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“What If” Could Be Now: Truly Mobile Healthcare

Once upon a time in the days of Opie and Andy, doctors made house calls. I’ve seen it on TV, so it must be true. Now, a doctor visit usually requires that you do the visiting to a clinic, office, or hospital. An initial appointment may result in referrals for tests or to specialists – more visits, parking lots, waiting rooms. Sometimes your information gets transferred along, sometimes it doesn’t.

Mobile devices are showing up everywhere, healthcare included. There’s even a new word: mHealth. (We had e-everything in the early 2000s, then came along iSomething, so let’s now move further into the alphabet with mWords.) Read More »

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Customer Collaboration Offers Something for Everyone

Cisco’s contact center business is on a roll, as companies of all types and sizes embrace Customer Collaboration at an ever-increasing rate to forge deeper, more proactive relationships with their clients.

Today’s press release showcases three such companies– CareCore National, Skowhegan Savings Bank, and AAA of Western and Central New York–who, although very different, are all transforming and growing their business with Customer Collaboration.

These companies highlight the widespread applicability and benefits of Customer Collaboration, which combines proven, traditional contact center technology with the power of social media, video, web 2.0 agent workspaces, and network-based recording to allow businesses to closely interact with customers in ways that were never before possible.

Each of these companies is different, with its own unique requirements for interacting with customers.  But Customer Collaboration from Cisco offers something for all of them—a way for Skowhegan Savings Bank to connect with existing and prospective clients via Cisco SocialMiner and Cisco Unified Contact Center Express, a platform including Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise and Cisco MediaSense for CareCore National to deliver a better support experience for its physician clients, and an integration of Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise with workforce and quality management solutions for AAA of Western and Central New York to connect more efficiently with its growing customer base.

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“What If” Could Be Now: A New Retail Experience

Consider me a weekend warrior of the DIY home-improvement world. My projects are likely laughable (in scope and outcome) in the eyes of the professionals, but if that’s the case, they’re not invited to my next barbeque. So there.

Granted, I sometimes experience delusions of grandeur as I envision transforming my fixer-upper into a quaint Sunset magazine-worthy before/after feature. Norm Abram will never worry about me usurping his reputation, but I like fixing things when they break and looking at something I’ve improved and knowing I did it.

I can swing a hammer and even use a tile saw, but most projects involve a lot of learning and asking questions along the way. Sometimes that’s a bit of a process – finding the answers I need or the people who have them. Read More »

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Enabling Collaboration with Cisco Interactive Services

Cisco has often touted our vision of delivering any video to any device, any where. Today, we are continuing that vision by extending enhanced collaboration capabilities to any digital sign or video endpoint. Cisco is introducing new products as part of Cisco Interactive Services, to transform any digital sign into a highly interactive display by delivering targeted, customized rich media content such as video, collaboration applications and Web pages and Web applications.

With these new innovations, you can now walk up to a touchscreen digital sign, browse through a variety of content to find the information you need that is most relevant to you, and access a remote expert to talk live if you have questions or need additional help. Today’s announcement is part of a larger evolution in the digital signage market, as digital signs move from just static displays to more dynamic video endpoints that become a medium for two-way communication. Customers across the world, in verticals such as retail and transportation, are now able to leverage these capabilities to create a more personal experience for their users and provide easy access to more information.

Interested in learning more? Head on over to our Video blog to see a video by the Director of Marketing for Cisco’s Enterprise Video Solutions, Erica Schroeder, and find out more details about today’s announcement and new digital signage customers.

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Evolving Beyond the PC

For at least the past two decades, knowledge workers have been firmly rooted in the PC era. Within enterprises of all sizes, that meant that the predominant operating system on the desktop – and often in the data center — was Windows.

We had unprecedented productivity gains during this time, no doubt, but I would now firmly assert that as Ray Ozzie suggested — and Steve Jobs was more than happy to reinforce — that we are transitioning to an era where PCs play a secondary role, if at all – this is the Post PC era. 

I believe we will now have more access to more information on more devices from more applications than ever before.

It’s not as if PCs are going away, so what do we mean by the “Post-PC Era”? PCs have their place. They’re still useful business tools. But it’s clear: We are rapidly evolving from a predominantly client-server world to one in which the Windows PC is just another device in a broad list of options.

We now have many choices in devices – even the option to perform the same tasks on different devices depending on our preferences at different times. Everything is anchored by persistent services that enable device portability and mobility

Once upon a time, I dreaded having to replace my mobile phone or PC. The transition invariably brought with it lost data, lost time, lost sanity… But I can now upgrade from one device to another fairly quickly without breaking much of a sweat. And I really need that ability if I want to keep up with the latest advances in technology.

Why is that? Because it’s cloud-enabled!

Although they’ve performed well for over two decades, traditional business tools and infrastructure based around the desktop PC and office-productivity software no longer exclusively fit the modern knowledge worker nor the global distributed form of 21st century work.

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