By David Sims
David at firstcoffee d*t biz
The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music in an iPod shuffle playlist of Jimmy Buffett and Alice Cooper. It works:
Vettro, a vendor of mobile on-demand business applications, has announced the sales staff of Travelex, a foreign exchange concern, is using mobile applications from Vettro with the BlackBerry from Research In Motion to enhance customer service through real-time business operations.
With Vettro 360 for Sales & CRM, Travelex synchronises its current Salesforce.com application with its existing BlackBerry smartphones. The Vettro implementation lets Travelex’s sales force access and react to real-time account information while on the road.
Financially successful foreign exchange services depend upon sales representatives increasing and sustaining the volume of transactions. Access to real-time information is important, and sales representatives can now take action on accounts within minutes, as opposed to spending hours logging account updates at the end of each day or scheduling
an administrative non-selling day at the office.
Previously, sales personnel had to contact the call center to receive customer information, which was time consuming and created more burdens on the call center staff.
Hannah Cleaver, Salesforce.com Manager for EMEA, Travelex, said because sales people can log a call or open a case on the road, “that means they are not calling the call center to gather the information they need for a client meeting. They can now enter feedback directly after a meeting instead of logging in at the end of a long day.”
Vettro 360 for Sales & CRM integrates seamlessly with the capabilities of BlackBerry smartphones and allows users to save e-mails or phone calls as sales activities and synchronise their CRM tasks with Outlook or Lotus Notes calendars.
The application allows users to interact with information residing in single or multiple back office systems from a single, unified mobile application. It can be updated, and even deleted, completely over the wireless network. It remains fully accessible outside of wireless coverage areas, and all data captured offline is automatically transmitted when the user moves back into coverage.
Xtime announced today that Saturn has named Xtime an approved vendor to provide its retailers with online service appointment scheduling.
Reg Proulx, Fixed Operations Director for Saturn of St. Paul, has been using the Xtime software in his four Saturn facilities since 2006. “We evaluated half a dozen options last year, but got excited when we saw the Xtime percent. We now book about 20 percent of our appointments over the Web, and believe that will exceed 50 percent in 2008.”
The Lupient Auto Group has been using the Xtime product at its four Minneapolis-area Saturn facilities since last year. George Schaust, Lupient’s Fixed Operations Director, agrees that it significantly enhances the customer convenience. “The system is well thought-out — for instance, it shows each owner a full schedule of maintenance services and prices for the specific model and year of their vehicle. Service menus get complicated with all the different model variations, but now we can keep it simple for the owner and accurate to prevent confusion over pricing.”
Saturn facilities can also use Xtime to manage all of their appointments, including those taken over the phone, to improve overall efficiency. Those facilities adopting the Xtime product will realize additional benefits, Saturn officials say, when Saturn migrates its retailers to dealer management systems provided by Reynolds and Reynolds, expected in 2008. Xtime integrates with Reynolds and Reynolds’ software — it’s the only scheduling system approved for such data exchange by Reynolds and Reynolds.
Epicor Software has announced that LaVigne, a commercial printer, is the first company to fully implement the new Kodak EMS Business Software, powered by Epicor.
A Massachusetts-based sheetfed, digital print and print-optimization company, LaVigne runs its entire operation — front office, back office and production —on Kodak EMS Software, based on Epicor’s manufacturing enterprise resource planning (ERP) product.
Kodak EMS Business Software is a business workflow product that helps manage a graphic communications business. This product can drive production at a single site or be used to link hundreds of users across multiple facilities.
The core Epicor ERP product, which has been extended by Kodak for EMS Software, enables users to manage the entire order cycle from sales through billing. Built on a 100 percent SOA, the combined Kodak and Epicor product enables continuous performance initiatives, real-time connectivity between supply-chain applications and partners and greater business agility, company officials say.
AMC Technology, a provider of multi-channel interaction management products for contact centers, has announced that its AMC Telephony Connector for Cisco IPCC Express 5.1 has achieved “Certified for SAP NetWeaver” status from SAP AG for the interaction center capabilities integrated with the SAP Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application.
To achieve Certified for SAP NetWeaver qualification, AMC Technology has demonstrated that its AMC Telephony Connector for Cisco IPCC Express integrates through the SAP Integrated Communication Interface (CA-ICI). The integration has taken place by using the telephony channel of this interface (certification scenario CA-ICI-CTI).
Anthony X. Uliano, President/CTO, AMC Technology, said achieving this latest certification with SAP products “demonstrates our continued dedication to our relationship with SAP and our customer base.”
With the addition of achieving Certified for SAP NetWeaver status for the AMC Telephony Connector for Cisco IPCC Express, AMC provides full support for both of Cisco’s integration platforms, IPCC Express and IPCC Enterprise.
With this latest accomplishment, AMC has completed a total of 12 certifications with SAP products handled by the SAP Integration and Certification Center area over the years.
Aspect Software, a vendor of contact center products, has announced a partnership with OpenSpan to allow Aspect to use and sell the OpenSpan Platform as part of its Aspect Quality Management recording and quality management product.
This partnership enables Aspect Software to extend Aspect Quality Management functionality — such as screen capture and call tagging — to record all back-office interactions with applications like customer relationship management (CRM) systems, e-mail or other in-house developed systems.
The OpenSpan Platform delivers events, notifications, and data elements to Aspect Quality Management to trigger various recording functions. As a result, contact centers can trigger screen capture when agents click on specific buttons or insert data in fields within various productivity applications.
OpenSpan will work with Aspect Quality Management to start, stop, pause, and resume recordings based on agent desktop activity, such as when an agent flags a call as high priority in the CRM system or when an agent creates and sends an e-mail.
This allows interactions to be categorized in more ways, speeds access to recordings during searches and ties related interactions together to see the full history of a customer’s interaction, all without programming.
Call recordings can also be tagged with information derived from certain fields. For instance, a recording could be tagged if the agent fills in “Gold Customer” in a field in a CRM application. Supervisors and mentors could then pay particular attention to the Gold Customer recordings.