Brendan Read : The Readerboard
Brendan Read
TMC
| Contact Center/CRM Views and Analysis

IBM, Mitel, Wearable Tech round out Latest ITEXPO News

Its been an amazing ITEXPO so far - wow. In case you missed some of the happenings from day 1, here are...

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3 Reasons UC Deployments Fail

Just getting ink on a Unified Communications deal is just the beginning. So many deployments go wrong or worse the company...

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Small Cells are Key to Attracting and Keeping SMB and Large Enterprise Customers

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

To say that operators of macro-cellular physical networks are facing all type of challenges these days would be an understatement.  These range from spectrum scarcity issues, competitive pricing pressures, the need to build out LTE networks ASAP as platforms for new services and to meet the insatiable appetite of users for things like streamed and real-time video, getting ready for the Internet of Things (IoT) etc.  They also are busy figuring out how to keep users, particularly enterprise users on their smart devices always and all ways on their networks in an increasingly fickle world where alternatives abound, including for value-added traffic lost to Over-the-Top (OTT) providers.  

It is to keep enterprise customers on the mobile service provider networks for enhanced services that good in-building wireless solutions are seen as both a powerful business tool and a competitive advantage.  This is particularly true when it comes to retaining small-to-medium business customers (SMBs).

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Changing the SIM game

The iPad Air 2 with Wi-Fi + Cellular models comes with a SIM  that “gives you the flexibility to choose from...

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WebRTC and the Enterprise

I was reading an article titled, “How WebRTC can serve the Enterprise” but when I originally saw the headline I thought...

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Jeff Pulver, Andy Abramson, Craig Walker, Alon Cohen, Mike Tribolet, Andy Voss and Danny Windham at ITEXPO Next Week

Panel to celebrate 20 years of IP communications/VoIP and discuss its future. Next week at the 29th ITEXPO, I get the pleasure...

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Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes on Importance of Bringing Ultra-Broadband to Africa

By: Peter Bernstein, TMCnet Senior Editor

It may be almost cliché to say we live in a global economy, but many times when globalization is discussed the focus is on developed and emerging markets and not that often, if at all, on under-developed regions.  In fact, in the past few years until the recent drop in oil prices, much of the financial community’s and economic development interests has been focused on the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).  This leaves out not just most of South America, but the promising rest of Africa which contains a wealth of rare minerals and other natural resources waiting to be literally and figuratively mined.

However, for most of the African continent countries to move from under-developed status, along with toward political stability and having a educated citizenry, infrastructure needs to be in place which it currently is not. This means not just giving the populace access to clean water and energy, but in a digital world ubiquitous and affordable access to businesses and individuals to high-speed broadband communications is now not just a foundation but a pre-condition that is essential for moving ahead.  

In this regard it is enlightening, refreshing and significant that Alcatel-Lucent CEO Michel Combes recently wrote a corporate blog stressing the company’s interest in working with governments and commercial interests to help accelerate economic development across the continent.  This about not just about the Oscar winning movie of several years ago “Out of Africa”, but is also about around, into and across Africa. 

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Cable Company IVR Crimes

March 10, 2008

I got my online version of the ASRNews and was interested to read about two cable giants: Charter and Comcast, and the fact that ASRNews tested their IVRs and found that the data customers feed in to the system is not used for CTI screen-pop purposes. Basically, Charter and Comcast are using their IVRS merely to annoy customers at the front end.

Said the newsletter, "This month we tested Charter Communications.  No CTI.  They gather ID information from the caller and then throw it away. Comcast does the same thing. These folks should either implement CTI of get rid of their IVR that is doing nothing other than irritating callers."

More high-quality customer service from the cable companies.



First-Call Resolution Podcast

March 5, 2008

First-call resolution, as a call center principle, gets a lot of attention, and for very good reason. While 10 different call centers may not agree on their management, hiring, training and technology approaches, all 10 will probably agree that first-call resolution is far and away the most important metric to master. Why? It's a realistic way to achieve increased customer satisfaction at lower operating costs.

D&D Creator Gygax Dies

March 4, 2008

Marketing Salaries Guide

March 4, 2008

Call Center Life Saver

March 3, 2008

Canadian Call Center Woes

February 28, 2008

Here's an article from the Edmonton Journal about the closure of a Toronto Dominion Bank call center in the city, for a net loss of about 140 jobs.

Though this is a Canadian company shutting down a Canadian call center, there have been other Canadian call center closures that can be laid at the foot of the weak U.S. dollar.

Outsourcing to Canada (an important destination in the so-called "near-shore" outsourcing model) is no longer saving U.S. companies money due to the unfavorable exchange rates for the U.S. dollar.

A recent Datamonitor report covered on TMCnet by associate editor Patrick Barnard revealed that companies are truly starting to pack up Canadian operations.





Video Gaming Widows

February 25, 2008

Another Upside To Virtual Call Centers

February 21, 2008

Call Center Space Availabilities

February 20, 2008

Feeling The Love From Offshore Outsourcing

February 19, 2008

Here's a piece on TMCnet today that takes a look at the pitfalls, both obvious and hidden, of offshore outsourcing and how to overcome them. First, it's important to identify the problems.

My favorite snipped from this article was that one company discovered that an agent at one of its foreign call centers was ending customer calls with, "I love you." He thought it was a great way to show customers he cared. Sometimes...agents can care a little TOO MUCH.

The best way to make offshore outsourcing work for you is to get a better handle on training. Studies show that even if a foreign call center agent has a heavy accent, if he or she handles the call the way a North American customer expects (use the right words, strike the right tone and effect good results), accents are immediately forgiven.

And your customer will know you love them without you have to tell them, which...let's face it...is a tad creepy.

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