When it comes to outsourcing, you see the words “call center” and “contact center” used, often without discretion. Both refer to an outsourced entity that handles customer communication, usually it involves communicating via phone, so what’s the difference, right? While many use the terms interchangeably, there are some key differences to be aware of.
Call Center VS Contact Center: What’s the Difference?
A call center typically refers to an outsourced service that focuses mainly on the phone aspect of customer service. Call centers can be used to deploy outgoing call campaigns, surveys, and telemarketing. They also can serve inbound call center functions, which is largely what comes to mind when you think about customer service.
While it’s true that the words “call center” often are said with a negative connotation, many are actively working to buck the old stereotypes. Although the term “call center” may conjur up images of old-school technology and antiquated communication methods, call centers are capable of providing high-tech capabilities such as IVR, data analytics, and programmed call routing.
Contact centers essentially bring the communication methods of call centers up to the speed of today’s consumers. They employ omnichannel communication methods, which means that customer communication can take place over the phone and beyond. This allows businesses to create a consistent presence across a multitude of channels and allows for seamless communication. A contact center not only utilizes telephone channels for communication, they can also offer live chat, social media, email, and text to engage with customers. Agents have access to customer interactions and can personalize their communication and streamline the troubleshooting process.
Multiple channels mean multiple metrics, which can mean a logistical nightmare when it comes to comparing reports. Having an omni-channel system means all of your customer data can live together in one place.
Overall, call centers and contact centers exist with the same goal in mind: to improve the customer experience. Whether you’re looking for call center services or more advanced contact center services, there is an outsourcing solution available to meet your needs.