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NICE

Cloud tech delivers ‘18% more customer satisfaction’

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

The findings of the 2019 NICE inContact Customer Experience (CX) Transformation Benchmark has shown that companies with all of their contact center technology in the cloud report 18 percent higher customer satisfaction (CSAT) based on service experience compared to companies with on-premises contact center technology.

Furthermore, at 40 per cent, a significant portion of companies are very likely to invest in four or more channels to improve the customer service experience.

The 2019 NICE inContact Customer Experience (CX) Transformation Benchmark gauges the attitudes of businesses and consumers in key areas of customer experience.

The latest report on the business wave of the study provides insights on contact center technology investment plans amidst changing customer needs, and points to the need for businesses to move beyond multichannel offerings and create true seamless omnichannel customer experiences powered by a complete cloud customer experience platform.

The study polled contact center leaders in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia.  

Key findings:

  • Organizations with all of their contact center technology in the cloud report superior customer experience outcomes. Companies using cloud contact center technology report 18 percent higher CSAT as well as 36 percent higher likelihood to recommend their company from customers based on service experience, compared to companies with on-premises contact center technology.
  • Channels investment plans are significant. Forty percent of companies are very likely to invest in four or more channelsto improve the customer service experience in the coming year. Further, those who are very likely to invest in four or more channels who also have all their contact center technology in the cloud or are planning to move to the cloud are more likely than those with on-premises contact center technology to now offer eight of the 11 channels covered in the study, including communicating with customers on social media, online chat, SMS / text, video chat, IVR, mobile apps, chatbots, and service via a home electronic virtual assistant device.
  • Despite customer demand, investment plans for omnichannel functionality are lacking. Overwhelmingly, customers expect seamless omnichannel functionality when interacting with businesses, by a rate of 91 percent. Meanwhile, only 25 percent of businesses are likely to invest in new services that allow channels of communication to work together seamlessly. Consumer use of and preference for digital channels is on the rise. In the US from 2017 to 2018, chat use tripled, and text grew tenfold; preference for these channels grew 36 percent and 71 percent respectively.
  • Almost half of global organizations see a need for more agent-assisted resources. While customer reliance on self-service channels has spiked, increasing from 17 percent to 31 percent in the United States (based on the 2018 CX benchmark) 49 percent of businesses globally expect they will need more agent-assisted resources in the coming year. Among these businesses, 61 percent say the need is due to an increase in the number of customers interacting with agents.

Paul Jarman, NICE in Contact CEO, said: “From social media messaging, to text, to chatbots, the customer relationship takes place across a wide and diverse range of channels in addition to voice. As more customers embrace multiple digital channels to communicate and engage, it becomes increasingly important for businesses to be able to quickly adopt and integrate digital channels into a seamless omnichannel customer experience.

“The NICE inContact CX Transformation Benchmark not only shows that contact centers are moving to the cloud, but that those who are in the cloud, and those that plan to invest in customer experience, provide superior customer experiences. Leading organizations of all sizes can stay agile and ahead of customer expectations by leveraging a complete, unified and intelligent cloud contact center platform, to deliver quick, effortless interactions – anywhere.”

NICE inContact surveyed more than 900 contact center decision makers in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. The report presents global findings from the business wave of the research and provides insights on contact center leaders’ technology investment plans and contact center goals and metrics.

For more information and to download the full research report, please click here.

Image by rawpixel from Pixabay

NICE partners with Atos to drive digital transformations

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

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.”

Compliance software investments ‘a priority’ for contact centres

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

91 per cent of contact centre IT staff consider compliance software investments a priority.

The research commissioned by enterprise software solutions company, NICE, also found that 97 percent of IT and compliance professionals were concerned about the ability of their organisation to meet today’s compliance requirements.

These concerns ranged from the introduction of new regulations and growing threat of cyber-attacks to the increasing complexity of internal systems.

When asked to identify the most important factor for improving contact centre compliance, 88 percent of respondents highlighted a need to improve proactivity and speed through better mechanisms to detect violations (26 percent), better error prevention (23 percent), improved visibility across different tools/systems (21 percent) and quicker violation resolution (18 percent). 

The survey also found that a quarter of the Contact Center IT staff’s time is being invested in compliance-related activities

A key conclusion identified by the research was that dedicated compliance solutions comprising analytics and automation will help contact centres optimise resources while empowering employees to ensure compliance and building trust among customers.

“Contact centres must protect the interests of their customers when it comes to their personal data,” said Barry Cooper, President of the Enterprise Group for NICE. 

“Ensuring compliance requires contact centres to navigate a maze of regulations, standards and best practices, which are becoming increasingly resource draining for IT and compliance professionals. Businesses must leverage analytics, AI and automation to adopt a proactive approach, uphold the trust of their customers and simplify their employees’ day to day tasks.”

Image by bhupendra Singh from Pixabay

AI key to customer service, but performance overrated

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Sixty-three per cent of contact centre leaders agree that chatbots and virtual assistants make it easier for consumers to get their issues resolved.

That’s according to findings of the second annual NICE inContact CX Transformation Benchmark, a global research study that gauges the changing attitudes of both industry professionals and consumers.

NICE inContact polled contact centre leaders in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. The report compares global findings to the 2018 consumer wave of the study, and includes year-over-year findings for the US.

NICE inContact says results reveal that businesses are confident in artificial intelligence’s (AI’s) role in delivering exceptional customer service experiences, but they overrate their own CX performance.

Compared to consumers, businesses overreach when estimating their own net promoter scores (NPS), overrate their own CX success, and underperform when it comes to delivering seamless omnichannel experiences.    

Key findings:

·       Businesses express confidence in AI. The CX Transformation Benchmark found that 63 percent of contact center leaders agree that chatbots and virtual assistants make it easier for consumers to get their issues resolved, and 68 percent of those surveyed agree that consumers want to use virtual assistants to interact with them. Findings show that significantly more US businesses now offer automated assistants / chatbots online, at 54 percent compared to 44 percent the prior year.

·       Business overreach in self-assigned Net Promoter Score (NPS). Compared to consumers, businesses give themselves higher net promoter scores for every method of communication tested. Businesses overestimate most channel-specific NPS by broad margins. For example:

o   Automated Assistant / Chatbot: While consumers award automated assistants an NPS of -8, businesses estimate they earn an NPS of 25, for a gap of 33 points.

o   Email: The consumer NPS for email is -9 while the business NPS is 19, for a gap of 28 points.

o   Text: Consumers give text a -2 NPS while businesses estimate 25, for a gap of 27 points.

·       Businesses overrate their CX success. Businesses are 15 percent more likely than consumers to agree that they make it easier for consumers to get their issues resolved in their preferred channels, and that they provide a consistent customer service experience across the purchase journey.

·       Businesses understand the value of omnichannel experiences, but underperform. While 93 percent of businesses agree that consumers expect companies to provide a seamless experience when moving between channels, only 24% of businesses globally give themselves an excellent rating on allowing consumers to switch seamlessly between methods of communication.

Paul Jarman, CEO at NICE inContact, said: “We are at an inflection point for AI in the contact center. AI innovations are at their best when paired with the human touch and deployed to address targeted customer and agent experience opportunities. AI in the contact center has the potential to add significant value to customer experience outcomes and operational performance.

“The CX Transformation Benchmark shows contact center leader confidence in AI, and we join them in delivering end-to-end AI capabilities that span the entire customer and agent experience, to empower organizations of all sizes to stay one step ahead of customer expectations.”

NICE inContact surveyed more than 900 contact center decision makers in the US, UK, and Australia. The report presents global findings from the business wave of the research and provides comparative results to the consumer study published in 2018.

For more information and to download the full research report, please click here.

NICE unveils global ‘Robotic Automation Community’

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

A new educational platform from NICE aims to provide resources and best practice sharing for customers, partners, system integrators and domain professionals across various industries.

With over 550 deployments, 500,000 robots in production and 16 years of RPA experience, NICE says its automation community members now have access to insights on RPA and NEVA (NICE Employee Virtual Attendant), as well as the latest innovations and trends in the industry.

By joining the NICE Robotic Automation Community, entry level employees as well as experts can learn how to harness the growth the industry is experiencing and cultivate their skills and careers.

Open to customers, partners, system integrators, as well as domain professionals, materials include short articles, how to videos, white papers, in-depth e-learning content for technical employees and consultants, as well as certification programs.

The community includes a forum that encourages discussions among peers and with NICE experts, enabling the sharing of best practices, guidelines and experiences that members can learn from and adopt in their own implementations.

NICE’s community is integrated with NICE Dojo, one of the largest global learning networks which enables users to easily access training assets and choose flexible learning paths to suit their individual and professional needs.

Barry Cooper, President, NICE Enterprise Group, said: “As the most established and experienced RPA vendor in the enterprise market, NICE is delighted to launch a comprehensive and engaging global community to drive collaboration and innovation among RPA professionals. The NICE Robotic Automation Community is the ideal platform to share in-depth experience and industry knowledge. Our innovative RPA technology is built to support the most complex process scenarios facing enterprises today. The RPA market is vibrant and dynamic, and we are excited to be contributing towards and shaping the industry on a global scale.”

Thomas Cook adopts NICE Robotic Process Automation for customer experience

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Thomas Cook has implemented the NICE Robotic Process Automation (RPA) solution for its UK operations, which it says has saved millions in operational costs over a 24-month period.

The travel giant elected to adopt US-based NICE’s advanced process automation solution in order to meet the challenge of servicing both internal and external customers across various markets and networks.

The company deployed NICE RPA’s attended and unattended robots across its UK operations, including automation of its back-office activities.

In addition, Thomas Cook brought its outsourced offshore activities back onshore and in-house at the UK contact centres.

The new system replaced a heavily manual process involving inconsistent legacy systems by either completely automating routine tasks or assisting agents to ensure more efficient customer interactions.

The partners claim the changes have driven millions in savings, reduced the average handle time of in-house processes, introduced global consistency in reporting, increased efficiency, and facilitated a greater focus on customer service.

Thomas Cook is planning a phased roll-out of NICE RPA across all its European operations and within other divisions of its UK business activities.

Graham Lee, Group Head RPA, Thomas Cook said: “At Thomas Cook, we are investing in process automation initiatives as a pillar of a transformation program intended to liberate cash for investment in marketing and to accelerate growth. NICE RPA, with its scalability and flexibility, has met those goals with significant operational cost savings and support for our customer experience strategy in the UK. It has provided a great foundation for additional savings and efficiency enhancements using advanced process automation across our European offices, for internal business functions, and in the context of other enterprise activities.”

John O’Hara, President, NICE EMEA said: “We’re excited to see NICE RPA making a significant difference at Thomas Cook by helping ensure efficient and effective operations. By combining both attended and unattended robots, the solution provides Thomas Cook with a platform to deliver on strategic objectives across all its markets with a consistency that improves both service and internal reporting. In the travel industry, automating routine tasks with NICE RPA is an important key in delivering customer service that’s comprehensively streamlined in terms of processes and fuels greater engagement among frontline agents, both of which customers are attuned to. This makes all the difference in an economy where customer experience is king.”

NICE move by BT

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Telecoms giant BT Group has chosen NICE software to replace its previous recording and workforce management (WFM) solutions, implementing NICE WFM, Nice Engage and Nexidia Analytics across the group within the next three years.

Working towards improved customer services experience, ensured regulatory compliance and optimised total cost of ownership, BT undertook a selection process that resulted ion choosing NICE for multichannel recording, speech and text analysis and WFM.

Commenting on the new partnership, Libby Barr, managing director of consumer customer care at BT Group, said: “After extensive research we concluded that the NICE WFM, Engage and Analytics platforms were the best in the market, with a proven track record of helping organisations such as ourselves to deliver better outcomes for our customers, whilst also allowing for simplified support processes.

“We look forward to partnering with NICE as we embed their use into our contact centres.”

John O’Hara, president of NICE EMEA, added: “With the roll-out of the three complementary NICE solutions at BT – focused on employees, channels and customers – they are reinventing customer service and significantly improving employee engagement with new features and functionalities.

“BT’s contact centre evolution reflects NICE’s position as a driver of actionable insights and efficiency across customer-centric operations in the telecommunications industry, with solutions that both reward and create successful employees.”

Wilmac and Business Systems continue Global Partnership Alliance development…

800 450 Jack Wynn

Well into the second year of its formation, the Global Partnership Alliance created by Business Systems and Wilmac continues to grow in strength by addressing the increasing need for ‘exceptional support and service’ on a global scale, in regards to recording technologies and other related solutions.

Amassing 18 partners across 39 countries, the Alliance – founded in 2015 – was the conclusion of a large number of global customers expressing the need to extend their service and support contracts across their countries of presence. On an international scale, customers hold greater and simpler centralised control of their estate with standardised cost plans and levels of service. Meanwhile, at a more local level, customers receive technical support from the ‘best local provider’ who holds a strong regional presence and is familiar with national regulations.

Founding director of Business Systems, Stephen Thurston, commented: “Systems availability pressures have dramatically increased for companies across the globe, and especially in the financial sector where the majority of our global customers operate. As a result, being able to provide them with high quality services, on time, wherever they need us, is becoming a key business driver for Business Systems. We are excited about partnering with Wilmac to extend our reach and deliver more value to our global customers.”

As well as voice data management and strategy consultancy, technical support services, professional services, remote management and monitoring and staff augmentation are offered to support existing systems for clients including NICE, Verint, Red Box and VPI.