Converting Customers, NetSuite Stock, Contact Center Outsourcing, Customer Trends

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Converting Customers, NetSuite Stock, Contact Center Outsourcing, Customer Trends

JSE-listed telecoms operator, Vox Telecom, is “making progress” converting its least cost routing (LCR) customers onto its own network.

According to industry observer, Chanel de Bruyn, it’s happening as the lower interconnect rates come into play: “CEO Tony van Marken on Thursday said that the group would exploit the lower interconnect rates, which is the rate operators charge to carry each other’s traffic, to offer a competitive basket of voice solutions for all traffic types.”

As de Bruyn pointed out, earlier this year, South Africa’s largest mobile operators “reduced their peak interconnect rates, which are also called mobile termination or call termination rates, to 89 cents a minute. The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa has also determined that the two largest operators would have to reduce their peak and off-peak rates to 40 cents a minute by March 2013.”

This April, TMC reported that VOX Telecom froze the renewal of client contracts to align the new agreements with the revised cell phone interconnection rates, but the move reduced earnings in the half-year to February by 18 percent.

“As the cost of cross-network calls falls, there will be less need for least-cost routing services, so providers that offer them as their sole service are under threat. Although the bulk of Vox's earnings comes from least-cost routing, it has diversified into areas such as internet services,” company officials said at the time.

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According to authors of a recent report titled, “Key Consumer Trends for Insurance Providers in 2010,” available from Market Publishers, the global financial crisis “has had an impact on all consumers and their attitudes and motivations for buying insurance.”

In this “challenging environment,” the report’s authors found, “it is no longer sufficient to react to consumer behaviors, rather insurers need to understand the trends and influences behind insurance purchasing decisions.”

One strategy they recommend for growth-hungry insurers is “to establish operations in rapidly expanding markets where demographics and economic conditions favor growth the most. This has been the strategy of a few insurers in recent years, with mixed results.”

For the wave of consumers “across all markets,” the report finds, streamlining lifestyles “has had direct implications for insurance markets. Policyholders lowering the level or cutting the features of their policies to cut costs. This behavior has been relatively constant as most economies have exited the recession since 2009, though it is uneven across product type.”

In related news, it’s been determined that Brits buy life insurance according to price.

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This past week there was some good news for NetSuite’s stock.

According to a report published by SmarTrend on November 24, NetSuite was “one of today's notable stocks on the rise, up 4.7 percent to $26.28. The S&P was trading 1.2 percent higher to 1,195 when that was published, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was trading 1.1 percent higher to 11,162.

NetSuite is in SmarTrend's Application Software industry, as analyst Chip Bryan noted, adding that “this industry is currently in an Uptrend according to our research. We are monitoring many other stocks on the move within this industry.”

In the last five trading sessions, Bryan said, the 50-day MA climbed 1.79 percent while the 200-day MA has risen 1.57 percent: “In the past 52 weeks, shares of NetSuite have traded between a low of $11.62 and a high of $26.00 and are now at $26.28, which is 126 percent above that low price.”

SmarTrend had shares of NetSuite in an Uptrend at the time of Bryan’s analysis, and issued the Uptrend alert on November 08, 2010 at $22.95.

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A recent study by Volt Delta, titled “Outsourcing for Outsourcers Contact Center OnDemand and Voice Self-Service for a Competitive Edge” looks at issues challenging contact center outsourcers.

Some highlights from their findings:

Delaying investment. The recent state of the economy is partly to blame. The recession has caused many outsourcers to delay capital investment. Many call distribution and agent infrastructures installed in the past 20 years have become obsolete or do not have capabilities outsourcers require to remain competitive. In many cases, upgrades have been skipped in the interest of short-term cost savings. As a result, they are prevented from taking advantage of newer technology to achieve multi-channel support and/or cost savings attained from a ubiquitous IP Infrastructure.

Growth in mobility. A notable example is the “mobilization” of the world with cell phones and other wireless devices, presenting tremendous implications for contact center outsourcers. Mobile callers expect anytime and anywhere support with multi-channel options such as SMS messaging. Outsourcers ignoring the special concerns and opportunities to better serve mobile callers will find themselves at a distinct disadvantage.

Increase range of service. Services demanded of contact center outsourcers extend beyond the contact channel to the agent. Multi-lingual support and the ability to locate agents in increasingly diverse geographies are frequently demanded, with customer satisfaction and loyalty metrics as primary drivers.

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