Why Is Webex Rated as a Leading Intelligent Contact Center?

John Flood

Webex understands customer challenges and applies technology to solve them

Cisco Insights
Why Is Webex Rated as a Leading Intelligent Contact Center?

“If you build it, they will come” is the famous line that originated in the 1989 movie “Field of Dreams” with Kevin Costner. The story itself is about creating something that faces impossible odds. Impelled by a personal mission, Costner’s character builds a baseball field in the middle of his Iowa cornfield, an unlikely spot for a professional baseball team.

Now, consider the technology industry. There are men with dreams – visionaries – like Steve Jobs, Andy Grove, and Elon Musk. Sensing a market with vast opportunity, they single-mindedly built it. Because as Grove said, “What’s possible can be done.”

Yet, it also helps if the dream has some chance of meshing with reality. In contact centers, the opportunities are rife, and visionaries – like Webex – are seizing the moment to innovate and make the improbable possible.

The No-Go Zone of Today’s Call Centers

To this day, customers who interact with call centers suffer from cumbersome IVRs, long wait times, and bounce from agent to agent to resolve their questions. For many, contact centers have become a ‘No Go Zone,’ leaving customers highly aggravated and low on satisfaction.

This is where Webex senses its opportunity; creating more intelligent Contact Centre solutions.

But the vendor hasn’t become distracted by technology. Instead, Webex remains on the path of pragmatism. By all accounts, their vision is coming to life.

Indeed, despite only venturing into the CCaaS space in 2020, a 2021 Aargon Research study singled out Webex as the leading intelligent contact center platform – as evident in the matrix below.

The Aragon Research Globe for Intelligent Contact Center 2021

Sharing how Webex managed to make such waves in the market, Zack Taylor, Director of Strategic Communications at Cisco Contact Center BU, said:

Today, customers are overwhelmed with choices and the endless stream of what is possible. Rather than confuse them even more, we took a step back and looked at the heart of the problem.

That was a fortuitous decision. Not only for call center agents, who spend up to 40 percent of their call time searching for answers, but for customers too who need accurate answers without waiting.

“Cisco balances today and tomorrow,” Taylor explained. “We believe in practical solutions to customer’s problems.”

The Balance of Power Has Shifted: Customers Have Their Way

If there’s one thing that CEOs and senior managers understand in the current business climate, it’s the need to adapt to shifts in the marketplace. It’s the customer who now has the leverage. They have many choices and a low tolerance for pain. Companies that can’t or won’t pivot to this reality risk everything.

“The consumer owns the power now,” Taylor continued. “They want to feel that the interaction is germane to them, in other words, relevant.”

Their power comes from an expectation that companies will respect their time. “They expect a service that reduces friction and impedances when they reach out,” Taylor explained. “Make my life more efficient and reduce the time needed to do what I want.”

The Paradigm Shift: Making Call Centre CX Delightful

Today, the implementation of intelligent call center platforms – such as Webex solutions- sets forth a framework that provides multi-channel experiences.

Webex has coined it as “One app for everything. And everyone.”

Indeed, it offers more than a traditional CCaaS platform. It allows the customer to:

  • Call from any device with their cloud phone system.
  • Meet from anywhere with immersive sharing.
  • Message instantly for collaboration and file sharing.
  • Engage everyone in meetings and events with polling and Q&A tools.
  • Host webinars and events virtually and in person, with up to 100,000 attendees worldwide.

Webex wishes to wave goodbye to the days of the uncaringly cold and brittle contact center structure, where customers know they are about to face a contact center fortress. Instead, the vendor offers AI-based support systems to find answers independently without needing a conversation.

SMS messaging, email, and video support tools, and access to company knowledge repositories have replaced irritative and impersonal contact center structures.

“We’ve moved from ‘migraines-brought-to-you-by-contact-center’ recordings to the age of unexpected delight,” said Taylor.

It has been a paradigm shift in the call center ecosystem.

“Today, the agent interacts with the outliers,” explained Taylor. “They’ve tried everything, and at that point, they need someone with empathy and critical thinking skills. They are at the last point before they leave. It’s a bit like a digital goalkeeper. They get the penalty shots and kicks.”

Backcasting Led the Way

To create the future, you must envision it – in a definite way. So, when Webex looked at developing new solutions to the vexing issues in call centers, they relied on a planning method known as backcasting.

By working backwards from the desired outcome, the process identifies the interconnecting demands that technology must address in the future. It helps define the technological challenges, its scope, and the timetable to reach the desired end.

Going further, Taylor explained:

We started with questions about how to deliver exceptional CX. Working back from there, we found three critical areas where technology could help.

Webex defined it as low friction access points, low effort processes, and a satisfying personal experience.

“We had to create a technology platform that made the customer’s experience personal, contextual, and highly satisfactory when they had to speak with an agent,” Taylor emphasized.

Webex Contact Centre from Small-to-Medium Sized to Enterprise

Webex’s CCaaS platform offers excellent functionality for small-to-medium-sized organizations. Enterprise organizations are adopting it too.

“We run Webe Contact Center in multi-domain and multiple theatre operations,” explained Taylor. “One of our enterprise customers has call centers in 90 countries. Each one has a different level of connectivity and local carrier issues. So, our deep expertise in IP telephony and networking has helped us a lot.”

Webex Contact Center can be tightly integrated to Cisco’s collaboration portfolio (UCaaS) and Webex Connect (CPaaS).

Plus, the company is expanding its data centers worldwide, which means localizing traffic and improving performance. “There is no need for ‘hair pinning’ around the world, which results in latency issues,” Taylor said.

Outside Experts Like Webex

Gartner recognized Webex within it 2022 CCaaS Magic Quadrant, noting that the solution offered “good functionality across the four pillars of great customer service in terms of resource management, analytics, and a growing number of technology ecosystem partners.”

Moreover, in the aforementioned Aragon Research study, the analyst lauded the Webex brand recognition; its sizeable installed base; its success in deploying AI; end-to-end encryption; flexible cloud, premises, and hybrid deployment options; and its overall CCaaS capabilities.

This robust offering was a mix of intelligent acquisitions and proprietary, in-house software development.

“With Webex, we’re leveraging one of the world’s largest collaboration clouds,” explained Taylor. “It’s secure. It’s global. It’s trusted. It’s been around. We leveraged the outstanding characteristics of that brand and integrated them into our Contact Center solution and Webex Suite.

“We’re standing on the shoulders of Webex,” he concluded. “Tens of billions of meetings and messages. Security, reliability and scalability. And, where we needed it, we acquired great technology, and we’ve created our own.”

For more information about Webex’s CCaaS solution, visit: www.webex.com



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