce inbound call volume by 30%:
“We implemented [Genesys] PureCloud in an environment that had no ACD system, and an outdated way of answering calls. Using this technology gave us an easy system to deploy, and reduced inbound call volume by about 30%. This was because callers got to the right person much more often, and did not have to call back/leave voicemails nearly as often.”Verified User | Director in Customer Service | Automotive Company
#3 Increased Scalability
Along with an easier, faster implementation and deployment—cloud-based content centers are also easier to scale up than traditional on-premise installations. If your contact center starts growing rapidly or has a sudden increase in inbound call volume, additional seats can easily be added. Bringing more agents on board during peak call seasons can help increase capacity.
By the same token, if you’re experiencing a lower than average volume of calls, many vendors allow you to easily remove agent seats as well. One of the biggest benefits of the scalability and flexibility a cloud-based solution provides is the ability to size up or down your business according to your current needs.
According to this reviewer, scalability was a key factor in their decision to purchase Fuze:
“After evaluating a number of vendors we chose Fuze for its scalability, price, and common UC features that we needed across our growing enterprise (we started with 5,000 licenses and are scaling up to 15,000). Fuze is our single point Unified Communications platform.”D. Skye H. | IT Technician | Computer Software Company
#4 Greater Security
Security for cloud-based contact centers and data centers has increased as software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications have proliferated. For many companies, having the technical expertise and resources needed to maintain security for their infrastructure isn’t very realistic. On the other hand, vendors that specialize in delivering cloud-based solutions have invested in the type of technical expertise needed to maintain data integrity and security.
It also turns out that your information may be safer when stored in a data center managed by a cloud provider in compliance with national and global security standards and certifications. These vendors are more likely to have multiple data centers and the resource to provide both virtual and physical security for their data centers.
#5 Ease of Remote Working
Another big benefit of implementing a cloud-based contact center is the flexibility it affords employees in terms of remote working. Since agents and administrators can access the software online, it’s much easier for administrators to manage remote workers. Having a certain percentage of your employees work remotely can help cut business costs too (e.g. money saved on office space).
Giving your employees more freedom and flexibility to work remotely may also boost morale and employee productivity. 54% of office workers report they would leave their current job for one that offers greater flexibility.
For this 8×8 Contact Center reviewer, the ability to have agents work remotely translated into reducing communication costs:
“We used 8X8 primarily for our VOIP service. It worked flawlessly for over a decade across the entire company. 8X8 enabled us to have employees working from home and around the world, while also providing a local presence. It dramatically reduced our communications costs.”Ron P. | Chairman and Founder | Computer Software Company
#6 Improved Customer Experiences
Whether you love or hate terms like digital transformation or digital experience, the main message they’re trying to get across is that providing customers with a stellar online experience matters. It’s hard to ignore the importance of customer experience and the consequences it can have for your business.
Bad customer experiences can result in decreased brand loyalty and lower satisfaction scores. On the flip side, a customer that had a positive online experience with your company or brand is more likely to be a repeat customer, leave a positive review, or provide a higher customer satisfaction rating.
According to recent research, millennials care more about online experiences than previous generations. And for these 20-somethings (and 30-somethings too), online experiences need to support omnichannel interactions.
Many cloud-based contact center solutions support omnichannel, or at least multichannel experiences. This means that your agents can meet customers wherever they are most comfortable—whether it be over the phone, email, video chat, texting, or Facebook messaging.
According to this Genesys PureEngage reviewer, the omnichannel nature of the platform allows for customers engagement across multiple digital channels:
“Genesys PureEngage is a world-leading omnichannel customer experience platform. The solution helps the customers to engage with the organization on all communication channels like mobile, web, social media, email and voice.”Rashid Y. | Senior System Analyst | Telecommunications Company
#7 Increased Agent Productivity
One final benefit of switching to a cloud-based solution is increased agent productivity. Access to online databases that display customer interaction histories across channels can help agents resolve calls and other customer queries faster.
Rather than needing customers to relay the same pieces of information each time they call, agents can access this contextual information ahead of time. Having all this information at their fingertips can also help agents reduce KPIs like average handle time, first call resolution, and customer satisfaction.
The increased flexibility agents have in terms of remote working and the ability to carry out conversations with customers across multiple digital channels also allows them to save time.
For this reviewer, return on investment (ROI) from using Five9 includes:
“Higher agent productivity rates.
Better reporting to better manage agent time.
Costs per agent went down substantially.”Sally E. | President | Telecommunications Company
When it comes to contact centers, it’s cloud or bust
If you’re in the market for a new contact center solution, cloud-based software is the way to go. Even if the nagging voice in the back of your head is frantically whispering ‘but what about our data security??’— talk with a few cloud providers and ask what data center security measures they have in place.
After all, cloud-based contact centers aren’t going anywhere. Estimates predict the cloud-based contact center market will grow at an annual compound growth rate of 25% from 2018-2023. Choosing to invest in a cloud-based solution now could help save you time and money down the road when you would (inevitably) need to make the switch from an on-premise installation to a cloud-based one.
*Cisco’s on-premise contact center product, Cisco Unified Contact Center, is one of the qualifying products for TrustRadius’ TRUE vendor certification program. Vendors that are TRUE certified have made a commitment to ethically sourcing reviews in an unbiased manner and providing equal opportunity for their customers to provide both positive and negative feedback.