In 2019, businesses and communication service providers (CSPs) continued to evolve their offerings and deliver value to their customers by integrating cloud-based communication capabilities into their product suites. As we anticipate what investments will impact businesses’ bottom lines in 2020, we are confident that innovations that facilitate global collaboration and enhance customer experiences will dominate the market.
Below are three enterprise communication trends we predict will empower businesses to lead and disrupt their respective industries in 2020.
- Enterprises will turn to global communication offerings.
Industry analysts have found that many global enterprises are just now awakening to the benefits of cloud-based telecom solutions. For example, the U.S. is currently one of the leading countries of adoption of cloud-based communications, yet it only has 18 percent market penetration. This small percentage illustrates the infancy of cloud communications adoption worldwide, as well as the emerging opportunity for communication service providers (CSPs).
As businesses look to evolve strategies and gain market share in 2020, considering partnering with a communication service provide that offers global cloud-based services will be a strategic move to reach new customers and optimize engagement. Flowroute, for example, offers the most expansive number of international DIDs on the marketplace – more than 160, with the UK leading in active numbers. Other providers will likely follow suit as they try to support businesses in gaining influence and increased market share of the emerging global cloud communications industry.
As a result, and in order to remain competitive in this industry, we forecast CSPs will form strategic partnerships with cloud providers that offer international numbers to help customers collaborate in the global business network.
- Collaboration tools will continue to leverage voice and calling features.
The size of the remote workforce continues to grow with more than two-thirds of people around the world working away from the office at least once every week, according to researchers. The trend of the growing remote workforce has made it critical for businesses to provide voice and messaging services that enable collaboration for their employees and customers, wherever they may be.
The long-term success of this emerging business ecosystem relies on global cloud collaboration tools. Enterprises must take their internal processes and external communication offerings to the cloud to support the changing needs of their employees and customers around the world.
Cloud collaboration tools such as MS Teams, Skype and Slack (among many others) are prioritizing the quality of cloud communication services to power the remote and increasingly global workforce. Benefits to using these tools are numerous. They help teams stay organized and connected by providing real-time updates and improved access to large files. Additionally, these tools are cost effective, easy to deploy and require little to no maintenance outside of regular software updates.
In 2020, we will see the impact of quality voice and calling capabilities enhance enterprise collaboration tools and partnerships with cloud-comms providers. We forecast that businesses that do not adopt expansive and adaptable collaboration tools will not be able to compete in the global economy.
- Contact centers will invest in omnichannel from the start.
Customer service is top of mind for companies looking to increase brand loyalty, considering 96 percent of consumers say that customer service is an important factor when determining if they will be loyal to brands.
Customers increasingly use multiple touch points or platforms (i.e. apps or websites) when interacting with a brand to buy a product. As new digital communications channels enter the mix, brands must evaluate every touch point of their business to ensure they provide a high standard of customer service. Fifteen years ago, the average consumer typically used two touch points when buying an item, with only 7 percent regularly using more than four. In 2016, consumers used an average of almost six touch points.
Providing access via multiple touch points used to be sufficient for a quality customer experience. Now, those touch points must work together to create a more holistic experience for consumers. Contact centers specifically must ensure that all touch points build on each other instead of being disjointed.
Consider a traveler booking a hotel. An omnichannel contact center has instantaneous access to a customer’s entire communication and purchase history with the company (i.e. through direct messages with a representative on Twitter, emails with a third-party travel site, phone calls, etc.). This history follows the customer as they interact with various points of the business and its representatives. Not only does this provide a streamlined customer experience (so a customer does not have to reiterate past interactions or booking details), but it also empowers business decision makers with data to make investments that will improve future service.
We predict that in 2020, more businesses will invest in telecom APIs to enhance omnichannel communications and WebRTC, with the objective to unify consumer touch points and improve overall customer experience and brand loyalty.
The market momentum that drove improvements in collaboration and customer experience in 2019 will continue to accelerate in 2020 as businesses look to deliver value to a more widespread customer base.
We predict enterprises and CSPs that can embrace global cloud communications, integrate voice and calling features into collaboration tools, as well as invest in omnichannel communication strategies will not only see a promising ROI, but will quickly gain market share in an increasingly competitive landscape.