Call and contact
center technology
stack: How to
optimize it
for efficiency

Author: Satta Sarmah Hightower

Contact centers, particularly those that are virtualized and artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled, have become an integral part of the customer experience for both private and public sector organizations.

Governments have relied on them to deliver social services and share timely public health information, while consumer companies have leaned on them to deliver more responsive customer service and accelerate the path to purchase. However, regardless of industry, many organizations still face challenges optimizing their contact center technology stack, since they may rely on a patchwork of point solutions that don't always play well together.

Addressing these issues can help your organization reap more value from your contact center technology stack and deliver a better call center experience.

Navigating a cluttered call and contact center technology stack

Several factors make it difficult to consolidate contact center technology.

Increased IT complexity is at the top of the list. Many organizations historically have relied on legacy telephony systems as the foundation for their call center infrastructure. These systems often didn't have analytic capabilities or offer an omnichannel experience, leading many organizations to seek point solutions to expand their call center capabilities. However, if these solutions aren't interoperable, it can lead to technology silos and a fragmented call center technology stack.

Once organizations have made an investment in certain technologies, it can be difficult to get buy-in and budget to modernize. Often the easiest solution is to work with what they have, which can lead to even more fragmentation if these systems aren't extensible or easily reconfigurable to begin with.

However, this approach has business risks. A fragmented contact center technology stack creates inefficiencies that hurt both the employee and customer experience. Legacy systems can be time-consuming and costly to maintain, diverting IT resources from making improvements or introducing new capabilities that could enhance the call center experience.

A cluttered call center technology stack also creates redundant costs in terms of ongoing maintenance and software licensing fees for separate products. Employees also must be trained on and learn how to operate different systems.

Additionally, the data silos this fragmentation creates prevents your organization from accessing relevant information—whether it's sentiment analysis data or information on a customer's previous interactions across all your online and offline touch points—that could help your team better serve customers now or improve service in the future. This also could make it difficult to improve key metrics like call wait times, the percentage of issues resolved during the first call and call abandonment rates due to long hold times.

To address these issues, your organization will need to adopt an integrated solution or platform that offers all the capabilities you need in a single technology or suite of interoperable, connected solutions.

The benefits of contact center technology consolidation

An integrated solution, such as a cloud-based virtual contact center, can help your organization deliver an omnichannel experience, improve reliability and scale your operations.

By consolidating your call center technology stack in this way, your organization will be able to onboard new capabilities such as self-service portals, SMS messaging and virtual chatbots to handle routine customer questions and accelerate response times. You can even integrate new channels like social media, video chat and Facebook Messenger.

You also can access remote capabilities that allow agents to securely work from any location, enabling your organization to increase call center capacity and potentially extend service hours. Your organization also can take advantage of AI-driven automation to reduce customer hold times and to route calls to the right agent who's best equipped to handle a customer's issue. All of these capabilities can improve agent productivity and potentially reduce maintenance and support costs for call center infrastructure because your organization will only have to pay for a single platform.

Optimizing your call and contact center technology stack

A cluttered contact center technology stack reduces your operational efficiency and creates data and technology silos that lead to redundancies and unnecessary costs.

Using a bunch of disparate point solutions makes it more difficult to scale your call center operations. Rather than rely on a fragmented technology stack, an integrated, omnichannel call center solution can help your organization reduce IT complexity, take advantage of interoperability to streamline agents' work, and deliver a call center experience that meets or exceeds customers' expectations.

Learn how Verizon helped a global retailer solve the challenge of disparate contact center solutions.