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Stuart O'Brien

5 Minutes With… Kevin Morley, Crown Commercial Services

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In the latest of our ongoing series of interviews with leading customer care professionals, we sat down with Kevin Morley, Deputy Director at Customer Service at Crown Commercial Services, to talk about industry trends, challenges and careers advice…

Tell us a little bit about your career to date and what your current professional focus is?

31 years in the public and private sector. Operations delivery, leadership and strategic roles. Current focus is on moving from a customer service delivery service to customer fulfilment.

What do you believe are the benefits of attending the Call Centre & Customer Service Summit?

Hearing what other organisations are doing and how we can apply this.

If you had not taken the career route to become a call centre / customer service professional, what would you be doing right now?

I never did! I have delivered this on the back of delivering organisation remodelling, but fell in love with customer service.

What topics do you believe will be trending within this industry over the next 6 months?

Employee experience, automation and personalisation.

What are the biggest challenges facing this industry right now?

Attrition, poor digitisation, overly complicated service models – customer service is what it has always been.

And what are the biggest opportunities?

Reverse the above.

What has been the highlight of your career so far?

In the last three years I have developed a Customer Service Centre from scratch, transforming how we deliver customer service, building a service fit for the future and achieving a NPS score increase from -36 to +60 while delivering these changes.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

Rise above the detail and the issues, get your strategy right and keep going.

And what advice would you give someone looking to forge a career in this industry?

Learn from those around you. There is lots of advice, pick the best bits and be better than al of us as a result.

Kevin will being hosting a Seminar Session, “Employee engagement and retention in the call centre environment”, at the upcoming Call Centre & Customer Services Summit.

Staff and skills retention is an ongoing issue in the call centre environment. So, what can we do to ensure we get the most out of our people and we retain their skills where possible? Kegvin will look at:-

  • What really motivates our people in 2019?
  • What can we learn from the very best organisations?
  • What are the keys to performance?
  • Tools for contact centre mangers

Find out about our other speakers here.

Digital Customer Engagement Summit – Attend for free!

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There’s a free VIP place reserved for you at the Digital Customer Engagement Summit – claim it today!

15 October 2019 – Hilton London Canary Wharf

This unique event is entirely FREE for you to attend – simply reserve your place here for the opportunity to:-

  • Source new innovative and budget-saving suppliers
  • Learn from inspirational seminar sessions hosted by industry thought-leaders
  • Network with like-minded senior professionals
  • Enjoy complimentary lunch and refreshments

RSVP now to avoid disappointment!

8×8 Named a Leader in 2019 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service

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8×8 has been named by Gartner as a Leader in the 2019 Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service, Worldwide.

It’s the eighth year in a row 8×8 has been recognised as a Leader in the report.

“Companies using one technology platform for voice, video collaboration, team messaging and contact centre from a single vendor are realising tremendous business value that goes far beyond the sum of each individual solution,” said Vik Verma, Chief Executive Officer at 8×8, Inc. “We believe that Gartner’s recognition again this year validates our commitment to delivering innovation across the entire 8×8 platform to help organisations enhance customer and employee experiences and accelerate their business growth.”

With over 30 years of R&D innovation, 8×8 delivers communications solutions and enterprise-class APIs for global voice, chat, video, team messaging and contact centre from one cloud platform.

The company says its real-time analytics and intelligence allow businesses to harness actionable insights across interactions and channels so they can delight end-customers and outpace the competition. 8×8 says its solutions help companies transform communications, empower and unify the needs of the global, mobile workforce, and unleash productivity to maximize both employee and customer engagement.

In addition to being named a Leader in the Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service, Worldwide, 8×8 has also been positioned as a Challenger in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Contact Centre as a Service, North America for the last four consecutive years.

CONTACT EveryCloud Communications for more information:

www.everycloud.co.uk

Tel: 0800 470 1820

8X8 Wins UC Today 2019 Best Cloud Communications Provider Award

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8×8 has been named Best Cloud Communications Provider at the UC Today 2019 Awards.

The category recognises organisations that have proven market success and continue to push the boundaries of innovation in this sector. 8×8 was selected as the winner from a group of industry heavyweights.

The UC Awards, hosted by UC Today, is a global event designed to celebrate pioneers and innovators. It brings together the best in unified communications, collaboration, and CX technology, to show who is leading the way in the marketplace.

8×8 says it has shown commitment to driving the future of business communications through its ongoing product development and innovation, delivering communications solutions and enterprise-class APIs for global voice, chat, video, team messaging and contact centre from one cloud platform.

Real-time analytics and intelligence allow businesses to harness actionable insights across interactions and channels so they can exceed end-customer expectations and outpace the competition. 8×8 says its solutions help companies transform communications, empower and unify the needs of the global, mobile workforce, and unleash productivity to maximise both employee and customer engagement.

“We are honoured to receive this award, as together with other recent industry accolades, it further validates our ongoing mission to deliver the only fully-owned, single vendor global technology platform for voice, video collaboration, team messaging, contact centre, and enterprise-class API Software-as-a-Service solutions,” said Vik Verma, Chief Executive Officer at 8×8.

8×8 was recently named a Leader in the 2019 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service, Worldwide, for the eighth year in a row, and has also been positioned as a Challenger in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Contact Center as a Service, North America for the last four consecutive years.

The company also won the CRN Tech Innovator Award and Frost & Sullivan’s 2018 North American Integrated CCaaS and UCaaS Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award.

CONTACT EveryCloud Communications for more information:

www.everycloud.co.uk

Tel: 0800 470 1820

UK outsourcing rebounds as government spending increases

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A rise in government spending saw the UK outsourcing market rebound in Q2 after a quiet first quarter, according to the Arvato UK Outsourcing Index.

The research, compiled by business outsourcing partner Arvato CRM Solutions UK and industry analyst NelsonHall, showed that contracts worth a total of £938 million were signed by UK organisations between April and June, up more than a third (34 per cent) on the previous quarter.

Public sector spending reached £489 million over the three-month period compared with £51 million in Q1, as procurement teams focused on signing contracts to deliver back-office services.

Business process outsourcing (BPO) deals accounted for almost all (98 per cent) of the contracts signed over the period, with customer services, HR and revenues and benefits being the most popular service lines.

Central government departments procured the majority of public sector deals between April and June, according to the findings, signing agreements worth £470 million. Local government buyers were less active over the period, agreeing deals with a total value of £20 million.

The findings show private sector outsourcing spend was dominated by energy and utilities companies, as firms in the sector focused on securing tech contracts.

Contracts worth £284 million were signed for application and network management and end user computing. Manufacturing companies were the second highest spenders, with the total value of deals signed reaching £118 million.

Overall, the research highlights that despite the rise in public sector activity in Q2, the UK market experienced a slow start to the year. Contracts worth £1.64 billion were signed in the first six months of 2019, compared with £2.89 billion spent in the same period in 2018.

Debra Maxwell, CEO of Arvato CRM Solutions UK, said: “The government market rallied between April and June, with the vast majority (88 per cent) of deals being procured for services which haven’t been outsourced before. Central departments are using specialist partners to deliver a wider range of services and see them as key to delivering transformation across the back-office, whether that’s through introducing new ways of working or innovative technologies.

“But, the overall UK market was subdued, suggesting continued political uncertainty is impacting investment decisions. Spending among businesses softened to £1.08 billion in the first half of this year from £1.84 billion in the same period in 2018.”

Chris Sood-Nicholls, Managing Director of Services at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “Although heightened economic uncertainty is affecting client demand and outsourcers’ appetite to invest, it is encouraging to see that there remain some areas where growth is continuing and new contracts are being signed. Labour markets remain tight and this could over time make it more costly for firms to hire; equally, changes to payment regulations are making it harder for some firms to manage working capital.

“Whilst still at an early stage of deployment the direction of travel of the Government’s new Outsourcing Playbook looks encouraging, and is clearly trying to put more of a focus on long term partnerships and value for stakeholders, rather than an absolute focus on cost alone.

“For now, the effect of that shift in focus is being subdued by the challenges affecting outsourcers’ ability to plan, but we would hope to see the sector begin to shake off its current cautious approach as those other pressures begin to lift, which they hopefully will in the next few quarters.”

Overall, BPO deals accounted for 58 per cent of the UK outsourcing market in Q2, with contracts signed across the public and private sectors worth £546 million. IT outsourcing (ITO) agreements made up the remaining 42 per cent, equating to a total value of £392 million.

The Arvato UK Outsourcing Index is compiled by leading BPO and IT outsourcing research and analysis firm NelsonHall, in partnership with Arvato CRM Solutions UK.

The research is based on an analysis of outsourcing contracts procured in the UK market between April and June 2019.

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

NICE partners with Atos to drive digital transformations

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Cloud contact centre software platform NICE inContact has partnered with French digital transformation specialist Atos, which currently operates in 73 countries and employs over 110,000 members of staff. 

The partnership will see the creation of NICE inContact CXone, a solution for Contact Center as a Service and bring CXone to the company’s installed base of hundreds of thousands of contact centre agents across the globe as well as new customers.

CXone will be integrated with Circuit and sold by Atos under the name Cloud Contact Center – powered by CXone, to deliver one unified, digital-first omnichannel cloud customer experience platform, and complements the OpenScape Contact Center solution which Atos will continue to offer for on-premise and hosted requirements.

“Contact centre organisations of all sizes around the world are moving to the cloud to power immersive and engaging customer experiences that drive down costs while building loyalty, advocacy and wallet share,” said Paul Jarman, NICE inContact CEO. 

“Our partnership with Atos demonstrates NICE inContact’s accelerated international expansion. We’re delighted to work together to bring the benefits of the cloud to thousands of agents and customers.”

Commenting on the partnership, Simon Skellon, Chief Sales Officer for Atos’ UCC division, said: “For many customers, the move to cloud is a central element of their digital transformation strategy and by offering them NICE inContact’s world-class cloud platform underpinned by Atos’ proven leadership in Workplace Services, they have the perfect opportunity to migrate to a true digital first omnichannel customer experience — whether served directly by Atos, or via a member of our extensive partner community.”

Look who you’ll be joining at the Call Centre & Customer Services Summit

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We’ll get straight to it: the Call Centre & Customer Services Summit is taking place this autumn and we’d love you to be there.

16 & 17 September 2019 – Hilton Manchester Deansgate

We have a free VIP priority pass for you. This ticket will give you the opportunity to meet with suppliers based on your own unique requirements, attend a series of seminars and network with like-minded senior customer service professionals.

Your VIP pass also includes complimentary overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshments, plus an invitation to our networking dinner.

Unlock your priority pass here and join representatives from:

  • Barclays
  • BOC Gases
  • Buy it Direct
  • British Airways
  • British Gas (Centrica)
  • B T 
  • Canal & River Trust
  • Car Benefit Solutions
  • CET-UK
  • Dunelm
  • East of England Ambulance Service
  • Ecco Shoes
  • Ecotricity
  • E.ON
  • Experian
  • GoCardless
  • Hermes
  • Homeserve
  • Imperial College London
  • Instaprint
  • Jet 2 Holidays
  • Key Travel
  • Lakeland
  • Legal & General
  • London North Eastern Railway
  • Markerstudy Insurance
  • Newday
  • Oasis & Warehouse
  • OCS 
  • On the Beach
  • Openreach
  • Pentland Brands
  • Prima Group
  • Progress Housing Group
  • Ramsden International
  • Saga
  • Sage
  • Secret Escapes
  • Slater & Gordon
  • SSE
  • Talk Talk
  • The City of Edinburgh Council
  • The Hut Group
  • Thomas Cook
  • Ticketmaster
  • TKC 
  • Warwick University
  • Urban Outfitters
  • Vodafone
  • Virgin Holidays
  • Virgin Media
  • Worldremit
  • World Travel Holdings

Confirm your VIP ticket here or contact me today to find out more.

Digital Customer Engagement Summit – Don’t miss out!

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The Digital Customer Engagement Summit is taking place on October 15th – and we only have a handful of delegates places left.

15 October 2019 – Hilton London Canary Wharf

This VIP pass will give you the opportunity to meet with suppliers based on your own unique requirements, attend a series of seminars and network with like-minded senior customer service professionals. Lunch and refreshments are complimentary.

Unlock your priority pass here and join representatives from:

  • All Saints
  • AMEX Global Business Travel
  • Assurant
  • Aster
  • Avalara
  • AXA Partners Travel
  • Barnsley Council
  • BCG Digital Ventures
  • British Gas
  • Camelot
  • Cisco
  • Comensable 
  • DrinkSupermarket
  • Eurotunnel
  • FMG
  • Futures Housing Group
  • Green Network Energy
  • Haringey Council
  • Hermes
  • Homeserve
  • Junkyard Golf Club 
  • KPMG 
  • Kantar
  • LGC Biosearch
  • Newday 
  • NHS England
  • Orbit
  • Paymentshield
  • Swale Borough Council
  • TJX Europe (TK Maxx)
  • Target Group
  • Tesco
  • Samsung Electronics
  • Vodafone

Do you specialise in Knowledge Management for Call 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 September we’re focussing on Knowledge Management.

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 Knowledge Management 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.

Here are the areas we’ll be covering, month by month:

Sep – Knowledge Management
Oct – Web Self Service/Chat
Nov – Display Boards
Dec – CRM

For more information on any of the above, contact Gayle Buckland on g.buckland@forumevents.co.uk.

Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

Call Centre & Customer Services Summit – just 2 free VIP passes left

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Don’t miss out! Register today for the Call Centre & Customer Services Summit.

It’s free for you to attend and could help you reduce your expenditure by matching you up with innovative suppliers who match your business requirements.

But we have just two free VIP places left, so register today to avoid disappointment. Here’s why you should attend:

  • As one of our VIP guests, you will be provided with a bespoke itinerary of face-to-face meetings with suppliers based on mutual agreement. No hard sell, and no time wasted.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to attend insightful seminars and interactive workshops.
  • Network with 60+ other senior contact centre professionals who share your challenges.
  • Enjoy complimentary overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshments, plus an invitation to our networking dinner.

Taking place on September 16th & 17th at Hilton Manchester Deansgate, the Call Centre & Customer Services Summit provides a platform for new business connections.

But act swiftly! There are just two free VIP places left – register today!