Articles for Christopher Musico
Re:Tooling — Speech Analytics: Seeking What's Inside
Why speech analytics is starting to get a little more than recognition.
The 2010 CRM Service Awards: Service Leaders -- Workforce Optimization Suite
The 2010 CRM Service Awards: Rising Stars -- ClickFox (The Quick Fox)
Emphasizing the analytics of customer experience has helped ClickFox make inroads where others have struggled.
The 2010 CRM Service Awards: Rising Stars -- Nexidia (The Wordsmith)
Nexidia is one of the few companies able to decipher speech analytics and make the technology relevant to the contact center.
The 2010 CRM Service Awards: Service Leaders -- Interactive Voice Response
Re:Tooling — Email Management: You've Got Mail
Despite fits and starts, many still believe email management solutions can deliver on their promise.
Bundling Up from Within
Amid pricing shifts and technological innovation, the sector's own operations may help repair a disconnected customer experience.
Food for Thought
RightNow Technologies helps Organic Valley feed information-hungry consumers
Your basic processes can affect your agents' stress levels
Stressed and Distressed
Underappreciated. Overworked. Underpaid. Here's a shock: Stressed-out customer service agents provide lousy customer service. We've got ways to reduce the tension—and raise satisfaction—on both sides of the call.
On the Scene: SPSS Directions '09
Possibilities and Potentialities—After the acquisition by IBM, SPSS executives and customers alike predict a bright future for predictive analytics.
Re:Tooling — Sales Enablement Tools: Make the Selling Simpler
Organizations want sales reps to have access to the right information at the most critical moments
Innovation Picks Up Static
In the pursuit of consumer sentiment, has the industry skipped over speech analytics and jumped on the social media bandwagon?
Re:Tooling — Geolocation: Location, Location, Location
To get back to more personalized content, companies are discovering geolocation technologies.
Scratching the Surface
A luxury hotel utilizes surface computing from Microsoft to deepen relationships and its brand promise.
5 for '10
Cutting-edge technologies are altering the possibilities that are open to us. Is your company prepared to embrace the new?
This month's special report on innovation may have a bit of an emphasis on the inhuman machine, but we still know the single-most important part of technology is the user interface. What happens when the user becomes the interface?
Unified Communications Slow to Make Its Presence Felt
A recent DMG Research study on UC examines major players, trends, and a potential wild card that could shake up the space.
Nexidia Seeks to Put Quality in Speech Analytics
The company's latest offering looks to tie individual agent performance more closely with corporate initiatives.
E-Discovery Requests Set to Rise in 2010
Research from Enterprise Strategy Group finds the space will continue to grow as more companies bring operations in-house.
Cashing In On Customer Experience
New research from Strativity Group finds consumers are willing to pay a premium for goods and services if companies deliver quality experiences.
SoundBite Delivers Text Messaging to Contact Centers
With SMS on the rise, one pundit says the vendor's latest offering will help drive more business.
Comcast-Spectacor takes a shot—and scores more revenue for email campaigns—with Salesforce.com.
SysAid Delivers Integrated Live Chat into Help Desk
Pundits say adding the capability will enable quicker, higher quality support for end users.
ClickSoftware Unveils Standalone Mobility Suite
The latest offering will help the company continue to grow marketshare, pundits say.
Poor Customer Service Costs Billions
A new multinational survey attributes $338.5 billion in lost business to flawed customer service efforts.
Analytics Pays Off in the Contact Center
Analysts say the partnership between Nexidia and Merced Systems will make agent incentives more objective.
Aspect Software Beefs Up Quality Monitoring
Pundits say the company's latest release tightens competition in the QM space.
No Substitute for Experience
When the economy (eventually) rebounds, customers will be swayed by differentiators. That's why the smart companies are investing in customer experience now.
Chatty-Chatty Makes a Bang-Bang Online Experience
Nationwide talks its way to a more successful automotive quote-and-buying process with nGenera CIM.
Re:Tooling -- Sales Compensation Management: Always Be Selling
Streamline and automate how sales professionals are compensated so they can focus on what they do best: selling.
How Many Clicks Does It Take?
Forget all the bells and whistles—usability reigns supreme among CRM users.
Market Focus: Energy/Utilities: A Lightbulb Moment for Customer Interaction
Can a proactive consumer strategy help North America find the impetus it needs to reinvest in customer-facing technology?
Teleperformance Unveils 'Platinum' Service
destinationCRM Exclusive: The outsourcing giant targets companies looking to further relationships with high-value customers with its latest offering.
Usability Needs Drive Numara Software
A revamped user interface provides highlights the company's latest service desk solution.
Business Intelligence Birst-s in the Cloud
The latest offering from the software-as-a-service vendor adds more pieces to further build out a comprehensive BI suite.
Uncovering the Next Chapter in Predictive Analytics
SPSS Directions '09: A panel discussion with IBM and SPSS executives highlighted continued integration and optimism for the market moving forward.
8 Rules for Better Predictions
SPSS Directions '09: Statistician Nate Silver shared his tips for successful data analysis predictions.
Re:Tooling -- E-Signatures: Sign 'Em Up!
As companies look to cut costs and streamline operations, electronic signatures may be entering a renaissance period.
Customer Service Strategies Continue to Evolve
Barely half of all customer service requests -- 52 percent -- now have their origin in the contact center, according to new research from Aberdeen Group.
At Your Service, But Not Yet?
Analysts say Salesforce.com has only just begun to gain traction in customer service—and that the company will have to look beyond the cloud
UC Takes a Village, Says Gartner Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications
Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications '09: New research finds no single vendor can adequately address a company's UC needs with one solution.
Helpstream Adds Marketing Automation to Suite
Pundits say adding the capability, along with social monitoring, is a wise move in a rapidly changing market.
RightNow and eGain Hold the Lead in Gartner Magic Quadrant for E-Service Suites
Gartner Magic Quadrant for E-Service Suites '09: The increasingly saturated market seeks to solve a common problem: disintegrated customer experience.
Unica Wants Marketers' Heads in the Cloud
The company's latest on-demand solution looks to ease the challenges online marketers face today.
Brand Lessons Learned from Mickey Mouse
RightNow Summit '09: A closing keynote address examines the strategies Disney utilizes to deliver on its brand promise.
They’ve Got Your Number
Enterprises now see the potential for telephone-enabling technologies and software-as-a-service to help capture the voice of the customer.
RightNow Makes Experience Its Mission
RightNow Summit '09: In his opening keynote address, founder and CEO Greg Gianforte outlined the company's plan to rid world of bad experiences.
Chordiant Focuses on Improving Customer Lifetime Value
The vendor's pair of new solutions are geared to make an impact quickly -- just what companies need, according to analysts.
Acquisitions Get the Call in Contact Center Consolidations
Deals by both ClickSoftware and Spoken Communications signal an emerging trend in the customer service sector: competition through acquisition.
SAP Calls on Companies to Embrace "The New Value"
SAP World Tour '09: Morning keynote addresses challenge attendees to take charge — or risk failure.
Ribbit Hops onto Oracle On Demand
The move into Oracle's ecosystem opens up more opportunities for growth, according to company executives.
Avaya Scales for Small Businesses
Pundits and company executives believe that the new IP Office 5 expands functionality while improving simplicity -- two factors deemed prerequisites for success in this sector.
Amdocs Offers Retailers a Helping Hand
Amdocs Retail Experience Solution hopes to tackle a lack of customer visibility in retail stores.
Jesubi Just Wants to Jumpstart Your Sales Productivity
The company's flagship sales force automation product tries to bring clarity to ad hoc selling.
The Evolution of E-Learning
As contact centers adapt to the needs of a recession—and an increasing number of Generation Y staffers—the systems designed to train agents have to adapt as well
What’s Your Type?
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is a 15-minute questionnaire designed to measure psychological preferences in perception and decision-making — and may help reveal what kind of customer or customer agent you could be.
That's Not Fair!
A British initiative called Treating Customers Fairly focuses on the consumer.
Re:Tooling -- Marketing Campaign Optimization: Optimization for the Masses
When budgets get tight, marketers need to squeeze everything they can out of what's left.
Driving Bigger Sales Down Under
The TAS Group steers FleetPartners toward its sweet spot with an influx of higher-quality deals.
Get Smart About Outsourcing
Forrester outlines 12 criteria necessary to address when assessing contact center outsourcers today.
Fewer Seats in the Contact Center
A new study finds more agent jobs were lost than gained in the fourth quarter of '08.
One-Stop Shop for E-Discovery Data Processing
Looking to streamline operations and reduce cost, Clearwell unveils a bolstered, fully integrated platform.
Survey Software Continues to Sell
DMG Consulting's latest study finds the contact center survey and analytics software keeps growing despite the recession.
Adobe to Acquire Omniture
Pundits say the $1.8 billion deal — uniting a provider of development platforms with arguably the predominant player in Web analytics — has the potential to finally make measurement a powerful aspect of interactive media.
RightNow Dives into Deeper Functionality
RightNow Technologies continues to target larger contact centers, with its August '09 edition offering expanded graphical workflow capabilities and trending/analytics features.
Teleperformance and Genesys Team Up to Deliver On-Demand Functionality
destinationCRM.com Exclusive: Company executives and industry pundits alike are calling the move another major win for the hosted contact center delivery model.
The 2009 Elite - NBC Universal Airs a Winning Program
The media giant unifies its systems—and maximizes sales opportunities—on the Salesforce.com platform [Enterprise Suite CRM]
The 2009 Rising Stars - Google
Riding the Cloud-Computing Wave
The 2009 Rising Stars - Lithium Technologies
Trusting the Community
The 2009 Influential Leaders - The Cloud Commando
COFOUNDER, CHAIRMAN, AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, SALESFORCE.COM
The 2009 Influential Leaders - The Event Horizon
FOUNDER AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, O'REILLY MEDIA
Re:Tooling -- Mobile Service Applications: Beyond the Contact Center Walls
Lucrative return on investment is driving companies — and vendors — to look more closely at mobile service applications.
CRM Market Grows for Fifth Straight Year
Jetting to a Better Customer Experience
The airline industry is looking for a flight plan to combat the headwind of low satisfaction scores
The Power of Voice
CRM Evolution '09 — Day 2: Today's keynote address stressed the need for speech throughout the enterprise, not just in the call center.
Customer Intimacy and Operational Excellence Drive Innovation
CRM Evolution '09 — Day 3: CRM thought leader Denis Pombriant traces the origins of customer experience, and suggests it should not be our sole focus.
CallCopy Puts the WFO Pieces Together
Citing customer demand and market movement, the company unveils its latest platform, promising the equivalent of a workforce optimization suite.
Get Salespeople Back to Selling
CRM Evolution '09 — Day 1: If only today's companies would measure on process -- not function -- they might create alignment across the organization.
eTelecare Global Solutions Merges with Stream Global Services
One industry analyst believes the move is the biggest business process outsourcing market shakeup in the last six to 12 months.
Parature Joins the Twitter Stream
The provider of on-demand customer service software delivers a direct integration into the burgeoning social media site.
Infor Delivers CRM to IBM System i Users
The move looks to help the install base of 14,000 integrate basic CRM functionality with existing Infor ERP systems.
Knoa Provides a Comprehensive View of Business Application Use
The company's Global End-User Monitor product promises to provide monitoring of all applications for end-users.
Employee Engagement Can't Thrive on Bonuses Alone
Financial services firms need to look at more than just monetary compensation to keep employees engaged, according to a new study.
Bridging the Gap in Enterprise Search
RightAnswers seeks to close the loop and maximize search capabilities with its latest release.
Avaya Wants to Up Virtual Agents' Ante
The release of one-X Agent marks a potential re-emphasis on the vendor's ability to cater to remote agents, says one industry pundit.
Patients Are Customers, Not Case Numbers
"Healthcare" and "customer service" don't have to be mutually exclusive.
Serving Up Service Strategies
Delivering quality customer service means making quality shots.
On the Scene: Clarity Is SAP’s New Enterprise
SAPPHIRE '09: SAP executives stressed the emerging need for transparency among all enterprises. Did the message ring true?
Re:Tooling -- Predictive Analytics: Keeping a Step Ahead
To cope with the recession, more organizations are looking to predictive analytics for answers.
The Power of Information
OSIsoft uses Socialtext to revamp an outdated knowledge base.
CRM Market Grows for Fifth Straight Year
Software-as-a-service, analytics, and customer retention technologies help lead the way, according to a new Gartner report — and SAP retains the market-share crown.
Workforce Management Market Set to Double
According to new research from Pelorus Group, the market will jump from $268 million to $533 million by 2014.
Kana Looks to Cut Down the Silos of Customer Service
One pundit forecasts the company's service management solution is the first of many we can expect to come down the pike.
Lithium Floats a Social CRM Balloon
Lithium Technologies' new suite, launched today, looks to unite traditional CRM and the social Web.
The 7 Benefits of Online Customer Service Communities
A new Forrester Research report highlights the return on investment in social media communities.
nGenera CIM Goes Tactical
Bolstering search, integration, and queuing, the company looks to emphasize hard ROI and customer satisfaction in its latest release.
Making the Grade
As the higher education sector finds itself struggling under a heavy course load — short-term admissions problems made worse by a systemic financial crisis—leading-edge universities are studying up on CRM.
Adhering to Higher Quality
New York Life streamlines its workforce, vastly improving internal metrics.
Re:Tooling -- Partner Relationship Management: Rousing from a Slumber
The PRM market—often seen as a quiet backwater—may be entering a revival, particularly among B2Bs.
On the Scene: New Beginnings from Within
Customer Experience Summit '09: Improving the customer experience starts with a hard look in the mirror.
Contact Center Performance Thriving in the Recession
A new CFI Group study find customer satisfaction statistics improving despite the economic downturn.
Accelerating the Evolution of the Online Experience
Forrester Customer Experience Forum '09: A Day Two keynote stressed that the pinnacle of online capabilities yet awaits.
Interactive Intelligence Ups Its IQ with Process Automation
The vendor's latest offering looks to deliver a clear vision for unified communications — a vision that centers on productivity enhancements.
Follow the Yellow Brick Road to Customer Experience
Forrester Customer Experience Forum '09: Opening keynote stresses the importance of possessing heart, brains, and courage in the pursuit of experience-based differentiation.
Antenna Software Picks Up Dexterra
Antenna's latest acquisition puts the company in a position to capture an even greater share of the growing market for mobile middleware.
Amdocs and TOA Aim for a More Holistic Customer Experience
A global partnership between the two companies is indicative of a growing trend, according to one pundit.
Tying Together Social Service and CRM
Helpstream adds deeper integration and a bolstered best practices community with its latest release.
Envision Takes a "Real" Look at Speech
Envision Telephony wants to deliver a "realistic" speech analytics solution with InteractionIQ.
RightNow's May '09 Edition Introduces Cloud Monitoring
RightNow Technologies' latest release provides the company's answer to social media and customer service.
Avaya Takes a Fresh Look at the Midmarket
Industry pundits say the latest initiatives will help the company play catch-up.
Social Customer Service Remains "A Breed Apart"
The successful utilization of social media by contact center agents remains several years away, according to new research from Datamonitor.
Online Reviews Continue to Drive Consumption
New research finds that companies failing to actively monitor the channel for user-generated content risk falling behind.
Service and Social Media: You’re Not Social (Enough)
Communities and channels are rapidly expanding — and your company needs to at least know its place in all of them.
Poking Holes in Attrition
Social networking has the potential to transform the day-to-day operations of customer service representatives.
Re:Tooling -- Social Networking Platforms: Making Social More Social
Capable of far more than pokes, tweets, and zombies, vendors begin to connect with social software platforms.
Infusing Social Communities into Service
With Helpstream's on-demand offering, Infusionsoft bolsters its customer support.
VoIP Penetration Steadily Increases
Pent-up demand for integrated telephony and business applications will drive adoption through 2013, according to new research findings.
E-Discovery Goes Global
Kazeon Systems' latest triad of products targets a globally distributed workforce.
ClickFox Analyzes the Customer Experience
The vendor's packaged solutions target three specific pain points in the contact center.
SupportSoft Speeds Up Proactive Support
The launch of Performance Manager aims to automate computer maintenance and reduce the number of calls to the service desk.
CIO vs. CFO: The C-Suite Deathmatch
SAPPHIRE '09: Experts attempt to dispel stereotypes about the battles that rage over technology-purchasing decisions.
Speed and Clarity Drive SAP's Success
SAPPHIRE '09: Keynote addresses by several SAP executives reflect the company's desire to quickly deliver business value for companies during the downturn.
SAP Promises "Innovation You Can Trust"
SAPPHIRE '09: SAP co-CEO Leo Apotheker lays out his company's roadmap to navigate the economic crisis. "The only antidote to uncertainty is clarity," he says.
Customer Care and Billing Become Flexible
Is MetraTech's latest solution agile enough to tackle the recession and greenfield opportunities?
Low Costs Drive the Gartner Magic Quadrant for CRM Customer Service Contact Centers
Magic Quadrant for CRM Customer Service Contact Centers '09: Microsoft and Salesforce.com join Oracle as Leaders in the analyst firm's annual assessment.
In More Ways Than One
Companies recklessly adding new channels for service outreach risk damaging the customer experience.
Ringing the Opening Bell
A financial-trading facility gets a new recording system in less than two weeks—and saves $292,000.
Re:Tooling -- Interactive Voice Response (IVR): Dial-Up Innovation
Speech-enabled interactive voice response systems now involve other customer channels.
Workforce Optimization Rises Above the Recession
Automating and optimizing work processes will boost the market for the foreseeable future.
Sugar Express Is Aimed at SMBs' Sweet Tooth
Analysts say the newest solution from SugarCRM allows the open-source CRM pioneer to compete directly with Salesforce.com.
Tellme Delivers Voice in the Cloud
Nearing the two-year anniversary of its acquisition by Microsoft, Tellme's new features look to slash costs for enterprise customer service.
VPI Empowers Quality Management with Analytics
The company's latest release represents "a major step" forward for its contact center solutions, according to an industry pundit.
Can Cloud Computing Get "Army Strong"?
RightNow Technologies unveils high-security software-as-a-service capabilities compliant with the Department of Defense's standards.
LiveOps Makes Play for Enterprise Contact Centers
The features in the company's Spring '09 release aim squarely at its target market, says one industry analyst.
Envision Sees Insight in Every Call
With the release of Centricity 9.7, Envision Telephony extends tagging capabilities to all its customers.
Dimdim Opens Up Web Conferencing to Open Source
Pundits say this latest version aims squarely at traditional players including Cisco Systems' WebEx and Citrix's GoToMeeting.
Consona Acquires SupportSoft's Enterprise Software Group
The deal -- valued at $20 million -- looks to help Consona extend its reach into target markets.
Yes We Can. (Maybe.)
CMS Watch finds a single platform for Web content management and social software is not ready yet for the level of transparency the White House demands.
Right Message, Right Channel, Right Time
Varolii looks to go three-for-three with its latest array of automated communication applications.
4 Rules for Enhancing Customer Experience
Customer Experience Summit '09: A healthy dose of proactive service can go a long way toward forging better relationships.
Power to the Consumer
New federal laws require an opt-out for prerecorded calls—but that just might lead to better relationships.
Market Focus -- Telecommunications: Bundled Offerings, Better Retention?
As service providers expand their combined multimedia packages, customer service requires attention.
Re:Tooling -- Knowledge Management: Knowledge (Management) Is Power
The need for knowledge now permeates the enterprise.
Loyalty for the New Breed of Customer
Customer Experience Summit '09: Keynote speakers suggest utilizing the voice of the customer to forge deeper loyalty.
Avaya Takes a SIP
To streamline and improve customer service, Avaya unveils new contact center solutions designed around the architecture of the session initiation protocol.
The Next Evolution of SaaS?
eGain's new "solution-as-a-service" delivery model looks to kick SaaS up a notch.
Syntellect Brings Together Past and Present
The company's new offering is the first major release since it acquired Envox Worldwide in October 2008.
rmbrME Looks to Take eContact Swapping Further
The release of beamME Pro strives to add more intelligence and simplicity to the electronic exchange of contact information.
Outsourcing in ‘09: Onshore, Offshore, and At Home
Datamonitor examines the five key trends shaping the outsourcing market this year.
The More CRM Changes, the More It Stays the Same
A new Gartner study finds the state of CRM in 2000 can predict its look in 2020.
Kronos Makes Time for Its Workforce Central Suite
The release targets global expansion and cost savings -- two compelling attributes, says one industry analyst.
RightNow Registers with Manufacturers
The vendor's latest release includes self-service product registration, tailored to streamline and improve customer service.
Contactual Unveils a Revamped Contact Center Platform
One pundit believes the company is poised to take advantage of a growing demand for hosted customer service solutions.
We the People
After years of lagging behind, government agencies are now expected to provide the same level of service as their private-sector counterparts. Can they catch up?
Re:Tooling -- Contact Management: Business-Card Shakedown
New applications allowing the electronic exchange of contact information—Web 2.0's answer to traditional cards, or not?
Stimulating Citizen Experience
Could an infusion of Web 2.0 in the public sector change the way we view constituent service?
A Battle Fought from Afar
With Axeda's help, Varian Medical Systems remotely tends to its cancer-fighting radiation-oncology equipment.
5 Recession-Busting Customer Service Strategies
New research from Forrester warns companies to invest in customer service — or else.
Mobile Self-Service Adds Another Nuance
Nuance Communications' Mobile Care solution might be the answer for those looking to avoid automated phone systems.
Gimme That Remote (Support)!
Citrix Online's latest release -- GoToAssist Corporate -- looks to ride the recession to expand into the market for remote support.
Is Workforce Optimization Recession-Proof?
A new study finds WFO had a very good 2008, despite the economic downturn.
33 Percent of Contact Centers Don't Measure Customer Satisfaction
Shocking new research finds many companies still don't fully understand their own customer service organizations.
Aspect Unveils 6 New UC Applications
New unified communication offerings are geared to help companies cut costs while improving customer service.
Where's My Software Bailout?
The recession drives at least one vendor, VPI, to introduce a pricing plan with a topical title: the Call Recording Technology Bailout Package.
SugarCRM Strives to Bring Clarity to the Cloud
SugarCon '09: New CRM features, connectors, and learning programs were all on display this week.
xTuple Looks to Expand into New Markets
The open-source provider's new release -- with more than 300 enhancements -- looks to dig deeper into CRM.
Hold Onto Your Customers!
In a recession, making the most of the people and technology you already have—and maintaining the service they provide—should be your top priority.
Constructing a Virtual Customer Experience
Wagner Equipment Co. digs deeper into service—and saves hard cash—with Siemens.
Breaking Customer Service Tradition
More companies are realizing that delivering a great experience may not require a contact center.
Re:Tooling -- Web Conferencing: Calling Your Conference to Order
No longer a brand-new technology, Web conferencing continues to expand its reach as its capabilities continue to mature.
Autonomy Acquires Interwoven for $775 Million
The move looks to extend Autonomy's reach into the legal profession's document management sector.
ClickSoftware Connects Field Service
The company's ClickContact offering enables service providers to turn communication into customer satisfaction.
Are Contact Centers Finally on the Verge of an IP Telephony Revolution?
Penetration for Internet Protocol telephony went from 14 percent in 2007 to 20 percent—but 43 percent of respondents plan to take the plunge in the next two years.
Aspect Takes AIM at Bolstering PerformanceEdge
In yet another move to expand its workforce optimization offerings, Aspect Software acquires AIM Technologies.
Avaya Wants Retailers to Cash In
The verticalized solutions aim to improve the customer experience and employee productivity.
The True Definition of UC
New research shows confusion among users over what unified communications really means.
Unified Messaging Gets It Together
New research finds the market for enterprise unified messaging and voicemail systems continues to grow, particularly abroad.
Internet Protocol Contact Centers May Not Connect in ‘09
New research says IP had a ringing 2008, rising 37 percent, but that growth is likely to flatline this year.
The Feedback Funnel
Properly harnessed, customer feedback can help companies forge a competitive advantage. But with feedback pouring in from all directions, companies are struggling just to keep up.
Tech Solution: Web Self-Service
Business Problem: Customer service representatives are overburdened handling basic inquiries.
Stuffing the Ballot Box—With Complaints
Will the Election Day success of the CNN InfoVoter hotline change the game for governments and CRM?
A Worthwhile Excursion into Call Recording
A not-for-profit educational traveling company boosts customer service with CallCopy's recording solution.
Siemens Communications Looks to Break Down Silos
The new multi-tenancy licensing option in its OpenScape Contact Center solution opens up new markets for the company, says one analyst.
Aspect Wants You to Ask an Expert
The company's Unified IP 6.6 release features a tighter integration with Microsoft Office Communications Server in its push for UC.
Verint Looks to Resuscitate 9-1-1 Centers
The company's new public safety-specific solution is a shot in the arm for an industry "15 to 20 years behind in contact center technology," according to one pundit.
Fonality Gift-Wraps CRM Integration for SMBs
The vendor's new PBXtra Unified Agent solution fulfills the promise of unified communications, according to one analyst.
Bomgar Thinks Outside the Box for Remote Service
Citing high customer demand, the company's latest Bomgar Box release incorporates support for BlackBerry users.
SugarCRM Shows a Web 2.0 Sweet Tooth
New in-the-cloud services and social feeds in Sugar 5.2 puts it on par with traditional CRM leaders, says one analyst.
Growth Slows for Worldwide Services Market
According to research firm IDC, blame the current recession for the scaled-back spending forecast.
Value, Not Price, Drives Customer Experience
New research suggests that simply cutting product costs during the recession will ultimately backfire for companies.
They Aim to Please
There's one way to improve your chances of having customer-centric service: Hire customer-centric employees. If only it were really that simple.
Mixing In a Little Sugar Sweetens the Deal
Geeks on the Way turned to SugarCRM to keep pace with increasing demand.
Will Customer Experience Survive in a ‘Soft’ Economy?
On The Scene: RightNow Summit '08 -- Cutting costs may lead to cuts in service.
Market Focus: Energy/Utilities -- Empowered Consumers Are Ready to Flip the Switch
Utilities have to contend with customers seeking more control of their power consumption.
Tech Solution: Knowledge Management Tools
Business Problem: Failure to easily locate answers to customer inquiries.
Nice and Verint Remain the Forces in Workforce Optimization
New research from Datamonitor finds the two market giants continue to lead the WFO space, which is set to grow 10.3 percent annually through 2013.
Why It's So Hard to Focus on Customer Focus
NACCM '08: There's a realm beyond the land of surveys and statistics, and it takes a strong inward assessment to truly cultivate change.
Putting Customer Experience in Your Pocket
Tealeaf debuts an array of offerings aimed at digging deeper into mobile-customer behavior.
The Magic of New Mindsets
NACCM '08: The morning keynote presenters stressed the power of shifting philosophies through the power of storytelling.
RightNow Puts the Pieces Together
The on-demand customer experience solution provider's latest quarterly release makes it ready to release a one-stop enterprise contact center package.
RightAnswers Sees Web 2.0 in Knowledge Management's Future
A provider of help-desk solutions aims to maximize content effectiveness and boost return on investment.
Avaya Goes Vertical with Proactive Outreach
The company's new outbound messaging offerings will first target financial services and healthcare industries.
Gift-Wrapped Unified Communications
Spanlink's prepackaged solution targets small and midsize businesses that think UC is too complex or costly to implement.
The 7 Evolutionary Phases of Enterprise 2.0
New research from AIIM shows the various stages of development in the pursuit of Web 2.0 nirvana.
MDM Inside the Box
Cognizant's modular master data management solution prompts industry pundits to ruminate about the space's maturity.
The Boomer Boom
Revolutionary from the day they were born, Baby Boomers will continue to dictate—with their wallets—how they're targeted by marketers.
Tech Solution: Predictive Analytics Tools
Business Problem: Identifying future trends and behaviors to boost business.
Contact Centers Chatting to Success
No longer simply a forum for teens, chat is becoming an integral part of the cross-sell, upsell, and support strategies run by customer service.
Boosting Productivity North of the Border
By streamlining workflows with Antenna Software's AMPower Service, Pitney Bowes Canada found more time for customer calls.
Companies Crave Customer Feedback
New findings from DMG Consulting show the contact center survey-and-feedback space grew by 21.3 percent between '07 and '08 -- its best year to date.
Companies Scale Back UC Implementations
Citing the economy, new research finds unified communications vendors must convince organizations of the potential benefits during a recession.
Interwoven Weaves in Adaptive Targeting for Web Marketers
The content management provider looks to provide a more holistic Web marketing solution, according to company executives.
Companies Catch the Customer Experience Wave
New research from Forrester unveils the top vendors for companies yearning to achieve experience-based differentiation.
Interaction Recording Market Forges Ahead
New research indicates global sales continue to climb, and will surpass the billion-dollar mark by 2010.
Enkata Emphasizes Sales in the Contact Center
The performance management provider hopes to evolve contact centers into selling centers with its new Strategic Service Suite.
A Perfect Storm for VoIP?
Combine the economic environment and phone-system life cycles -- and you just may see a spike in Voice over Internet Protocol usage.
The Never-Ending Customer Service Journey
RightNow Summit '08: Ultimate customer centricity -- the "faultless journey" -- relies on integrated multichannel communications, an Expedia executive says.
RightNow Pushes Customer Experience Global
RightNow Summit '08: CEO Greg Gianforte calls customer experience the final frontier of differentiation.
Your Customers Want You to Join Them
New research from Cone LLC finds 93 percent of Americans want companies to have a presence in social media.
Customer Demand Drives Gartner Workforce Optimization Magic Quadrant
The research firm's debut report on this market puts Nice Systems and Verint Systems on top, and says we can expect more vendors to join the WFO party in 2009.
Jacada Looks to Expand Its Workspace in Key Industries
The unified agent desktop provider targets financial services, insurance, and retail with its latest release, Workspace 5.0.
There's No Place Like Home
As technology drives flexibility, the living room is becoming the new contact center. Will customer service ever be the same?
The Sweet Smell of High-Quality Service
Bath & Body Works delivers a superior customer experience thanks to Astute Solutions.
A Week of Strong Customer Service
An annual tradition provides hope for reps facing ever-increasing burdens.
Tech Solution: Text Mining Tools
Business Problem: Failure to create actionable strategies from unstructured customer data.
Convergys Converges on Communications Service Providers
The relationship management vendor unveiled Customer Service Manager 5.0 to help streamline processes in a telecommunications market growing in complexity.
Consistency is Key in Web Self-Service
destinationCRM Exclusive: New survey data finds customer adoption is growing, but companies need to create a strategy to attract -- and keep -- loyal channel users.
Customer Service Is No Laughing Matter. But Laugh Anyway.
Annual Call Center Exhibition '08: In an environment where attrition and change are rampant, one speaker argued without passion, contact center agents are lost.
Quality Relationships Pump the Contact Center's Lifeblood
Annual Call Center Exhibition '08: According to the keynote presenter, only a personal connection can lead to true satisfaction.
Tellme Shouts Out a New Aspect to Contact Center Offerings
destinationCRM Exclusive: A hybrid solution from Aspect Software and Microsoft's Tellme subsidiary validates ongoing plans to deliver unified communications to the masses.
Is Customer Experience Experiencing Critical Mass?
100 percent of companies surveyed by Aberdeen Group report either having customer experience management in place or planning on having it within 30 months.
Talisma Offers Customer Service Before Customers Need Any
The nGenera company's latest release looks to proactively avoid potentially poor experiences.
The Calm Before the Business Storm
New research from DMG Consulting finds one out of every five contact centers is without a plan for business continuity or disaster recovery.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Influential Leaders -- Des Cahill
The Mailman: Des Cahill -- chief executive officer, Habeas.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Influential Leaders -- Bill McDermott
The Rock: Bill McDermott -- president and chief executive officer, SAP Americas & Asia Pacific Japan.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Rising Stars -- nGenera
Acquiring an on-demand taste.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Rising Stars -- Ribbit
Rethinking voice in the user interface.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Elite -- VisionShare
Making a healthy data transfer with Microsoft and Axonom.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Market Leaders -- Midmarket Suite CRM
In a largely untapped market, Salesforce.com finds itself firmly in the winner's circle for the third consecutive year.
The 2008 CRM Market Awards: Market Leaders -- Open-Source CRM
In this category's Market Award debut, the first-ever title goes to SugarCRM.
Tech Solution: Business-Card Scanners
Business Problem: Managing important business contacts amid a hectic travel schedule.
Are Support Systems Way Off-Base?
Web 2.0 technology leaves many companies' knowledge base systems in the dust.
A Business That's Small Can Record Your Call
CallCopy's latest release -- a Voice over Internet Protocol call-recording solution -- specifically targets the smaller end of the small-to-midsize-business segment.
RightNow Takes Aim at Customer Service 2.0
The Bozeman, Mont.-based provider's latest quarterly on-demand release "pushes the envelope," according to one industry analyst.
SugarCRM Wants to Open the CRM Door
CRM Acceleration '08: The cofounder and CEO of the open-source CRM pioneer says that the best technology can finally win in this industry -- and that one day SugarCRM "will be a billion-dollar company."
The Unseen Force Behind Customer Experience
destinationCRM 2008: The missing link in providing quality service is an effective contact center manager.
Conflict Cripples the Customer Experience
destinationCRM 2008: The push to truly provide a differentiated service experience must take into account the consumer's ecosystem—not the companies'.
Press 1 for Caller Thoughts
SpeechTEK '08: As this year's conference opens, industry analysts, consultants, and providers say vendors must shed their distorted views on end-user opinions of speech automation.
Do Contact Centers Need a Unified Front?
New research from Aberdeen finds unified communications is on the minds of many, but more work needs to be done to clear up misconceptions.
Sage Act!s on Customer Feedback
Act! by Sage 2009 keys in on user requests, aiming to improve their experience.
Changing the Paradigm of the Contact Center
CallCopy's cc: Survey enables data collected by customer service agents to influence the entire organization.
Verint Looks to Impact Service
Noting a missing link in workforce optimization, the company releases an enhanced professional services portfolio.
Calling It Quits
Contact center agents are leaving in massive numbers -- attrition and absenteeism run rampant -- but there are ways to stem the tide.
CRM Class Is in Session
More colleges and consulting firms are offering CRM-specific certifications.
Market Focus: Education -- Making CRM Mandatory for University Administration
Why higher-education spending on CRM is set to almost double by 2012.
Tech Solution: Email Management Tools
Business Problem: Subpar email response forces unhappy customers to live agents.
Even Contact Centers Have Room for Improvement
France's Groupe b2s boosts productivity with Altitude Software.
Perpetuating a Complete Agent Life Cycle
Aspect Software looks to close the loop with new e-learning and agent-hiring features in PerformanceEdge -- and delivers them as software-as-a-service.
BT Snaps Up Ribbit for $105 Million
Company executives insist the acquisition will only help accelerate voice automation innovation for the masses.
A New Equation for Contact Centers
Research from Aberdeen Group indicates customer satisfaction can only take place if agents meet an unmet consumer need in addition to resolving issues.
Service Providers Can't Define the Customer Experience
In a growing trend across all verticals, the latest Yankee Group study finds 50 percent of service providers cannot explain what the customer experience should be.
SoundBite Communications Sinks its Teeth into Collections Pain
The multichannel communications provider's offering has the potential to accelerate adoption of hosted solutions in this space, according to an analyst.
Chordiant Keeps People in the Contact Center Equation
With the release of Recommendation Advisor 6.1, the company strikes a balance between human decision-making and technology.
Convergys to Acquire Intervoice for $335 Million
The move deepens Convergys' footprint in an increasingly competitive customer service market, according to company executives.
CRM Market Continues to Soar for a Fourth Straight Year
Gartner sees 23 percent growth in 2007, and also finds social networking becoming a disruptive force in the CRM industry.
Aspect Software Acquires BlueNote Networks
The deal furthers Aspect's strategy regarding unified communications for the contact center, according to a company executive.
Who's Really Calling Your Contact Center?
ID Analytics' new authentication solution looks to break high-cost boundaries.
Overall Satisfaction for Contact Centers Rises
The latest study from the CFI Group finds customer satisfaction remains an important competitive differentiator.
The voice user interface problem has long been the sticking point in automated support systems. Why can't designers design a system worth talking about?
Biting Off the Right Amount
PracticeWorks brushes up its technical support operations for oral-healthcare offices.
Tech Solution: Open-Source CRM
Business Problem: Lack of company control over the development of CRM software.
SAP Looks to ‘Change the Game’
On The Scene: Sapphire 2008 -- One analyst believes the latest from the German juggernaut propels the company squarely back into the CRM 2.0 battle.
Web 2.0 Technologies Remain Top-of-Mind for Most Companies
A recent study from the SSPA finds "higher-than-expected" gains in customer community and wiki adoption.
Pilgrim Software Synchronizes Complaint Logging
The newest offering from the provider of enterprise compliance and quality management solutions takes the human factor out of unifying data.
Business Lessons Drive New Enhancements for LiveOps
The vendor's latest on-demand contact center platform underscores the importance of monitoring calls in real time.
Keep Your Home Agents on Task, Virtually
West at Home says its new Locked-Down Desktop Security Environment will help a company manage its at-home reps through each agent's own computer.
Customer Service for the Web 2.0 World
Helpstream's new Summer 2008 release looks to move beyond traditional knowledge management; one pundit believes the company "has done it better than anyone."
Email and SMS Marketing Rules to Live (and Send) By
Acxiom Multi-Channel Media Symposium: As technological innovation brings the potential of a multi-channel marketing strategy to enhance the customer experience, company executives explain the basics have to be done correctly first.
Business Process Outsourcing Market to Reach $450 Billion by 2012
New statistics affirm the industry's continued growth amid warnings that activity could "take a downturn" as a result of November's presidential election.
5 Trends Your Business Can’t Miss
Driving Innovation '08: Verint Americas President Elan Moriah dishes the next key shifts companies must acknowledge and prepare for in order to remain relevant in an increasingly competitive business landscape.
An End to Information Chaos
Driving Innovation '08: Verint Systems CEO and President Dan Bodner says that merely collecting intelligence is worthless without being able to properly utilize the data.
Believe the Hype about Hosted Contact Centers
After years of build-up, how much longer should we wait for the market to mature?
Is SaaS Ready for Its Contact Center Close-up?
Software-as-a-service continues to catch on, but observers differ on whether the not-so-new business model is right for contact centers
The Risky Risk Business
PGAC assures better -- and more effective -- service with Upstream Works.
Is Workforce Management at an Impasse?
Recent study statistics show increasing dissatisfaction with workforce management software and a growing technology gap, leading one analyst to believe the market may be "at a precipice."
Intervoice Looks to Break Contact Center Silos
The company's new Contact Portal combines the functionality of its contact center offerings, enabling consumers to receive customer service on their own terms -- and through their preferred channel.
Workforce Optimization Giants Continue Patent Battles
For the second time in as many weeks, Verint gained a victory over Nice Systems in the long-running patent-infringement cases over speech analytics and IP recording in the contact center.
It's Been a Gloomy Decade for Contact Centers
A recent study finds that quality of service has deteriorated over the last 10 years--and contact centers are finding it harder than ever to keep agents in the seats.
Companies Still Miss the Mark on the Complete Customer Experience
A new study maintains that while many companies claim they're crafting quality customer service, most still fail to deliver.
Varolii's New Collections Products Get Collected
Looking to guide companies through a gloomy economy, the on-demand communications provider's newest offerings are prepackaged -- and predictive.
Interactive Intelligence Unveils New Customer Feedback Products
The unified IP business communications solutions vendor seeks to gain a firm hold with mid-size and large contact centers and enterprises in what one analyst calls "a large, untapped market."
SAP Seeks to Tie Up Loose Ends
SAPPHIRE '08: Relying on services-oriented architecture, SAP co-CEO Henning Kagermann believes his company can now help businesses "close the loop" between strategy and execution.
Microsoft Goes Automated With its Service Agent
The release marks another contact center-specific offering available now from the software giant, and underscores a future move to make inroads with large-scale, more complex contact centers.
CRM Is All About Teamwork
SAPPHIRE '08: At SAP's annual user conference, the opening keynote address stresses the value of teamwork and its importance to any CRM investment.
Eureka! CallMiner Hopes Large Enterprises Discover Its New Release
CallMiner plans to enter a new realm, large enterprises, and prove its solution's scalability with its latest Eureka release.
And They're Off!
Offshore, that is--and nearshore, and homeshore. When it comes to outsourcing contact centers, it's a whole new horse race.
Tech Solution: Price Optimization Tools
Business Problem: Unsure how to price products and services to stay competitive while still ensuring profitability.
Vendors Go Virtual for Feedback
On The Scene: SAP CRM 2008 -- Online communities are another way to get into customers' heads.
VoiceXML Propels Global Investment in IVRs
In a shift away from open-standard IVR platforms, new Datamonitor statistics show approximately 69 percent of all IVR shipments will be VoiceXML-based platforms.
Open Source Is an Open Book for SaaS Providers
A new study from Gartner predicts that, by 2010, 90 percent of software-as-a-service providers will incorporate some component of open-source technologies into their infrastructures.
For Contact Center Infrastructure, Hosting Becomes the Life of the Party
A new study from DMG Consulting finds the market will rapidly expand, with 30 to 35 percent of all new contact center seats being hosted by 2011.
Siemens Delivers Unified Communications to the Contact Center
While other vendors are still just announcing plans to deliver UC capabilities, Siemens Communications announces two UC-enabled contact center packages and a voice-portal solution for its SIP-based OpenScape UC Server.
On-Demand CRM Primed to Shock and Awe the On-Premise World
In the battle for software supremacy, new research predicts the on-demand CRM market will grow more than six times faster than its on-premise counterpart through 2010.
Heavy Competition Continues to Drive the BPO Market
An ever-growing number of countries and companies are competing for attention in the business process outsourcing field -- and the top vendors are finding ways to expand their revenue streams and delivery options.
Companies Still Fail to Measure KPIs for the Contact Center
In a recent Aberdeen study on Contact Center Consolidation, the findings reflect a harrowing trend of companies still failing to measure key performance indicators and ROI.
Microsoft and Nuance Get Muted By Gartner Magic Quadrant for IVR
The two vendors are removed from contention in the research firm's latest assessment of the interactive voice response marketplace.
LiveOps Dials in Telephony to Salesforce.com's AppExchange
The announcement underscores efforts to speed contact center adoption of on-demand software; a Salesforce.com executive says LiveOps will "help us integrate better to telephony systems."
Sword Group Slashes into CRM, Acquires Graham Technology
The deal may help U.K.-based Graham extend the global reach of its ciboodle CRM product, but analysts caution that growth may be more elusive in the United States.
The 2008 CRM Service Awards: Elite -- BOK Mortgage
Varolii Corp.'s software helps BOK Mortgage reduce the number of delinquent accounts.
The 2008 CRM Service Awards: Interactive Voice Response
IVR solutions are growing increasingly mature; Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories proves itself most mature of all.
The 2008 CRM Service Awards: Workforce Optimization Suite
Consolidation is all the rage in workforce optimization; Verint Systems takes the "optimal" spot.
The 2008 CRM Service Awards: Rising Stars -- Jacada
Jacada hopes a tighter focus will lead to brighter fortunes.
Labor Disputes Reach The Contact Center
Pending lawsuits filed against AT&T and other companies over unpaid contact center wages could change the traditional value model.
Market Focus: Telecommunications -- The Plight of the Wirelines
With wireless encroaching one coverage bar at a time, wireline providers are struggling to revamp their customer strategies.
Required Reading: Learn the New Rules for Building Brands
The lessons to be learned from "accidental" marketers.
Tech Solution: Speech Analytics Software
Business Problem: Inability to understand or organize customer feedback in order to retain customers and improve overall service.
Contact Centers Aren't Yet Ready for Web 2.0
Magic Quadrant for CRM Customer Service Contact Centers '08: Foreseeing a "revolutionary" future for the contact center customer service market, the latest Gartner Magic Quadrant for the sector extends the multiyear Oracle/Siebel winning streak, and highlights the continuing value of niche players for verticals.
Want Customer Loyalty? Improve Customer Experience First.
Recent reports from Forrester find an increasing emphasis on customer experience -- and a payoff in terms of customer retention.
Calabrio Joins the Enterprise 2.0 World
The provider of workforce optimization solutions is seeking to provide a unified framework so contact center workers can achieve results faster and more efficiently.
Kana and IBM Team Up for New Customer Experience Solutions
Expanding an existing partnership, the companies are expecting services-oriented architecture to help foster "seamless" customer-service integration.
Customer Satisfaction Is Just the Beginning
According to statistics from a newly published study, organizations are realizing that "customer satisfaction" means far more than just "happy customers."
Oracle Finally Says ''See Ya'' to ''Siebel'' for On Demand CRM
In addition to a long-rumored change in naming conventions, the software giant's Release 15 weaves social networking into on-demand CRM; also, a new Mobile Sales Assistant is unveiled.
Apple Takes a Bite Into Enterprise CRM
With Salesforce.com's announcement of an iPhone-specific application, will Apple finally tackle the corporate world?
9 Essential Strategies to Improve Customer Experience
SAP CRM 2008: As advertising budgets shift to online efforts, customer care is where the money is.
SAP Refocuses on "Fun"
SAP CRM 2008: SAP's overarching theme of "customer co-innovation" goes beyond its newly launched CRM offering, according to company executives.
Re-shoring Contact Centers
A rise in customer dissatisfaction with offshore contact centers has many companies looking to relocate closer to home.
Required Reading: Your Employees Matter, Too
Heavy Competition Drives Bilingual Offshore Market
New research reveals increased competition among Latin American nations looking to provide customer service for America's rapidly expanding Hispanic markets.
Ahead of the Innovation Curve: On-Demand Contact Center Platforms
LiveOps' Spring 08 On-Demand Call Center Platform comes amid widespread thinking in the industry that customer service's future lies with hosted and managed contact centers.
CRM Steadies the Foundation of a Struggling Housing Market
CDC Software's newest release of Pivotal CRM for Home Building and Real Estate looks to help streamline operations and boost profits for homebuilders.
Access Your Contact Center Data Anywhere, Anytime
In response to customer demand, Autonomy etalk's Intelligent Contact Center solutions suite introduces Qfiniti Web Access, turning any Internet-connected computer into a customer-service station.
Marketers Get Invites to the Social Networking Party
Loyalty Lab's newest release links email to myriad activities -- and makes messaging relevant for social networks.
If SMBs Don't Buy Contact Center Applications, No One Will
A new study concludes vendors must tap into the midmarket to prevent a potential stagnation in market growth.
Amdocs Beefs Up Its Consulting Services
The vendor believes consulting on business processes, not solely on software implementation, is the key to unlocking a valuable customer experience.
Social Networking Continues to Permeate Customer Service Solutions
The expanded partnership between eVergance and Jive Software underscores a growing need to provide tools enabling online consumer forums.
Companies Hate Their Customer Service, Too
Better customer service may require specialized tools to fill the gaps left by software suites, according to Forrester Research.
Worldwide Outsourcing Market to Grow 8.1% in '08
A new Gartner study reveals strong growth in the overall outsourcing market -- but even stronger growth in the business-process outsourcing most critical to CRM.
Workforce Management Expands, But Fails to Satisfy All
Growth may not equal success: One study finds more than one-third of businesses using WFM in the contact center are not satisfied with the WFM process or with the available software.
Avaya Call Center 5.0 Features New Capabilities
The telecommunications powerhouse promises the new release will help businesses improve the overall customer experience -- and cut costs.
Thomson Acquires Contact Networks
The deal spotlights the ever-increasing importance of social networking, particularly in the B2B space.
Amdocs Tries to Digitally Connect with Communications Providers
With Amdocs CES 7.5, the company looks to usher in a new era in which consumers control the purchasing process.
Speech Self-Service a Top Priority in 2008
Companies are beginning to see the technology as an essential part of customer service strategy.
7 Essential Customer Service Processes
A new study by Gartner identifies the top priorities for any business trying to improve its customer service.
Quality Management Market Forges Ahead
DMG Consulting's latest figures reflect the market's increasing profitability, especially with SMBs.
Jacada Sells Application Modernization Business
Jacada's $26 million deal with Software AG now allows the company to focus exclusively on its rapidly growing call center solutions business.
Rating the Top Customer Service Providers for 2007
RealPeopleRatings.com's survey reveals which businesses provide the best customer service, and where they stand with consumers.
CRM Managers Should Listen for a Change
AMC Technology resumes its telephony, contact center, and CRM integration webinar series; targeted programs will help attendees focus on specifics.
Aspect Offers More Localization and Capabilities for '08
The latest version of Aspect Unified IP 6.5.1 expands language capabilities, and adds unified command and real-time reporting.
Centive Streamlines Sales Data for '08
The Compel Winter 2008 release from Centive features an interactive dashboard allowing sales pros to view their stats in one place.
Contact Centers Rely on CRM -- Some of the Time
Two recent studies confirm the fact that CRM applications are used by nearly two-thirds of contact centers -- and will become even more influential in the future.