Interest in deploying a remote workforce went through the roof during the COVID-19 pandemic that spread around the globe. Many countries were put into lockdown, forcing businesses to turn to work-from-home alternatives to keep up with business operations. Through implementing effective, advanced cloud-based technology, CX operations and customer service industries were able to maintain productivity and deliver exceptional customer service in the comfort of their own homes.
As many countries and states around the world begin to reopen and ease back into normality, some people are heading back to the office. This begs the question, what is the future like for remote workforces? Are remote workforces and virtual call centers here to stay?
Beyond Just a Trend
Based on the trends in some of the nation’s biggest companies, work-from-home and virtual capabilities are here to stay. The future will see more and more companies adopt a work-from-home format as the technology advances and companies become more tech-savvy.
Some of the largest companies in the world are insisting on maintaining work-from-home procedures. Google, for example, is allowing its employees to work from home until as late as 2021. They are further encouraging employees to work from home by reimbursing each employee up to $1,000 dollars to pay for equipment to help them work from home. Facebook followed suit, exploring the possibilities of allowing as much as half their workforce to work from home. Many other major companies, like Capital One, Amazon, Microsoft, Zillow, and others, have announced that they’ll extend their work-from-home programs.
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter and Square, took it a step further in a forward-thinking and unprecedented statement, telling his employees that they may remain working from home “forever”. With advanced corporate meeting technology like Zoom, Slack, and Google Hangouts, working from home is just as efficient as working in a traditional office environment.
Remote Customer Support Workforces
While many brick and mortar stores had to close for the government-mandated lockdowns across the world, CX operations that made the move to a remote workforce kept going at a normal pace. Customer service operations that implemented virtual call centers were able to maintain productivity and business continuity. Some CX operations were even expanded due to the remote workforce set-up, with many hiring new talent from across the globe.
Even after the end of the lockdown, many CX operations will continue using remote workforce technology and having remote agents to deliver global, truly 24/7 support to its customers. Many are looking to keep a remote workforce set-up to save costs on office space, get the ability to hire global talent, and deliver truly 24/7 support.
The Future of Tech in a Virtual Call Center
While the technology for implementing a remote workforce is here, we can expect to see additional innovations that power remote call centers. Advances in call center technology can push the boundaries of what a virtual call center can do.
One technology that will impact the future of the virtual call center is integrated AI. AI is a popular topic in the tech industry, and it’s application in CX operations has been tried and proven. AI can be used in a remote workforce to streamline call center operations and boost CSAT scores, even when agents are spread across the globe. Through tech like natural language processing and conversational IVRs, AI can interact with customers for an improved experience and assist remote agents by providing AI-powered suggested responses.
Another technology that will impact the future of the virtual call center is AI-powered quality assurance. Quality assurance ensures that interactions between agents and customers are high-quality and receive high customer satisfaction. Through AI and omnichannel technology, quality assurance can be done on a global scale, allowing call center managers and admins to monitor 100% of interactions on all channels from anywhere around the globe.
Future-Proofing with Bright Pattern
Bright Pattern’s omnichannel contact center platform is ready for deployment in any remote workforce situation. Featuring integrated best-of-breed AI, comprehensive quality assurance, and advanced omnichannel capabilities, Bright Pattern’s platform is filled with innovative features that will future-proof your contact center and provide your agents with the most powerful tools to deliver excellent customer service remotely.
Ted Hunting leads marketing at Bright Pattern, a leader in simplifying and innovating cloud customer service. Previously Ted worked at Genesys where he led North America Marketing with over 15 years in the customer experience industry. Prior to that Ted worked for startups and enterprise software and hardware companies in all marketing functions. In addition to his CX experience, Ted has a background in business intelligence and large scale computing systems. Ted is a graduate of the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan with a marketing and finance background.