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Adaptive IVR Blog

Add Mindfulness to Your Contact Center WFO and IVR Strategies

Mindfulness.  It's not just personal anymore.  It's a state of mind that can enhance performance in the contact center if you apply it to your WFO and IVR strategies.  Start with your approach to the three P’s of business – people, process and product.

Learning expert, Eduardo Brinceno, said in his popular TedTalk How to get better at the things you care about

“...the most effective people and teams in any domain do something we can all emulate. They go through life deliberately alternating between two zones: the learning zone and the performance zone.”

So what does that mean for creating contact center mindfulness that delivers actionable, improved results? Let’s put our learning zone caps on for the moment, because what you read next will help you get to your performance zone even faster.

Topics: Contact Center Insights IVR Business Case WFO Customer Data Customer Care Customer Experience Agent Productivity IVR Process Improvement Performance Optimization

Best Practices to Stay Engaged: Highlights from Verint Engage 2017 Conference

Last week’s Verint Engage 2017 Global Customer Conference (#Verint17) brought customers and prospects from across the world together to address the rapidly changing customer care environment.  As a first-time Engage attendee and staffer the event left a positive impression on me – directly from informed and inquisitive customers, from C-level to technical to operations, and across many industries. Running an effective contact center is not all rainbows and unicorns, but there are certainly inspirational moments that create a rainbow or two. Here’s how I sum up the content of the conference and the direction Verint and industry-leading customer service and customer experience experts see as the optimal way to deliver exceptional customer service through your evolving contact center operations:

  • Lead the evolution of the Enterprise
  • Clear the path for the best Customer Journey
  • Embrace the value of Employee Engagement

As made clear at Engage, it’s never going to be one-size-fits-all, but it doesn’t need to be complex. Let’s dig deeper into each area.

Topics: Contact Center Insights IVR Business Case WFO Customer Data Customer Care Customer Experience Agent Productivity IVR Process Improvement Performance Optimization

Demolish Data Silos to Improve Contact Center Performance

Integrating IVR and WFO Data Can Improve Operations and Customer Experience 

We’re all familiar with silos – those “isolated islands of data” (per Harvard Business Review) that make it difficult or impossible to share and analyze information to make better business decisions. This is particularly true in the contact center.

Silos can arise from several scenarios created by organizational culture and technology:

  • proliferation of applications, particularly niche software, which don’t work together
  • reliance on multiple project teams that may compete with each other
  • data hoarding by departments or database administrators
  • mergers and acquisitions that bring together disparate organizations with duplicative databases

Whatever their origin, data silos are a major problem, particularly in the age of Big Data and analytics. They prevent people from seeing the “big picture” that is necessary to spot opportunities, trends and problems affecting the organization as a whole. Data silos also act as barriers to collaboration, productivity and efficiency. Forrester agrees.  See why...

Topics: Contact Center Insights IVR Business Case WFO Customer Data Customer Care Customer Experience Agent Productivity IVR Process Improvement Performance Optimization

GenZ Perspective on Bad IVR and Bad Customer Service

GenZ, or Post-Millennial, consumers are the last demographic group you would expect to make a phone call for customer service. These teens and young adults want quick and easy solutions to their issues and prefer to use digital channels for them. They are impatient and will shortly make up the majority of our future customer target base. So what’s a contact center to do if they are lagging behind digital transformation and rely on phone customer service to help their customers?

During South Florida’s Take Your Child to Work Day today, I approached this topic with my inhouse GenZ expert, my son Nicolas, and here’s what he had to say.

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights WFO IVR

For 2017, Resolve to Maximize your Contact Center Technology Investments

Analyst Guest Insights: Paul Stockford of Saddletree Research, Inc. shares insights about how to best maximize your contact center technology investments. For example, read more about how WFO and IVR investments can be better leveraged to improve your results.

Besides my gig at Saddletree Research, the company I founded 18 years ago, I also work under contract as research director for the university-based, not-for-profit National Association of Call Centers (NACC), which provides me a deep reach into the end-user community for research and discovery regarding industry trends, issues, concerns, purchase intentions, etc.  While the majority of the research we do at the NACC is quantitative, for our 2016 year-end study we decided to focus on qualitative information.  To get a feel for what contact center issues customer service professionals are most concerned about going into 2017, I conducted 20 interviews in December.  In a nutshell, I asked the study participants what issues are keeping them up at night when thinking about their contact center(s) in 2017.

What we discovered during these interviews were two overriding concerns for 2017. 

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Personalization Customer Care Customer Engagement IVR WFO

How IVR and WFO Help You Win the Cost vs. CX Balancing Act in the Contact Center

Research shows that cost control is the #1 goal for contact center operations executives, followed closely by delivery of a positive CX

But here’s a dirty little secret: in many contact centers, those two objectives are diametrically opposed.

  • Cutting budget (fewer agents, inadequate technology) to meet business mandates can have a negative impact on customer experience (CX) and staff metrics.
  • Improving CX might require investing $ in processes, systems, tools, and products to improve customer service which may increase the budget initially.

Both of these issues require you to walk the tightrope between controlling your budget and delivering a satisfying CX. Successfully reconciling these two ostensibly conflicting goals is a balancing act that contact center execs can win. Let’s explore how to turn confrontation into collaboration with your workforce optimization (WFO) and interactive voice response (IVR).

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights WFO IVR

Contact Center Execs: 5 Pains Keeping You Up at Night

Are you lying awake worrying about your contact center’s operations and more? Many executives experience constant anxiety from trying to juggle competing priorities. Time is precious and you don’t have enough of it to do more – you need solutions to ease your burden, not add to it.

What if you could make some simple modifications to turn that insomnia into a peaceful night's sleep?

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights

Is WFO Painting Half the Picture of your Contact Center Operations?

Workforce Optimization (WFO) is a cornerstone of contact center operations.  When you need to see the landscape of agent performance, WFO is the paint-by-number kit you count on to help maximize agent productivity and customer satisfaction. 

But your contact center could have a festering problem. What if it’s missing a few colors and paints only part of the picture you need? 

Unless you’re a contact center Picasso, missing part of the picture could put a real limit on your ability to optimize. 

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights

Contact Center Customer Self-Service Data Mining: Secrets Revealed

When have you had the opportunity to delve deeper into contact center data mining, and in particular in the customer self-service channel? This is historically a “set it and forget it” channel, which means there’s a whole source of actionable analytics that you may be missing out on.

We get it, no one can be accused of being Superman in the contact center - seeing through the data, tools and technology in the blink of the eye to the core actionable answers. That would be great, but it’s not reality.

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights Fraud Analytics Personalization Consumer Behavior

Rev Up the Pulse of Contact Center Operations

As we see played out in most enterprise contact centers – most technologies are decentralized, unintegrated and lacking common goals.

The challenges for you as contact center leaders and front-line managers are to deliver an optimal customer experience that satisfies the customer, while maximizing the value of your operational teams, processes and infrastructure. These conflicting yet equally critical priorities compound the already complex role you have to create a smoothly executed, cost-savings operation that solves your customers’ needs in the ways they wish and need to be served.

So what does this mean for your enterprise? How can technology vendors become true partners to maximize the pulse of your contact center?

Topics: Customer Experience IVR Business Case Process Improvement Performance Optimization Contact Center Insights Customer Care Customer Data Industry Insights