Armenia’s Panorama.am news agency recently interviewed the head of Ameriabank’s Contact Center, Lilit Hovhannisyan. The full interview is below.
PANORAMA: What purpose did Ameriabank pursue when creating its Contact Center, what does it include?
LILIT HOVHANNISYAN: Given present-day developments, financial markets put forward new standards, and technological developments enable us to make our services more convenient and accessible for clients. I do believe that in the current competitive environment it is very essential to follow international best practices and implement new technologies in order to establish long-term partnerships with our clients, and this process should be as sustainable and intense as possible.
Today the client has a great deal of choice, and chooses the option which is convenient, provides a comprehensive solution and offers quick as well as affordable service.
Bearing in mind our aim of establishing long-term partnership with the clients, Ameriabank constantly offers innovations ensuring convenient and attractive terms for a top-of-the-line service.
A contact center is probably one of the most effective tools of servicing present-day financial clients. If we look at the history of development of the contact center concept, we will see that today “contact center” means not just phone support, but availability through all types of telecommunication means. In other words, by means of a multi-functional contact center we spare our clients both distance and time, becoming open and available with a whole range of services.
At present, Ameriabank’s Contact Center represents a system which incoperates all means of communication with clients: phone, electronic inquiries, web site, SMS, social networks, etc.
P.A.: What kind of technologies and innovations were implemented for the creation of this Contact Center?
L.H.: Ameriabank’s Contact Center runs Avaya solutions, one of the leaders on the international technological market specializing in the analysis of competition. Creation of a multi-functional Contact Center requires a very flexible program with all-around technology solutions enabling us to perform incoming call segmentation, online monitoring and control, as well as providing multiple possibilities for mass communication. We selected Avaya software because it provides the necessary comprehensive solutions for our contact center.
P.A.: What services does Ameriabank’s Contact Center currently provide?
L.H.: Telephone is no longer the only tool for providing mobile support, that is why at present Ameriabank’s Contact Center also uses other telecommunication means such as online chat, which enables the client to directly submit his questions and get answers via the bank’s web site; electronic inquiries and SMS, interactive voice response, etc. Ameriabank’s Contact Center is proactive, which means that apart from handling the clients’ inquiries, we are the one who initiates communication with the clients, provides them with information on various services of the bank while at the same time performing virtual sales.
Non-cash transactions are growing daily making it a pressing challenge to provide clients with maximum convenience when using card services and quickly solve any problem which may arise during the card usage. We offer our clients an unprecedented service on the Armenian financial market – the fraud monitoring function of our Contact Center which is 24/7 monitoring of all types of card transactions to identify and prevent fraud as soon as possible. We are available for our clients anytime and anywhere in the world.
P.A.: What competitive advantages does Ameriabank’s Contact Center have as compared to other similar services available on the market and what possibilities does it provide to its clients?
L.H.: First I would like to mention that contact centers are crucial for the development of any business since their function is to provide service availability 24/7, as well as time and cost savings. Given the current competitive environment, a professional contact center first of all ensures loyalty of our clients, availability and easy access for our services anytime and anywhere in the world.
From the operational efficiency point of view, it does not only result in significant cost savings, but also serves as a unique infrastructure to identify client needs on one-window basis and offering all-inclusive solutions covering a wide range of financial tools and services.
Another important advantage of a contact center is resource optimization which makes it possible to automate a great deal of similar activities and functions, assuring highly specialized servicing of clients, including sales options.
As I have already said, Ameriabank’s Contact Center is a 24/7 support system, and this, I believe, is a highly competitive advantage, especially given all possible card-related problems in different countries and in different time zones. No matter where our client is and what kind of card problem he or she has, they can call + 374 10 561111 anytime, and our specialists will always be there to help. I think this is already a breakthrough; however, we still work hard towards improving and further developing the capabilities of our contact center.
P.A.: Are you ready to adjust the Contact Center’s services to clients’ demands? What developments should we expect in future?
L.H.: In fact, all services implemented by Contact Center are based on clients’ requirements and needs. Our objective is to create a common service system enabling each client to choose his or her preferred way of service.
To make this possible we are currently working hard to implement mobile banking services and plan to launch it in the near future. This service will enable clients to execute any account transaction by means of a single call to the bank. Moreover, clients will no longer need to visit the bank to use its products, e.g. order a card, deposit, etc.
Now we strive to become a virtual branch to service each and every client anytime and anywhere in the world. In other words, we lift the restraints of both time and distance, meaning that the bank is there for the convenience of the client. This, I believe, will be a significant improvement in client servicing, when each client will be able to state that his Bank is always at his hand.