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The Steely Dan Contact Center: When “Do It Again” Isn’t a Hit

In 1973, the group Steely Dan burst onto the music scene with two hits from their first album “Can’t Buy A Thrill.” Setting the standard for obscure lyrical references, a loyal following for the band endures even in 2015.

One of the hits, Do It Again raced up the charts as a pop-music rarity – a hit song in a minor key. Most Steely Dan fans have concluded that it’s about a gambler that must return to the tables. For a vintage rendition of the song, check out this link:

I had a recent experience that highlights just how much Do It Again resides in today’s contact centers. After being unable to locate the answer to my question on their web site, I engaged a long-time financial-service provider supplier for live help. Read More »

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Off the Shelf and into Production – grow your lifecycle services business now!

There has never been a better time to take inventory with your customers. By asking them if you can help them assess their software investments to turn dormant “shelf-ware” into “productive-ware, you will begin to discover new business, and new opportunities to sell services that support the entire software lifecycle.

Every customer wants to be as effective with the software investments they make and wants to quickly realize the return on their investments. Your work to discover activation opportunities or adoption and usage increases is just the beginning of adding value to your customers!

There are a lot of reasons why this is important – but here are my top three: Read More »

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Prove Your Collaboration Expertise with Cisco Certifications

The way we work – and where we work – has changed immensely in the past decade alone. That transformation will continue with the ongoing proliferation of communications devices.

According to Gartner, an estimated 40% of the workforce will be mobile by 2016. In addition, more organizations have employees in different buildings, cities, states, and even countries.

Collaboration is critical to business success and innovation, but the changes in the workplace require new ways to collaborate. No longer can you rely on being able to huddle at the cubicle down the hall.

Fortunately, advancing technologies have empowered people to engage and innovate anywhere, anytime.

To support this transition, today’s IT staff must wear multiple hats. Gone are the days when you’d have a dedicated voice guru, a specialized video expert, and someone else to support collaboration tools. Multiple trends are converging and with them, IT job roles are blending. In many organizations, video and voice specialist roles have converged to become a single specialty.

As a network engineer, how do you convey and prove that you have the skill set to deliver business value using Cisco collaboration solutions? Through Read More »

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Simplifying Midsize Collaboration Deployments

feb 2015 midmarket blog image - guy walkingIn my last post I talked about the impact that low-effort experiences can have on customer satisfaction.  I singled out my home broadband provider for criticism, and so thought it only fair that I talk about a recent great experience I had with them.

Last month, my provider sent an email telling me that they’d proactively upgraded my home broadband service to 50Mbps.  All I had to do was replace my old cable modem/router.  The process couldn’t have been simpler.   The new modem was delivered with pre-configured settings. All I had to do was connect it, power up, and enter the network ID and password onto my devices.

Contrast this experience with lengthy and complicated installations that customers often face when installing multiple communications and collaboration solutions from multiple vendors.

For small and medium-sized businesses in particular, with smaller IT teams, it is critical that solutions are easy to deploy, manage, and use. So we’ve taken a different approach.

The Cisco Business Edition 6000 consolidates multiple virtualized collaboration applications into one server solution that is right-priced and right-sized for small to medium sized businesses.  IT departments can rapidly deploy voice, video, messaging, or presence solutions, starting with their highest-priority use cases — and add additional functionality later. Read More »

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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – January 30, 2015

Partner-Weekly-Rewind-v2Each week, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco Partner Ecosystem news and stories, as well as point you to important, Cisco-related partner content you may have missed along the way. Here’s what you might have missed this week:

Off the Top

Bruce Klein had big news on the Cisco Partner Ecosystem this week as he blogged about how Cisco ONE and Meraki drive opportunities for partners. Bruce’s blog covers the launch announcements from Cisco Live Milan, and talks about how simple it is now to choose from what Cisco offers via Cisco ONE and Meraki.

Check it out and let us know what you think!

What do Technical Sales People Need to Achieve Maximum Success?

As always, Karin Surber has great insight into the mind of the sales force. In her blog this week, Karin explores how the average technical salesperson’s day breaks down by time and interaction with the customer. She points out how planning that interaction properly can greatly affect the success with those customers.

She also has some information on how the Cisco Partner Plus program can support your sales through a holistic sales model. Be sure to take a look and provide Karin with some feedback. Read More »

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