Make those minutes count

Finding the Silver Lining in the Cloud

shutterstock_92683114With cloud services continuing to blanket the market, analysis paralysis has truly set in for countless clients and agencies. Cloud computing and storage is the next big thing, and the overabundance of services has resulted in a quagmire of uncertainty and endless options. No truer is this than when it comes to finding the right vendors to meet a company’s needs. The only way for a business to tackle this challenge is to focus on one clear and simple cloud goal.


The Cloud Dilemma

Cloud-based services are now visible in several industries and applications. From digital cable to telecommunications, it is next to impossible to keep up with all of the changes and developments. From Cisco and Microsoft to NEC and Shoretel, there are now over 40 different ways to utilize and implement cloud services on-site or from remote locations. As such, it can be overwhelming for a business to effectively analyze and assess which services meet its goals. Additional complications include:

  • new cloud products, services, and changes happening at a moment’s notice,
  • cloud services evolving based on existing industry trends and changes,
  • shifts within the landscape that are affecting how cloud experts offer services to clients, and
  • clients possessing little to no knowledge of cloud benefits.

With seismic shifts happening in the cloud industry at rapid rates, only organizations that know precisely what they need are benefiting.

Cloud Cover

Sifting through the many cloud options available today can be an obstacle that limits productivity and performance. While it’s great for clients to carefully weigh their options and choices, selecting the right vendor has become a time-consuming and tedious process. In order to secure the best possible outcome, there are many factors to consider:

  • Company executives and staff must be on the same page to meet cloud initiatives and directives.
  • Effective and strategic planning is needed to find the right and most affordable cloud solutions for enterprises.
  • Businesses must take into account all potential opportunities, risks, expenses, and management challenges.

Only with these options and facets in mind can a sound and lasting decision be made about which cloud provider or service to attain.

Gray Clouds

Unfortunately, this level of strategic planning rarely takes place anymore. Many businesses simply do not have the time, and even having a solid management plan does not guarantee finding the right cloud solution. It can take several attempts along with trial and error to finally secure a cloud provider and achieve desired results.

By firmly establishing a single clear goal, clients can amend or modify solutions based on their particular needs and aspirations. Company objectives must be precise throughout the chain of command. Setting the simplest goal is the only way to truly find the silver lining in the cloud.

Manage Your Business Through VoIP

shutterstock_117804328The customer contact center is critical for organizations that don’t rely on brick-and-mortar locations to conduct business with customers. For such companies it is important that calls are clear and understandable, making an investment in Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) particularly advantageous. VoIP has many features that enable companies to better manage call flows and employees.


Call Forwarding

Call forwarding allows a customer to ring multiple employee telephones, rather than having to leave a message. Call forwarding also makes it easier to send calls to other departments and managers depending on the needs of a specific customer.

Leveraging Employee Skills

Many contact centers use the skill feature to have Spanish-speaking customers interface with Spanish-speaking employees. This isn’t the only application of the skill feature, however. Skills can be set to capitalize on an employee’s specific strengths. For instance, a call involving a specific computer part can be directed to an employee who has been trained on that particular product. This ensures that calls are always answered by knowledgeable representatives.

24/7 Customer Service

Many contact centers have multiple locations. A common reason for this is to make customer service available at all hours of the day. For example, if a business has contact centers in Chicago, Paris, and Tokyo, each of those centers would have the ability to cover calls around the clock — no matter where or when a customer makes a call.

Dividing Calls by Contact Center Size

Of course, time zones are not the only way to split up calls between different contact centers. A business, for instance, might have two contact centers: one staffed with 40 employees and the other with 60. It would be reasonable to split call volume between those two locations in proportion to the size of their staffs.

Basic features of VoIP allow companies to provide better customer service through their contact centers. With VoIP, businesses can more effectively manage their operations.