Find out more about Call Center Software
What is Call Center Software?
Companies can use call center software for marketing, customer support, and other purposes. This system can manage multiple communication channels including phone, email, live chat, instant messaging, SMS text, and social media. Call center software is offered in various types including auto dialer, call center monitors, call accounting solutions, call analytics, predictive dialer, computer telephony integration (CTI), interactive voice response (IVR), and automatic call distributor (ACD). Customer support and help desk systems offer ticketing features to help agents resolve customer issues. Other main functionality include quality monitoring, call recording, speech/text analytics, virtual queuing/Web callback, and social media support. If you are looking for a high quality call center solution, you can read our reviews of the leading apps in this category. We especially recommend Freshdesk which our review team currently rates as the top platform.
Most Popular Call Center Software
Best Call Center Software
How To Choose The Best Call Center Software
Call center systems are without doubt on the list of compulsory online corporate software, being an essential mean to every company which aims to deliver proper customer support. At the same time, call center software has many critical benefits, meaning that even tiniest nuances will have a say when choosing one. The more good systems appear on the market, the more difficult it becomes to be convinced of your choice: you bear the responsibility to make your inbound call center run smooth, both because of your employees, and foremost – because of your customers. That’s exactly why we prepared this guide: to help you familiarize with the basics of call center software, and to help you choose the best call center software for enterprises and SMBs.
Get to know each product with free trial
A good course of action is to sign up for at least a few free trials and basic unpaid plans from the vendors that are popular. With that method you will have the opportunity to test the important elements and you will get a good overview of the capabilities of each app. The best thing to do is to try services that currently have the highest results in our SmartScore and Customer Satisfaction Rating in the Customer Support Software category and choose the best call center software for your company: Freshdesk reviews, Vocalcom Cloud Contact Center, ContactWorld, and Scorebuddy.
Call centers offers a variety of essential customer support services to all businesses wishing to nurture customer relationships and to cut support costs. These are the businesses that qualify as potential buyers:
- Small Businesses. Small companies are the ones that need to keep a sharpest eye on expenses to grow their operations, which makes investing in customer support matters a smart decision. Using call centers as virtual receptionists cuts the cost of maintaining a permanent support center.
- Medium Businesses. The same as small companies, medium businesses are looking to cut the expense side of the ledger and to bring new clients even in intervals when their business is lean. Call centers qualify as reliable and expandable solutions which most probably won’t have to be adjusted each time the number of customers raises.
- Large Businesses. Large companies are the ones for which 24/7 live support has become unavoidable, and call center systems can help them provide such at the fraction of the cost. Most systems will even offer advanced services, such as translation, transcription, recording, customer identification, and many other benefits which are expensive to obtain without a call center at stake.
What are Examples of Call Center Software?
- Freshdesk: A cloud-hosted help desk solution for exceptional customer service, packed with multichannel capacity, automation, and productivity features.
- Vocalcom Cloud Contact Center: Cloud-based,easy-to-use platform focused on quality user communication. It preserves the context of previous customer interactions, which makes the transition from self-service to live service almost seamless.
- ContactWorld: A popular telephony solution that helps companies deliver top-quality service to their customers. It is fast, understandable, and personalized.
- MiContact Center: A functional cloud-center solution with CTI integration that covers Microsoft Lync-based contact centers and large-scale contact centers.
- Interactive Intelligence CaaS: A perfected tool for medium and large businesses, known by its capacity to unify communications and to automate both routine and non-standard business processes.
Types of Call Center Software
Depending on how communications are being managed and processed, the same as the technology that is being used, call centers can be divided in the following categories:
- On-premise call center systems. On premise call centers are usually sold with a on-time utilization license where the customer bares the responsibility to upgrade and maintain his call center. Most of the time, they require installation of private branch hardware and equipment. They rank as the most expensive, but also most professional call centers.
- Virtual call center systems (SaaS). The virtual model requires the company to replace its traditional, centralized call center with a virtual one, where it can connect with customers using its own equipment. The difference is that the vendor is the one that is hosting the center, and the company doesn’t need to upgrade, but rather to cover its monthly fees.
- Cloud-based call center systems. In this case, SaaS is extended to cloud computing, meaning that the call center will be hosted in cloud, and will therefore be accessed from anywhere, without the need to download or install a specific application. Cloud-based call centers are known as the most affordable ones.
Key Features of Call Center
With all that call center fuss going around, expectations are starting to hit the ceilings. Luckily for us, quality support is no longer a myth, and the evolution of call center technology in the past 10 years made expecting the impossible is pretty much justified. In case you don’t really know what to expect from your next call center system, here is a summary of the essential features:
- Controlled Telephony. Isn’t that what call centers are all about? The good news, however, is that virtual call centers don’t require you to install special hardware: they work with what you already have. The bonus you get in the case is call control (being able to hold, transfer, or mute callers with a single mouse click).
- ACD – Automatic Call Distributors. ACD is the core of every good call center, as it can route calls to the most appropriate agent without you being involved in the process. It is also thanks to ACD that managers get to monitor performance and conferencing, and to gather information on quality, volume, and duration.
- IVR – Interactive Voice Responses. IVR is the ‘meanwhile feature’ that takes care of callers before/after they are connected to the appropriate agents. Before the system becomes fully operational, the team creates an IVR scenario, including a greeting message, a menu of service prompts to choose from, as well as waiting queue coverage.
- Call Queues. The ‘magic’ of virtual call centers is that they don’t let customers ‘disappear’ right after being told that they have to wait. Each department/agent gets a specifically designed waiting queue where customers arrive after being skills routed; and a special dashboard with essential metrics to measure statistics based on real-time data.
- Disposition Codes. Disposition codes are used to describe the outcome of every call, tagging it as ‘Not interested’, ‘Transferred to IT support’, ‘Refunded’, etc. The agent chooses the code from a special menu, and attaches it to the call to remain permanently in the profile of a particular contact.
- Call Barging. Call barging is a feature developed for novice agents, who get to transfer the call to the manager without informing the client about it. The manager can drop in on his own behalf, using a feature called whisper coaching.
- Predictive and Power Dialers. Both features are used to inform a client when an agent becomes available, while in certain cases they can even make calls automatically, and connect the agent to a group of clients. Sales teams find these features very beneficial, as they don’t deal numbers manually, and they reach leads much faster.
- Voicemail and Notifications. Customers love having the chance to leave a message for the agent when he is not available. Premium systems can even transcribe the messages, or email them to the agent in order to keep them within the activity feed.
- Real-Time and Historical Reporting. The reporting feature is critical for every manager interested to follow metrics such as: number of calls per day/line/agent/department, average duration, average abandoning rate, waiting time, service level, etc.
Benefits of Call Center
The mere fact that you’re here, and you’re scrolling down to capture relevant facts indicates two things: You know that the market is heaped with out-of-the-box solutions, and You have no idea which one is for you.
You can always go the traditional way and forecast call volume to account the performance you’re going to need, but for the sake of frankness, that won’t make your choice anyhow narrower. An adequate anticipation of performance involves the presence of numerical, comparable factors, and puts the accent on systems which can do the most work with least human involvement. As you can conclude by now, the benefits should go beyond common perceptions of efficiency, and should be advanced enough to motivate the team even when works blows out of proportion. Let’s check them out:
- Lower costs. Costs and expenses are the principal factors which determine efficiency. Expecting call centers to reduce costs is somehow counterintuitive, as you really have to tighten your belt to buy and maintain quality equipment. Doing things the virtual way, however, can cut your losses big time. Your call center will be managed without hardware installation, and you won’t have to upgrade backup in order to prevent data loss.
- No need to concentrate a large agent team in one location. Remote agents are a distinctive advantage of virtual call centers, once again guaranteeing serious savings on your account. Your agents can be at any geographical location – as long as they have internet connection on their devices, they will be a part of your team. Needless to say, call center software adds value to your talent haunting mission, enabling you to onboard talented people wherever they are.
- Improved security. Operating with data via call centers triggers serious security alerts, which makes reliable software the core of your business’s success. The thing virtual call centers offer (and which is not attributable to regular ones) is cloud backup, and a reliable provider which takes care of security protocols, compliance, and maintenance of the system.
- Flexibility. Call center software is out-of-the-box software, because it can do much more than managing calls and information. It is simple enough to be used by every agent, but designed to adopt multiple types of operations at the same time. The best thing, however, is customization: most call center systems are configurable to meet all sorts of organizational goals.
- Improved customer relationships. We live and work in a customer-centered world, not so much because of our will to serve clients, as because of the fact that they are willing to pay crazy amounts for better experience. Knowing how call centers dictate the quality of customers’ experience, we can’t deny the benefits such can have on our profitability.
- Outstanding productivity. Call centers are packed with useful features a traditional phone system cannot offer, as for instance auto-dialers, monitoring tools, time routing, prioritization, and call route matrices. Each system works on the base of KPIs (key performance indicators) to measure the productivity of each agent, and to reveal some real-time feedback on how customer support is really doing.
List of Call Center Software Companies
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FinancesOnline makes us of our special SmartScore™ mode to evaluate all the products in the Customer Support Software category to help you decide on the best possible software. It analyzes the following aspects: core functionalities, collaboration elements, custom elements, available integrations, intuitiveness, help & support, how secure a software is, support for mobile devices, general media ratings. As of now, Freshdesk is the leader in this category and we gave it the highest score in our tests. Following detailed examination it had the best results among its competitors and we strongly suggest that you include it as one of the options for your business.
A summary of the entire user satisfaction with the software in the Customer Support Software category calculated using our unique algorythm that gathers customer reviews, comments and opinions across a broad set of social media sites in order to help you make an educated purchase choice.
Every vendor in the Customer Support Software category will have a different set of pricing packages for its app and every package will include a unique group of tools. Below we list the general pricing for the most affordable plan offered for each product. Please note that advanced features may cost extra.
An overview of what type of devices and operating systems are supported by these B2B services in the Customer Support Software category, including mobile platforms and web-based solutions.
Check what languages and geographies are supported by the best B2B services in the Customer Support Software category, including services designed for international markets and created for multi-cultural groups of employees.
Examine what pricing packages are offered by the vendors in the Customer Support Software category to check which one fits your business requirements and expenses best. Note that some software can support free or freemium accounts for you to try out first.
A brief look at which groups of customers a specific B2B software in the Customer Support Software category is designed for, from small businesses and non-profits to big enterprises.