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Contact Center Solutions Week in Review

February 02, 2014

ITEXPO (News - Alert) this past week in Miami, FL had the look and feel of being a winter ground zero for what is abuzz in the contact center solutions community.  Not only were the latest and greatest solutions from our community’s major vendors and a host of aspirants on full display on the show floor, but there were several sessions of interest.

In fact, the sessions are not a bad place to start this week in review.  I will not steal the thunder from my colleagues’ coverage. I am sure the excerpts will entice you to read what our guest subject matter experts had to say.  Panel subjects included:

  • What's next for customer service?  Having gone multi-channel or in the process, what will be the impact of things like WebRTC and skills based routing that brings in a broader group of employees to interact with customers?  Read our “Editor’s Choice” to find out the answers.
  • Keeping the “care” in customer care. Context is becoming increasingly important in customer engagement.
  • "Best of All Worlds: New Face of Customer Service," focused on best practices for going social with customer interactions and the level of commitment required.
  • Customer interactions are more than just satisfying individual customer issues, they are also about brand stewardship and increasingly as ITEPO showed about both marketing—leveraging inbound and managing outbound correctly.
  • On the show floor Telax demonstrated its hosted contact center solutions.

Community host Interactive Intelligence had a big week on several fronts.  It reported another very strong quarter and continued to show the shift of next generation contact center interest in cloud-based solutions.  In addition, the company’s flagship Customer Interaction Center (CIC) has achieved certified integration with SAP customer relationship management (SAP (News - Alert) CRM) applications.

There was some interesting news in the M&A area with Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway company announcing it was buying MyAssist.

In other industry news there was a usual an eclectic mix of developments around the community and around the world.

  • OAISYS (News - Alert) recently awarded Solar Communications the 2013 Top European Partner Award.
  • Avaya (News - Alert) recently introduced the Avaya IP Office Contact Center for midsize businesses
  • Systems integrator NACR, who works with Avaya, has targeted the contact center as an area of growth with the announcement of it Service Delivery Practice
  • SDL debuted a new customer experience cloud solution to enable marketers to provide global customer experiences seamlessly via various channels in different devices and languages.
  • Home automation services company Vivant turned to Intradiem to improve the delivery of agent training.

There were two other items of interest that deserve notice. The first relates to the use of big data by retailers and how it is becoming part of a holistic look at customer experiences so that offers can be more personalized and agents can have better context about customer preferences.

I save this one for last because it is food for thought in thinking about resource allocation of social media expertise and how to leverage it.  There are significant differences in the nature of interactions on various social media and it should be noted that for the first time, Twitter now outranks Facebook (News - Alert) in social customer care queries according to the latest report from Socialbankers, provider of social media analytics.

Weekend reading  

A quick reminder, the links on the community home page can be invaluable and are constantly being updated with new eBooks, whitepapers, videos, demos, etc. Plus, for detailed information on specific areas of interest, our affiliated channels — Accounts Receivable Management, Business Process Automation, CaaS, Cloud-based Contact Centers and Insurance Technology — are places to visit frequently and bookmark.

And, if you missed it, the webinar Key 2014 Contact Center Trends and Priorities: How you can be ready, is one you really should consider downloading.




Edited by Peter Bernstein

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