• May 6, 2003
  • By David Myron, Editorial Director, CRM and Speech Technology magazines and SmartCustomerService.com

Siebel Taps ClientLogic

Siebel yesterday courted ClientLogic as a Strategic Consulting Partner in its Siebel Alliance Program--a move that analysts say will bolster scalable, multichannel, call center outsourcing initiatives. The news comes just weeks after ClientLogic, an international provider of business process outsourcing (BPO) in the contact center and fulfillment industry, opened a 450-seat, multichannel customer contact center in Bangalore, India, in late February with plans to grow it to 1,500 seats by the end of the year. ClientLogic says it will handle offshore customer care for three or more international Fortune 500 companies by the end of the second quarter of '03. With big growth plans comes the need for highly scaleable technology. The partnership enables companies to use an outsourced customer care solution to communicate with entire ecosystems of customers, prospects, and partners across multiple information channels in a consistent and scalable manner. "As long as they can provide the service at a lower cost, they will keep their customers happy. If you're going to an outsourced model, customers just want the business process to work. They don't care what's under the hood as long as its efficient, effective, and meets service levels at a low cost," says Sheryl Kingstone, CRM program manager at Yankee Group. "ClientLogic's impressive customer care capabilities will help our customers who are looking to outsource core business processes, such as call center management and fulfillment operations," said Mark Armenante, group vice president, alliances, Siebel Systems, in a prepared statement. "Through this partnership, our joint clients will have a more accurate view of their customers and realize a competitive advantage by being able to better understand and serve their customers." A lot of organizations tried the outsourcing market with client-server architectures, but have run into a lot of trouble, Kingstone says. "Siebel's architecture with version 7.5 is better, and ClientLogic feels it can do it more cost effectively than others in the past." "Opportunities in the outsourcing market are growing. Especially in this economy where companies are looking to cut costs and maximize efficiencies," Kingstone says. Yet while opportunities may be growing, customers are still struggling to release their cash. That's why ClientLogic and Siebel have agreed to implement a rolling payment plan for customers, enabling them to absorb the blow of large CRM implementations over time, Amit Shankardass, solution design and strategic planning officer at ClientLogic, told CRM magazine. Neither Siebel nor ClientLogic were able to comment on specific details of the payment plans at press time.
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