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The Future Contact Center Summit Review – Part 3


Presented By: CrmXchange

The holy grail for companies these days is knowing as much as possible about their customers and being able to intelligently communicate with them on any channel anywhere in the world.  In our final report on the Future Contact Center Summit, we talked with several solution providers (Castel Communications, GeoFluent by Lionbridge, PrimeConnections, and VoiceBase) who discussed new tools organizations can use to get closer to their customers. 


What do you see as the most significant recent developments that enable businesses to better engage customers and consistently provide superior customer experiences? 


castel_detectAnne Pacifico, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Castel Communications The best time to provide customer service is when the customer is engaged in a phone call with the company. So many of us now use chat, text, email for customer service with companies. If we are taking time to speak to a company live, the company’s job is to impress us.. How often as customers do we hear the person on the other end state to us, “Just a minute while I pull up your account.” Technology now allows businesses to immediately retrieve customer account information and suggest next steps to agents, without the agent having to pull up another application and review while customer sits and waits. Speech analysis technology for call centers is capable of monitoring and detecting conversations on split channels (agent side and customer side), and determining who said what. The solution can provide reminders to agent to verify the customer’s identification, update customer contact information, disclose regulatory statements, and market products/options specifically to that customer. An excellent example is the opportunity an agent has in receiving a message stating to “market upsell product Z” to Customer A as she typically will spend an average $250 on each purchase. The speech analytics solution does this by dipping into the customer account information and in recognizing the character traits of Customer A, pops a message to the agent’s live screen as to next best step to take.


lionbridge.0215 Greg Belkin, Director of Product Marketing, Lionbridge Technologies (GeoFluentThe proliferation of omni-channel customer service strategies have allowed businesses to better engage customers and consistently provide superior customer service experiences. It used to be that retailers and other customer-facing organizations were focusing on “multi-channel” selling strategies that allowed them to simply sell on multiple devices and channels. Omni channel support strategies have changed all of that. Omni channel is focused on customer support and nurturing… communication and back and forth interactions with customers. These omni-channel customer support strategies have allowed customers to demand new levels of customer support. That to me is the biggest development as of late. Organizations used to talk a lot about customer service. Now, they are actually being forced to make it a priority.


prime.0215Joe Jacoboni, President and CEO, PrimeConnections Contact Solutions  The most significant recent developments that enable businesses to better engage customers and consistently provide superior customer experiences are:

1 ) Understanding and implementing Customer TouchPoint Optimization.  First, this involves determining and outlining a complete and comprehensive Customer Strategy which includes knowing who your customers or potential customers are – their demographics, needs, wants and desires.  You also need to know where to find these prospects and then communicate with them on the communication channel of their choice.

2) Nurture each lead and ensure you are giving the customer the medium they use to determine/research the vendor/company they want or need.

3)  Retain them through great customer service, account management and an effortless experience.


And lastly, be sure to upsell and cross-sell.  Buying new products or services from a vendor or company they trust and have had good experiences with is an advantage to the customer and enhances the experience they have had.


From the operations side, it’s important to have a strong introduction to the company or brand, including real time Interaction with brand management teams. Gamification for your customers and of course, your employees… (awards, real time interactive contests, etc.) Let the consumer enhance your brand and become a true active advocate (i.e: Twitter, Facebook and other social media)


voicebase.0215 Jay Blazensky, Co-Founder and Director of Business Development, VoiceBase  Companies can now correlate keywords with customer engagement and doing predictive analytics and benefit from talktime analysis.


There is still some confusion in the marketplace over the definition of “omni-channel service.” How does your company view it and in what ways are omni-channel approaches reflected in your solution? 


Greg Belkin, Lionbridge There still is a lot of confusion! To Lionbridge omni-channel service, is the ability to both sell and support new and existing customers on a global basis, quickly and effectively. It is important to distinguish that this is different from multi-channel selling strategies, which is more focused on the selling piece.


Joe Jacoboni, PrimeConnections  Omni-channel service is for marketing/servicing customers thru multi-channel communications with a seamless user interface.  This means allowing customers or potential customers the ability to communicate or facilitate their functions through all channels and devices: i.e, voice, chat, email, Twitter, Facebook, text as well as through mobile or browser-based applications.  Consolidate all siloed databases and ensure that all departments of the company have access to all customer interactions and information to make certain that the customer is serviced to the highest level.  

Our view, supported by many people we met with, is that omni is the customer-unified view of your brand and multi is the operational side of processes and strategies. Omni-channel service incorporates:

-Making the interaction seem to be a“seamless” user interface i.e: Chat (Smart Device).

-Tracking customers Social Media history and tailoring your responses to them.

-Letting consumers pick their means to interact with you, and you enhancing those channels for them.    

-Making an offer to provide a Multiple Channel / Digital Marketing solution and letting them choose!


In our solution “Customer TouchPoint Optimization,” we engage consumers fully through our client’s Life Cycle.


Jay Blazensky, VoiceBase  For us, omni-channel means text and voice channels.  This could mean call center calls combined with online chat sessions.  The aggregation of that combined data and analytics is on our roadmap – but as of today, we are voice only.


 How can agent performance be monitored and improved in voice interactions as well as on other touch points?


Anne Pacifico, Castel  By utilizing highly accurate word and phrase detection, a business can live monitor agent/customer conversations while they are occurring and address the business risks and opportunities while the customer is engaged with the company. Certainly, trend discovery and post-call analysis provides insight as to what happened, but the opportunity to remedy an issues or increase revenue is long gone. Additionally, there are a handful of targets a company looks to hit when providing feedback to call center agents, including identifying performance issues, communicating with the agent in a timely fashion, providing consistent reinforcement, and monitoring and tracking improvements. Utilizing live speech analytics allows an organization to hit all targets without pulling an agent off the phone.


Greg Belkin, Lionbridge  There are a few things that can be measured here. First… call volume. If customers are getting their issues addressed, no matter what their language, online, then call volume goes down. Second, call length. Are customer service agents able to manage multiple calls at the same time, and provide a consistent, direct, and simple exchange in all calls? If so, it makes them capable of highly effective customer service.


This is where Lionbridge steps in. We make these conversations actionable and understandable, so that call center agents can move from one issue to the next quickly and effectively. This increases C-SAT as mentioned, and it also makes the call center agent more effective and efficient. At the end of the day, that means less cost for retailers and other selling organizations.


Joe Jacoboni, PrimeConnnections  Agent performance be monitored and improved in voice interactions as well as on other touch points Methods include:

Employing typical voice monitoring, but also using keyword and phrase tagging.

Taking a complete focus on customer retention and growth, using our “Customer TouchPoint Optimization” solution


Jay Blazensky, VoiceBase  Extracting keywords from recorded calls and attaching those words to CRM records for predictive analytics.


What specific benefits does your solution or service deliver that differentiates it from other offerings in the marketplace? 

Anne Pacifico, Castel  Our customers are highly concerned about the accuracy in which the solution detects events, and the process in which the business teams are alerted to events. For example, the language models created for Castel Detect customers are customized for their business needs, allowing incredibly high accuracy during monitoring. Customers who have used other solutions prior to Castel Detect have commented the solutions detection of words and phrases were much lower, creating much research of erroneous data. If agents and management are receiving live alerts, companies expect those alerts to be true and meaningful. Castel Detect strives to deliver the highest accuracy to its customers.


Greg Belkin, Lionbridge One of the most frequent questions we get is: how does GeoFluent differ from free solutions available on the Web? There are four aspects:

Customized. Our solution ensures global brand consistency and is normalized for common vernacular. Industry and corporate terms are translated in a customized manner, ensuring that branding is not lost globally, and terms of discussion are properly maintained for an actionable and effective customer service conversation.

Integrated. Seamlessly integrated into chat and community platforms. We integrate with all of the major chat and community platform providers. Additionally, our Text Translator is Web-based, which makes translations easy and direct.

Secure. Sensitive content is maintained in a secure, private workspace.

Smart. Iterative process improvement methodology.


Joe Jacoboni, PrimeConnections What sets us apart is:

Helping our clients move and stay connected with consumers through the complete Life Cycle: Customer Strategy / Customer Acquisition / Customer Retention / Customer Growth.

Testing through every stage of their customer’s Life Cycle, through end-to-end solutions, including strategy, process, people and technology.


Jay Blazensky, VoiceBase There are lots of factors. Our solution is fast, accurate and low cost.  You can search by keyword or topic. Keyword markers enable instant playback We also provide entity extraction.  


CRMXchange also posed application-specific questions to our participants. 


(Castel) How does your live speech analysis enable agents and supervisors to identify and address issues that put the call at risk while the customer is still on the line?


Anne Pacifico  Agents’ time on a call often includes a comprehensive script with a multitude of statements and disclosures. It can be daunting to remember each one, and additionally any one-offs that may also have to be provided during the course of the conversation (i.e. if customer says “that”, then respond with “this”). Agents embrace Castel Detect since its pop-up messages are helpful and on queue when needed most. Also, management teams can receive appropriate alerts as well, or be systematically called and join in on a call as necessary. By identifying risks early, a business can deescalate the situation while the customer is still on the call.


(Castel) Why is important for companies to have the capability of real-time call auditing?


Anne Pacifico As 100% of calls are monitored live, all auditing of the calls is occurring live as well, giving QA teams the ability to address issues while they are happening, and also the easy ability to follow up with agents within seconds, minutes, hours, or as they see fit. There is no longer the ‘catch me if you can’ approach whereby issues will not be addressed due to the past practice of very low percentage of calls being monitored and reviewed. Companies have the ability to address issues live while they are happening as well as audit calls that have been flagged due to content analysis for further review. By giving more time to QA teams to do other tasks, assisting agents and supervisors on live calls with reminders and alerts, and presenting key account information to agents at time of call, companies experience better time management, increased customer service excellence and revenue generation.


(Lionbridge) Why do companies need to develop a global customer lifecycle strategy and how does your GeoFluent real-time translation platform enable them to address customers in their own language?


Greg Belkin  Research has proven that repeat customers are a key to long-term growth. For many of our customers, getting global customers to repeat the shopping experience is critical to growth. Customers, however, will only come back if they are treated properly and respected post-purchase. It is too easy for them to go to another location where they can be properly understood and catered to. Lionbridge makes this possible by removing the global language gap. Conversations are seamless, direct, and easy to understand.


(PrimeConnections) How does your Customer TouchPoint Optimization help organizations transition their contact centers from cost center to profit centers?


Joe Jacoboni Our solution helps our clients facilitate the shift in direction in a number of ways:

-Reviewing today’s internal costs and offsetting these expenses by turning their efforts into profit.  “Cross-selling and Up-selling” and moving our clients through our “Customer TouchPoint Optimization” model!! 

-Since we no longer can silo our customers’ needs and data, we must manage the entire life cycle of our current and potential customer.  This includes developing a customer strategy, determining their needs and providing the ability to target the optimal prospect cost effectively,

-Next comes acquiring these prospects and communicating with them via the communication channel they want to use whether its Twitter, FaceBook, text, voice or chat.       

-Our next opportunity is to ensure we retain our customers by giving them an effortless experience, because customer acquisition is not only expensive but customer churn is a sin,      

-Providing greater customer satisfaction which ultimately results in higher revenues and greater profits.


(VoiceBase) How does your on-demand voice search and transcription platform enable companies to cost-effectively manage customer interactions, monitor compliance and detect trends?  


Jay Blazensky  It enables companies to define topics and keywords they want to have spotted.  Also, users can take advantage of Auto Call Scoring using our prediction API.