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Understanding the Key Difference between Contact Center Vs. Call Center and Make Wise Decisions

A lot will come to mind when the issue of contact center versus call center pops up. Decision-makers have to fathom how these centers differ from one another to figure out which best suits their needs. The good thing is that both are effective tools for customer service and depend on the phone. 

These tools have spurred the development of efficient software solutions accessible at aircall for sales and support teams. Understanding the difference between a contact center and a call center will transform your experience with IT-approved solutions for your teams. This article will help you make wise decisions on the kind of software solutions your business needs. Keep reading to learn more.

What is a Call Center?

A call center is a crucial department that services outbound and inbound calls from customers. Traditional call center agents are reputable customer service representatives who can handle customer questions or inquiries hassle-free. 

They also offer other services such as debt collection, billing, and telemarketing or customer-related functions. In addition, call centers may be suited within an organization or outsourced to a partner who is an expert in the field. 

What is a Contact Center? 

A contact center is a department in an organization that deals with inbound and outbound customer interactions. The center can operate within the organization or may be outsourced to an experienced partner. Compared to call centers, a contact center agent will interact with customers via multiple channels like text, email, apps, social media, and the web. 

Key Difference between a Call Center and Contact Center

Here are key facets to help understand the difference between a call center and a contact center:

Channels Used 

Both call centers and contact centers provide customer-related services and outreach. However, they differ in the communication channels they use. 

Call centers will rely on one channel- the phone while contact centers will utilize a wide variety of channels. Call centers have been around before digital channels, but they benefit many companies because phone calls are quite efficient. 

Organizations can reach out to live agents for a personalized experience that other channels don’t guarantee. On the other hand, contact centers will use different digital channels, which make it easy to interact with customers on whichever platform they choose.

Data Collection

Contact centers relish the opportunity of being able to collect more customer data. The channels they use make it easy to enhance customer profiling, making it easy for the organization to provide personalized customer support. Hence, it is easy to improve customer experience. 

Call centers rely on speech analysis software to analyze calls and gain insights into customer preferences and personalities. Contact centers may utilize the same technique, but their omnichannel approach gives them more opportunities to collect data. 

Customer Self-Service

Most call centers use interactive voice response (IVR) systems. These are automated phone assistants that respond to keypad entries and voices for CSS capabilities. IVR systems can route callers to relevant agents and perform simple tasks, but their lengthy menu options can be annoying.

Contact centers’ CSS capabilities offer robust options besides relying on IVR systems. They offer chatbots, FAQ webpages, and online knowledge forums, which help customers find the answers they need independently. 

Agent Capabilities

Both call and contact center agents need necessary customer service skills. But then again, contact center agents will need additional skills like how to use diverse channels to enable effective communication. Call center agents will need excellent verbal communication and problem-solving skills because they provide their services over the phone. Even though contact center agents may use the phone, their need to show capabilities in communicating via email, live chat, text messages, and social media. 

Technology Dependence

Both call and contact centers rely on technologies to deliver quality services. Contact centers will require additional services and expertise to manage their omnichannel. Besides standard phone and computer technologies, call centers will require:

  • Interactive Voice response systems
  • Automated call distributor (ACD)
  • Speech analysis software
  • Workforce management (WFM) system
  • Enhanced internet access

Contact centers will embrace technologies such as:

  • Email response management system
  • Advanced analytics
  • Channel reports 
  • Omnichannel routing 

To Sum Up 

Understanding the many responsibilities of call centers and contact center is imperative for any organization. Regardless of the options a company settles for, the center to invest in should depend upon its priorities and needs. It is also important to stay up-to-date with the latest technologies regardless of the size of your center or the solutions you choose. Always aspire to offer seamless customer experience in a reliable platform. 

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