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Zoomtopia Session Posits CCaaS and UCaaS Are Better Together

At Zoomtopia 2023 during the session “All You Need To Know About The Next-Generation Contact Center,” Andrew Lindley, CIO of global payroll services company Vensure Employer Solutions, joined Zoom’s global head of contact center solution engineering Amy Roberge and Adrian Swinscoe, Principal, Punk CX, to discuss some of the challenges facing the contact center and its agents and supervisors, and to talk about how delivering an excellent customer experience (CX) may involve unifying the contact center with the unified communications and collaboration platforms.

Lindley said that in the last four and a half years, Vensure acquired 57 companies, presenting a challenge to Vensure in how to support a geographically distributed workforce with different contact center tools. Since February 2023, Vensure has been using Zoom’s Contact Center platform for their roughly 600 agents all of whom “with very few exceptions, are not at home but are distributed across many offices,” he said. “The leaders managing teams might have 20 people across 10 different offices, so the tools inside of the contact center from a supervisory perspective are extremely important.”

Roberge spoke to some of those tools already in Zoom Contact Center that help address those challenges. She noted that contact center supervisors used to be able to “visually see when an agent looked distressed or needed help or assistance on the interaction they were working on.” One of Zoom’s challenges is to empower supervisors to help their remote agents in those difficult moments and coach them over time which helps keep them happy and productive. “Agent effectiveness is agent happiness. It's also customer happiness.”

“We have capabilities like sentiment analysis and quick summaries and snapshots of interactions that allow supervisors to visually see when agents need help, so it’s almost as good as looking over their shoulder,” she said. Zoom’s Workvivo product will also help deliver agent performance insights to supervisors so they can “coach and manage agent performance over time.”

Roberge also noted that it’s “harder than ever to find agents and harder than ever and, frankly, to be an agent. With more AI and more self-service, the easy, repetitive tasks that agents used to cut their teeth on and learn with no longer exist.”

Swinscoe echoed this point, saying that with the adoption of self-service technology, which includes conversational and generative AI, the sort of queries that come to agents are “going to be more urgent, more complex, more complicated conditions. You need to work collaboratively with [internal] teams who have access to expertise or systems or people – whatever it might be – to solve those issues in a timely manner.”

This is why he argued in favor of unifying the contact center platform and the unified communications/collaboration technology stacks. To date, UCaaS and CCaaS have largely been independent efforts – UCaaS focused on collaboration within the enterprise with CCaaS obviously focused on customer-facing interactions. But by unifying them agents “can work more seamlessly with people in and around [their] organization to get the rapid and accurate responses that the customer is looking for,” Swinscoe said.

Framed thusly, Zoom’s move into the contact center space makes sense. Clearly, other vendors are moving in this same direction. A few examples include RingCentral which launched RingCX in August 2023, Cisco Webex which highlights a combined UCaaS/CCaaS platform and 8x8.

Swinscoe continued, “I think we're still early in that cycle, but if you jump in and do it now, I think you're going to be ahead of the game.”

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