7 Limitations of Single-Channel and On-Premise Contact Centers


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Friday, April 15, 2022

While the contact center has always been at the heart of customer service, its role within the business and the demands of customers have changed.

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7 Limitations of Single-Channel and On-Premise Contact Centers
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Research from PWC found that 82% of US customers expect and demand more human interaction going forward, and organizations need to find effective ways to deliver this to keep them satisfied.

The future of effective customer experiences lies in delivering interactions to customers when and where they expect them. Being available is one part of this, but beyond that, it’s about tailoring your interactions and communications to the customer’s specific needs.

On-premise contact center arrangements can seem like a good idea, but they come with significant limitations. Most on-premise contact centers are primarily focused on single-channel communications, usually via telephone, and this simply doesn’t meet the modern consumer’s needs.

People are used to communicating in a wide range of different ways, using various technologies. In any given hour, they may send a text to a friend, book a restaurant via telephone, and enquire about a booking over Facebook Messenger or Whatsapp. Modern consumers are used to switching between these communication methods, and omnichannel communication is an expectation in the modern world, not simply something to aim towards.

In order to keep up with the demands of the modern consumer, businesses need to adopt the same approach to their communications, and abandoning traditional and on-premises contact centers is the first step.

Here are seven limitations of on-premise contact centers holding businesses back from effectively communicating with modern customers.

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1. Flexibility

On-premise often means your contact center is in the same location as your office or very nearby. However, once sales representatives and customer service agents are off-site, they’re fully disconnected from the workplace. As a result, they lose access to all the tools they need to operate effectively.

In an increasingly remote or hybrid-led approach to work, on-premise call centers don’t meet the needs of the modern work environment. On-premise contact centers also require regular maintenance, installation, and support to manage the hardware. This is a further limit on flexibility as you can’t simply upgrade without high cost.

2. Hardware

Once you’ve invested in the hardware for your contact center, it can be difficult to scale up or upgrade without significant cost. Relying upon on-site hardware also increases the risk of damage. If an integral part of your contact center hardware is damaged, it can put your entire system offline and result in significant downtime for your customers.

3. Mobility

Customer service agents must remain and work on-site when utilizing an on-premise contact center. As well as agents, you’ll also need on-site supervisors and management to monitor and report.

Cloud-based contact center solutions allow employees to work from any location. They run on the internet and will enable employees to log on from any location and deliver the same quality level of service. In comparison, the lack of mobility offered by on-premise setups is a serious limitation.

4. Integrations

API integrations are an important element of any functioning contact center as they make streamlining workflows much easier. API integration allows agents to log into a single system and check on all relevant applications. On-premise solutions offer API capability, but this usually requires advanced technology, and developer knowledge that may not be commonplace in your organization. Cloud-based contact center platforms like make integration easy and intuitive.

5. Staffing

All on-site technologies and hardware in your business require qualified technical assistance and staff. On-premise contact centers require the relevant IT staff to keep them running and effective. This means investing in your IT team and hiring suitably qualified individuals to take care of the technical side of the contact center. This once again can get expensive very quickly, especially when compared to a cloud-based platform that is both easy to use and get used to and has highly qualified technically trained staff of their own—often available for support 24/7.

6. Disaster recovery and management

In the unfortunate event of a disaster or accident at your premises, your on-premise contact center can be put out of action. Anything from fire to flood to theft can directly affect your telephone lines and connectivity, leaving your contact center offline and your customers unable to get in touch. Cloud-based solutions aren’t geographically tied to your premises, and their backup servers are as robust and effective should a highly unlikely disaster impact their data center headquarters.

7. Pricing

One key limitation of on-premise contact centers is how costs can quickly mount. To begin with, there’s the significant outlay for the premises to house the contact center, the hardware purchase, and then installation and maintenance of said hardware. You also have to consider staffing costs to maintain the contact center and further increases in spending when it needs upgrading or updating. It’s very hard to budget for your on-premise contact center as the costs are not predictable.

Cloud-based solutions are transparently priced, and it’s clear to see the exact price you’ll be paying. Additionally, you can change your budget to a specific price point if you wish to scale up or scale down your operations.

Embrace scalability and flexibility with cloud contact centers

While the idea of on-premise contact centers feels reliable and robust, they come with many limitations. Most businesses operating under this model are still committed to the “call center” approach to customer service, while a modern contact center has to reach far beyond this.

With a cloud-based contact center platform, you can access telephony, instant messaging, email, and other communications methods to match the omnichannel requirements of the modern consumer. In addition, the seamless nature of an effective cloud contact center solution ensures employees quickly get to grips with managing multiple communications channels.

Learn more: https://www.ringcentral.com/effortless-customer-engagement.html

Cloud-based solutions grow with your business and allow the level of flexibility that satisfies both your customers, your employees, and your organization as a whole.

Further reading


RingCentral, Inc. (NYSE: RNG) is a global provider of cloud enterprise unified communications and collaboration solutions. More flexible and cost-effective than legacy on-premise systems, RingCentral empowers today’s mobile and distributed workforces to be connected anywhere and on any device through voice, video, team messaging, collaboration, SMS, conferencing, online meetings, contact center, and fax. RingCentral provides an open platform that integrates with today’s leading business apps while giving customers the flexibility to customize their own workflows.


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