Digital Marketing: The contact center belongs at the center of your Voice of Customer program

So why do you think we call it the contact center, anyway?


One reason is because the contact center, which handles the frequent and direct interactions with customers, is uniquely positioned to serve as the central hub for enterprise-wide Voice of Customer (VoC) initiatives.


Contact_Center_Image.JPGWhile this observation might seem self-evident at first glance, there are many resource, process and technology challenges that make it difficult for organizations to fully embrace the strategic role that the contact center should fulfill when it comes to understanding our customers as well as we possibly can.


The good news is that HP Autonomy offers solutions to these challenges, and, in fact, I had the pleasure of recently hosting an HP Autonomy webinar on this very topic with my colleague, Steve Graff, Chief Technology Architect for our contact center management product HP Qfiniti: Put the contact center at the center of your VoC program (listen to the on-demand recording).


Let's start with three of the five business drivers that Steve and I identified in another webinar earlier this year (The future of the contact center is leaving now, which you can also access as an on-demand recording):


  1. Workforce Engagement -This business driver requires constant effort by your business to hire, train, and retain not only your contact center workforce but also employees across the enterprise. To successfully address this challenge, you must align your people, processes and technologies across teams and business groups. This alignment is critical in terms of providing a consistent experience of your brand to all of your customers.
  2. Customer Engagement - In the context of a VoC program, this business driver is self-evident, but let's broaden the scope of this challenge to include the imperative to differentiate your brand in the marketplace. This can only be achieved by developing a complete understanding of customer needs across each and every preferred interaction channeland then effectively tracking customer satisfaction metrics for every interaction.
  3. Big Data – This is not simply the business flavor of the day. It is a very real business challenge that changes everything about how we do business today. Only by managing the volume, the velocity and the variety of enterprise data can you realize a fourth and critically important Big Data 'V' the value embedded and very likely hidden in all that information.

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 The contact center is at the front lines of critical business drivers in today's marketplace, especially the three highlighted here: Workforce Engagement, Customer Engagement, and Big Data.


Yes, these are broad business drivers, but the contact center can, and should, serve as a focal point for bridging siloed teams who would all benefit from improved understanding of your customers.


Conducting post-call surveys is certainly one place to start. If you want to know your customers, you need to ask them for feedback on your services, products and support. HP Qfiniti's post-call Survey module can accomplish this easily with a robust survey tool that can be triggered either by an email for a Web-based response or post-call using IVR technology. Collecting data points on a scale like the Net Promoter Score (NPS) can go a long way to measure customer satisfaction. And our Survey module is an extremely effective tool when it comes to both workforce and customer engagement because the survey results are linked directly to the interaction with the agent.


If you really want to know your customers better, of course, you need to ask them why they scored their experience with a certain rating, which means that you need to offer your customers the opportunity to respond with verbatim answers either in the form of a text or voice response. This is where the challenge of big data and the explosion of capturing all that unstructured data becomes such a daunting task for any business.


The contact center can lead the way here, too.


At HP, we believe that Big Data changes everything. It is not just the business flavor of the day; it is a technology, process and resource challenge that impacts the very pragmatic business issues that companies face every moment of every day. In the contact center this is certainly true because of the enormous volume of unstructured data that is collected when recording phone calls, emails, chat sessions and agent desktop activity. Clearly your customers don't speak to you in the language of columnar databases.


Working with all of this unstructured data, or human information, presents its own set of challenges because this information is made up of ideas that have context, diversity, distance relative to other ideas, and which convey sentiment. Even more critical is the fact that valuable insight into your customers' behavior can only be discovered if you are able to understand the meaning contained in all of this human information.


The integrated HP Qfiniti product suite and HP Explore, our multichannel analytics tool, are engineered to work together in unlocking the value that might otherwise remain hidden in all of the human information gathered in the contact center. But don't isolate the value of this insight inside the contact center. Instead, consider these findings from a 2013 Forrester report, "The State of Customer Experience Management," which found that while 60% of companies do survey consumers to gather feedback about their interactions, only 33% analyze this data across organizational boundaries. It’s not only a data volume problem, but rather a data value problem, too. Imagine how much more valuable the voice-of-customer knowledge residing in the contact center could be if shared with other business groups such as marketing, sales and HR.


Solutions from HP, from call recording, workforce management, and multichannel analytics to archiving, storage and cloud technologies can position your contact center at the center of your broader Voice of Customer program where it rightly belongs.


I invite you to listen to the on-demand webinar I mentioned above, Put the contact center at the center of your VoC program, to hear more details on this topic.


Learn more about HP Qfiniti 10, the latest release of our next-generation workforce optimization solution, at


And learn more about HP Explore, our advanced multichannel analytics tool, at





Read more articles from our product experts:

Why you should attend #HPEngage14. by Jeff Westover
Digital Marketing: Leveraging the HP MediaBin APIs: Part 4 – Asset Metadata by David Roy
Digital Marketing: Time for Finance to Invest in Optimization? Customer Experience Depends on it. by Jenny Ryan

LesleyDunn | ‎10-18-2014 06:15 AM

Excellent summary.  The Contact Centre is critical for organizations to offer their clients a seamless, consistent and joined up multi-channel personalised service. 


In Financial Services in particular with regulatory drivers such as the Dodd Frank regulated content, the contact centre is a critical part of the information compliancy and archiving requirement.

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About the Author
Henry Eakland joined HP Autonomy in April 2012 and currently works as Director Product Marketing for HP WFO Software, which provides workfor...

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