CRM Add-On From Cobblesoft, Visitar, Starbucks Data, SAS, Miniskirts in South Korea

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
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CRM Add-On From Cobblesoft, Visitar, Starbucks Data, SAS, Miniskirts in South Korea

By David Sims

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Kinky Friedman and the Texas Jewboys' From One Good American To Another album. Kinky for Texas governor; look what that job's a stepping stone to:

Let's see what the top news today is, and you know, First Coffee isn't one of these depressing, "if it bleeds it leads" MSM journalists, intent on reporting only the bad news, here at First Coffee we believe there's a lot of positive news out there, starting with the fact that the Democratic Party seems to have finally realized what most of America had known for years, that John Kerry, known to Republicans as "the gift that keeps on giving," is somebody you don't want on your side in anything, be it fighting in Vietnam or running a campaign:

To kick off, Reuters is reporting that "Hot pants and miniskirts will soon be legal in South Korea:"

The country is in the final stages of revising an indecency law that prohibits people from wearing revealing outfits and was once enforced by ruler-wielding police during authoritarian governments in the 1970s, officials said.

"The law for excessive exposure does not match our current society," said Kim Jae-kwang, an official with the Korea Legislation Research Institute.

Under authoritarian rule, police could arrest or fine women for their fashion choices. They also took scissors to men whose hair they felt was too long and tossed people in jail for unauthorized dancing.

As we said, all good news all the time.

SAS, a vendor of business intelligence, has announced new releases of Customer Intelligence offerings, specifically SAS Marketing Automation and SAS Marketing Optimization products.

SAS officials say enhancements to SAS Marketing Automation "provide a number of performance improvements for high volume marketers, and a series of new features to continue to make sophisticated marketing simple, effective, and profitable."

SAS Marketing Optimization is designed to let marketers "mathematically optimize" outbound customer communications while balancing the organization's capacity to deliver. The latest version of SAS Marketing Optimization has what company officials call "improved usability" for business users. This release also provides improved reporting, analysis and collaboration. 

SAS Digital Marketing, available next month, delivers e-mail and text messaging capabilities. 

SAS Customer Intelligence includes Marketing Automation, Marketing Optimization, Interaction Management, Web Analytics, Digital Marketing, Veridiem Marketing Resource Management and Marketing Performance Management components. It's built using the open-standards-based SAS9 platform, combining best-in-class technology with industry and domain expertise.

Company officials say the product can be integrated readily with an organization's current infrastructure. 

More good news from Reuters: Starbucks Corp. said Friday it had lost track of four laptop computers, two of which had private information on about 60,000 current and former U.S. employees and fewer than 80 Canadian workers and contractors.

The data, which includes names, addresses and Social Security numbers, is about three years old, dating prior to December 2003. The company has not received any reports that anyone's personal information has been compromised.

Okay, and the good news is…

Asked if there were any secret recipes on the missing computers, O'Neil chuckled and said, "I don't know of any."

And an interesting case study from Richard Stevenson at CRM add-on vendor CobbleSoft International, a transplanted Brit in upstate New York who just had an article, “Service Intelligence: Value-Added Compliance," published this week, October 31st, in the British Computer Society’s journal, 50th anniversary edition"

Good evening old chap, Richard writes, how’s life out in Istanbul? Sitting here as New York starts to get chilly makes me wonder why I don’t live in Europe somewhere nice! We had our first snow flurry yesterday…  it disappeared quickly, BUT… a sign of things to come. I love the snow, but hate the extended cold.

I promised you recently that I would forward a new case study on to you as soon as we had it ready. Well, please find attached. Our client recently spent several months and stressful times with auditors, and completed the SAS 70 Type II audit. This was primarily because the majority of their customers are public companies, needing to provide assurances for compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) etc. 

According to their auditors, this was the first time that they have not had to write up the technology in place -- ever. Naturally, we were ecstatic that COIGN Enterprise enabled them to sail through.

Stevenson notes "a new industry phrase/ buzzwords, also coigned (pun intended) by CobbleSoft: 'Service Intelligence (SI).' We’re advocating the use of SI for customer support and service, as opposed to BI which tends to refer more to the health of a company and financials. SI in COIGN Enterprise is partially provided through our concepts of Active Data Warehousing, basically real-time data warehousing."

The case study itself tells of CyberShift, a provider of workforce and expense management software and services, who "established a corporate-wide initiative to consolidate its client support, incident management, and data center service desk systems to support its Total Client Service Quality program."

CyberShift chose CobbleSoft, a vendor of specialized service desk, service management and database products, to provide the Web-based application framework to meet its objectives. In addition to "ensuring compliance with regulations and control requirements, such as Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 70," according to CyberShift officials, the product has "streamlined the end-to-end support process within

CyberShift by improving operational efficiencies as well as reducing internal management costs."

More interesting reading in the case study itself.

Visitar has announced what company officials are calling "key enhancements to its 360° Care viaVisitar" product. The enhancements include both planned upgrades and response to customer feedback, more core functionality and support options for the product's targeted small and mid-sized business market. 

The company sells hosted products to the SMB market, so pricing for the product remains only $55 per-seat, per month. It will be available for customer access in mid-November.

Visitar's first interaction product, 360 Care viaVisitar, provides customer relationship management (CRM) and sales force automation (SFA) that link rich telephony capabilities with business applications designed to "improve efficiency and enhance customer and employee interactions," company officials say. 

The new version includes enhancements in CRM and customer interaction functionality, the user-driven configuration model, and the technology platform. 

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