As January comes to a close, we wanted to have a look at what 2020 has in store for the contact center. Being a progressive industry driven by innovation and new technology, we can expect to see several trends emerging this year that propel the industry forward and have a significant impact on customer experience and agent productivity.
To ensure you stay ahead of the curve in the year to come, we have compiled a list of what we think will be the top five trends for the contact center in 2020.
1. Live engagement customer service
Over time, the customer has come to expect every business they connect with to provide fast responses, expert-level service, and quick resolutions. Should any company fail to provide this holy trinity of service, they run the risk of losing their customers and damaging their reputation.
To meet customer expectations, modern businesses are now adopting live engagement tools that help improve service through real-time communication. These tools help both the customer and the agent stay on the same page and increase first-time resolutions tenfold.
2. Contextualized omni-channel support
Omni-channel support enables businesses to seamlessly connect with their customers and provide consistent service across all channels. By giving each customer the freedom to choose how and when they communicate with the company, they can improve customer experience and retention rates.
Modern customers don't want to repeat themselves every time they switch between agents or channels, and omni-channel support ensures that it doesn't happen. With this single pane of glass model, every contact center agent has a 360-degree view of each customer's journey, so they can instantly pick up where the previous agent left off.
3. An increase in self-service automation
Though it's nice to know there's always somebody available to help resolve your issue, sometimes it's easier to do it yourself. This is especially true with minor problems that require little expertise or outside assistance. For this reason, we expect to see an increase in the number of self-service resources at contact centers in 2020.
By building a library of things like video tutorials, FAQ pages, virtual agents and more, contact centers can reduce call volumes, minimize customer service costs, and increase first-time resolutions.
4. AI-assisted customer service
Of all the technological innovations expected to dominate the future of our world, AI is the one set to have the most significant impact - and contact centers are no exception. AI is already used in many modern contact centers to improve performance and ensure the customer receives the kind of service they expect.
As we move into 2020, AI will continue to spread throughout the customer service space - be it through automation of menial tasks or by assisting agents in their role to boost performance and productivity. With AI, contact centers and their agents will be faster, smarter, and capable of delivering better customer service than ever before.
5. Real-time insights & analytics
Many businesses already use real-time analytics to improve customer conversations and enhance key business metrics, but the standard of these analytics will increase in 2020. AI is the driving force behind these insights, and this is the year when we can expect to see huge advancements in that space.
By using complex data algorithms and machine learning, emerging analytics will be able to tell the business more about their customers than ever before. By harnessing this data, companies can make significant improvements to their customer experience strategy, improve satisfaction rates, and deliver what their customers expect of them.
Final thoughts on contact center trends in 2020
There's no doubting that the future of the contact center will be heavily invested in data. Information is vital, and AI-driven innovations like chatbots, intelligent IVR, and machine learning algorithms will harness that data and transform the contact center landscape.
Customer experience will continue to be the number one priority for the contact center, and AI technology will help businesses achieve that goal in unprecedented ways. Contact center agents will also be able to work much more comfortably and happily once equipped with AI tools that will make their lives and the lives of their customers easier.