With workforces disjointed and dispersed and customers more concerned and flustered than ever, IT leaders leverage cloud services to enrich their customer communication channels and support their hybrid work models. A 2020 Salesforce report found that 75% of service professionals said the pandemic caused the managing of customer case volumes to be significantly more difficult. Those surveyed added that they used AI and cloud technologies to adjust their communication strategies for the rapidly changing environment. As customers grow more anxious and demanding, maintaining pre-pandemic levels of customer support and productivity is critical. Brands must present themselves as empathetic and personable. Moreover, customer cases are becoming more complex, with remote employees needing suitable communication tools to assist them; that’s why IT leaders are turning to CPaaS.
CPaaS Comes to the Forefront
Years from now, when people look at the COVID pandemic and shutdowns, they will compare the proliferation of cloud services (like CPaaS) to WWII and the Space Race, which fueled the creation and commoditization of various things from radar and computers to wireless headsets and LED lighting. Although cloud computing may seem like a novel invention, it’s actually much older, with the earliest roots dating back to the 1950s. Much like the internet, the proto-cloud was a U.S. military mainframe that connected computer terminals across an internal matrix. Later, “cloud computing” would be coined in a 1996 Compaq document and in 1999, Salesforce became the first company to offer applications over the internet; the dawn of Software as a Service (SaaS).
The cloud is foundational to enabling remote work. Additionally, cloud-based services, typically SaaS offerings, rely on CPaaS for communication needs. CPaaS is key to helping companies along with their teams adapt and adopt unique and disruptive communication capabilities. Plus, CPaaS offerings are affordable, consistently attracting new providers, and have a potential marketplace expected to be worth around $17.7 billion by 2024. Currently, voice and SMS are mainstays of CPaaS solutions, with video, OTT messaging, and API-based services projected to grow considerably. The pandemic drove much of this growth – however, the evolution of the omni-channel contributed to enterprises engaging in digital transformation.
CPaaS – the Ultimate Tool for Hybrid Work Models
CPaaS enriched communication channels and supported companies during the initial volatile months of the pandemic, cementing itself as a staple for IT leaders. Today, enterprises continue to use CPaaS capabilities to provide high levels of customer support. These features prevent customers from waiting in long queues, especially if they have time-sensitive issues. Such elements include automated workflows which can collect customer information without people having to speak with an agent. Self-service options streamline processes and allow customers to complete easier tasks like resetting passwords, paying bills or hearing product information. Also, chatbots allow customers to get their simpler questions answered and escalate to an agent if their inquiry is more complex.
On top of keeping remote employees connected and involved, CPaaS permits companies to make quick implementations and helps them ease the strain on resources and people during spikes in traffic or reduced workforces. Top CPaaS solutions come with outbound omni-channel notifications to keep employees updated on new protocols, announcements and client information; customers remain in the loop on new product offerings, revised services and changes in hours of operation. Likewise, CPaaS systems can integrate with CRM platforms and are designed to work with a business’s existing infrastructures and contact center systems.
CPaaS for Customer Experience and Business Continuity
As mentioned earlier, customers are eager to resolve their issues quickly and amicably. CPaaS solutions enable organizations to provide personable and customizable communication services that create an enjoyable customer experience (CX). Businesses can respond dynamically to changes in traffic patterns and surges in call volume by using real-time data and actionable analytics. CPaaS gives companies access to more information, from past purchases and buying intentions to call performance and speaker tonality, allowing for more personalized interactions with customers. Similarly, data helps organizations deliver ideal CX throughout the customer lifecycle, increasing loyalty and driving revenue. Furthermore, with call recordings, CPaaS users can maintain quality assurance via compliance and employee training purposes.
Not only can CPaaS improve CX, so too can it ensure enterprises continue operating despite unexpected circumstances. In 2020, a study found that 51% of organizations did not have a business continuity plan in case of emergencies or disasters. CPaaS provides an innovative, flexible and scalable solution that can facilitate more than purely business continuity, such as enhancing customer communications and improving CX. Likewise, its ability to maintain pre-pandemic levels of customer support is invaluable during unforeseen situations. Whether a disruption comes from a pandemic, a natural disaster, or a typical holiday surge in traffic, consistent communication is critical to a company’s success.
As hybrid work becomes not just preferred but expected amongst employees, so too will CPaaS continue to reveal itself as an invaluable tool for businesses. From supporting customers and connecting disperses workforces to enhancing CX and enabling business continuity, it is no surprise that IT leaders have turned to CPaaS to address the challenges of our post-pandemic era.