Shift from numbers to quality serviceBy Marlet D. Salazar
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—People have talked about the use of varied tools—hardware, software, even motivational—to promote productivity in the workforce. Gadgets, such as tablets, allow for mobility and remote control of a business. Smartphones can now do a lot of tasks aside from the basic call function.
But Stewart Bloom, chief executive officer and president of Aspect Software (Aspect), says that in the contact center industry, “the big shift that was occurring gradually over time was less of a focus about productivity and more on profitability.”
Aspect is a provider of next-generation customer contact center, enterprise workforce optimization, and back-office solutions globally. It has operated in the Philippines for 10 years now.
Bloom and Chris Koziol, president and general manager of Aspect’s Interaction Management, recently hosted a convention at Shangri-La Mactan, Cebu, for customers who came from different parts of the world.
Stewart says the big shift that is occurring in the landscape has gone from numbers to quality service. Contact center job is no longer just about how many calls were handled or what the average cycle time for one call was, but more on doing a better job at, perhaps, cross-selling or up-selling.
“The latter helps establish new customers more efficiently,” Stewart says, “and we call it relationship revolution.”
He also explains that the shift is being fueled by the new demographic coming into the workforce, and a consumer population with more disposable income.
“They have very high expectations in the way they want to be served,” Stewart says.
He illustrated the power of consumers with mobile devices. If there are 6 to 8 billion people running around with more computing power using their 4-inch devices, he says, one click of a finger can change everything for a company.
“We engage in very different ways across social media, short messaging service, email, web portals, and phone,” he says. “Sometimes all of that happen in a single transaction.”
This is just one of Stewart’s examples on why the trend in the contact center industry is experiencing a shift from productivity to profitability. Companies want satisfied consumers.
Contact centers play a crucial role in this relationship revolution. Aspect’s job is to assist contact centers in achieving their goals of delivering “remarkable consumer experience” through a single software platform.
One of Aspect’s business solutions is called “Productive Workforce” which hopefully delivers the tools and processes to help contact centers maximize their resources and adopt improvements in the workplace. This application seamlessly integrates all channels of communications in the work environment including back-office.
Aspect’s “Unified IP” is a complete, software-based, unified platform that helps enterprise contact centers to connect people.
“The solution brings all contact options together, in one place, on one platform, and empowered agents can keep talking, typing, and conversing.”
“We have a very large healthcare customer,” Stewart says. “It’s a world-respected brand leader and has 26 dominant facilities. Up until recently, it was almost impossible to find out where a physician would be in a particular facility, so patients can make a predictable appointment. Using Aspect’s capabilities, we now have multiple ways to engage with that healthcare provider and predictably set an appointment with the physician in a particular facility, in a particular day and time with one interaction. These shifts have material impacts at how businesses deliver unique experiences to customers in a very crowded and noisy economy where experience matters.”
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