DSC Tech Library
This section of our technical library presents information and documentation relating to Call Center technology and Best Practices plus software and products.
DSC is a leading provider of contact center technology and software solutions as well as predictive dialer phone systems for the modern call center. Customer contact center software includes CRM software and computer telephony integration solutions. These modern products help call center phone agents communicate effectively with your customers and prospects.
The following article presents product or service information relating to call centers and customer service help desks.
Contact Centers: Brand Image on the Line
When customers refuse to deal with or are frustrated by a telephone rep from Bangalore or Buffalo, brand suffers. Underestimating the value of the contact center, whether it's in-house our outsourced, can have a devastating effect on a brand's value.
While contact center operators generally accept that outsourcing customer service can improve dealings with clients, reduce costs and boost operating efficiencies, some also believe it doesn't help reinforce brand essence.
This can be particularly true when non-native customer service representatives (CSRs) -- who have a totally different frame of cultural reference than the customers they are hired to serve -- are used. And remember, "non-native" could just as easily be Ben from Bangalore answering calls on behalf of an American company as it could be Betty from Buffalo handling inquiries for a firm in the United Kingdom.
Too often, outsourced customer care is evaluated as a basic operational decision in contact centers -- one that's made by a C-level finance manager whose primary concern is to save money and increase operating margins.
The risk of this approach is the huge potential for failure, not to mention the devastating effects a poorly executed program can have on a company's long-term customer satisfaction .
Finance's primary focus is on costs. And marketing often is busy developing creative, exploring new markets and launching products and services. Somewhere in the process it tends to be forgotten that the contact center can be a central touch point in a company's go-to-market strategy, helping to reinforce brand image and foster customer retention and loyalty -- and that it's worthy of resource commitment and dedication.
Accordingly, we must focus on integrating the needs of enlightened brand managers with those of skeptical financial officers to create a new service - one with incremental hiring, training and monitoring expenses.
Decisions will need to be made in which "branding" trumps the traditional metrics of "cost" when evaluating the potential benefits of outsourcing. While initially there may be additional expenditures, ultimately the extended brand value will improve the overall return on investment of the total outsourced customer care effort.
Beyond mere customer satisfaction and service performance-level analysis, branded customer service requires active customer participation. If customers exposed to this new kind of contact center activity feel better about the brand, then branded customer service has been achieved.
Here are two examples of branded customer services in a contact center environment:
A prepaid wireless communication product is developed and targeted to teenage girls. The telecom company's advertising has a youthful edge, using age-appropriate language, color and context that reflect its target audience. The customer care challenge is to deliver an enjoyable experience in which service levels are met and brand extension achieved.
Essentially, there are two choices: (a) Develop a highly competent live operator and interactive voice response environment using traditional scripting and staid, reliable customer service reps, or (b) Develop a customer experience that delivers on service level requirements and functionality and has the hip edge of the core brand.
In Option a, the customer experience is likely to be perceived as efficient and courteous -- nice, but not primary core brand takeaways. In Option b, the provider is able to use the tone, slang and colloquialisms of its audience while delivering quality care. In other words, the target consumer will define the experience as, "Hey, that was way cool!"
Approximately 18.2 million Americans suffer from diabetes. Patients continually must assess their glucose levels using self-monitoring devices. Maintaining this regimen often can be challenging and painful, making it critical for device manufacturers to establish a caring relationship between their technical support representatives and patients.
Some medical device manufacturers have turned to outsourcing as an effective hybrid solution. Besides hiring doctors, nurses and other high-level healthcare professionals to staff these programs, outsourced providers also use advanced contact center technologies such as skill-based routing and screen pops to handle repeat customer inquiries and help build relationships between patients and service reps.
Outbound dialing systems also are used to enable the CSR "caregiver" to follow up with patients while using the appropriate, legally permissible customer management processes to engender genuine interactive relationships.
Remember that every customer touch is an opportunity to improve brand value. Make sure your outsourcing agreements include both service- and branding-level metrics, so your contact center can have the maximum branding punch.
CRM Call Center Software
Database Systems Corp. (DSC) has been providing CRM Customer Relationship Management solutions to businesses and organizations for 2 decades.
TELEMATION is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application employed in a wide variety of organizations including contact centers, help desks, customer service centers, service bureaus, reservation centers and corporate call centers. The package has extensive CTI features and is fully integrated with our PACER phone system. TELEMATION operates on Linux, Unix or Windows servers. Software programmers can develop call center applications quickly using the robost features found in the Telemation toolkit.
Call Center Phone System
The PACER is a call center phone system that handles inbound and outbound calls for a wide range of contact centers. Calls are either initiated by the phone system or accepted from the outside and distributed in an intelligent fashion to your service agents. The PACER includes ACD and IVR components, plus call recording capability. Using industry standard components, the PACER phone system has features and functions that can only be found in large scale PBX’s, but at a fraction of the cost. And the PACER has predictive dialing capability that cannot be found in most of these larger phone systems. The PACER phone system can connect calls to your employees working at home or in a local or remote office. The PACER communicates with applications written on Unix, Linux, or PC servers over a LAN. For a complete product presentation, download our PACER demo.