What is a Virtual Call Center?
A virtual call center offers a business of any size a fully-featured IP phone system without representatives being located in one place. Phone calls can be directed to representatives across the globe, working from the comfort of their homes, without callers ever realizing they’re being directed to employees in separate locations.
Virtual call centers are used to provide customer service, technical support, event sign-ups, and other situations where operators are needed to man phone lines. The solution can also be used for outgoing calls, allowing a company’s telemarketers and marketing representatives to work from anywhere with an internet connection.
Even a business’s receptionist services can be routed virtually, opening up the possibility of hiring a receptionist to work offsite and accept and route phone calls.
You can get price quotes for a virtual call center by filling in our short form.
While virtual call center solutions can vary from provider to provider, they generally offer advanced call center features that can be managed through an internet portal. Each call center agent connects to accept calls either through a PC or VoIP phone set.
Features offered by this type of software generally include:
- Interactive Voice Response (IVR) - This feature allows menus to be set up to direct calls to specific people or departments.
- Virtual Queuing - Gives callers the option to leave a number and receive a callback when an agent is available.
- Management Tools - Supervisors are given access to monitor and control team activities, making it easier to manage employees located offsite.
- CRM Integration - Connect call software to existing CRM solutions to automatically log data on each call that comes through.
- Call Recording - Each call can be recorded for quality control purposes.
- Historical Reporting - In call center management, the ability to capture data on call volume trends is essential to future resource planning.
In switching to a virtual call center, businesses often weigh the benefits against a traditional phone system. A virtual system offers the following advantages:
- Lower Initial Cost - A traditional phone system generally requires a fairly large up-front capital investment, making it demanding on a business’s budget.
- Reduced Operating Cost - virtual call center solutions usually charge a monthly per-user fee that is significantly cheaper than the per-line charges traditional phone providers bill.
- Remote Access - The ability to allow staff to work from anywhere gives businesses the opportunity find the best talent, regardless of location. Businesses also save money on office space.
- More Flexible - A virtual call center can adapt to company changes, allowing for updates as a company grows. If a new employee needs to be added, the business can often do so from the console. Traditional phone companies require a request for these changes that can take extra time.
American businesses have a wide selection of providers to choose from, including:
- 8x8 - In addition to a full suite of features, 8x8 gives managers four 1.5-hour training sessions to familiarize them with the app’s features. Pricing is provided on a personalized basis.
- Five9 - Since 2001, Five9 has worked to change the face of contact centers through providing cloud-based software. Annual and month-to-month pricing is available.
- Genesys - Genesys provides cloud virtual call center services to mid-sized and large businesses with personalized IVR, call monitoring, and many other features.
- Mitel - Mitel’s MiContact Center has solutions for businesses of all sizes, with separate solutions geared toward workgroup contact centers, small formal contact centers, teams focused on outbound calls, and more.
Many businesses have seen the benefits of using these services, including iCruise, a leading provider of cruise sales.
By switching to 8x8, the company was able to save money and strengthen their customer relationships.
Companies of all sizes can use virtual call centers to create enterprise-grade call center solutions for a fraction of the price. There are lots of software providers currently offering a number of different flexible solutions to suit businesses working across all industries.
These solutions are completely scalable, so for many businesses there is no need to ever revert to a traditional model with a large call center in one physical location. The virtual model is future proof and makes the most sense.