Witness Systems gets customer feedback management functionality with the purchase of Amae Software, a move that may spark a customer feedback trend in the contact center market.
Posted Dec 4, 2006
Witness Systems announced today the acquisition of Amae Software, a purchase that will inject customer feedback management capabilities into the company's workforce optimization offering. The new functionality, which will be available immediately through Witness's Impact 360 Workforce Optimization solution, enables companies to put a microphone to their customers' mouths, gaining immediate feedback from individual consumers through call, online, and email surveys. Amae's software will give Witness customers better visibility into what key performance indicators are causing customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction and may launch a customer feedback trend in the WFO market.
Impact 360 Workforce Optimization has workforce management, quality monitoring, e-learning, and performance management capabilities. Prior to the acquisition, the missing component in the platform, according to Witness, was the ability to capture feedback from the customer. Oscar Alban, principal global market consultant for Witness, says that the company had been searching for such a solution for the past two years. Witness decided on Amae due to its strong methodology and the fact that it is installed software. Alban adds that the "key that makes [Amae's solution] very interesting is, it allows you do capture a significantly credible amount of data so the numbers are significant from a statistics standpoint. That's really critical."
The newly added customer feedback management functionality will enable Witness customers to collect, measure, and incorporate customer-generated information on products and services. Customer surveying can be completed online, on a call, or through email to deliver analytics that will help companies better target why customer service initiatives succeed or fail.
Dick Bucci, associate consultant at The Pelorus Group, says that customer feedback management marks one of the last frontiers in call center statistics. "Any formal call center knows how long it takes to handle a call, how many people are waiting in queue, and dozens of other measurements. But surprisingly few can produce the one metric that matters most--how well they are delighting callers."
A recent study from Yankee Group found that only 20 to 25 percent of contact center managers do customer surveys; Ken Landoline, customer-centric strategies senior analyst at Yankee Group, believes this deserves a much higher level of attention. He says that this acquisition will improve the depth of Witness's offerings. "This adds a credibility level, making sure the data you're collection internally matches up with the real world."
Landoline says that this acquisition may cause a trend in the contact center field that could mean more acquisitions and stronger partnerships with customer survey firms. "If nothing else, the Witness acquisition with Amae will spark that interest on the end-user side. I think people are moving in that direction."
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