Two Big Reasons Why Call Centers Are Alive and Well
- The advent of smartphones appeared to change everything about call center services, via the app economy.
- Apps are subject to varying quality, though, and not everyone wants to use apps to interact with businesses.
- Call centers adapt to the realities and demands of the market just as well or better than other tech sectors!
Are Call Centers Dying Out?
Just a few years into the age of smartphones, some commentators began to speculate on the impact these devices would have on customer care strategies. The general takeaway from their ideas was that call center services would become decreasingly relevant in a world of apps and personalization.
Here in 2019, though, the picture is pretty far from that kind of slow and agonizing death. On the contrary. We’re enjoying a boom in the need for the kind of systematic support that call centers provide businesses. Let’s take a look at what’s going on.
Reason 1: Customer Service Apps Follow the Pareto Principle in Terms of Quality.
You may know the Pareto Principle as the 80/20 rule. Strictly speaking, it refers to the idea that “80 percent of effects come from 20% of causes.” Put in less abstract terms, most of the benefits of your work come from a much smaller fraction of the work you do.
The 80/20 rule pops up in a surprising number of contexts. In economics, for example, it’s common knowledge that approximately the wealthiest 20% of a population generally owns or produces roughly 80% of that society’s wealth, and very often, contributes at least 80% of tax revenue to their governments.
It’s a principle that can apply to many other sectors, such as software. Microsoft discovered that 80% of their problems stemmed from 20% of their systems’ underlying code.
Based on experience, anyone with a smartphone can confirm that app stores are loaded with cool and useful apps. They’re even more loaded with mediocre apps of limited functionality. This applies to games, time-management tools, educational apps, and… customer service apps.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly about Apps vs. Phone Calls
Some companies, like Domino’s Pizza, have found enormous success by investing heavily in their software. Using the Domino’s app makes ordering a pizza easier and more enjoyable.
Think about this, though. That’s one pizza company. How many other pizza companies do you know of that have had so much success with an app? Apply the same logic to other industries. You’ll soon realize that for every major business that enjoys the benefits of high-quality customer service through an app, there are probably at least four others that lack that level of usefulness.
This won’t change in the long run even as app quality increases, because of the churn of old, dying firms being overtaken by new ones. Apps become obsolete and new ones are needed. And that’s not even getting into the thousands upon thousands of smaller regional or local players who don’t have the resources to invest in a top-tier app. All that is to say nothing of the marketing power those smaller companies would need to get people to even consider using their specialty app.
All of those companies need to handle their customer relationships by other means. Phone support is the one with the best reach and lowest barriers to entry. Simple as that. Everyone who can download an app to their smartphone can also make and take phone calls. But not everyone who can download apps is going to necessarily want to use yours. How are you going to make sure you can still interact with them, then? By phone, of course.
Reason 2: Call Center Services are More Flexible Now Than Ever Before
Call centers are not just about taking customer orders or complaints, and they never have been. Not only is outbound marketing a huge part of the call center industry, but the way they can handle both inbound and outbound calls has changed dramatically.
Outsourced call centers serving the US used to have the reputation of being obviously located in far overseas locations and staffed by agents with heavily accented English. New innovations, like the Ready Response technology used by our Perfect Pitch call center software, has changed that game completely.
It’s now easier than ever to implement a high-quality inbound customer care strategy. Whether using hosted call center services or implementing technological and process improvements to an in-house center, no business has to worry anymore about whether their agents and customers can understand each other.
What’s more, through cross-training, outsourced call centers have made agents far more productive. Solutions are now available that range from the scale of full customer support teams, down to individual sales development representatives and virtual assistants. Everyone, from the Fortune 500 big shots, down to the local handyman who needs someone to take calls at odd or busy hours, can benefit from modern call center services.
Contact Boomsourcing today to learn more about how we can streamline your own operations with an upgraded and flexible call center!