Contact center technology sourcing decisions are not as simple as they used to be. The sourcing landscape includes a wide array of hosted services and support options that are as attractive to multinationals as they are to single site centers. The old saying, “Good, fast, cheap – pick two” may be gone. If you consider all of the options carefully, you may be able to have it all.
“Build or Buy” is becoming “Customize or Configure.”
Few organizations build applications from scratch anymore. Those with truly unique requirements generally buy applications and then customize them for a one-of-a-kind implementation. But the preferred approach is configuration – i.e., adjusting variable options within a pre-packaged solution to closely match the work environment. Fully featured solutions (“good”) with impressive configurability options (“fast”) are available off the shelf and requirement limited internal or external development resources (“cheap”).
“Premise Only” is becoming “Premise or Hosted”
Hosted solutions subsume software as a service (SaaS), cloud services and managed services. With their feature-rich applications, integrated network services, reliability guarantees and enhanced security capabilities, they’ve been able to put the “fast” in “good, fast, cheap.” Many are less invasive to existing applications and systems and can enable use of legacy systems, applications and databases without undue demand on IT.
“Suite” or “Best of Breed” is disappearing as an option.
The ends-of-the-spectrum are meeting in the middle. Traditional best of breed application vendors continue to add to their offerings to provide a complete suite of solutions. Traditional suite vendors continue to enhance their capabilities to close the gaps that drove larger organizations from the “suite” strategy.
Support choices can expand options.
Managed support is an option for premise or hosted solutions. Beyond providing access to the service applications, these providers offer a “human” service or the day-to-day and periodic operations, administration and maintenance of the application. These services can be a combination of those typically performed by IT and by the contact center internal support staff.
Collaboration yields the best decision.
Making the best technology sourcing decision requires a cross-functional team that includes all of the impacted business units plus IT. The choices have expanded and all are credible. The best solution depends on how IT functions and the relationship between IT and the business customers.
If you’d like help sorting through your contact center technology sourcing options – or you just need a sounding board for your assessment process – please contact us. We’d be happy to help!