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Rich Tehrani
CEO
| Communications and Technology Blog - Latest news in IP communications, telecom, VoIP, call center & CRM space

CRM

TMCnet Visitors Cautiously Optimistic About 2009

December 13, 2008

For those of us in telecom and tech, there is obvious concern about where the economy is headed - just like any other industry. The difference for us is we have seen a recent bubble burst and don't have the excess in our markets which other markets do. In fact in 2000, the dotcom bubble burst in March and the telecom bubble in November.

Most CEOs I speak with in our industry tell me tech and communications are among the best industries to be in for 2009 and beyond.

SaaS in the Contact Center Webinar Starts Soon

December 9, 2008

I am moderating a webinar on SaaS in the contact center and it starts in 20 minutes. You can listen live or get the archived version. I am looking forward to it.

SaaS in the Contact Center an Attractive Alternative
During a Down Economy

Tuesday, December 9, 2008, 2:00pm ET / 11:00am PT

Customer service is a hot topic in boardrooms everywhere.




Call Centers Still Hiring

December 8, 2008

While layoffs take place in the hundreds of thousands, at least one industry has some bright spots in terms of hiring. Thomas L. Cardella & Associates is adding 55 full-time jobs at its Keokuk call center to handle a new outsourcing contract.

In the recession of the early nineties, hundreds of thousands of new call center jobs helped the economy rebound more quickly. For better or for worse, about half the call center jobs were for outbound calling otherwise known as telemarketing.

Dialogic Officially Acquires NMS

December 8, 2008

Dialogic has officially acquired the communications platforms division of NMS as of Friday evening and I had the opportunity to speak with Dialogic's Senior Vice President of Marketing Jim Machi about the acquisition and the future of the company. You may recall, I first reported on the news back on September 12th.

Before I get into the conversation with Machi, it is worth pointing out that the major competition in the CTI space between Dialogic, NMS and Brooktrout has finally come to an end this past weekend.

These companies were at each other's throats in decades past but as they competed, the industry thrived. More importantly, this rivalry caused the communications market to open to the point where a high school kid can develop telephony apps in the cloud with no knowledge of underlying telephony networks. CTI was a huge step towards openness in telecom and as these building blocks which were used for computer telephony integration began to be applied to IP communications and more specifically, VoIP - the world changed.

The opportunity for companies like Dialogic is changing and while VoIP is a big part of the company's business, video is a strong part of the future.





TMCnet Gets a Redesign

December 2, 2008



While many of you were busy in the malls this past weekend or trying to find the best price on that new digital camera yesterday on Cyber Monday, the dedicated team of designers and programmers here at TMC worked day and night and night and day to bring you a new look and feel.

Over the past years, many of you have told me that you love to come to TMCnet on a daily basis and the hundreds of stories and blog entries we write on a daily basis contain everything you need to navigate the telecom and tech worlds. At the same time, many of you have told us the interface TMCnet has looks busy. Others have told me it is not clear that 50-100 writers contribute to TMCnet on a  daily/weekly basis.

Our new redesign is meant to adress all of these great requests and we hope you enjoy the new TMCnet.

One last point... Thanks to the 2-3 million communications and technology decision makers who visit TMCnet monthly and thanks to the TMC team for doing such a great job on this redesign.







Great CRM Ideas For A Down Economy

November 26, 2008

Recently, my wife ordered a few pairs of shoes from Zappos.com and they upgraded her shipping after the order was placed. She placed the order Monday evening and the shoes were received Tuesday afternoon. She was blown away and I think Zappos has a new loyal customer. In a slow economy, this is a smart thing you can do to ensure customer loyalty.

Another out of the box idea comes from BMW of Darien - the BMW dealer closest to TMC headquarters in Norwalk, CT.

SMS Comes To Contact Centers

November 25, 2008

When an entire generation uses their phones for nothing but social networking and sending text messages, smart contact center companies see an opportunity. Interactive Intelligence is one such company and recently added SMS as a channel as part of its multichannel contact center solutions.

Remember, kids today do not even check email. We could argue the reason for this... I personally think they don't mind paying for messaging when email is free -- because frankly, their parents are paying.

So if they use SMS only, then a bank needs a solution which allows checking account balances to be sent via SMS to customers.



Top CRM News 11/21/08

November 21, 2008

Here are some article flagged by my editorial team as worth reading in the CRM/contact center space. There are some great nuggets on this list and I hope you find it useful:



SalesForce.com Tops Q3 Forecast, Keeps Outlook

November 21, 2008

Hats off to Benioff and company at SalesForce.com for beating the quarterly estimates and also for keeping guidance for the year. Analysts are grappling with whether the SaaS model is immune from slowing in a down economy and the simple answer is while SaaS has the potential to reduce costs for a company and increase productivity, the challenge for SalesForce.com and other vendors is to grow as unemployment rises rapidly.

I feel unemployment will hit at least 12% and in this environment, SalesForce will have to expand by talking share from other companies to keep growing. Perhaps this is why the company added 700 new employees in the first three quarters of this year and plans on continuing this hiring spree.

Twitter Allows Customers Immediate Response To Ads

November 19, 2008

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