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Contact Centers Rapidly Abandoning On-Premises Technologies According to Survey

Evolve IP announced the results of its annual North American Contact Center Survey, providing key insights into the contact center market landscape. The starkest findings of the survey indicate that a period of rapid adoption and evaluation of cloud contact center solutions is underway:

  • 31% of contact center respondents have already moved their service to the cloud – an increase of 6.5 points in the last year.
  • 89% of on-premises contact centers plan to evaluate a cloud service; of those, nearly seven in 10 (68%) will do so in the next 18 months.

Additional findings note that software-driven technology needs such as omnichannel, and CRM integration are top investment priorities in 2019. Additionally, an overwhelming majority (92%) desire a unified contact center, where both the PBX and Contact Center technology are from a single technology provider, versus a PBX overlay where two separate technology providers are involved.

Contact centers are undergoing rapid change driven by technological and demographic transformations. With dramatic shifts in preferred customer contact channels such as chat, email, and text, organizations have been forced to adopt new solutions to maintain excellent customer experiences. Meanwhile, business leaders now recognize that the contact center is a primary point of brand differentiation and are demanding greater levels of insight gathered at the point of customer interaction. Accordingly, the top three features contact center leaders desire are: 

  • omnichannel capabilities (40%) 
  • business intelligence (31.5%)
  • speech analytics (26%)


According to the survey’s respondents, their biggest concerns are insufficient reporting and analytics with just over 6 in 10 rating it from “challenging to extremely challenging.” The second biggest struggle is finding ways to reduce costs where 20% found it to be “very to extremely challenging” and another 37% found it “challenging.” Enabling remote agents was the third biggest concern with 18.5% noting it to be “very to extremely challenging” and 14% noting it as “challenging.”

Additional Survey Highlights

  • 70% of contact centers faced compliance issues with HIPAA (36%), PCI (34%) and SOX (21%) as the top requirements.
  • Despite all of the buzz in the market around chatbots, just 12% of contact centers plan to invest in the technology in 2019.
  • Top Investments in 2019are CRM integrations (33%), Omnichannel (26%), and Business Intelligence / Reporting (25%).
  • Downtime often results in lost revenue and brand loyalty erosion. However, the survey found that failures are frequent with six in 10 contact centers reporting downtime in the last 12 months.
  • Total Cost of Ownership is a much bigger issue for on-premises contact centers with three times as many respondents noting the concern compared to cloud solutions.

The blind, web-based survey was conducted by Evolve IP in the fall of 2018 and featured 163 respondents in North America who are directly involved in managing the operations of their organization’s call or contact center. 

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