Call centers everywhere know how crucial ACD systems (Automatic Call Distribution systems) are to making customers happy.
It is no coincidence that the development and progress of ACD systems had paralleled the growth of the call center industry – ACD’s current capabilities dwarf what was possible before.
This makes call center managers’ lives easier in serving customers and agents as they now have access to synergistic tools that let them “have their cake and eat it, too.”
Say goodbye to the days where an ACD system simply distributed calls among staff evenly.
Today we’ll learn more about ACD’s current capabilities and how it integrates with other cutting-edge cloud software to create better call center results.
ACD Systems in the Old Days…
While ACD systems trace their history back to the 1950s, it wasn’t until the more recent advancement of Round Robin that call centers began adopting ACD en masse.
Round Robin allows call centers to input multiple numbers for outbound calling (usually with a smaller number-dialing cap), as part of a campaign. Then the manager can decide:
- What order numbers are called
- How long each number should ring before automatically hanging up
While this was a great advancement, the lack of skill or experience-specific routing had its drawbacks.
Fortunately, call center software technology companies invented a much better way to deploy an ACD system.
The Value and Utility of Current, Cloud-Based ACD Systems
Modern cloud-based call center software incorporates ACD systems that operate on a much higher level. Cutting-edge ACD systems route calls based on:
- Agent skills
- Customer needs
- Call center business objectives
- Real-time call center conditions
So, what can a modern ACD system do to improve call center metrics and operations? How does it work practically?
Let’s start with one of the best features…
Customers no longer have to wait on hold! That’s right; a cloud-based ACD system offers a queued callback option for customers who prefer to be productive while waiting.
This gives agents time to focus completely on resolving or researching a customer’s issue without wasting their time. After they’re done, they can give the customers a ring to move resolution forward.
Speaking of results… because current ACD systems route customers to the most skilled agents available, First Call Resolution (FCR) rates increase immensely. All of which translates directly into customer satisfaction.
But skills-based routing isn’t the only advancement to change the call center scene. ACD systems give managers the choice of routing based on many factors, including:
- Time-of-day. Run a 24-hour call center? Choose to route calls during regular business hours to the main office and all other requests to agents working overnight.
- Percentage-based. Have a high-inbound call volume? The ACD system scans incoming calls and pings them to multiple locations to ensure the highest and fastest call answering rate possible.
- Geo-routing. Part of a global company? Route customers from around the world to agents who speak their language to maintain high service levels.
- VIP-call routing. This feature is perfect for high-end callers and customers who have super-specific issues that require special assistance from a particular agent or office.
If that’s not enough, cloud-based ACD systems also integrate with vital Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software like Salesforce, social media accounts, and more, which all helps agents better understand and serve customers.
Though an ACD system is remarkable in its own right, its true power cannot be unleashed without the help of a cloud-based call center platform.
Synergies Between ACD and Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
The best ACD software uses an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system to create the perfect, automated customer service solution that saves everyone time and money.
IVR systems use interactive call routing and prerecorded responses for inbound calls to solve customers’ problems before they need to talk to an agent. That way, customers hang up the phone satisfied while agents are freed up to support customers with pressing needs.
When customers need to talk to an agent, an IVR system works with an ACD system to immediately route calls to skilled agents to fix the issue swiftly.
All the while, managers get real-time operations statistics and important agent Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
Modern IVR also features free call recording, a bonus for managers training new agents and ensuring the business honors the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
Similar to the fantastic features cloud-based ACD offers, cloud-based IVR contains virtually no limits to its dialer capacity, number of lines, and more.
Call center businesses that combine ACD and IVR systems experience unquestionably better results. But call center managers also need a more robust software package to guarantee total regulatory compliance while delivering unbeatable service.
Agent Gateway: The Missing Link Between Extraordinary Customer Service + Flawless Legal Compliance
Agent Gateway is a must-have for any high performing call centers.
It takes all the utility and invaluable insights generated by ACD and IVR systems and integrates them into one easy-to-use platform – enhancing the entire experience for agents, managers, and customers.
From supplying agents crucial customer information for each call to providing tools to help them maintain compliance, this software is simply designed to make every aspect of agents, managers and customers’ lives easier.
An ACD System Software Suite that Watches Over Call Center Businesses
TCN is a call center businesses’ all-in-one resource. And our call center software is redefining the contact center in every way.
From a cloud-based ACD system that goes above and beyond old iterations to an IVR system and Agent Gateway that synergistically work together to deliver unparalleled results, TCN covers everything.
The best part? Managers get cloud-based software without the headache of contracts or obligations. That means no monthly minimums or hidden fees. And, businesses can cancel at any time and only pay for what they use.
With TCN, call center managers have much less to worry about when supporting their agents in delivering excellent customer service and maintaining regulatory compliance.
Still, regulations are tricky. Managers face a huge challenge when it comes to understanding all the various TCPA, FDCPA, HIPAA, PCI-DSS regulations, and how it affects call center service and operations.
It’s a lot to handle alone.
And with the recent increase in fines, the stakes are higher than ever. (The FCC would now be “empowered to seek an additional $10k per violation.”)
Luckily, our free manager’s guide breaks down all the regulations managers and directors need to know.
Download the free manager’s guide to call center regulations today and stay on top of the most important regulatory changes!