New Technology Solves an Old Problem
By Lori Bocklund, President, Strategic Contact, Inc.

In spite of rumors to the contrary, the need for agents is as strong as ever. Contact Centers are planning for growth (agents!), even as the Artificial Intelligence hype train rambles on. Strategic Contact’s technology survey[1] shows growth as a top driver for acquiring technology for 40% of participants. In addition, 58% seek to fill feature/function gaps – and KM is undoubtedly a big one.

Centers are moving to the Cloud for a variety of technology solutions. Analyst firms such as Forrester and DMG, as well as vendor surveys, show the cloud contact center technology market growing. Our survey agrees, showing very few shying away from cloud technology. In fact, about one-third have cloud solutions and a majority would consider them. Combine that eagerness to use the cloud and the top implementation challenges people are trying to address – integration and the shortage of IT/telecom resources – and the opportunity for an easily integrated, cloud-based KM is strong.

Digging deeper into KM specifically, we note it ranks high on the “Top Priorities” list but also looms as a tool to combat many of the “Top Challenges” we see in our annual survey[2]. In our most recent results, 18% indicated they want to improve knowledge management access, content, and processes. Arguably, that number would be higher if more believed this “elephant” could be moved.

KM is also a top enabler to help agents succeed on target performance metrics. It can improve FCR, perhaps one of the “hottest” metrics. It can reduce Average Handle Time (AHT), something that can easily creep up with the increasingly complex and diverse contacts that agents handle and can have a huge impact on performance in other key metrics like service level. Add improved self-service based on good knowledge sources to those handle time and FCR improvements and the overall workload declines, boding well for every center under pressure to reduce its costs.

All this agent success and cost savings for the center and the company comes with a tremendous bonus: customer satisfaction. Whether your focus is the customer “journey” or “experience” or you really want the customer to give you a big thumbs up on a customer satisfaction survey, good KM optimizes the customer experience on first touch, with consistent, accurate information that is easily acquired and processed, no matter what channel they choose to use.

[1] See Contact Center Pipeline Special Report, July 2018: 2018 CONTACT CENTER TECHNOLOGY SURVEY REVEALS CRITICAL NEEDS

[2] See Contact Center Pipeline Special Report, January 2018: CONTACT CENTER CHALLENGES & PRIORITIES FOR 2018

Originally published on Contact Center Pipeline on Oct 16, 2018.