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A Year of Lockdown for Mission Labs: What Have We Learned?

A Year of Lockdown for Mission Labs: What Have We Learned?

When the UK went into lockdown following the spread of COVID-19 in March 2020, few expected it to last as long or have as great an impact on all the ways we do things. A year after the pandemic hit, Mission Labs have witnessed immense changes to not just our business, but our industry and the world we operate in.

The advent of social distancing and the need for new, faster ways of communicating have accelerated certain trends and transformed the trajectory of some businesses. Mission Labs have been at the heart of an industry in flux. Our business has itself changed in drastic ways as we continue to bring the future forward faster than ever.

Here, we reflect on what the last year of lockdown has meant for both Mission Labs and our industry.

MF - ML Blog Lockdown

Cloud Comms Over the Horizon.

The world was already waking up to the power of cloud technology before pandemics and social distancing were imaginable. The way our lives have changed has had a huge impact on how businesses communicate and operate, highlighting the necessity of the cloud and accelerating its usage.

Cloud technology has been required for many industries to adapt in lockdown. The telephony industry is no different. Mission Labs have seen clients, from enterprise to public sector to charities, leave their limiting legacy systems and embrace cloud communications and telephony in order to provide quality services, supporting customers remotely.

Connect blog image 1 - call centre

But this has not just been a means for businesses to simply continue what they were doing so they could survive the lockdown crisis. Many have made big leaps into the future by embracing the power of cloud technology, leading to greater efficiency, lower costs and happier stakeholders. Cloud tech solutions have proven to be more than a lockdown lifejacket for telephony companies; cloud comms is now steering the ship for the industry, making cloud-based contact centre businesses a certainty for the future.

Continued understanding of automation’s advantages will see even more accommodation of machine technology. Contact centre businesses that understand the power of automation can use it to transform their operations and make life easier for everyone from customers to agents to managers. Mission Labs believe meaningful automation of contact flows can bring huge benefits to businesses; we expect to see more and more clients make the most of our robotics solutions in 2021.

ML Blog Automation img 2

Mastering the cloud on an omnichannel basis will be a further key to success for cloud-based contact centres. Using a traditional single channel, such as voice, is expected to become increasingly detrimental for contact centres - as customers use a variety of communication methods and expect ever faster services, the demand for more options that satisfy customers will only increase. Maximising the potential of voice, chatbots, instant messaging and other channels for the best omnichannel solution to suit your customer will make your contact centre stand out this year and beyond.

These dramatic changes will make it more important than ever for contact centres to focus on two things: customer experience (CX) and agent experience (AX). Contact centres that decide to incorporate automation or new channels should always keep the customer at the centre of their decision-making. CX will remain the most important part of any company’s future-proofing strategy. Similarly, remote working has meant unexpected jumps to the cloud have a big effect on the way agents work day to day. Contact centres can make significant changes to improve agent experience and wellbeing, ultimately helping their business. Mission Labs’ SmartAgent product is designed to make life easier for agents and journeys better for customers - we believe more and more businesses will turn to products like SmartAgent to optimise their AX.

SmartAgent QA blog graphic

AWS continues to lead the world in its ambitious, resourceful approach to changing cloud technology. Amazon Connect remains the best platform for building cloud-based contact solutions; with a number of exciting new features coming this year, it promises to bring even more potential to businesses through the cloud. Working with Mission Labs to implement Connect and other AWS services will ensure this proven, impactful technology is set up to make the biggest difference possible to your business outcomes.

A Stellar Year For Mission Labs.

In the end, lockdown proved life-changing for our startup from Rossendale.

We were able to expand our work with public sector organisations dramatically during the pandemic. From gaining Approved Supplier status with the Crown Commercial Services G-Cloud 12 Framework in September 2020, to joining the Digital Outcomes & Specialists 5 Framework in January, our credentials as a provider to the public sector have never been stronger. Our success in helping public sector organisations like Hackney Council to assist their citizens throughout the pandemic, not only showed the potential cloud solutions have to help people, but proved the efficacy of our work.

AWS Advanced Partner

We were also proud to support the third sector as the pandemic took hold in 2020 by offering free and discounted services to UK based charities. Our CircleLoop product was available to any schools, healthcare providers and charities that could benefit from the cloud-based phone system, including those in Ireland following CircleLoop’s expansion there in August. We were delighted to see CircleLoop be used by so many, but were especially pleased to see it support the essential organisations that kept working through the pandemic.

CirceLoop Blog Graphic Landscape

Our relationship with AWS and partner status also developed - we went from not only being an Amazon Connect Service Delivery Partner (SDP), but joined fewer than 10% of AWS Partners globally by becoming an Advanced Consulting Partner in January 2021. This is testament to our ever-increasing expertise with implementing AWS and Connect, which we will continue to harness for building the very best cloud solutions for our clients.

Despite the difficulties of adapting to lockdown, our business has done more than adapt. Our staff has doubled in size and we’ve been delighted to successfully onboard so many people remotely. To support the team, we have introduced a number of wellbeing initiatives and held internal events like our Hackathon to maintain morale and inspire our colleagues.

After 12 months, we find ourselves poised for even more achievements. After being acquired by Gamma in February, we now face a new period of exciting growth and further success.

Everyone at Mission Labs is not just relieved to have made it through a year of lockdown, but optimistic about what the coming year will bring as part of a dynamic company in a fast-growing industry. As the world emerges from lockdown and reflects on how it’s changed, we continue to look forward and commit to bringing the future to more businesses and customers than ever.

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