Seeing how the InGenius conference rooms at headquarters are named after Star Trek characters, it was only fitting that our esteemed leader Dale took the team out to see the new movie, Star Trek Beyond. In the ultimate twist of nerdery, a quote from the movie has inspired some thoughts about computer telephony integration:
“You cannot break a stick in a bundle.”
– Montgomery “Scotty” Scott
(Read it again with a Scottish accent, and it feels even more powerful.)
The customer experience is a complicated beast. Stay with me on this. There are a ton of great articles and research out there that show that customer service is critical to consumers and that it heavily influences their purchase decisions. When you think of a call made to a contact center, factors like telephony infrastructure, IVR technology, agent training, software tools, and even an individual agent’s mood that day, all play a part in the customer experience. If they integrate together successfully, the result is a happy customer. Alone, computer telephony integration, also known as CTI, is a mere stick in the process, but once you combine the value of your phone system and CRM, well now you’ve got an unbreakable bundle. Who knew the wisdom of Star Trek could be used to make your contact center live long and prosper? I did, because damnit Jim, I’m a marketer, not a doctor.
An article I read recently by Laura Ballam at TeamSupport expands this idea of software’s role in the contact center even further. She says, “Consistency is a large component of customer satisfaction,” and notes that software can help to create this consistency and share information across teams. What this says to me, is not only do you need a full bundle of sticks, you need tools and processes that ensure your bundle is providing a uniform experience each time. Anything else would be highly illogical. In terms of CTI, features like automated call logging for recording call info consistently and screen transfer for sharing customer details among agents during a call, line up perfectly with Laura’s advice.
Resistance is futile. If your contact center isn’t keeping up with customer expectations, it’s time to reevaluate your software tools and see what’s holding you back. Boldly go where your contact center has not gone before – invest in the right building blocks and capture lasting loyalty from your customers.