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

What's With the MSO Consolidation?

Charter was the first company to make a play for TWC. Now reports are in that Charter is chasing Bright House....

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Expect Security Funding Bubble to Pop in 3-5 Years

Security is one of the hottest areas in tech right now. Indeed, there is infinite possibility in this space because technology...

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SmartPhoneMan and His Interaction with Media Servers on St. Patrick's Day

Last week we made it about halfway through SmartPhoneMan’s day.  Let’s finish his day.  Right now, he’s in a rush to...

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Verizon Invites the Channel Once More

Jon Arnold wrote up a good review of Verizon's Broad Cloud offering (VCE). One glaring problem is that it targets in...

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Media Servers and St. Patrick's Day

Last week I wrote about the important role media servers play in the network.  Today is St. Patrick’s Day and let’s...

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What Can You Learn from Target?

I was reading a couple of articles about Target. The retailer has not been doing well lately, including closing all Canada...

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Media Servers Will Play an Increasingly Important Role for Telco Apps

Media servers play an important role in enabling many of the real-time communications applications many of us use every day.  When...

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Needed: Improved Data Management--Forrester

March 25, 2009

To get a full view of your customers to utilize your CRM systems so you can retain and obtain more value for them, especially in this challenging and highly competitive economy you need realtime access to complete quality data on your customers.One of the biggest barriers to getting value from CRM initiatives is this need for improved customer data management, according to William Band, Vice President and Principal Analyst with Forrester Research.

Needed: A Contact Center Makeover?

March 20, 2009

Unfortunately if reports are accurate, contact center turnover continues to be higher than one might have expected in these difficult times.To fix these issues a contact center makeover may be needed. A good hard look at why those that are experiencing staffing issues cannot attract and retain the quality people they or more accurately their customers need, and take steps to address the problem areas.

Nortel May Be Split, Sold To Avaya, Nokia Siemens, Siemens Enterprise Communications

March 12, 2009

Remember the last time you played Monopoly (TM) when a big player in the game who owned Boardwalk and Park Place went bankrupt, and how you and your friends couldn't wait to buy these nice assets for dimes on the dollars? That's what's happening to Nortel right now. The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reports that the communications firm, which is under creditor protection, has attracted several possible purchasers of its high-value enterprise and wireless equipment businesses. According to The Canadian Press, the WSJ's website named Avaya and Siemens Enterprise Communications as potential purchasers of Nortel's enterprise product line according to well-placed sources.

Security Concerns And BPO/Contact Center Locations

March 9, 2009

Research firm Datamonitor recently came out with an intriguing report about Sri Lanka as a potential business process outsourcing (BPO)/offshore contact center hub. Intriguing in that there may be a strong case for that island nation to become a BPO center despite its small (relative to neighboring India) population of 20 million. Intriguing is that it has been the media lately on account of an ongoing civil war: which is not exactly the kind of development that assures potential investors and clients.

Attention Airlines: To Avoid Calls and Customer Losses, Keep Washrooms Free...

March 4, 2009

Call avoidance saves money and bolsters revenue by reducing contact handling costs and by improving customer satisfaction and retention by tackling their issues head on before they become problems. Outbound messaging and notification, which will be covered in the April issue of Customer Interaction Solutions is one technique. Another, and much more effective, is discovering and preventing the problems and issues that prompted the calls in the first place. In the spirit of aiding the already beleaguered airline industry and its roster of many fine people still working for it, including in contact centers, here is a great opportunity to practice call avoidance: flush into the 'blue ice' chamber consideration of charging customers to use in-flight toilets that was raised last week by Irish deep-discount carrier Ryanair.

Offshoring and Homeshoring

February 26, 2009

There has been a lot of fanfare lately of contact center work being brought back to the U.S. from other countries, most notably India. Yet unless the additional demand is managed effectively, the result could be higher costs, less service, and more automation and fewer jobs. There will still be offshoring, though at lower levels because many firms are satisfied with its cost/quality equation. There will also be if fewer live agents because self-service cannot replace people where high thought and touch are needed; some of those individuals will be traditional centers mainly because some organizations don't want or see the need to change. Yet a growing percentage of agents will be at home, because there is no place like it to supply quality, cost-effective customer care and sales.

Wired Best Option For Rural Broadband?

February 20, 2009

Now that some $7 billion+ will be spent on rural broadband expansion, thanks to President Obama's just signed $787 billion economic stimulus package the interesting question becomes which technologies should be supported i.e. subsidized to deliver it.

Good News/Bad News from United (and other airlines)

February 12, 2009

There has been some good news on the beleaguered U.S. domestic contact center front, courtesy of United Airlines. The good news is that the air carrier will be opening 165 seats at its Chicago and Honolulu facilities, reports the Associated Press and carried in BusinessWeek, to handle written (e-mailed/letter mailed) customer commendations and complaints (CC&C): work that had been managed offshore in India. The bad news, from this writer's perspective, is that United is ending handling voice CC&Cs. It would stop publishing its customer relations phone number, which will be turned off altogether at the end of April.

Smoot-Hawley...It's Baaaack! Will It Infest Tech And Destroy The Economy?

February 2, 2009

The ghost of Smoot-Hawley is baaack...and it is a real horror that spread misery worldwide, and could do again unless elected officials have the guts to drive a stake in its latest resurrection.

Forrester's Practical Solutions To Growing Business and Cutting Costs

January 30, 2009

There has been much and understandable wailing in the current economic climate about 'yes I need to retain and grow customers but my CFO has axed my budget'. Now Forrester Research has come up with five practical, leading-but-not-bleeding edge recommendations that will make CFOs, CMOs, and ultimately CEOs happy by shrinking costs and increasing business.
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