[View Past Issues] February 11, 2014
Top Headlines
Featured Link
Analyst/Bytes & Statistics
In Other News
Required Reading
Our News
About Us

: Learn How to Balance Metrics & Quality to Deliver Superior Customer Service

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. 

Watch 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

Watch the webinar today!

Five9 Powers NexRep Contact Center
Call center specialist NexRep is using Five9, a provider of cloud contact center software, to enable and optimize at-home agents. NexRep is a call center specializing in direct sales, marketing, and customer service campaigns for a wide range of product and service providers. Unlike conventional call centers, NexRep recruits, contracts, and certifies sales agents who work 100 percent from home. With approximately 500 agents located in 35+ US states, NexRep handles hundreds of thousands of calls every week. With the help of Five9, NexRep has been able to drive continual growth during the past eight years with their at-home agent business model.

8x8 Launches Enhanced Cloud Contact Center Solution
8x8, Inc., a provider of cloud communications and collaboration solutions, announced the completion of a significant upgrade to its Virtual Contact Center (VCC) cloud-based call center software offering, designed to improve an organization's customer relations, enhance the management and productivity of their call center agents and guarantee the security of the call center environment. 8x8's VCC service is available as a single point solution or as an integrated component of 8x8's Virtual Office cloud-based telephony and unified communications solutions.


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!

Emerging Markets Slowdown Continues to Inhibit IT Spending
According to the new International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Black Book, IT spending will be inhibited by the economic slowdown in emerging markets in 2014, in addition to an inevitable deceleration in the growth of smartphones and tablets. IDC has lowered its forecasts for IT market growth in Asia Pacific (including China), Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, driving down its forecast for Worldwide IT spending growth to 4.6% this year in constant currency terms (down from the previous forecast of 5%). With currency devaluation and inflation likely to inhibit business confidence in many emerging economies in the first half of this year, and with the explosive growth of mobile devices having begun to inevitably cool from the breakneck pace of the past 2-3 years, overall industry growth will dip slightly from last year’s pace of 4.8%.

Infrastructure, Software and IT Services are Hot Spots

While overall industry growth has cooled, some areas of tech spending are heating up as businesses in mature economies including the US and Western Europe, begin to invest in overdue infrastructure upgrades and replacements. Spending on servers will increase by 3%, after last year’s decline of 4%, and storage spending will also grow by 3% this year (following a 0.5% decline in 2013). The PC market is showing tentative signs of stabilization, with improving commercial shipments in mature markets. The increased pace of hardware investment will have a positive effect on IT services revenue, which is forecasted to post growth of 4% this year (up from 3% in 2013). Enterprise software spending remains broadly strong, with growth still expected in the range of 6-7%. Excluding mobile phones, IT spending growth will actually accelerate in 2014 from 2.9% last year (excluding phones) to 3.4% this year.

Emerging Markets are Volatile

Exchange rate volatility is likely to exert a strong influence over IT revenues for global suppliers this year (in US dollar terms, the IT market grew by just 2.8% in 2013, compared to 4.8% in constant currency, due to the strength of the dollar). It’s too early to predict whether the dollar will remain strong throughout 2014, but the Fed’s decision to begin tapering its QE program will clearly exert a strong influence in the first half of the year. Not only will this create volatility for IT vendors during earnings season, but it may also create economic instability in key emerging markets.

Cannibalization Continues

Despite the pickup in mature economies, there are still significant inhibitors that will mean that IT spending growth remains moderate by historical standards. Cannibalization remains a broad trend, impacting everything from PCs (tablets) to software and services (Cloud) and ensuring major disruption for individual vendors. Price erosion and commoditization in hardware have spread to mobile devices. While showing signs of bottoming out, the PC market continues to post year-on-year declines in revenue terms, and telecom infrastructure investment remains tepid in many countries as carriers compete for a more mature customer base.

Underlying Fundamentals Have Improved

Nevertheless, in spite of this ongoing cannibalization and economic uncertainty, IT market fundamentals are more solid this year than 12 months ago. There is now significant pent-up demand for new servers, storage capacity and network equipment, and this is trickling through to increases in IT services revenue. Enterprise enthusiasm for new software built around the key 3rd platform solutions of Mobility, Cloud, Big Data and Social, remains strong. Consumer enthusiasm for mobile devices and applications remains positive, even though the market has inevitably cooled.

More...


By 2015, 25% of Large Global Organizations Will Have Appointed Chief Data Officers
Organizations are creating, accessing and using more sources and types of information than ever before. This trend, combined with the increasing need to understand how data is being used within a company, is driving the need for chief data officers (CDOs). Gartner predicts that by 2015, 25 percent of large global organizations will have appointed CDOs.

Gartner has also found that 65 percent of CDOs are in the U.S. while 20 percent are in the U.K. There are, however, CDOs in over a dozen countries now. In addition, over 25 percent of CDOs are women, almost twice as high as for CIOs (13 percent). The position is most common in heavily regulated industries, media and government.

CIOs should view the CDO as a peer and partner who can manage data and who has the knowledge, background and skills to do so, which allows CIOs to focus on the more-than-full time job that they already have. CDOs are appearing more rapidly in some industries than in others. Banking, government and insurance are the first three industries to adopt the CDO role and in that order. However, we are now seeing other industries following. For example, we saw the first significant appointments in the advertising industry in 2013.

It is important to remember that the CDOs do not "own" the data. They may own key processes around the data and be "in charge" of some data - for example master data. The CDO owns a few things, but coordinates the use of data in other places. This is exactly like a CFO, who owns a few financial processes, like consolidation and treasury, but other than that coordinates the use of capital throughout the organization.

More...


Click here for more Industry Stats

How Newly Appointed CIOs Take Charge
The transition for any executive into a new appointment is a challenge. This transition for the newly appointed Chief Information Officer (CIO) is especially so given the breadth of their responsibilities. The CIO not only manages the delivery of IT services and projects but must be viewed as a legitimate business leader in order to influence strategic decision-making. This article reports on a study that explores the experience of CIOs taking charge of a new appointment.
Full Article...

Ten Tips for New Executives

Jokes are risky. Email is forever. Don't answer hypothetical questions. Never complain. Here are 10 suggestions I wish someone had given me when I was beginning my run as an executive. I made the mistake of violating many of them but not all.
Full Article...

How to Break the Cycle of CIO Turnover
For chief executive officers, the selection and retention of a skilled CIO has never been more critical. At many companies, however, a number of factors—including limited succession planning, the choice of reporting lines, and a lack of buy-in from key stakeholders for major IT projects—can make it difficult for the CIO to perform effectively, leading to a tenure shorter than those of other C-suite executives. Study results reveal some steps chief executives can take to ensure that their information officers and IT professionals are set up to succeed.
Full Article...

15 Tips on Contact Center Scheduling
One of the call center manager's most important tasks is to create a schedule that balances agent needs vs. call center capabilities, while accounting for such variables as shrinkage and exceptions. Easier said than done? Not necessarily – the right workforce management system streamlines the process and provides more consistent, accurate data.
Full Article...

Transforming Your Contact Center to a True Profit Center
Is your contact center an asset or expense? The costs of running an efficient, multi-channel contact center can be daunting. But with the right strategy and tools, you can turn that expense into a profit-producing asset that boosts sales and customer satisfaction at the same time. Recognizing the value of contact center agents is one key to success.
Full Article...

Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t
by Simon Sinek

In his travels around the world since the publication of his bestseller Start with Why, Simon Sinek noticed that some teams were able to trust each other so deeply that they would literally put their lives on the line for each other. Other teams, no matter what incentives were offered, were doomed to infighting, fragmentation and failure. Why?

The best organizations foster trust and cooperation because their leaders build what Sinek calls a Circle of Safety that separates the security inside the team from the challenges outside. The Circle of Safety leads to stable, adaptive, confident teams, where everyone feels they belong and all energies are devoted to facing the common enemy and seizing big opportunities.

Click here for more information!

Follow supportindustry on Twitter

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...

Visit the SupportIndustry.com Blog
The SupportIndustry.com Blog is another way stay on top of the service and support industry. Our blog, updated at least once a week, is dedicated to covering the latest topics related to service and support, call center management, customer experience management, web-based support, help desks, workforce optimization and more.
Check it out today

Manage Your e.Newsletter Subscription!
Log-on to the member's only page and you can to change newsletter formats, remove yourself from the list, or update your member profile.

Editorial suggestions, feedback & comments:
Carolyn Healey, Editor - chealey@supportindustry.com

Advertising Information:
adinfo@supportindustry.com

Thank you for reading SupportIndustry.com's weekly newsletter!
 
2014 SupportIndustry.com, All Rights Reserved