Most of us use video in personal and enterprise interactions, but how is video doing in contact centers? We are seeing growth in video as a channel within customer care world, both based on recent reports and deployments by Cisco customers. I think that’s good news.

Dimension Data’s 2016 global contact center benchmarking report shows that video as a contact center channel is growing.

video the new voice Ruch blog May 2016This is also the first year that Dimension Data have introduced branches and kiosks as a contact center channel that uses video in many use cases. This growth in video is showing not only on digital channels (web, mobile) but also in physical store and branch interactions as well. As per the report video as a channel grew close to 50% from 2015 to 2016.

Some recent examples of digitization of physical outlets include:

  • NationwideNow: Enables the close of mortgage sales in branch offices by providing access mortgage loan advisors via video
  • SBI Intouch: Delivers exciting new customer interaction experiences in the branch, including virtual advisors

video the new voice Ruch blog May 2016 Image bLikewise, although online video chat has been available for a few years, it’s only in about the last two years that we are seeing mainstream adoption cases. Today organizations are looking to scale their deployments from pilot projects to general availability.

In the past, most organizations considered video as a niche offering for contact centers. Many worried about the operational constraints of video (agent uniforms, office backdrops, special training, etc.) in addition to technical considerations. This is all changing now with the pivot of the contact center from a cost center to a profit center. Breaking silos in organizations–video the new voice Ruch blog May 2016 Image cresulting in partnerships between contact center and other business groups–enables adoption of new capabilities that can drive business outcomes.

Trends enabling video growth in customer-to-business interactions fall into two categories: technological or business transformation. Some of the technological trends that we are witnessing today include:

  • Broader adoption of WebRTC
  • Next-generation video endpoints
  • Availability of 4G
  • Advances in video-adaptive techniques
  • Technology quality improvements

On the business side, the trends are as follows:

  • The need for differentiation
  • Tracking new KPIs such as Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Effort Score
  • The shift in budget control between IT and other Business groups

Video in Contact Centers
Examples of use cases where contact centers are using video – and where we expect video will increase – include:

  • High-value transactions: wealth management, mortgage sales, etc.
  • Expertise-based interactions: education, telehealth, legal proceedings
  • “See what I see:” agents and customers share visual information instead of talking heads
  • Collaborative interactions: co-browse, form-fill, annotation, etc.

Video is the best way to have a great customer interaction that helps to build trust, gain context, and increase opportunity for upsell and cross sell. At the end of the day, not every interaction will use video. But there are use cases across verticals where it can be beneficial, including financial services, healthcare, government services, education, and manufacturing.

To accelerate the growth further, we need to continue to work together to remove any roadblocks, technological or business. The other focus is to drive great user experience and ease of use.

I look forward to feedback/comments and hearing about your experiences on this topic. Learn more about what Cisco has to offer with Cisco Remote Expert Mobile.


Ruchi Gupta

Senior Product Manager

Cisco Customer Collaboration