After a long and painstaking process to acquire the perfect contact center technology, it’s really tempting to just let the IT department get it up and running as quickly as possible. But if you want to reap the rewards of all that hard work, you’ve got to take the time and commit the resources to do it right.
Here’s our top 10 contact center technology implementation tips:
- Establish a cross-functional project team. IT and Ops will play important roles, but HR, training, change management, procurement/contracts, and subject matter experts (SMEs) from other areas of your business may have valuable input.
- Negotiate a comprehensive vendor Statement of Work. Nail down the roles and responsibilities and the process that you’ll follow. Keep negotiating until you arrive at final pricing.
- Define clear operational requirements. Be specific about the efficiency, process or service improvements that you expect. Share your expectations with the vendor.
- Use a consultative design approach with thorough reviews. Get the vendor on site to work with you interactively. Discuss options and possibilities. Don’t assume that the vendor already “gets it.” Iterate as necessary.
- Prepare your facilities and infrastructure. Get clear on all of the requirements and build in sufficient lead time to install and test.
- Plan for and set up a robust training and testing environment. Make it as close to the production environment as possible. (Make sure you have the licenses to support it.)
- Train users and administrators. Include the process changes that will accompany the technology. Use real world examples; skip features/functions that don’t apply. Complete the training as close to system implementation as possible.
- Conduct thorough testing. Consider all applicable test types and assign responsibility and time frames for creating and executing test plans. Don’t assume that the vendor will take care of it for you.
- Conduct thorough cutover planning. Develop a day-by-day, detailed schedule of events that minimizes service interruption and places the right resources at the right place at the right time.
- Pilot and then roll out to full production. Choose a pilot group to wring out the last of the technology and process issues in a “live” environment. Document and track findings. Have a roll out plan – by site, functional group, call type, etc – that will go into effect once the pilot is deemed a success.