Why Will Cloud Based Call Center Remain An Upward Trend

A contact center or call center is today an important aspect for every business. It is the one stop destination for every customer to get their queries answered, doubts cleared and issues solved. And for the very reason, it is extremely important that every business incorporate with the best contact center available in the industry. There are broadly two types of call centers – the traditional premise-based contact center and cloud based contact center. In a traditional premise-based call center, the company owns the technology they use. On the other hand, the hosted call center or cloud based contact center uses technology that is placed in the cloud or in an exterior data center. This technology is then transported through the Internet based on demand.

How To Improve Call Center Agent’s PerformanceThe cloud contact center has been booming since its inception. And I personally believe the cloud based contact center or the cloud call center will only keep mushrooming in the times to come. For starters, cloud based contact centers help in accelerating business modules and customer support. It helps business’ enhance customer experience. And it is the business change and customer experience that act as the motivators in the global market, the market where contact centers are the defining factor among competing businesses. Hence, business’ will always prefer a motivator to ensure a seat in the global, competitive marketplace.

While comparing the traditional premise-based contact center and cloud call center, the latter is a much cheaper option when compared to the former. Alternatively, in a business that is incorporated with the cloud call center, the business does not own the hardware. As a result the business saves bundles of money, which can further be used to boost sales and customer service. Another major criterion any business looks into before incorporating with a contact center is the implementation process. And cloud based contact center is a much better option out of the two, as it can be implemented faster, hence delivering flexibility to promote growth and expansion of the business. Since the technology used in cloud call center is stored in a separate data center, there is no limitation as compared to the national phone networks.

The information technologies delivered through the cloud is based on the internet protocols. And this technology will be constantly updated and maintained by the external data source. According to a report, it is estimated that the market for cloud based contact center will grow from $4.15 billion to $10.9 billion by 2019. This will happen at an annual growth rate of 21.3%. While North America is the present largest market for the contact center, emerging economies like Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific are also likely to experience a rise in the cloud contact center market. Hence, the cloud call center is definitely a growing part of the industry and very soon most, if not all, businesses will choose the cloud based contact center over the traditional premise-based contact center. It is not only a more economical option, but also a more logical option for businesses.

Problems Faced By Call Centre Agents

“Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them become what they are capable of becoming,” said Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, a German author, to all call centre agents. Call centre agents or call centre solutions providers are considered to be next to God every time a customer, like you and I, call them for a solution to our problem. We call them hoping to put an end to our problem with their help.

But have we, as customers, ever wondered what are the problems faced by these call centre solution Gods? Have we ever asked ourselves the question ‘what if the agent can’t answer my question’ before making that call? Contact centre solution agents too, are however human beings. Won’t there be some issue of ours that they cannot provide an answer for? Have we ever wondered if our questioned is in that list of ‘cannot-be-answered’ problems? Have we ever thought of the issues that call centre agents have to go through, which could be a probable reason for them to be unable to answer our queries properly? Next time you or I get angry at a contact centre solution agent, let’s think about the following issues that they could possibly be going through.

LACK OF PROPER TRAINING CLASSES

Let’s accept it, to be a call centre solution guru is a tough task. These agents do not just have to find solutions to each and every problem bombarded to them, they also have to go through the whining and drama from customers about the problem, the number of times they have to call the centre, the lack of efficiency from the agents’ side and so on and so forth. And yet, sound calm and comfortable while answering the problem. I doubt if you and I can be as successful a contact centre solution agent as those who sit day in and out listening to our problems and solving them. This requires good training and management, the lack of which can lead to ill-mannered, short-tempered, and consequently, unsuccessful, call centre solution agents. These agents have to be trained about the possible outcries by customers and how to keep their calm despite everything they have to hear from the customer. They have to be taught how to speak well in a language that is understood by all. And all of this require good training, which is lacking in today’s call centres. This could either be because of lack of proper financial resources, or because of large number of call centre solution agents, leading to insufficient staff to train them. But the dip in training levels is a problem faced by call centre agents everyday, affecting the work quality, internal quality and internal attrition, and as a result the output, drastically.

RISING DISSATISFACTION OF CLIENTS

A customer calls the contact centre solution provider with a problem. The customer expects the call centre solution agent to have an answer for it immediately. In case the call centre solution agent delays the answer for a few minutes or if s/he mumbles, the customer assumes s/he doesn’t know the answer. And the conversation turns to be a heated argument, with the customer screaming at the agent. Have we ever wondered how the agent would feel if s/he had to hear atleast five to ten such screams from customers in a day? Personally, when I get one bad remark from my boss, the entire day suffers. So it is quite understandable when these agents too lose their temper and become hostile to customers, when customers themselves do not care much about their language or tone towards the agents. So the rising dissatisfaction among clients and customers are bound to have a direct impact on the contact centre solution agents as well.

RISE IN OPERATIONAL COST

There is a famous saying that whatever happens, happens for the best. Personally, I also believe that every outcome has a consequence to it. In a call centre solution too there are reasons for each and every happening and dissatisfaction of call centre solution providers. A constant rise in the overall operational cost results in less or no training to new agents. This makes these agents vulnerable and scared, leading to dissatisfied clients. Dissatisfied clients, in turn, lead to dissatisfied contact centre solution agents. As a result, the company has to hire more call centre solution agents who too have to be paid their monthly salaries and the cycle continues. Hence, this is a cycle, which begins with a rise in operational cost.

These are just some of the issues that call centre solution agents have to undergo each and every day. A dip in good training levels leads to dip in internal quality and attrition levels, hence dissatisfying the clients, agents and the company as a whole. But barely are these issues thought or talked about within the company itself. Let’s end this with a simple question. Have you ever asked your call centre solution agent if s/he has received proper training before s/he was pushed into the deep end of the pool?

Seven Trends In Call Center Softwares You Cannot Afford To Ignore

Today, every business is incorporated with a call center software. A call center software helps business’ improve customer service and customer support. And for the same reason, it is of utmost importance that the contact center industry understands the latest trends in the industry. This helps the software improve client communications, which will ultimately result in better customer satisfaction. It is important for every business to incorporate with the best call center management software in the industry, so that it beats its competitors by providing customers with better service and support. Here are seven latest trends in software contact center that every business should understand and implement to ensure the best service to their customers.

THE SaaS CALL CENTER SOFTWARE

The contact center software industry is now slowly leaning towards the web-based software, or what is commonly known as SaaS, due to its convenience and varied availability. These call center management software do not require any installation or updates. In addition to this, business’ need not worry about technical issues with the software. A third party is sure to look into any technical issue with the software call center. In general, SaaS software is a much affordable and better option for business’, especially small scale business’.

CLOUD BASED CONTACT CENTER SOFTWARE

A growing trend in the contact center industry is the cloud based contact center software. In this software call center, the technology is not owned by any business. Instead, the technology is stored in an external data center which is then transported on demand through the Internet. Since the business does not own the hardware, the business need not worry about the maintenance or upgradation of the call center management software, hence making it a much cheaper option for business’. It is one software that has been booming in the industry and which will reach much greater heights in the years to come.

SOCIAL MEDIA AS A SOFTWARE CALL CENTER

Today, everyone is dependent on the social media – to keep in touch, to conduct money transactions, to interact with the masses and to improve customer support. Call center management software too use this social media to improve customer support and service. Customers, too, prefer conveying their complaints and compliments to business’ through the social media, such as Facebook, Twitter and others. As of 2014, almost 16% of customers prefer posting their complaints on Twitter over a straight-forward conversation with a business agent. For this very purpose, there are also mushrooming complimentary software, such as live chat software which helps the agents communicate with their customers in real time.

SMARTPHONES FOR IN-BOUND CALL CENTER SOFTWARE

Another booming industry is the mobile industry where nearly 722 million smartphones were shipped in 2012 alone. Call center software are merging with this industry to create the latest trend in the contact center software industry. It is estimated that by 2016, smartphones will be the reason for almost 40 percent of inbound contact center calls in the US and Canada. Hence, the merger between the contact center software industry and the mobile industry will be crucial to ease customer support, both for the agent as well as the customer. These mobile applications simplify the work of the customers and enables business’ to communicate with customers either through the Internet or through voice.

CONTACT CENTER SOFTWARE PREFERED BY SMALL SCAL BUSINESS’

Everyone wants to start his/her own business and become an entrepreneur. And with the rise in technology, it is extremely easy for anyone to begin his own company. However, it is the next couple of steps that require a lot of critical thinking and understanding. When it comes to call center management software, small scale business’ prefer within-the-company software over outsourcing from a third party. Though this seems contradictory to the cloud based software contact center, the rise in SaaS call center software is one of the main reasons for the rise of in-house call center management software. It is extremely easy for business’ to operate and maintain these software call center, hence making it a preferred choice.

CALL CENTER SOFTWARES BASED ON METRICS

It is of utmost importance for a successful contact center software to be able to measure its success and numbers. Keeping a constant track on the KPI’s and other numbers helps call center management software improve its performance. Now it is not just important for software call centers to simply measure these numbers. These numbers do not make any sense if the contact center software cannot understand what these numbers mean. These numbers also help in creating an understanding within the various multi-channel environments. As of 2013, it was found out that a mere percentage of 43 call centers understood the KPIs metrics. So it is of extreme importance that these call center software know how to calculate the metrics and understand the calculated metrics.

CRM TRENDS IN CONTACT CENTER SOFTWARE

The numbers in call center software are increasing day by day. And these numbers are only going to increase further. Hence it is highly important that software contact center implement software that help store and retrieve this data as and when required. And a CRM software or a Customer Relationship Management Software is one of the latest trend in the contact center software industry. With the data stored in the CRM software, business’ are trying to adopt a holistic understanding of the customer, along with the customer feedback.

These are few of the latest trends in the call center management software industry which every business has to incorporate with to ensure the best customer support.

Ten Things Call Centre Agents Hate To Hear

Being a call centre agent is a hectic and tedious job. Anyone who has been a part of a call centre knows and understands the psychological trauma a call centre agent goes through every day at work. They have to be presentable to the customer through their voice, they need to control their anger and maintain patience during any situation and they should sound pleasant to the next customer immediately after a horrible conversation with the previous customer. Well personally I would have to appreciate them for this quality, because I get extremely irritated after one bad comment from my Boss and the work that follows too gets affected.

For a call centre agent, time is God. There is the Army disciplined checking in and out of office, timed washroom breaks and also strict control over the call duration with their customers. Basically, a call centre agent’s life is similar to that of the robot. But have you ever wondered how these call centre agents feels when they are bullied in this manner by their customers. And especially, for no fault of theirs. Have we ever wondered what aggravates these call centre agents? What is it that these agents hate to hear? Here are ten such things that every call centre agent hates to hear.

  1. Extended shifts – When I worked with a well-reputed news channel, we had a strict 8-hour shift. However, during dire situations, such as breaking news’, we would have to extend our shifts. Well, imagine having to extend a shift after 8-hour of extreme work and running around. I am sure a call centre agent would understand the agony and pain one has to go through when they have to extend their shifts. The manager calling you to say “you will have to extend your shift by another two hours”, is probably the last thing a call centre agent wants to hear.
  2. “The systems are back in action” – So the call centre agents are having an amazing time in office, for a change, as all the systems are shut down and hence no calls can be received. And just as they are ready to call it an awesome day, the manager announces that the systems are back in action and they can now receive calls. Well for you and I when the current is back, it means air-conditioned rooms, water supply and thrilling matches on the television. But for a call centre agent, it means calls from grumpy customers who are bound to vent out their anger and frustration at these poor souls, for no fault of their!
  3. The manager comes out from his cabin with a wide smile on his face. He announces that there can be an early finish for the day. But the catch is, only two of them can enjoy this early finish! And these two agents can be decided amongst everyone. Now who would you choose? Well, everybody deserves an early finish, considering the amount of work they have gone through. But having to choose two out of 50 call centre agents is a heart-breaking deal,
  4. “You colleague has called in sick tomorrow. So you will have to replace him and do a ten hour night shift tomorrow,” says the manager. The call centre agent wishes the sun never rose!
  5. “You forgot to press the mute button!” – A call centre agent is being bombarded with silly and unreasonable questions by a customer. And all that the agent wants to do is call the customer a sea of swearwords. The agent thinks he has press the mute button and utters the words, when his colleague looks at the mute button and says, “dude you forgot to press the mute button”. The call centre agent would rather die than have to go through the consequences.
  6. “Can you please connect me to the manager?” – This is probably the worst thing a call centre agent wants to hear from his customer. This not only means the agent has failed to answer the customer’s queries but also means the customer is not satisfied with the agent’s reply. Both of these could only mean one thing to the agent, trouble!
  7. “WOW. It is a miracle you have survived in a call centre for three years.” – Well, every call centre agent is bound to hear this from either his parents, family relatives, friends, lover, colleague or even a total stranger. The worst part is the agent knows it is a miracle and is frustrated with the way his life has been for the past three years. A reminder from anyone is reminder on the past few years the agent has wasted at the call centre.
  8. “Hello. I am a 64-year old grandmother and I would like to ask you something related to my refrigerator” – The call centre agent is trained to be polite and patient to all their customers, especially the old ones. But a call from a 64-year old woman will not end with just one small doubt about the refrigerator. It will travel from the refrigerator to the boiler to the television to the oven and even to the next door neighbour’s granddaughter!
  9. Receiving an order from the manager to do overwork on a weekend – A call centre agent can never pre-plan his events with a family member, his friends or his girlfriend for the weekend. Because there is always a possibility that he will be asked to extend his time over the weekend. Maybe that is why he always seems alone and lonely!
  10. “Your answers don’t seem to help. Maybe I should change the product” – This is the worst thing to hear for a call centre agent from his customer. This implies the agent’s answers have been unsatisfactory, the customer is going to call the manager and complain against him and the customer is going to change the product to a competing company. All of this means it is time that the agent looked for a new job.

These are just some of the things a call centre agent hates to hear. For all agents, these ten points could be a look at your daily routine. And for those ex call centre agents, this could be a trip towards memory. Maybe you have a better point that every call centre agent hates to hear. We would love to hear your eleventh point.

Why Should Anyone Feel Threatened By Outsourcing?

The General Industry Compensation Report published by professional services firm Towers Watson says Lower-skilled and process-based jobs in the UK remain vulnerable in the face of continued popularity of business process outsourcing (BPO) to central and eastern European countries.The General Industry Compensation Report published by professional services firm Towers Watson says Lower-skilled and process-based jobs in the UK remain vulnerable in the face of continued popularity of business process outsourcing (BPO) to central and eastern European countries.

Emerging destinations like Poland, Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary present attractive alternative to companies who are looking to outsource their bottom line jobs so as to cut down on the operational costs in order to boost the overall productivity.

I have two issues with this news. One, with the usage of the term “threatened”. Outsourcing is no devil by which you need to be scared of , it’s a standard business practice which businesses resort to remain profitable. Moreover, Outsourcing isn’t just about cutting costs, it is about value addition, it is about getting things faster , better and of course cheaper. The second issue I have is with the common notion that only low sill level job gets outsourced. No, that used to be the case of the early 2000. Not in 2013. Now high end, complex jobs which need highly qualified people get outsourced too. KPO – the knowledge process outsourcing industry arrived long time back and is running in top gear be it India or even in central and eastern European countries.

Let me be a bit blunt in my assessment. The world we are in today is getting more and more competitive. Only the fittest will survive. If we have people with low skill set, who have no inclination towards improving their expertise, then, they have every reason to feel insecure not just from offshore centers but also from their fellow countrymen. If you can’t take a pay cut and are not willing to upgrade your skill, the end result wouldn’t be quite pleasant. If today these folks have a reason to cry foul or feel as if some sort of injustice has been meted out to them, let me tell them, this is phenomena which will happen across the globe. Yes, it is just a matter of time. The same thing will happen to Indians, to polish, to Filipinos, after all, corporates care about profits not people. If you wish to stay in demand in the job market, stay on your heels, keep learning, keep adding new skill set. The opportunities are many; you just need an eye to spot them.

If you have lost a job, don’t loose your heart, introspect, keep learning new skills, join the freelancing sites like elance, odesk, start a blog write about your expertise, keep building contacts, pounce on every opportunity that arrives. That’s the way to deal with it instead putting all the blame on outsourcing.

If today it is you, who is at the receiving end , tomorrow it will those who took away your job. That’s how it has been, that’s how it will be. Our ancestors witnessed industrial revolution and made similar noises. The industrial revolution bought the biggest social economic change. Those who adapted, survived, those who didn’t perished. Outsourcing as a strategy has always been there , just that due to the invent of new technologies it has gone offshore, and it will never reverse. If this has come to as rude shock, it’s a fine reminder that’s the world we are in keeps tweaking its rules every now then. Those who keep on crying why the rules got changed are eventually thrown out and only those who accept the rules and keep playing are the one who eventually end up winning it. The big question is – Which side are you on?

Why Social Media Is Must For Contact Centers!

Gone is the age when the customers used to have only one way of complaint redressal, a toll free number , with an IVR announcing several options and a long wait before the call could actually be transferred to a call center representative. The customer used to go through this agonizing process till, social media arrived. Now, all they have to do is find a company’s fan page , post their compliant or use a hashtag to start a trend to draw their attention. The point I am driving your attention to is, if your customer care is not active on social media, you remain ignorant about all the buzz surrounding your brand either negative or positive. If your brand is being bashed up in the blogosphere, it creates enough scope and opportunities for others.

An active social media presence is important to defend the reputation of your brand otherwise your competitor will always make use of such instances and lure your exiting as well as potential customers away. In addition to reputation management, it also helps you address your customer’s concerns, get their feedback and use their opinions to further improve your product thus building loyalty in the process.

An active social media presence doesn’t helps you in just remaining in touch with your customer base, it also acts as a binder for your employees and helps you attract potential recruits. Give your star performers recognition by putting up their images, highlight their achievements. This is a time tested way to keep them motivated. Sodexo has been using social media campaign to bring down their cost of hiring quite significantly and they are not the only one. Many more companies are experimenting with how to leverage the benefits of social media to attract quality talent and reduce their cost as well as dependence on recruitment firms.

If you are a third party call center, then social media is absolutely must for you as it gives you a great opportunity to show off your work (like how promptly did you resolve a crisis situation or addressed a customer’s grievances) in real time. In addition to it, share your high performance case studies, white papers, PowerPoint presentations and keep sharing your expertise from time to time. This not only influences your client’s decision to award you their contract, but also helps you negotiate better rates in terms of proven performance in real time.

So stop thinking, and start acting on a robust social media strategy which helps on all the three fronts, gaining more customers, employees as well as clients. I will write more on what all important points are needed to be taken care of while using social media especially for call centers. Watch out for this space.

Anti outsourcing sentiment: More on hype, Low on substance

An average american thinks that outsourcing is all about handling phone calls for technical support and chasing people with outstanding credit card payments. The fact of the matter is this a highly flawed notion. the business process outsourcing industry in india is $16 billion business (as per nasscom) and is growing in all the imaginable segments from a low end customer support job to high end research project. BPO in itself is a very small part of outsourcing. It expands to ITO (IT outsourcing), RPO, LPO and so on.An average american thinks that outsourcing is all about handling phone calls for technical support and chasing people with outstanding credit card payments. The fact of the matter is this a highly flawed notion. the business process outsourcing industry in india is $16 billion business (as per nasscom) and is growing in all the imaginable segments from a low end customer support job to high end research project. BPO in itself is a very small part of outsourcing. It expands to ITO (IT outsourcing), RPO, LPO and so on. As per the last available data as per nasscom – IT services – which includes not only application development and maintenance but also testing, infrastructure management and system integration, and all the other stuff you think of your in-house IT guy as doing – grew 19 percent this fiscal year to account for exports of $40 billion. Despite of current rhetoric against outsourcing, nothing much would change – because of very simple economics: Companies move work to places where labor is cheap.

Outsourcing does not happen due to tax breaks or any other financial benefit which such companies receive from the state. They do it improve their revenues and cut the overall cost of operations. Point is demonizing Indian workers and promoting a kind of xenophobia isn’t going to make any changes to the way business is being conducted worldwide. It is being done to appease the vote bank which otherwise would vote elsewhere.

An average american will find it hard to accept that his job is being outsourced. The need of the hour is for the government to make them understand that this is a transitional phase, such jobs will be outsourced however, what is more important is to understand that new kind of jobs will be created and all the americans needs to be prepared for it. As always, government needs to take the initiative to prepare new america for contemporary challenges, simply bashing third world countries won’t help.

7 Reasons Why Infosys is in a Terrible Mess Right Now!

Infosys – the Indian answer to Accenture is in the news for all the wrong reasons. First the company’s profit in the three months missed analysts’ estimate, notably, 3rd time in four quarters. The company which used to say that it will grow faster than the industry, has forecasted a gloomy picture of less than industry’s average growth. They froze increments and also announced steep cuts (up to 70%) in variable pay of their employees. Attrition rates are going high. Employee dissatisfaction is at its highest.

The bad news doesn’t end there. The company is under scrutiny by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for likely errors in the employer eligibility documents of its staff working in the United States. This is when, it is already facing a probe in the US over alleged misuse of visas. According to an Infosys employee in the US, Jack Palmer, the company has been sending employees on B1 visas in lieu of H1B visas.
No wonder the ramifications have begun to show in the stock market with investors buying TCS and selling Infosys. Cognizant is expected to replace it by next June.

The question everyone’s asking is – When most of the other companies are reporting profits including HCL, why Infosys’s performance is dipping? What exactly is Infosys problem? Let’s try and understand the same.

1. Current Management – The founders were different. Their approach was different. The current think tank doesn’t have that kind of passion, ideas or strategy to pull the company out of its current mess. Wrong policy decision has been a big hidden reason their current sorry figures .Moshe Katri, managing director of Cowen & Co , insisted that Internal changes are needed, if infy wants to come back on track.

JPMorgan says that the company’s inability to walk the pricing versus volume trade-off, and constantly blaming the environment for volatility in its performance have kept investors away from Infosys. The worst things is that, analysts have started disbelieving the Infosys management. Analysts have made it clear – Infosys is going through company specific problem and not the industry specific.

2. Sitting On Cash Pile – Experts says that the company has shown excessive risk-aversion, sitting on a cash pile of $4 billion and hasn’t been able to make any game-changing acquisition. Investors are questioning the purpose of saving this cash reserve, as they are not getting the right returns they expect to receive.

The last two companies acquired by Infosys were – Portland Group and McCamish Systems. Reports were in that it may acquire a stake in firstsource. However, nothing has materialized so far.

Insiders say “ Infosys is at a strategic crossover point where it has to decide whether it needs to abandon over-conservatism in favor of greater dare. It also has to decide whether it will take the high road to high short-term margins or the low road to higher long-term margins by seeking higher topline growth.”

3. Premium Tag – Infosys has always been a big margin player operating in the space of 30% and terms low margins as zero sum game. The company’s premium pricing has been helping its peers eat into the company’s market share. Companies like Cognizant, TCS and Accenture are gaining at the cost of Infosys.

4. High Attrition Rate – Media reports confirm that increasing competition with TCS, and other companies has increased its churn rate. Attrition in the fourth quarter was 17% compared with 13.4% a year ago. Even though, Infosys official statement say -The goal of senior executive empowerment is laudable, but multiple responsibilities for business heads might be causing under-performance in some areas, Insiders DISAGREE. They say the top management is more responsible for the current mess. Many point out that at one point of time, there was a drove of people resigning and no one accepted that there was a problem. Clients were left aghast. Business opportunities were lost because of shortage of skilled people who can propel teams. During all this instruction from the top management was to hire fresher’s and get the job done. Why couldn’t they look into the problem. People even in ranks of delivery managers pleaded helplessness.

5. Client Dissatisfaction – Infosys lost more business due to client dissatisfaction and less due to competition. Insiders insist the “all is well” status was merely on the papers and not at the ground level. Account leaders were always pressurized to show that everything is working fine. You can make a client feedback look good on the paper, (for the sake your own promotion or to protect your own job) but can’t get the client back again to the company fold. A client lost is a client gained by the competitors.

6. Reverse Auctioning – Even though it is being touted as one of the reason why infy is losing on the contracts as being a premium player it doesn’t participate in such auctions, however, the fact is such auction have always been there in the industry and hasn’t dented much of infosys’s own clientele.

7. Heavy Dependence on US – One of the major drawback Infosys has is that the geographical diversity of its clients is missing. US accounts for over 62 per cent of Infosys revenue. Hence, any slowdown in US corporate decision making hurts Infosys more than anyone else.The next year could see an increase in rhetoric against outsourcing in US due to presidential election. This could also be another issue that could bother Infosys more than its peers specially TCS.

One passing comment on a social networking site will sum up the entire story

“The 2 places where Infosys got hit was the Sales/Marketing and employee management. Sales and marketing internal processes are so cumbersome that senior people despite knowing that something will help the company, are unable to take the right decisions for the company. On the other hand, the current clients are managed by the existing employees. The existing employees have for years been frustrated with complex processes and the apathy of management to the their genuine concerns. This gets negatively reflected in the work of the clients too. The no hike news recently just triggered the years of frustration in the employees. Until Infosys does not shed the “I am always right” kind of attitude and be ready to accept a 360 degree feedback on what needs to change, they will have issues continuing to come in. The meetings with stakeholders right now seems to be just window dressing rather than an exercise to take feedback and actionise on the genuine concerns of all stakeholders.”

Top 5 Trends in Call Center Services

In the call center industry trends are changing quite fast. This is because the expectations of the customers are changing quite fast too. They are becoming more demanding and making vendors more accountable.It is not that previous trends in the call center services are no longer viable. They are, but the same has to be laced with new priorities. Experts suggest that those involved with this industry will have to incorporate new trends if they really want to retain their existing customers as well as attract new ones. It is a fact that telemarketing no longer sounds attractive. Today’s customers prefer other means of communication. They will be happy if you contact them through emails or through applications that are available in their mobile devices. Let’s take a quick look at the top 5 ongoing trends while offering the call center services.

CLOUD COMPUTING

One of the newest trends doing the rounds is cloud computing. Clients are increasingly seeking this system. Every client expects that his or her project should be handled by the latest of technology whether it is customer service or telemarketing . The idea behind this preference is to get high quality call center services at cheapest possible cost . For BPO companies too, this system turns out to be cost-effective. As cloud computing helps a lot in reducing the server costs, the work gets done efficiently, at never before heard prices.

ONLINE REPORTS

This is another forward looking trend. Whether it is customer service or lead generation, customers want to check it out within a real time framework. Therefore the need of the hour is to develop an online reporting structure. This makes it possible to make reports available to the concerned people and also facilitates better understanding of the projects.

EMAIL MARKETING & MOBILE APPs & SOCIAL MEDIA

A majority of prospective customers have smartphones and they use these devices not only to make calls but also for various other purposes. They check emails, download applications and games, make payments etc. If BPO companies want to tap these customers then they have to resort to email marketing, social media and other unconventional methods that are compatible with this trend.

SECURITY

Those providing call center services will now have to put more stress on security. This is because with every passing day data is becoming more classified. Therefore, it is very important on the part of BPO companies to shoulder the responsibility of protecting this data. To make data accessible only to the concerned people, appropriate strategies must be developed. Those people who are only partly involved with projects should not have access to such classified information..

OUTSTANDING CUSTOMER SERVICE

The expectations of customers have risen phenomenally and to meet the same, companies will now have to provide better than expected services. The experience for a customer should be such that apart from being completely satisfied he or she should feel inclined to spread the word. No wonder due to emerging backlash against Indian accent the voice based processes got transferred to Philippines.

Conclusion

With the emerging trends mentioned above BPO companies will have to adjust to the change in demands and exploit technology to the fullest. The outcome will definitely be fantastic. Services will become faster and companies will be able to cut down on costs too. Both callers and customers will get the support that they seek.

5 Lessons To Be Learnt From Phaneesh Murthy Scandal!

iGate’s ex CEO, Phaneesh Murthy, the guy who hit the headlines in the month of April for advocating the game changer “result based billing model” was again in news in the month of May for all the wrong reasons. He allegedly sexually harassed his female colleague and did this for the second time in his career. How many times have we seen a celebrity corporate top boss getting involved in such a controversy that too twice in his career? I don’t remember any. Phaneesh Murthy said it is a case of extortion (something on the lines of Tiger Wood’s scandal), whereas industry has lambasted him as a serial offender. Here are the five lessons which can be learned from this sordid saga of trust, betrayal and conspiracy all played at the expense of iGate’s shareholder’s money.

1. When On Top, Don’t Be Casual: When you are on top level of a corporate ladder, there is no margin for error. David H. Petraeus resigned from the C.I.A. due to his extramarital affair, so did many other big shots sheerly out of misuse of overwhelming power they command by virtue of their position.

2. You Can Be Forgiven Once Not Twice: You can only make the same mistake once. The second time it’s a choice. Phaeesh Murthy is no high school teenager who fall into the trap of a beautiful dimwit and committed the grave error of being irresponsibly close. He knew in all his senses what he was doing , to whom, along with the possible consequences. Hence the shock waves were sharper than before without any space for sympathy.

3. Don’t Underestimate Boardroom Battles: Boardroom battles can be seriously injurious to one’s career. The heart burns occurred during boardroom battle ground, can lead to plotting and planning of one’s downfall. Phaneesh’s closeness with Araceli Roiz must not have been a closed secret and no wonder he might have become a victim of the consequences of someone’s heartburn.

4. Your Performance Is No Substitute For Your Character: Phaneesh was that rock star CEO who would macro as well micro manage each and every thing at igate. He was the fulcrum of igate’s successes and it would have been really tough for igate to take a call on his ouster, considering how much it was capable of hurting their own reputation. Having said that, it was them who decided to hire him despite of his known history and hence bore the brunt of his hara-kiri.

5. Last but definitely not the last and this one goes for everyone, Sexual Harassment Is Not Office Romance. It’s immoral, despicable and actionable. One should never ever in their life give a thought to anything that’s non-consensual.