Digital Island makes contact center investments more efficient

Leon Sheehan (Digital Island)

Credit: provided

Digital Island, owned by Spark, is riding a wave of growth as the cloud contact center market grows at around 16% per year.

Adoption, which was already rapid before the pandemic, has only accelerated since. It was now becoming clear how essential contact centers could be for organizations seeking digital transformation, said Digital Island CEO Leon Sheehan. Dealer news.

While part of Spark’s “multi-brand” approach, the company has also been integrated into the larger business, Sheehan said. This has given it a unique presence in the unified communications and contact center space, combining the ability to stay close to the customer and act with agility and speed.

Digital Island is Spark’s Amazon Connect partner, while Spark itself is a premier partner of another major contact center provider, Genesys.

“What we’re trying to achieve is what’s right for the customer and giving them options,” Sheehan said.

The advantage of being part of the Spark group was to use the scale of the group’s relationships while being able to go directly to market.

Organizations that rushed to deploy platforms like Microsoft Teams and collaboration technologies during the pandemic now had to adjust their thinking about contact centers and unified communications. Seen as part of a digital transformation story, which required organizations to focus on customer experience and the customer journey.

Contact centers were already serving customers via email, SMS and even on social media such as WhatsApp and Facebook.

But cloud-based contact centers could go further, providing agents with insights through artificial intelligence and machine learning and providing a hub to integrate and service other elements of an organization’s transformation. , such as managing alerts from IoT devices and other sensors.

Companies could then choose how to react to these alerts by creating rules to apply in their systems, Sheehan said.

Features such as real-time customer sentiment analysis could allow companies to further optimize their service and market approaches.

As in the healthcare industry, there’s an element of “triage” involved in running a contact center, Sheehan said. Companies had to deal with the most urgent requests first, with the resources at their disposal.

“As we’ve seen over the past few years, the ability of businesses to adapt quickly, whether to new government restrictions or changes in demand levels, is critical,” Sheehan said.

Simply being able to take a call at home is no longer enough. Contact center teams needed to be able to access different systems and connect to customer databases if they were to stay ahead of the game and resolve customer issues satisfactorily.

Digital Island has supported many local businesses connecting to Amazon Connectincluding companies with more than 2,500 employees and large call center contingents.

“We are currently working with a healthcare company that activated 2,000 users in less than six weeks,” Sheehan said. “They are all capable of working remotely and connecting seamlessly and securely to existing customer relationship management (CRM) databases.”

Previously, a deployment like this would have taken several months.

COVID-19 has forced New Zealand businesses to scale, Sheehan said. However, as one of the most connected countries in the world, New Zealand companies now had the ability to really innovate and use some of the technologies not fully utilized until now as a catalyst to differentiate themselves.

It’s no longer enough to take a phone call, Sheehan said.

“The user and agent experience is so important. We need to make sure we’re optimizing their work in hybrid environments to help customers and them.”

Farmlands Co-op recently adopted Amazon Connect and found the contact center to be a win-win-win. This allowed farmers to call hands-free, which was safer for them, while giving agents a better understanding of which customers were coming.

Caller queries were sorted faster and wait times were shortened. The Farmlands customer team could work from anywhere on a secure cloud-based system, rather than a centralized contact center, so COVID-19 restrictions did not impact service.

IT service provider LANTech had a similar experience. Calls decreased by 24% and time spent providing service decreased by 20%. Recently, the company signed a new customer with over 1000 seats based on its newly acquired Amazon Connect capability.

Working with customers to understand where they were in their data and transformation journeys was key.

“That’s where the rubber hits the road,” Sheehan said. “It’s more of a continuous improvement journey – think about the customer experience and how to change and improve it.”

Sheehan was spurred on by the capabilities that large-scale cloud investment could bring to New Zealand.

“I hope New Zealand businesses can jump on it and it will really help them to thrive more,” he said.

“Hyperscalers bring depth of development but also platforms that are infinitely scalable. Paying only for what you use is ideal for these times.”

The power of the cloud was its ability to scale quickly, Sheehan said. This had been demonstrated during the pandemic by a healthcare customer who needed to support contact tracing.

“The pandemic has really changed the way New Zealand businesses approach it,” Sheehan said. “It forced a lot of them to log in and use their communication packages properly.

Seventy percent of contact center costs were staffing costs, Sheehan said. Technology could ensure that organizations deploy and enable these people to deliver a service that is both more informative and of deeper impact.

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Contact Center TagsDigital IslandAmazon ConnectCloudSpark. Genisys