CALL CENTER

The Best Call Center Software Solutions of 2016

Whether your needs are for inbound, outbound, or blended calling center solution, we've put together this call center software solutions comparison guide to assist you in understanding your options. Our team of experts have researched 87 call center software services, and filtered out industry leading providers based on their network reliability, customer support, products offered, user reviews, and price points. Take a look at our top picks and find the software that works best for you!

 

What is a Call Center Software?

In the first few decades of call center software, phone banks were connected to a computer, called an Automatic Call Distributor that would direct calls. While that part hasn’t changed since the beginning, a call contact center has evolved from rows of telephone operators answering blinking lights into multi-lingual voice recognition software connecting customers to agents throughout the world based on matching needs with skills.

Today’s call centers are better known as contact centers and are cloud based, meaning rather than physically connecting to the ACD, the phones connect through the Internet to the provider’s data centers. All the hard work like maintaining hardware and updating software is done by the provider, so that you can focus on your business. All you need is an Internet connection, a call center software provider, and some sort of phone (physical of web based).

Top 5 Benefits of Contact Center Solutions for any Call Center:

1. Integration with CRM software
Track your successes and failures and analyze the data to determine the best time to pick up the phone. Add new customers to your database with every call.

2. More respect for your customers’ time
No one likes waiting on the phone. And having to explain the same problem twice, or connecting with an agent who can’t help is even more frustrating. Contact Center Solutions properly direct the call and pass on the information to the next agent.

3. Integration with social media
Today’s customers/callers Tweet, Like, and Chat more than making calls. Today’s Contact Center Solutions can monitor and filter social media and detect who needs special attention. You can direct your customers on any social media platform right to your agents.

4. It’s all about experience
Contact Center Solutions let a supervisor monitor a call and gives the option of either “whispering” into an agent’s ear without the customer hearing, or “barge” into the call and take over. Either way, the customer will get the benefit of the more experienced agent, and have a better call experience.

5. Customizable distribution rules
The order that calls are directed can be completely customizable based on tracking and analyzing data on success rate, length of calls, skill sets, and more. You can also make sure customers get the same agent every time.

What to Look for in a Hosted Call Center Solution:

1. Service Reliability & Uptime
No other metric is as important as reliability. If your call center is down for even a minute, you’re losing lots of money every minute. Your Contact Center Service Provider of choice should have at least 99.99% reliability. Unlike on-premise solutions, Contact Center Solutions are geographically redundant to improve dependability.

2. Ease of Use, Admin Portal Access, Dashboard Simplicity
The best features in the world are useless if the agent ends up writing everything down on a piece of scrap paper. Make sure the complex features of your potential Contact Center Software are still easy enough to learn and use.

3. Provides a 360 Degree View of Your Customer
Your Contact Center Solutions need to pull information about a customer from several sources and put that information in front of the agent, so the agent can better serve the customer. Knowing the customer’s past actions and present concerns will help predict their future needs.

4. Customer Self Service Features and Automated Tasks
Let your agent do the important stuff, but the boring tasks can be done for you. A good Call Center Solution will make the most of your agent’s time.

5. Security Measures
In today’s age of identity theft and leaked emails, you need the proper amount of encryption to keep your data safe. In addition, all financial and medical communications/data are tightly regulated. Be sure that your customers will feel safe giving private information to your agents.

Some Final Thoughts to Contact Center Shoppers:

You might be tempted by the latest features, or seduced by the lowest prices. The best deal is always the best deal for you. You can waste money on features you don’t pay for, or miss opportunities if you don’t have the features you actually do need. You have to find that sweet spot where you get the features you can use at a low price. The best price plans let you scale up and down according to your needs.

Don’t be afraid of long term contracts. The advantage of long term contracts is that they help protect you from rising costs. You can also expect to get incentives to be locked in. That said, month-to-month contracts mean that a call center software provider has to earn your business every day, and they work hard to do just that. Either way, the cost is far cheaper than having to buy and maintain your own equipment. You can be up and running on day one with a hosted Contact Center Solution.