The past year has highlighted—more than ever before—the importance for businesses to be agile and flexible in their approach to remote work. Interruptions to normal operations can be extremely costly within any industry, and it is vital that companies consider how to maintain business continuity during tumultuous times.
In 2020, nearly a third of the working population of Australia were working from home. It’s a trend that is likely to continue into the future, as workers embrace the benefits of remote work and more employers recognise the savings in overheads. Cloud contact centres are a natural part of this progression into a remote working future, enabling organisations to improve business continuity and providing a host of other benefits.
Business continuity is crucial for maintaining customer retention and loyalty, and for employee satisfaction. Whether for periods of global uncertainty, or during a localised event, organisations need to be ready to quickly shift their workforce into a remote environment. The ability to do so prevents your call centre from becoming overwhelmed and the frustrations for both customers and staff that come with an unprepared contact centre.
Why Business Continuity is Vital
Maintaining business continuity is the best way for an organisation to ensure long-term success. Business continuity allows an organisation to maintain essential functions even during unexpected events; it includes risk management processes and procedures to re-establish normal conditions as quickly as possible.
However, the amount of planning and resourcing required for business continuity is difficult for small and medium-sized businesses to achieve. Often these businesses lack the budget to invest in the necessary technology, infrastructure and other resources required to make business continuity possible.
Contact centres are among the most difficult sections of a business to move into a remote environment, due to the advanced tools and hardware used by contact centre agents and the sensitive information they have access to. While other office workers are able to utilise VPN services to continue their work from home, customer service agents often lack the capability to easily transition out of the office environment.
How Remote Working Improves Business Continuity
Taking steps to ensure that your call centre agents can work remotely is an essential part of improving business continuity. The ability for agents to continue their work away from an office environment is crucial for operations during unexpected events.
There are also benefits to a remote call centre workforce. Agents working at home are able to work more flexible hours, which assists in keeping them engaged and motivated. There is no requirement that live agents need to be located in the same city or even the same country as your main business operations; hiring people from around the world allows businesses to offer 24/7 support to their customers. There is increased potential for scalability, as additional agents can be added to a team during busy periods.
Additionally, agents that work from home experience greater job satisfaction and will often be more productive. They don’t need to worry about daily commutes, so they have more downtime at home and they report feeling less stressed than when working in an office environment. This is a big advantage during times of crisis, when high employee turnover can be an additional pressure on a business’ resources.
Why You Should Switch to a Cloud Contact Centre to Improve Business Continuity
There are additional benefits to cloud contact centres that can improve business continuity and an organisation’s overall outcomes. Cloud-based contact centres are extremely cost effective, making them a great option for smaller-sized businesses with less money to spend on rent, infrastructure and IT staff. The money saved on these can be invested into improving and implementing an effective business continuity plan.
Cloud contact centres have greater capacity to respond to customer queries quickly. With consumer expectation increasingly trending towards instant assistance from customer service agents, this is crucial for retaining customers and increasing their loyalty to your business. It also allows for omnichannel accessibility, which is often difficult for in-house contact centres to achieve. Cloud contact centres have increased data security, ensuring effective and efficient disaster recovery and fulfilling customer expectations that their personal information will be kept safe by the businesses they transact with.