Zoom brings its video service to the contact center

Zoom has launched a contact center-as-a-service product focused on providing video calling to a growing number of companies looking for more visual interaction with customers.

Zoom’s Contact Center, available this week in the United States and Canada, also offers voice calls with SMS messaging and web chat in beta. Because Zoom hasn’t finished the last two, companies in need of capabilities now are likely to look elsewhere or consider the Contact Center to supplement what they have, says Beth Schultz, an analyst at the research firm and Metrigy.

“Video isn’t enough,” he said. “[Zoom] will need to switch quickly to some of those features [Contact Center] nothing yet. “

However, video is one of the top three contact center technologies companies plan to implement this year, according to Metrigy. A survey in February of 1,846 businesses found that 75% will use video or will do so by 2023.

Organizations that use Zoom to build a relationship with customers and help them solve problems include financial services, health care institutions and companies that provide tutoring services, said Heidi Elmore, chief of Zoom’s UC as a service business.

Zoom Contact Center
Zoom’s recently released contact center product allows customers and service agents to interact with a company’s website.

“What we’re trying to do with Zoom Contact Center is take the same app that people know and want and add contact center agent and supervisor capabilities to it,” Elmore said.

Contact Center capabilities include a drag-and-drop designer for an automated telephony system that directs calls to the agent with the right skill set. The software also has supervisor tools, which allow managers to monitor agent productivity.

Zoom plans to update the Contact Center with integrations for workforce management, electronic health records and customer relationship management software. The Contact Center has Salesforce integration in beta at launch, with plans to support Zendesk, ServiceNow and Dynamics 365 for six months.

The Contact Center, which costs $ 69 per customer service agent, is launching Zoom in a market that research firm Fortune Business Insights expects to grow to $ 56 billion by 2027. However, Zoom faces many competitors, including Genesys, CXOne of Nice and Five9.

Last year, Zoom tried to acquire Five9 for $ 14.7 billion. However, that purchase fell under national security scrutiny at Zoom’s product development operations in China. Five9 shareholders canceled the deal because they believed the offer was too low.

“Parang [Zoom] Offering their own Contact Center is a second best initiative [to an acquisition]”said Dan Miller, an analyst at Opus Research.

Zoom aims to offer its CCaaS product while maintaining existing partnerships with contact center providers Genesys, Five9, Talkdesk and Twilio.

Mike Gleason is a reporter covering unified communications and collaboration tools. He previously covered communities in the MetroWest region of Massachusetts for Milford Daily News, Walpole Times, Sharon Advocate at Medfield Press. He also worked for newspapers in central Massachusetts and southwestern Vermont and served as a local editor for Patch. He can be found on Twitter at @MGleason_TT.

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