01Feb, 2018

Contact Centre Solutions

How to turn your contact centre into your competitive advantage

Contact centres are a tangible driver of customer value and a key component of the customer experience. They are still the primary destination for customers to find support despite the growing use of online chat, support forums, mobile payment and other online tools that help walk customers through their customer journey.

Companies that create an exceptional contact centre experience can set themselves apart from their competition. But what constitutes an exceptional experience? What do customers expect from their interactions with contact centre agents? The modern consumer has higher expectations than ever before, and the expectations on agents – to improve efficiency, reduce average handling time and provide a secure and seamless payment experience – are high. But all of this is difficult to achieve without the right technology.

Customers and agents want to spend less time on the phone

Reduction in call handling time is not only important to contact centres, but to customers as well. Over an 8-hour shift, agents are expected to handle between 50 and 80 calls. But call handling time reduction can be difficult to achieve as some payment systems disconnect the customer from the agent to take payments.

Technology such as recording solutions that pause and resume the call or IVR systems that route the customer to an automated system can adversely affect call recording quality and disconnect the customer from the agent at a critical stage in the customer payment process. This frustrates customers. At any sign of difficulty, they are likely to drop out, hang up or abandon the sale entirely.

More advanced solutions such as IPSI’s AgentSecure service ensures that the customer and the agent stay connected, with payment information entered securely and efficiently via the customer’s phone. The agent can see when the information is entered, but the data is masked so that the agent cannot record it. This takes the agent out of the PCI DSS compliance scope, reducing a company’s fraud exposure while also reducing call handling as the customer is responsible for entering the payment data, so data entry errors are less likely to occur.

Customers prefer brands that keep their credit card information secure

Customers are more aware of data security than ever before and 2018 was a watershed year for security awareness both in Australia and overseas.

In Australia, the Notifiable Data Breach Scheme came into effect on 22 February 2018. The European General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) will begin on 25 May 2018.

Both sets of regulations impose strict laws for data protection and notification requirements to certain organisations in the event of a data breach. It is likely that in 2018, data breaches will gain significantly more public attention from negative publicity, which will then lead to customers’ heightened expectations for contact centres to secure credit card data.

Research indicates that only 5% of customers believe that paying via a contact centre is secure, especially when contact centres expect customers to provide credit card details verbally over the phone.

As public awareness grows, customers will fast become reluctant to share their credit card details verbally, and contact centres without adequate security will have difficulty achieving and maintaining security (PCI DSS) compliance and customer trust. To achieve it, they need to ensure that no credit card data is seen, heard or processed through contact centre agents and the information never enters the contact centre environment.

Customers are then able to make a choice. Do they stay a customer, or do they find a competitor that cares about securing their sensitive financial information? As a knowledgeable, security-conscious customer, they’re likely to do the latter.

Protect your contact centre against organised crime

Because contact centre agents handle more sensitive customer data than other types of employees, they have become the target of organised crime groups.

Crime gangs recognise that contact centre agents can potentially get access to credit card details. There have been instances where organised crime groups have placed people within call centres with the specific purpose of stealing customer data.

But this risk is eliminated if systems are in place that prevents sensitive customer data entering the contact centre – as then neither contact centre agents nor crime gangs will have any data to access. All data will be secured outside the contact centre, making it impossible for data to be stolen.

Make collecting payments secure to win customers

Your contact centre is now critical to the customer experience, and the challenges of meeting PCI DSS requirements, legacy payment solutions and customer expectations are real for contact centre managers. Collecting credit card payments securely must now be a priority to reduce the risk of a data breach, negative brand exposure or fines from the card schemes or the Privacy Commissioner.

AgentSecure is a PCI DSS compliant, secure payment solution for contact centres that has the capability to take agents out of PCI DSS compliance scope, reduce call handling time and integrate easily with existing telephone and payment service providers.

For customers, it reduces call-handling time, ensures they stay connected with agents throughout the call and removes the need to verbally provide credit card information during the payment process. This ensures customer service and payment success rates are maximised.

It’ll ensure customers peace of mind in terms of security – and yours in terms of keeping customers while reducing your companies’ exposure to fraud.

For more information about the AgentSecure service call us on 1300 975 630.


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