Global business has yet to recover from the 2008 recession, and local business continues to battle with a volatile currency that makes imported goods very expensive. In such an environment, and with their balance sheets under pressure, many companies see disaster recovery for their contact centres as area that can be underfunded.
Nothing could be more ill-advised, says Rudy Sutton, solutions architect at ContinuitySA, Africa’s premier provider of business continuity management services. “Your contact centre is your lifeline to customers and business partners, to compromise its ability to recover from a disaster would itself be disastrous, and would threaten the company’s business continuity—something that boards are focusing greater attention on these days.”
Sutton offers a tip for helping business continuity managers navigate cost-cutting directives when it comes to the contact centre: Don’t be blinded by big brands. He argues that too many corporates and their IT departments tend to equate functionality with big brands.
“Actually, the up-and-coming brands frequently offer a greater range of functionality than their more established competitors,” he says. “Nowadays, it’s often the case that a Korean automobile offers the same features (or better) than a much more expensive German vehicle. What’s important is the functionality, not the name. Modern manufacturing techniques are driving the prices of anything with a technology component lower all the time.”
It’s true that many corporate employees rely on big brands to provide, in themselves, justification for any purchase. There’s very good reason for the quip, “Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM.”
Still is there some truth in the assumption that big brands do have better performance values, and stand by their guarantees?
Sutton believes not, and says that companies need to do their homework by accessing test and technical information that shows performance levels. “The newer brands typically offer better guarantees and better service because they are building their reputations,” he notes.
Another benefit is that these up-and-coming brands often offer better, more streamlined training, meaning that obtaining product certification is both quicker and less expensive.
“Your contact centre is a vital part of your business,” Sutton concludes. “Don’t let a preoccupation with big brands create a reason to compromise your disaster recovery plans for it.”