I just recently notched a second decade on my contact center leadership belt loop, and I’ve more than once been tasked with purchasing technology, including multiple CCaaS (Contact Center as a Service) solutions. I’ve also worked with many clients in an outsourcing relationship, helping to guide them through this process. Having seen this often enough, allow me to share a bit about how this usually plays out.
My typical CCaaS purchase process begins by building a spreadsheet with a list of required features. The list consists of our understanding of both the features our current solution offers, along with the additional items we wish our current solution offered. It might also involve some level of begging IT and other company leaders for their input with mixed success.
For some organizations, this might more closely resemble an RFP (request for proposal) process with an enormous list of questions requiring an entire army of employees at each vendor to complete. Good luck getting a timely response.
The next step involves a Google search or perhaps a desperate plea to my network on LinkedIn to find out the solutions others use. From there, time is spent poring over feature lists, both on vendor sites along with popular technology review sites to figure out which vendor is the best fit for us. This can be incredibly frustrating because no vendor will ever post what they can’t do on their website, and there’s often inconsistent formatting or nomenclature across the industry for certain features. And they almost never share their pricing publicly.
Next comes demos with highly motivated salespeople. And while the aim during the conversation is to check off all of the items on the requirements list, the salespeople either don’t know answers to certain questions, they aren’t completely truthful, or time runs out before they have to rush off to their next call. After narrowing the search, you eventually haggle on the price for a bit and then sign, or e-sign, on a dotted line.
What a fruitless exercise this is, all too often leaving us to make an educated guess and hope for the best. And how often do we spend the next several months second-guessing our educated guess? It doesn’t help when that salesperson no longer returns your calls and you’re left on your own to implement the solution.
If you’ve had similar experiences evaluating and buying CCaaS solutions, chances are that you too have wondered if there might be a better way.
Read the full article from Contact Center Pipeline here.