Your contact center is the focal point of your business. It’s where communication happens: between you and your customers, employees, and even branch operations and international representatives.
Your contact center can be entirely on-premises or it can hosted in the cloud. But there are naturally some key differences between these two setups that you should be aware of.
Setting up the center will be very different
Set-up costs: Setting up your own contact center on site is a costly endeavor. You need to rent space for the equipment, purchase all the hardware and software you need to run the center, and pay someone to do elaborate installation of the whole system.
With a cloud-based contact center, all you need to do is download the third-party call center software and learn how to use it. This software is deliberately designed to be user-friendly, so set up is fast and inexpensive.
Set-up time: Setting up your own center is time-consuming. Not only do you need to acquire all the hardware and have it delivered and installed, you also need to factor in time to test the system and work out all the inevitable kinks.
With a cloud-based system, that work is already done for you. Once you make a decision about the plan that’s right for your company, you can be up and running in a matter of hours rather than weeks.
Potential for flexibility will be very different
Expanding: Once you’ve invested the time, effort, and infrastructure to build your on-premises call center, additions are hard to make.
If you need more lines, more storage space, or simply more room for agents to work the phones, it will take a new investment of time, money, and effort. During a temporary busy time during the holidays, for example, you won’t be able to adjust quickly in response to demand.
With a cloud-based contact center, expansion is simple. If you have a hot season, all you need to do is upgrade your plan for as many weeks or months as you need. Once the season is over, you can go back to your old plan whenever it fits your business requirements.
Contracting: Down times come along for nearly every enterprise. If you’ve made a huge investment in hardware, software, and infrastructure to put together your own on-site contact center, it’s all being wasted if you don’t need it for weeks or months at a time.
Your cloud-based contact center contract is easy to change. Again, if you need to cut costs and tighten belts for a few months, all you have to do is change your call center contract plan to something more affordable.
Maintenance will be very different
Updates and routine service: If you have your own contact center on the premises, all the responsibility for keeping software updated and hardware serviced falls squarely on your shoulders. If you forget a few updates, you could be exposing your company (or your customers) to unacceptable risks.
If your contact center is cloud-based, software and hardware maintenance aren’t issues. Your third party vendor takes care of all this. And since maintaining the call center software is their primary responsibility, you can be sure everything will be up-to-date at all times.
Crashes and breaches: If you host your own call center on site, a power loss or data breach can be devastating. A power loss could mean a huge loss of data or even destroyed hardware. Bad actors are constantly working to breach systems and steal information, and defeating these attacks requires constant vigilance.
A cloud-based call center vendor has redundant systems in place. With everything stored in the cloud, one power outage will never erase all your important data. They also have the expertise and personnel to keep on top of all the latest data breach threats, so that you can communicate with confidence.