[View Past Issues] January 28, 2014
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: Learn How to Balance Metrics & Quality to Deliver Superior Customer Service

January 30, 2014, 10 AM (PST) / 1 PM (EST)

To truly focus on the customer experience and deliver high quality, consistent service, there needs to be a balance between metrics and quality. It takes a combination of metrics, monitoring, coaching, training, and effectively communicating to consistently deliver a high quality customer experience that you can measure and promote. Additionally, it is important to know that delivering “excellent customer experience” does not require perfection. In fact, a focus on perfection often leads to customer dissatisfaction and negative employee morale. 

Attend this session to take the imperfect path to excellence and learn:

  • The difference between efficiency and effectiveness (value) metrics
  • Where to focus to create a quality customer experience (tips on call, incident, and knowledge monitoring)
  • How to achieve the balance of efficiency and quality (reporting, quality monitoring, coaching, and training)
  • The skills that differentiate EXTRAORDINARY customer service from good or great service.

Take Aways include:

  • Sample reports
  • Quality score card templates
  • Check list for skills that differentiate levels of service

Register today!

Genesys Acquires Ventriloquist
Genesys, a provider of customer experience and contact center solutions, announced that it has acquired Ventriloquist Voice Solutions International. The Ventriloquist solution brings additional scale and reach to the Genesys cloud-based proactive communications offerings, which help companies to deliver persona-based, branded customer interactions over voice, SMS, email, and mobile to improve the customer experience. Ventriloquist is an existing partner of Genesys with a substantial installed base of customers in Canada and the U.S.

Envision Releases Unique Cloud-Based Software That Eliminates Costly Startup Fees, Deploys in Under an Hour
Envision with more than 20 years of innovation and experience in the contact center workforce optimization market, has introduced Click2Coach Cloud, a cloud-based, downloadable application that delivers enterprise-class functionality to contact centers of any size in under an hour, which eliminates the $50-$100,000 startup costs that often prevents adoption. Click2Coach Cloud is a complete recording, evaluation, coaching and agent analytics application that enables contact centers to capture phone, CTI, application workflow and desktop data.

Jabra Unveils New Headset Purpose-Built for the Next-Generation Contact Center Professional
Jabra, a manufacturer of innovative audio solutions, announced the answer to the contact center of tomorrow – the Jabra BIZTM 2300.  Completely rethinking the role of the headset in the contact center, Jabra is launching the Jabra BIZ 2300 as a direct response to address the needs of the evolving contact center landscape. With up to 50 percent better noise cancellation and a 20 percent lighter form factor compared to competitors, Kevlar® cords and a virtually unbreakable boom arm for durability, the Jabra BIZ 2300 comes out on top with all key call center headset parameters.



On-Demand Webinar: Dealing With Difficult People

It is that time of year for warmth, good cheer, and fellowship. But do you have customers, co-workers, or bosses who never got the memo? Communications skills expert, bestselling author and practicing psychotherapist Rich Gallagher will help you warm up your interpersonal skills, and teach you how to deal with some of the "characters" in your working life:

  • Scrooge: He has a word for everything, and it's always "no."
  • The Snow Queen: Can passionately and intelligently discuss any position as long as it's hers.
  • Jack Frost: That icy, passive-aggressive person who always leaves a chill in the air.
  • The Little Drummer Boy: Loudly stirs up drama when you least expect it.
  • The Angry Villagers: Customers who rise up on social media and elsewhere to criticize you.

Using evidence-based principles of strength-based communication, plus Rich's vast experience with managing difficult workplace situations, this on-demand webinar will help brighten your holidays with brand new tools for working effectively with anyone!

Watch the webinar today!

IT Professionals Salaries Remain Flat
The 2014 Salary Survey, just released by Janco Associates and eJobDescription.com, is not good news for IT Professionals.  The survey shows that hiring and salaries has not significantly improved for IT professionals in most North American metropolitan areas.

Salaries are up less than 1% for IT pros in the past 12 months and the only winners are the top level postions in mid-sized companies.  Salaries for most IT pros have finally gotten back to the level they were at in 2007 and that is a very good sign.

The seven major findings of the survey are:

  • IT compensation for all IT Professionals has increased by 0.67% in the last 12 months.
  • CIOs compensation has stayed flat in larger companies and increased in smaller and mid-sized companies in the past 12 months.
  • Positions in highest demand are all associated with the quality control, BYOD implementation, and service level improvement.
  • Over the long term IT executives have fared better in mid-sized companies than large companies.
  • In 2013 the IT job market grew by 74,900 versus 62,500 in 2012 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) – better but not enough to employee the number of IT graduates from US universities or to increase demand.
  • Lay-offs seem to have tapered off, however some companies continue to cut the size of the IT organizations.
  • Cost control is still the rule of the day; however we have seen an increase in the number of "part-timers" and contractors who are focused on particular critical projects. This has resulted in few IT Pros getting health coverage.
  • On shore outsourcing has peaked and companies are looking to bring IT operations back into their direct control and reduce operating costs.
  • Mandated requirements for records management systems and electronic medical records have increased the demand for quality control staff and custodians (librarians) of mechanized records.
  • Companies are continuing to refine the benefits provided to full time IT professionals. Though benefits such as health care are available to 80%, IT professionals are now paying a greater portion of that cost.

More...


Survey of More Than 2,300 CIOs Reveals Many Are Unprepared for Digitalization: the Third Era of Enterprise IT
Digitalization, the third era of enterprise IT, is beginning, but most CIOs do not feel prepared for this next era, according to a global survey of CIOs by Gartner, Inc.'s Executive Programs. The survey showed that many CIOs feel overwhelmed by the prospect of building digital leadership while renovating the core of IT infrastructure and capability for the digital future. The survey found that 51 percent of CIOs are concerned that the digital torrent is coming faster than they can cope and 42 percent don't feel that they have the talent needed to face this future.

The worldwide survey was conducted in the fourth quarter of 2013 and included 2,339 CIOs, representing more than $300 billion in CIO IT budgets in 77 countries.

During the first era of enterprise IT, the focus was on how IT could help do new and seemingly magical things — automating operations to create massive improvements in speed and scale, and providing business leaders with management information they never had before. The last decade has represented the second era of enterprise IT, an era of industrialization of enterprise IT, making it more reliable, predictable, open and transparent. However, while this second era has been necessary and powerful, tight budgets and little appetite for risk left scant room for innovation.

Entering the third era of enterprise IT technological and societal trends, such as the Nexus of Forces and the Internet of Things, are changing everything; not only improving what businesses do with technology to make themselves faster, cheaper and more scalable, but fundamentally changing businesses with information and technology, changing the basis of competition and in some cases, creating new industries.

Most businesses have established IT leadership, strategy and governance but have a vacuum in digital leadership. To exploit new digital opportunities and ensure that the core of IT services is ready, there must be clear digital leadership, strategy and governance, and all business executives must become digitally savvy. Indeed, the 2014 CIO Survey shows that the CEO's digital savvy is one of the best indicators of IT and business performance.

CIOs report that a quarter of IT spending will happen outside the IT budget in 2014 — and that is the spending they know about; the reality may be significantly higher. This is a direct result of the new digital opportunities that are more entwined with customer and colleague experiences, and that may, in some cases, reflect concerns that the IT organization is not fast enough or otherwise ready for more digital opportunities.

"There is an inherent tension between doing IT right and doing IT fast, doing IT safely and doing IT innovatively, working the plan and adapting," said Mr. Waller. "The second era of enterprise IT has been all about planning IT right, doing IT right, being predictable and creating value while maximizing control and minimizing risk. However, to capture digital opportunities created by the third era, CIOs need to deal with speed, innovation and uncertainty. This requires bimodal capability — operating two modes of enterprise IT — conventional, or "safe and steady" IT, and a faster, more agile nonlinear mode."

In order to deliver on this bimodal future, CIOs are planning for significant change in 2014 and beyond:

  • A quarter have already made significant investments in public cloud, and the majority expect more than half of their company's business to be running over public cloud by 2020.
  • Seventy percent of CIOs plan to change their technology and sourcing relationships over the next two to three years, and many are seeking to partner with small companies and startups.
  • Forty-five percent of companies have implemented agile methodologies for part of their development portfolio, although most need to go further to create separate, multidisciplinary teams, with lightweight governance and new, digital skillsets and alternative sourcing models.

More...


Click here for more Industry Stats

The 8 Traits of Customer-Relevant Companies
Research from Ovum has found that 90 percent of organizations are at risk of becoming irrelevant to their customers unless they can learn to adapt their practices much faster and in ways customers value. They're also missing key opportunities for exemplary customer satisfaction, greater customer loyalty, and faster growth. Ovum also notes that rising customer expectations and customer power brought about by social and mobile technologies have made it more challenging than ever for companies to remain relevant to their customers.
Full Article...

The 'Gamification' of the Office Approaches

Imagine if at the office you were made to feel like you were playing "Candy Crush Saga." Envision that every one of your professional endeavors was meticulously tracked and measured in points, that there were levels to complete and you were given prizes for excellence. That every workplace action provided a tangible sensation of winning or losing as part of a system engineered to keep you addicted, thrilled to come back every morning. If your job worked like that, would you become a better employee? Or would you feel just the opposite—crushed by metrics, constantly watched over, infantilized by your boss's attempt to turn you into an automaton?
Full Article...

Improving Agent Performance: 5 Tips for Successful Multitasking
Multitasking is a critical success factor for employees, and particularly for contact center agents. The very nature of the agent job requires them to perform multiple tasks with competing demands. While we all appreciate the importance of multitasking, we may not know exactly what multitasking is and how it affects productivity and critical business outcomes. These 5 tips reveal the latest research on multitasking and its impact on contact agent performance, satisfaction, and success.
Full Article...

5 Hybrid IT Roles Your Business Needs to Succeed in 2014
This year, the ability to simply configure and run a server or develop software in isolation won't be enough. Employers will aggressively pursue workers with multi-dimensional talent -- combinations of technology, domain, business, process and people skills.
Full Article...

10 Managers You Don't Want to Meet On Your Journey
Here's a fresh look at some of the habits of lousy leaders and managers based on input from participants in my management programs and forums. Check out the list of 10 managers you don’t want to ever work for.
Full Article...

Leadership 2030: The Six Megatrends You Need to Understand to Lead Your Company into the Future
by Georg Vielmetter, Yvonne Sell

The tumultuous changes of the past decade, including China’s economic rise and the financial meltdown, were just the beginning. The next cataclysmic wave is surging relentlessly ahead, demanding leaders who can steer their companies through complexity and change. Drawn from original research conducted jointly with foresight company Z-Punkt and further analyzed by Hay Group, Leadership 2030 uncovers six megatrends that will dramatically impact organizations’ markets, cultures, systems, and processes:

1. Globalization 2.0: Asia dominates the global economy.
2. Climate change: Sustainability becomes imperative.
3. Individualism: Freedom of choice erodes loyalty.
4. Digitization: Boundaries blur between private and working lives.
5. Demographic changes: Aging populations intensify the talent war.
6. Converging technologies: The sharpest tech shift in history is around the corner. Research findings and case studies provide compelling evidence of each megatrend and highlight the skills, capabilities, and attitudes leaders must cultivate, such as adaptability, collaboration, cultural sensitivity, strategic thinking, meaning creation, and more.

Click here for more information!

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Free Research on the Service and Support Industry
Are you looking for the latest research available (for free!) on the service and support industry? Then check out the research section of SupportIndustry.com. Some of the current offerings available to members are:

  • 2013 People Issues in Customer Support
  • 2012 Service and Support Metrics Survey
  • The 2012 Service & Support Snapshot: 5 Support Trends That Will Change Your Business in 2012
  • Research Insight: Self-Service Support
  • Research Insight: Average Speed to Answer, Wait Time and Handle Time
  • Research Insight: Effectively Measuring Customer Loyalty
  • Research Insight: Cost Per Contact (Phone & E-Mail)
  • Research Insight: First Contact Resolution

All of these reports can be accessed by clicking here...

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Check it out today

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