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When I first started in this industry a few years ago, one of the first questions that came to mind was the plausibility of outsourced support that featured a live video feed between consumer and agent.
One service delivery model I envisioned at the time had to do with paid search. I thought it would be revolutionary if, as a consumer, you were to scroll over a paid search engine advertisement- and there to assist you was a live person via a video window pop up. This person could invite you into their ecommerce store and could help with placing an order or provide customer service. I had not given this idea much thought recently until the beginning of the month when in the New York Times I discovered that Google was about to begin testing video ads on search results pages. Now this is not a live link to customer service agents, but I would argue it is definitely a step in that direction.
After reading the Times article, I decided to research ‘video support’ further and it turns out there is a formal term for this technology/service: ‘Interactive Voice and Video Response’. CosmoCom, a provider of contact center technology provides a video demonstration of this type of support here.
IVVR is apart of what industry experts are calling Call Center 2.0.
According to Technology Marketing Corporation (TMC) President Rich Tehrani‘video will play a huge part of call center 2.0. Call centers will video-enable themselves to increase the customer service of phone calls. In some cases conversations will be 2-way video enabled in other cases the benefits of having video calls will be so obvious that all call centers will scramble to show their agent’s faces.’
We have seen call centers become contact centers, and service offerings grow from simple phone support to email and live chat assistance options being available; I wonder if IVVR will be the next big step forward, and I look forward to hearing other people’s thoughts on the matter.
- Tim Peters