A new year always brings with it an opportunity to reset, reevaluate, reassess, or any other “re” word that might fit here. For contact centers this reexamination (I knew I could come up with another one) is no different. At the beginning of each of the last three years, I’ve teamed up with Art Schoeller from Forrester Research (BTW, Art is a really smart guy) to look at the hot trends in the contact center space and what those trends might mean for businesses who have deployed contact centers as a way to interact with their customers. The on-demand version [...]
Today, the term “cloud” seems to permeate every discussion and every bit of writing on the subject of contact center and business communications. It is the fastest growing segment of those industries by a long shot. Well-respected analyst firm, DMG Research, recently published in their comprehensive 433 page Cloud-Based Contact Center Infrastructure Market Report, that the cloud contact center market will grow 45% in 2012. That compares with single digit growth for its premise-based counterparts. If you look just at Interactive Intelligence as an example, our cloud based contact center business has been the fastest growing segment of our business [...]
Did radio REPLACE newspapers? Did television REPLACE radio? Did email REPLACE the phone call? In each of these cases, the answer is no. The one didn’t replace the other, but in each case, the newer technology had an effect on the older technology and was part of an evolution of how we communicate.
So what is the next step in this ongoing evolution? As it relates to the contact center, I believe the answer lies in that device you have in your pocket… yes, the smartphone. The latest mobile devices (that continue to evolve at a torrid pace) have so much [...]
This post has nothing to do with technology. However, it has everything to do with the success of the contact center. After all, the contact center’s value is based on the customer experience it is able to deliver. And often times, that experience comes down to the performance of the agent.
In a recent experience with a contact center agent, I asked her, "Can you tell me what my current interest rate is on the credit card." With an enthusiastic, cheery tone that would typically be used to tell someone that they had just won the lottery, she said, [...]
Starts and stops…more starts…more stops. That is what multi-named hosted, on-demand, or cloud-based computing and communications has seen since the early 90′s when the ASP (application service provider) was touted as a model to change technology forever. Well, here’s a new flash for you…this time it stuck!
Adoption rates of cloud-based communication services are growing fast. Some vendors of those services are posting order growth rates of more than 100% year/year. And the well-respected analyst firm Ovum shows premise-based contact center growth for the next five years of less than 3%, but growth of the cloud-based contact center market to be 17%-20% for that same period of time.
I went to Salesforce.com’s Dreamforce event a few days ago. It was a repeat for me as I also attended in 2010. What an event! Since I left I’ve been asking myself two questions. How did Salesforce pull this off? And, more importantly for you and me, why isn’t there a communications event like this?
So for the first question, let me start by pointing you to Nancy Jamison’s write up on the event, "Plenty for the Contact Center at Dreamforce ’11." A great summary. Thanks, Nancy. So how did they pull it off? Is it the San Francisco venue (they outgrew [...]
Just say the words "speech analytics" and you’re likely to cause many contact center managers and directors to cringe. The two things that come to mind, are in reality, the root of the problem. Traditionally speech analytics have suffered from two (or in this case "too") significant issues — too pricey and too complex.
To illustrate…I heard a company in Australia present recently. For their 100-agent contact center, the speech analytics product they purchased took nine servers, $60,000 in hardware, and $350,000 in software and services (there is problem one). After six months, it still isn’t implemented (there is problem two).
I’m going to tackle this topic in several installments (lest I get yelled at by the blog crew police for having a post that is too long). So here’s where I’m starting from…
Most contact centers that I visit….well….they "exist." What I mean is they do pretty much what they did yesterday, and the day before that, and the year before that. Not a lot of change. Plenty of ideas for change, but not much action.
Then there are the rare innovative ones. Those like Vegas.com, Phillips Medical, and Loan Depot, where everyday, the people at these contact centers wake [...]
A new year and a new set of challenges…and a new set of opportunities! You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who would disagree with the point that contact center technology, as well as the dynamics of delivering quality service, is changing at a rapid pace. The accelerated adoption of cloud-based solutions, the incorporation of social media into the multi-channel mix, the need to accurately capture the voice of the customer, new methods of measuring agent effectiveness…what will change in 2011 and how can you be ready?
Hopefully not breaking the blog crew’s rule of avoiding self-promotion, I’d like to [...]
I presented this week at Gartner’s Symposium/IT Expo (what an awesome event! 6500 attendees and nearly 2000 CIOs). I presented along with Erwin Thomas of Philips Healthcare on the subject of moving communications to the cloud. During my part of the presentation I covered some to the reasons that are compelling companies to switch from premised-based communication systems and move to communications as a service (CaaS) offerings. One of the reasons I gave was worded something like this:
"A migration to CaaS allows companies to push the IT responsibility to a third party and better focus on their core business." After [...]