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What are the Differences Between a Call Center and a Contact Center?

Published On March 8, 2021 | Last Updated March 9, 2021

The terms call center and contact center are commonly thrown around in the industry. But what are the actual differences between the two?

Channels which each system can handle are the main difference between a call center and a contact center. Call centers simply handle voice calls from a caller to an organization, whether it be inbound or outbound. On the other hand, omnichannel or multimedia contact centers can handle interactions from several communication channels to the organization.

At ComputerTalk, ice Contact Center can handle voice, IM, email, web chat, SMS, mobile application chat, video, social media posts, social media messages, and chatbots. Seamlessly switch between channels while contact center users continue using a single interface such as Microsoft Teams.

 Call center Contact center
Channels Voice Voice, Email, IM, Web Chat, SMS, Video, Social Media, Chatbots

Benefits of contact centers compared to call centers

Both call center and contact centers give organizations the ability to connect their users to customers and report, record, and manage all interactions with the power of ice. However, with an omnichannel solution, there are many benefits that contact centers offer compared to call centers.

Reduce training times with contact centers

With ice Contact Center, if you are using voice only and want to expand and connect multiple channels to your contact center, using ice will be easy for users. They will continue to use the same communication tools they are already familiar with. Media channels such as IM, web chats, SMS messages, and social media messages will be routed to the agents and handled on a single platform. This reduces the need to learn how to use multiple channels.

If you are not a ComputerTalk customer and want to move your call or contact center to ice, it will be easy for your users. They can handle all communication channels on one platform. No need to be using multiple pieces of software to handle different modalities.

Increase customer satisfaction and reduce wait times

ice offers multi-contact handling, so users can handle a call at the same time they would handle a web chat and an email. This can be configured to what works best with your organization. However, users cannot handle two calls at once! Having an omnichannel solution with multi-contact handling lets agents keep busy on multiple interaction or handling multiple tickets. Thus, a contact center solution can provide the ability to resolve more tickets in a shorter time period compared to a call center.

Increase flexibility

Organizations will have more flexibility with contact centers compared to call centers, since customer can reach out to organizations on their preferred communication channel. By offering more channels for customers to contact your organization, they are not forced into only using a single channel an organization offers. This makes it easier for customers to reach you as more channels are available. Although, there is an expectation that comes with certain channels (ex. customers may expect a 5-minute response with web chat and a 48-hour response with email). Overall, by offering an omnichannel contact center solution, organizations are unifying customer experiences across all touchpoints.

Keep up with industry trends and increase your competitive advantage

Voice isn’t ‘dying,’ but there are many statistics and reports of voice being a communication channel that has been slightly decreasing over the years. More and more users are interested in connecting to organizations with several other communication channels. Modalities such as web chat and social media have been seen a gradual increase. More and more millennials and gen-Z grew up utilizing technology in their daily lives and expect that organizations keep up with their needs.

Take advantage of artificial intelligence

Add artificial intelligence (AI) and increase automation across all media types to maximize contact center productivity and enhance the customer experience. AI can be used for voice (ex. voice bots), but many other types of contact center AI applications can be used to your advantage. Some examples include:

  • Analyze interaction texts with sentiment analysis
  • Automate messaging with chatbots and voice bots with no need for agent interactions
  • Break down language barriers with translation

Additionally, chatbots can prompt conversations with website visitors 24/7, 365 days a year to answer questions they have or perform self-service tasks. Customers can fluidly write their inquiries and they will get an instant response without needing a human on the other end. This saves users time from responding to repetitive and frequently asked questions.

In conclusion

I don’t know many people who look forward to reaching out to a contact center. But by providing outstanding customer services, you can deliver memorable experiences and gain repeat or long-terms customers.

ComputerTalk is here to help you transition into an omnichannel contact center. Regardless, if you only need to handle inbound and outbound calls, ComputerTalk’s ice Contact Center offers real-time monitoring, historical reporting, recording and media transcriptions, and much more.

Turning your call center into a contact center, opens the possibilities of having consistent customer experiences across multiple channels and increasing customer satisfaction.

Want to see if ice Contact Center is a good fit for you? Request a personalized demo today.


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