In today’s always-on, hyper connected business environment, customers are beginning to demand that products and services – and customer support – are delivered seamlessly and (almost) instantaneously. In an era in which a great deal of information can be delivered via a simple click of a mouse or tap on a screen, there is little patience for dropped calls or long lead times.

Fortunately, businesses are increasingly able to meet this demand for instant feedback and support. By accessing the Cloud and harnessing converged networks, they are able to provide a host of real time services to customers and clients. Equipped with instant views of critical data and activity, businesses can now provide a far quicker and more efficient service than ever before.

Within call centres, for example, when a customer calls in with a query about an account balance or payment, the agent can immediately open an application with the relevant information – which is up to date – and deliver feedback right away. In previous years, the agent would most likely have had to place the customer on hold – or even call him/her back at a later stage. In addition, instead of having to wait until the end of the month in order to review things like call histories, agents can get immediate and up-to-date views of reports – and then provide the required feedback or support.

From a company’s perspective, real time services also enable employees to flag potential problems more easily, and ensure that controls are in place. For example, when call centres receive abusive calls that end up sapping time and money, they can immediately flag them down and deal with the issue – before any wastage occurs. Without this real time view, however, such an abusive call would only have been detected at month-end…and after the fact. In short, companies can avoid incurring certain expenses by having a more accurate, and real time view of activity.

It also enables them to guard against the evil of lost business due to dropped or unanswered calls. For example, with a real time view of where incoming calls are sitting – and their status – companies can lighten the load on an overwhelmed receptionist and immediately direct calls to the appropriate agent or department. In addition, they can also quickly review unanswered calls and track potential new business that might otherwise have been lost.

By harnessing the many benefits of real time services over a converged network, companies can ultimately achieve better business outcomes – and retain customers in an environment in which great customer service is more critical than ever before.