Discovering CTI – An Inside Look at Computer Telephony Integration
Everything you need to know before you invest
Computer telephony integration (CTI) is a fundamental part of any modern contact center, that enables companies to automatically connect their phone system to their customer relationship management (CRM) system or service management platform.
By offering a set of cutting-edge, efficiency-boosting applications such as click-to-dial, automated call logging, screen pop and more, CTI can rapidly improve agent performance, maximize productivity rates and ensure that every customer is satisfied with the level of service they receive.
As well as improving how the business performs on the front end, intelligent CTI solutions can also harvest and utilize rich pools of data to help companies gain much greater control over their phone systems and build powerful customer experience strategies for the future.
Who benefits from CTI?
In this day and age, you would be hard-pressed to find any contact center that doesn’t utilize some form of CTI solution. Widely considered by many to be an essential component for any modern sales or service desk, CTI is a powerful tool that helps improve business practices across the board – from the very front-end right up to the business leaders.
For agents and service operators on the frontline, CTI provides a set of applications and tools that help improve operational efficiency and ensure that every customer query can be completed in the fastest possible time, with consistently impressive results.
As well as improving agent productivity, features like automated call logging also prevent agents from having to repeatedly carry out menial tasks and give them the freedom to focus their attention on delivering world-class, personalized service to their clients and prospects.
In addition to this, CTI provides a simplified solution for agents working in contact centers that are becoming increasingly complex. With the rise of the omni-channel contact center, agents are now required to source customer information from numerous separate entry points – calls, email, live chat, social media, texts – and doing all this manually is incredibly difficult, time consuming, and will undoubtedly lead to many mistakes and disappointed customers.
Fortunately, with a CTI solution, all of this information across different channels is automatically logged into the CRM and is instantly made available to the agent at the start of every interaction. CTI ensures reps have a clear view of the customer’s journey and know exactly what needs to be done to complete the job at hand.
Along with frontline operators, sales teams also benefit heavily from a CTI solution that automatically and transparently captures all data from every customer interaction. Sales reps can quickly familiarize themselves with a customer’s background and can immediately access all the relevant information they need to close a sale successfully. Plus, tools like click-to-dial ensure they can make faster connections without wasting time on misdials.
Executives and Management
CTI is extremely useful for contact center managers and senior executives, as it allows them to access detailed call reports and various other powerful metrics that help them decide what changes need to be made to improve their business.
For example, improved call logging and call reporting lets managers and executives know exactly how many calls are being made or received by each agent, as well as informing them how successful – or not – each call was. With this information, managers are able to isolate problems at their core and provide coaching or change strategies to ensure better results are achieved in the future.
As well as the abundance of features designed to improve the efficiency of their employees, CTI also benefits business leaders by allowing them to grow their business more quickly while leveraging existing investments in their phone system and CRM platform. CTI adds further benefit by reducing overall contact center costs by lowering call handle times, minimizing errors and enabling smart operational decisions.
As well as countless internal benefits, CTI is also highly beneficial for the customer, and plays a powerful role in ensuring that every contact made with the company is resolved in the best way possible. From the moment an agent answers the call, they are immediately aware of who the customer is – and in cases where there’s been previous contact, why they are calling – thus preventing the customer from continuously having to repeat themselves.
What is the ROI?
Along with a more efficient workforce that can turn calls around faster and with much greater success, the ROI of a CTI solution is prevalent in other areas of the contact center. From an administrative perspective, CTI is a powerful tool that eradicates many human errors by automating processes with workflow intelligence.
Along with the automation of rote administrative tasks, CTI enables businesses to take full advantage of the massive amounts of customer data they receive daily by collating it all together and transforming it into comprehensible reports. With this information, companies can make intelligent changes to their business strategy, to ensure that profits are lifted and costs are reduced.
The ROI of CTI can also be seen in the customer experience and reputation of a brand. As well as protecting the happiness and loyalty of existing customers, the positive word of mouth that is spread as a result of world-class service is a proven way to attract new customers in the future.
“CTI is a powerful tool that helps improve business practices across the board.”
What features can CTI offer?
Depending on the type of CTI solution selected, features can range from simple tools such as integrated call controls, screen pop and click-to-dial that help agents work more efficiently when dealing with customers, to more advanced applications such as automatic workflows and chatbot escalation that give business leaders much greater control over their phone system.
Here are some typical features a business can expect to gain from investing in a CTI solution.
What types of contact centers benefit most from CTI?
It goes without saying that different types of contact centers have different needs. Ensuring these needs are met is what defines success. Fortunately, with a CTI solution like InGenius Connector Enterprise, all types of contact centers stand to gain benefits on a number of levels.
Outbound Contact Centers
Contact centers that focus on outbound interactions can benefit enormously from the efficiency, automation and simplification of processes that a CTI solution offers. For example, advanced CTI solutions can generate lists of calls for each agent using data from CRM reports. The business is able to assign tasks to specific agents to select prospects based on their skill set. With a preview dialer, all the agent needs to do to connect with the lead is to click, review and then dial.
Inbound Contact Centers
Likewise, contact centers dealing primarily with inbound interactions can benefit from CTI by having the appropriate CRM record pop open when an incoming call occurs. The screen pop can occur based on the caller ID of the incoming call or based on information entered by a user in the telephone system’s interactive voice response (IVR) system. Businesses can customize which items they want to search and pop on. When an agent accepts a call, they have access to information to quickly assess the needs of the customer. The rep can easily enter call information, which is then stored with the appropriate lead, case, contact, account or other relevant CRM item.
What’s the installation process for CTI?
Given that CTI has such a powerful, positive impact on a business and can transform the way a contact center operates, many people assume that implementing a CTI solution into their company’s infrastructure is highly time consuming and disruptive. However, flexible CTI solutions such as InGenius Connector Enterprise can be up and running within hours.
With web-based CTI solutions, the product can be quickly rolled out across networks in multiple-locations in minimal time, enabling businesses to reap benefits almost immediately, without disrupting performance. By choosing a CTI solution that offers pre-built integrations for leading CRMs and telephony systems, contact centers can cut out the cost of lengthy professional service installations, as the product is ready to go straight from the box.