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New Survey Shows that Cisco Contact Center Skills are in High Demand

Computerworld’s annual IT Forecast survey for 2012 underscores the continued expected growth of the customer care industry, and highlights specific demand for Cisco contact center products.  Of the 353 IT executives polled, 35% plan to hire help desk and technical support personnel in the next twelve months, which bodes well for the customer care industry as a whole, while 23% plan to hire IT professionals skilled in Business Intelligence (BI).  I was particularly struck by the latter statistic, as it indicates how eager companies are for the kinds of recording and analytics solutions provided by Cisco MediaSense, in conjunction with our technology partners.

I was also strongly encouraged by the poll’s indication that 18% of the IT Executives surveyed plan to hire additional Web 2.0 developers, driven in part by demand for social media.  This is yet another confirmation of Cisco’s market-leading vision to deliver products like Cisco Finesse–our web 2.0 agent desktop–and Cisco SocialMiner, which integrates social media into the customer care workflow.

Most exciting, however, was the survey’s indication that IT Executives are looking to hire personnel with Voice-over-IP telecommunications experience, with specific mention of the need for people with skills in Cisco contact center systems.  IT Executives are clearly recognizing that the thought leadership and market momentum in contact center are all with Cisco, as we now hold the #1 position in interactive voice response (IVR) market share, and are well on our way to #1 in contact center.

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China Study Reveals Web Meetings Top Choice for Improving Communications

Our Cisco WebEx colleagues in China engaged a study with Bite Communications aimed at learning more about China’s mobile workforce. “The Science of Company Productivity Survey” was launched on one of China’s leading portals for two weeks in June.

Among the findings, they learned in China, collaboration technologies can play an integral role in improving organizational effectiveness while helping employees achieve a more flexible, balanced and efficient work life. Given a range of choices, respondents chose web meetings as their preferred method of working with others.

A Quick Look at the Findings

In China, one day of the work week doesn’t seem to be any more crazy than the other. When asked when people feel most overloaded at work, the answer spanned the week!

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Tips and Tricks for Leveraging CRM Solutions

One of the best parts of my job is talking with–and more importantly, listening to–leaders from companies and organizations who use Cisco’s contact center products to collaborate with their customers and grow their businesses.  Over the course of these conversations, we’ve discussed ways in which companies can get the most out of their customer relationship management (CRM) solutions.  Today I’d like to share a few of them with you, gleaned from a recent conversation with Doug Saunders of Republic Services Inc, the leading provider of solid waste collection, transfer, recycling, and disposal services.

1) Don’t underestimate the power of self-service: Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is a mature, proven technology for automatically handling routine caller requests that can free up valuable agent resources for calls that require more detailed/customized assistance.  For example, Republic Services uses Cisco Unified Customer Voice Portal for automated order entry, saving approximately five minutes apiece for each of 100-200 daily service requests–the equivalent of one to two full-time agents.

2) Creating a unified experience is key: Companies can strengthen their brand by providing a consistent, unified customer service experience across multiple media channels including voice, video, web, chat, and e-mail– regardless of whether the “call” goes into a national service center or a local branch. Cisco’s contact center solutions are built on the network, making this unification a natural consequence of our architecture.

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The Post-PC Era is Giving Birth to the New Virtual Workspace

It’s an exciting day at Cisco because today the company unveiled the next phase of its Virtualization Experience Infrastructure with host of innovations that are bringing the new virtual workspace to life.

What does this virtual workspace look like?

  • First of all, it’s all about the experience: giving end users a way to actually enjoy exceptional voice and video collaboration in a virtualized desktop environment.
  • It’s about simplicity: how can we help IT support a data center infrastructure that can host ever-increasing numbers of virtual desktops with simplicity, scalability, security.
  • And, it’s about giving IT the tools they need to deploy with confidence: providing customers with innovative ways to speed large scale deployments.

To find out what we are doing in each one of these areas, take a moment to watch this video featuring Roberto De La Mora, senior director, Collaboration Solutions Marketing, Cisco.

You can also learn more by reading the press release or visiting the Virtual Launch Experience, where you can see demonstrations of newly announced products, ask Cisco product experts questions about our latest introductions, or attend an in-depth technical briefing.

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Cisco Helps Customers Offer Better Service and Realize a Competitive Edge

Cisco’s success and continuing growth are predicated upon the success of our customers, so I’m always excited to hear how businesses and organizations are meeting and surpassing their goals with our contact center solutions.  Two such Cisco customers include Liberty University, the largest private university in Virginia, and Republic Services Inc., the leading provider of solid waste collection, transfer, recycling, and disposal services.

As Liberty University continues to expand locations, it relies heavily on communication and collaboration technology to cater to its increasingly mobile faculty and staff.  Liberty enlisted the help of Cisco Unified Contact Center Express to serve more of its students without incurring the additional expense of adding staff to handle student inquiries.

To accommodate its rapid growth, Republic Services sought solutions that would enable it to provide exceptional service and fill customer orders quickly without having to involve agents unnecessarily.

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