We are getting technical again this month, but no apologies – this blog gets to the heart of some key business issues facing all users of contact center systems.

As contact center cloud offerings expand, customers are being given toolsets that allow them to script their cloud contact center behaviour, or so it may seem.

The leading cloud providers have to offer lowest-common-denominator functionality in order to make their cloud offerings simple enough to work at scale.

This creates a landscape where it is very easy to throw together a simple solution for a contact center project, but means that modelling real-world contact center flows using this sort of tool requires a lot of additional integration effort.  Good for the cloud providers who create 'stickiness' for their customers by forcing investment in integration, but not so good for contact center operators who need to model detailed business processes for corporate end-users, and do so quickly in order to secure projects and turn a profit.

Scripting requirements for customers, beyond mom and pop shops, is the same whether on premise or in the cloud.  Here is our shopping list of requirements:

  • One application for all workflows; voice, dialog tree for bots, IVR, session routing.
  • Extensibility.  The scripting framework should allow you to build your own re-usable building blocks.
  • Reuse.  Is the framework set up to enable discrete chunks of logic/UI/service interaction script to be packaged for reuse?
  • Easy break out to a programming language (eg Python, JavaScript, C#).  Yes you can produce a text parser to strip out keywords/account numbers using a drag-and-drop visual programming tool; if you have programming talent who can write these things as reusable code you should probably use this rather than build messy scripts.
  • Clean and secure deployment of scripts, library code and dependencies, with versioning.  When you have rich scripting, deployment requires more than sending a script document to the server.  The deploy mechanism needs to do logic checking to catch errors at deploy time instead of run time, and automatic packaging of dependencies to make the process easy.

And of course all of this has to be properly cloud-deployable.  The framework needs to be simple enough so that business level people can get to grips with scripting, but powerful enough to enable complex workflows to be built quickly.

Cloud vendors will seek lockin with their own simple scripting products.  But users with more complex requirements should also consider richer scripting environments, that will integrate with a variety of cloud offerings.

Never been given this advice before?  Not sure about it?  Feel free to drop us a line at info@sytel.com


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