What is a Multichannel Cloud Contact Center?

A contact center is a customer service function that handles inbound and outbound interactions with customers. By its very nature a typical contact center is "multichannel" because they handle contacts in more than one channel, which can include phone, chat, email, social media and more. This distinguishes them from call centers, which only handle phone interactions. A multichannel cloud contact center has their contact center software, such as their automatic call distributor (ACD) and interactive voice response (IVR) system, in the cloud, hosted by a vendor such as NICE.

Being in the cloud offers multichannel cloud contact centers several benefits. In hosted cloud arrangements, contact centers typically only pay for the seats they're using, which is a cost-effective model for businesses with large, seasonal contact volume fluctuations. Additionally, multichannel cloud contact centers can worry less about technology, because that is the vendor's responsibility, and focus more on their core service functions. Cloud technology also enables agents to work at home, allowing multichannel cloud contact centers to tap into additional labor markets and offer their agents a nice perk, which helps reduce attrition and makes hiring a little easier.

However, being a multichannel cloud contact center has its drawbacks, related to the term "multichannel." Multichannel, in comparison to omnichannel, implies that the channels exist in silos, not allowing customers move across them seamlessly. For example, a customer might send an email about an issue and then, a week later, initiate a chat session to discuss that same problem with a chat agent. In a multichannel cloud contact center, the chat agent very likely won't have access to the email or even know it exists. This makes for a frustrating customer experience and causes agent inefficiencies. An omnichannel approach solves this through comprehensive integration across channels that enables the contact center to provide customers with the experience they expect.

How NICE is Redefining Customer Experience

NICE CXone is the industry’s only interaction-centric platform where channels, data, applications, and knowledge converge to improve customer experience at scale.

It is the leading, most complete and unified CX Platform on the market, used by thousands of organizations of all sizes around the world to help them consistently deliver exceptional customer experiences. CXone is a cloud native, unified suite of applications designed to help you holistically run your call (or contact) center operations.

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