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Stuart O'Brien

TTEC win 2 top awards at the 2019 ECCCSAs

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TTEC has won 2 awards in recognition of delivering customer experience excellence at the European Contact Centre & Customer Service Awards (ECCCSA’s), held in London.

TTEC Krakow was awarded the prestigious “Outsourced Contact Centre of the Year” for the best outsourced European centre with an efficient and effective customer and colleague focused operation.

In addition, TTEC in EMEA was given a silver award for “Best Pan-European Contact Centre of the Year” – judges were looking for the best pan-European outsourced contact centres from organisations that have two or more contact centres located in two different European Countries.

TTEC was also named a finalist for “Best Employer – Great Places to work”.

For more information on TTEC’s wins, click here.

Millennials and Gen Zs ‘driving digital-first customer experience’

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The third annual 2019 NICE inContact Customer Experience (CX) Transformation Benchmark has detailed how understanding younger generations’ use of and expectations around next-generation solutions like artificial intelligence (AI) and digital channels are fundamental to building exceptional, best-in-class customer experiences.

As Millennials and Generation Z become dominant consumer groups, with Generation Z purchasing already reaching an estimated $100 billion according to research conducted by Barkley, their comfort level and familiarity with multiple digital channels including social messaging and chatbots means organizations, no matter their size, must provide digital-first omnichannel experiences to meet consumer expectations and effectively compete in the experience economy.

Key findings from the study include:

  • Almost 60% of Generation Z and Millennials have used private social messaging for customer service. In contrast, 38% of Gen X, 19% of Baby Boomers and 16% of Silent Generation have done so.The majority of Generation Z and Millennials also want companies to allow them to interact with customer service using private social messaging apps (72% and 69%, respectively).
  • Consumers are using AI more and feeling more positive about chatbots over time.Half of all consumers have used AI for any purpose (50%), compared to 2018 (45%). This can be attributed to a significant increase in the use of an automated assistant/chatbot online (34%, up from 25% in 2018). Generation Z and Millennials are more likely to agree that chatbots make it easier and quicker for their issues to get resolved, and are also the most likely of all generations to have used all forms of AI for any purpose, as well as for customer service.
  • Half of consumers who start with AI are transferred to a live agent, and age is a significant factor when it comes to AI and the importance of the human touch. While chatbot usage and performance are improving – and preferences and attitudes are changing – most consumers want to be informed if they are using a chatbot (92%) and 91% of all consumers prefer a live agent. However, this preference follows a downward trend generationally: 98% of the Silent Generation, 96% of Baby Boomers, 91% of Generation X, 86% of Millennials and 83% of Generation Z say they prefer a live agent.
  • Seamless digital-first omnichannel experiences are vital to positive customer experiences.Most consumers (93%) want seamless omnichannel experiences, and yet they are increasingly giving companies a poor rating on seamlessly switching between channels – 73% give companies a poor rating, up from 67% in 2018. This is especially important for meeting and exceeding the expectations of Millennials and Generation Z, who are the most likely to have experienced omnichannel customer service (16% and 21%, respectively).

“Understanding the nuances of what consumers expect, and how they actually engage with brands via a myriad of digital channels, and integrating these in-demand channels seamlessly to deliver digital-first omnichannel experiences, is key to sustainable growth,” said Paul Jarman, NICE inContact CEO. “The NICE inContact CX Benchmark looks beyond education around demographic customer service trends and gets to the root of what makes new channel options attractive. Millennials and Generation Z are bellwethers of what consumers expect and are increasingly likely to recommend a company on social media based on personal experiences – the influence they wield is tremendous.”

Click here to read the full report.

AWARDS: The ECCCSA winners revealed

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The European Contact Centre and Customer Service Awards, now in its 19th year and hosted by boxing legend Frank Bruno (pictured, above), has recognised companies including Ageas, Gousto, Microsoft, Sberbank, Sky, Teledirect Europe and Teleperformance amongst its winners for 2019.

Teleperformance had a great night picking up Best Pan-European Contact Centre, with its Greek operation winning Best Multi-Lingual Contact Centre and Best Large Outsourcing Partnership with Canon.

Aegon won Most Effective Improvement Programme – Customer for their work introducing robotics to improve customer engagement, while Census Group won the Giving Something Back category for their work to rehabilitate prisoners with working in customer service – the judges said ‘this was the most powerful and emotional presentation this year; what these guys are doing is truly life changing’.

The 94 judges, all with years of experience working in the industry, were overwhelmed by the achievements of all the Finalists, saying Sitel in Serbia and their Best Small Outsourcing Partnership with The Bodyshop was ‘simply the best and they are really setting the standard’, and Assurant’s pan-European fraud processes using data analytics technology was ‘impressive stuff’.

The judges recognised NewDay with Best Use of Customer Insightfor their ‘great example of using multi-channel data to gain a holistic customer voice’. The judges said they were ‘wowed by the Expedia Group contact centre’ awarding them Best Employer – Great Place to Work – Small, while TTEC’s 120 seat Krakow contact centre was described as ‘an incredible environment’ winning them Outsourced Contact Centre of the Year.

Chair of the Judges, Ann-Marie Stagg, said: “It was tough winning an ECCCSA this year. Organisations across Europe are doing outstanding things to improve the employee experience, and the ramping up of technology focused on progressing the customer experience in line with customer demand is incredible. Every winner this year, including those that took Silver and Bronze, are fine examples of how the customer contact industry is pushing boundaries and delivering excellence.”

“We’d like to congratulate all the Finalists and especially those that took home a trophy,” says Sabio Group CEO, Andy Roberts. “We have been sponsoring these awards for as long as they have been around because they always deliver shining examples of brilliance. The industry has come a long way over the last 20 years demonstrating real value and driving up revenues through improved customer experiences. We look forward to seeing the winners share their celebrations on social media.”

For all the winners, visit www.ecccsa.com or follow the ECCCSAs on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram.

Take your place at the Contact Centre & Customer Services Summit

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If you’re free on April 27th & 28th join us at the Contact Centre & Customer Services Summit – It will be the best two days you spend out of the office next year.

This is a bespoke and highly-targeted two-day event created specifically for senior contact centre professionals like you. It is entirely FREE for you to attend. Simply register your place here.

When: 27 & 28 April 2020

Where: Radisson Blu Hotel, London Stansted

Format: Corporate ‘speed-dating’. As our guest, you will be provided with a bespoke and personalised itinerary of pre-arranged, 1-2-1 meetings with suppliers relevant to your requirements and upcoming projects. A series of seminars will also be hosted throughout the event, and you can network with professionals who share your challenges.

Overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshments, plus an invitation to our networking dinner, are included with your ticket.

Who Attends: Join fellow senior contact centre professionals, including those from;

Aldi – Customer Service Manager AXA Global Healthcare – Customer Experience Manager HM Courts – Deputy Director Customer Change Panasonic – European Relationship Manager Sky Betting – Planning & Performance Manager St. John Ambulance – National Customer Services Manager Wiltshire Police – Head of Contact Management Xerox – Operations Manager Yell – Call Centre Manager

Would you like to join them? RSVP today!

Security IT Summit returns for summer 2020

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Registration is now open for the summer 2020 Security IT Summit – don’t miss out on your free place!

Register for your complimentary guest place today.

Our Approach

Taking place on June 30th 2020 at the Hilton London Canary Wharf, the Security IT Summit allows senior professionals to share forward-thinking ideas, meet new partners and discover new ways to underpin their security strategies.

It’s entirely FREE for you to attend and your complimentary guest pass includes:

  • A bespoke itinerary of pre-arranged meetings with product and service providers who match your requirements and upcoming projects
  • Access to a series of seminars by industry thought-leaders
  • Networking with like-minded peers
  • Complimentary lunch and refreshments

How Do I Get Involved?

We have just 60 guest passes available, so register your free place today.

TTEC and livePerson form strategic partnership to fuel AI-powered digital transformation for enterprises

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TTEC Holdings and LivePerson have announced a strategic partnership to redefine the customer experience with digital engagement, messaging and AI-driven automation.

The TTEC-LivePerson partnership brings together two customer experience pioneers to help brands improve NPS and CSAT while also reducing friction and accelerating customer experience and digital transformation.

It enables conversational commerce, which gives consumers a way to ask questions, make purchases and get help through their favourite messaging apps. Today more than 4 billion consumers already use messaging and 470 million new users are expected to join them by 2021. The partnership will help brands:

  • Offer customer interactions in consumers’ messaging channels of choice
  • Transform contact centres into digitally enabled customer experience hubs
  • Deliver high-impact, personalised customer experiences at scale with messaging and AI

LivePerson’s conversational commerce platform LiveEngage enables customer experience hubs to leverage AI to manage both bot and associate conversations from any messaging channel, including the billions of customers using SMS, Facebook Messenger, Apple Business Chat, WeChat, WhatsApp and more. TTEC is operationalising this platform with its conversational messaging centre of excellence, consisting of conversational designers, AI/bot developers, conversation analysts and tuners, data scientists, solution architects and brand ambassadors in concert with clients at all of TTEC’s 100 customer experience hubs across six continents.

Brands using LiveEngage have seen up to a 2x increase in associate efficiency, 20%+ increases in CSAT, as much as a 4x increase in sales conversion, and material reductions in associate attrition rates.

“All of our clients are seeking an accelerated path to CX/Digital transformation with less friction for their customers at a lower overall cost. It’s our mission to continue to evolve our CX platforms to provide world-class solutions at scale,” said Ken Tuchman, Chairman, CEO and Founder of TTEC. “We’ve grown our digitally delivered customer interactions by 700% since 2014. Our partnership with LivePerson further accelerates TTEC’s position as a digital disruptor as we bring to market client solutions to respond to the rapidly rising consumer and market demand for seamless, personalised engagement.”

“Based on our history of bringing leading global brands in retail, banking, insurance, telecommunications, travel, and other verticals live with conversational commerce, we know this partnership with TTEC will give clients the keys to unlocking their own digital transformations: messaging, bots and automation,” said Robert LoCascio, CEO and Founder of LivePerson. “As a leader in customer experience innovation, we’re excited to work with the pioneers at TTEC to continue disrupting the market by combining our AI-powered conversational platform with their decades of customer experience expertise.”

For more information, visit www.ttec.com/liveperson.

80% of business leaders say Robotic Process Automation improves customer service

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NICE has revealed insights from a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting that shows the connection between improved customer service and Robotic Process Automation (RPA).

The findings indicated that 80 percent of business leaders surveyed felt RPA is important in making customer service teams more efficient.

RPA is not only a key component of a broader digital transformation, but 88 percent of respondents also consider it a cost mitigation strategy, while 72 percent reported looking at RPA as an enabler of customer self-service in emerging channels.

NICE asserts the findings testify to the strategic importance of embracing technologies that drive true and full digital transformations for enterprises while empowering employees to improve performance and automating increasing levels of processes at varied complexities.

This survey-based research study highlights the rapid growth of the RPA market and indicates that deployments are still the tip of the iceberg, stating: “According to Forrester’s research, RPA’s growth will continue, with global spending on RPA services in 2019 set to exceed $5 billion – and $12 billion by 2023.”

The research brings to light that 78 percent of business leaders are willing to leverage digital workers or robots for routine tasks while human contact center agents take on more strategic roles. Additionally, almost half (49 percent) of employees surveyed said RPA has removed all or some of the mundane tasks and helped them focus better on their work. These statistics indicate that RPA technology increase employee engagement and enable improved levels of customer service delivery, thus boosting brand differentiation in today’s customer experience-driven era.

Additionally, the study also noted that 47 percent of employee respondents stated they sometimes or often forget a step in the process. This directly ties into 41 percent of managers and employees reporting that the reduction of manual errors is one of the top three impacts of RPA on the employee’s job. Both these findings indicate RPA also improves service quality.

Barry Cooper, President, NICE Enterprise Product Group, said: “We welcome the insights from Forrester’s research which validate the market movements towards intelligent Robotic Desktop Automation solutions that sit at the heart of an organization’s digital transformation. NICE’s vision of bringing automation to the people is more relevant than ever to this dynamic high growth market. We look forward to expanding our partnership with organizations that want to empower their employees and drive their business to new heights of customer satisfaction and efficiency.”

British businesses battle sophisticated security threats with old tools and misplaced spend

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Only a quarter (25%) of business leaders across EMEA are confident in their current cybersecurity practices.

That’s according to a study commissioned by VMware in partnership with Forbes Insights, which shows UK businesses are trapped in a routine of spending without adequately assessing the needs of their organisation.

Three quarters (78%) of business and IT security leaders believe the cybersecurity solutions their organisation is working with are outdated, despite 40% having acquired new tools over the past year to address potential threats.

Seventy four percent, meanwhile, reveal plans to invest even more in detecting and identifying attacks in the next three years, despite having a multitude of products already installed – a quarter (26%) of businesses currently have 26 or more products across their enterprises for this. 

The apparent hope of UK businesses to spend their way out of security crises is coupled with a significant security skills gap: just 16% of UK respondents state extreme confidence in the readiness of their organisation to address emerging security challenges, with only 14% extremely confident in the readiness of their people and talent.

The report concludes that, despite British businesses shoring up their defences against an evolving threat landscape, the complexity surrounding multiple cybersecurity solutions is making it harder for organisations to respond, urgently adapt or improve their strategies. In fact, a third (34%) of IT security leaders state it can take up to an entire week to address an issue. 

Ian Jenkins, Director, Networking and Security UK & Ireland, VMware, said: “Businesses across the UK and beyond continue to follow the same IT security paths, and yet expect to see different results. Yet we now live in a world of greater complexity, with more and more intricate interactions, more connected devices and sensors, dispersed workers and the cloud, all of which have created an exponentially larger attack surface. Investment in traditional security solutions continues to be dwarfed by the economic repercussions of breaches.”

The lack of confidence highlighted in this study sits within a chasm forming between business leaders and security teams. In the UK, only a quarter (24%) of IT teams consider C-suite executives in their organisation to be ‘highly collaborative’ when it comes to cybersecurity. Across EMEA, meanwhile, only 27% of executives and only 16% of IT security practitioners say they are collaborating in a significant way to address cybersecurity issues.

Jenkins added: “Modern-day security requires a fundamental shift away from prevailing preventative solutions that try to prevent breaches at all costs. British businesses must invest in solutions that make security intrinsic to everything – the application, the network, essentially everything that connects and carries data. Breaches are inevitable, but how fast and how effectively you can mitigate that threat and protect the continuity of operations is what matters. Combining this approach with aculture of security awareness and collaboration across all departments is crucial to driving cyber best practice forward, and helping enterprises in the UK and across EMEA stay one step ahead in the world of sophisticated cybercrime.”

Your pass for the Contact Centre & Customer Services Summit awaits

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Are you free on April 27th & 28th and would like to be our guest at the Contact Centre & Customer Services Summit?

This is a bespoke and highly-targeted two-day event created specifically for senior contact centre professionals like you. It is entirely FREE for you to attend. Simply register your place here.

When: 27 & 28 April 2020

Where: Radisson Blu Hotel, London Stansted

Format: Corporate ‘speed-dating’. As our guest, you will be provided with a bespoke and personalised itinerary of pre-arranged, 1-2-1 meetings with suppliers relevant to your requirements and upcoming projects. A series of seminars will also be hosted throughout the event, and you can network with professionals who share your challenges.

Overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshments, plus an invitation to our networking dinner, are included with your ticket.

Who Attends: Join fellow senior contact centre professionals, including those from; 

Aldi – Customer Service Manager
AXA Global Healthcare – Customer Experience Manager
HM Courts – Deputy Director Customer Change
Panasonic – European Relationship Manager
Sky Betting – Planning & Performance Manager
St. John Ambulance – National Customer Services Manager
Wiltshire Police – Head of Contact Management
Xerox – Operations Manager
Yell – Call Centre Manager

Would you like to join them? RSVP today!

Do you specialise in CRM for contact centres? We want to hear from you!

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Each month on Call Centres Briefing we’re shining the spotlight on a different part of the customer care market – and in December we’re focussing on CRM solutions.

It’s all part of our ‘Recommended’ editorial feature, designed to help customer care industry buyers find the best products and services available today.

So, if you’re a supplier of CRM solutions to call centres and would like to be included as part of this exciting new shop window, we’d love to hear from you – for more info, contact Gayle Buckland on g.buckland@forumevents.co.uk.