Contact centers are the data centers


This blog post is sponsored by the Zero Distance Community and T-Systems.

There is a lot of talk about big data these days, the challenge of gathering, processing, and analyzing massive amounts of data to gain a strategic advantage over competitors. Retailers apply it to react quickly to competitive pricing; pharmaceutical firms use it to discover potential drugs quicker; and even during this year’s America’s Cup, teams dealt with big data in tweaking the design of catamarans for the race on San Francisco Bay.

Companies may realize the importance of big data but often wonder where to source the data. Well, there’s no need to look far…

So where is this place for big data? Check out that floor of dedicated employees taking calls and talking to customers. The contact center is where the customer interacts with the company, and every bit of that interaction is valuable data.

I’m pretty sure these data are already being collected: total call volume, average handle time, percentage of abandoned calls, etc. These are typical metrics for a contact center and gives a decent view of how the center is operating.

But they tell little about the company. Definitely nothing about the competitors.

These customer interactions are actually a goldmine of data waiting to be captured and analyzed into useful information.

What are customers calling about – a new product? an existing product? or asking about a product to match a competitor’s?

Do customers like using the IVR for self-service – is it convenient? is it terrible at voice recognition? do they prefer the website?

Are customers calling back repeatedly – is the wait time too long? are agents poorly trained? what’s the #1 complaint?

Implementing some sort of speech analytics solution further refines the data into even more useful bits, then combined with other data sources in the enterprise to be able to provide all kinds of insight into the external and internal business landscape.

Customers are more than happy to give you data, but it’s up to you to capture that and make good use of it.

This blog post is sponsored by the Zero Distance Community and T-Systems.

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