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Transforming Customer Care with the Cisco Collaboration Cloud

Customers are interacting with organizations in many different ways – from voice to email, chat and social media – using a variety of devices including smartphones and tablets. Many organizations are still figuring out how to deal with the evolving customer who is using any channel, any device and at any time. You need collaboration tools to share information faster and make more informed decisions. Legacy metrics are no longer adequate to measure customer engagement. The terms of engagement are changing rapidly and you need a flexible platform that will adapt to their requirements and growth.

Developing a system that meets all these requirements – yet is simple to deploy and use — requires an ecosystem approach. It’s no longer enough just deploy a contact center and expect to meet the needs of a new generation of customers.

Cisco combines the power of Cisco Collaboration Cloud with the versatile toolbox of Cisco Unified Contact Center Express (Unified CCX) to create a solution that scales to meet organizational requirements and is yet simple to deploy.

Deployed by more than 16,000 organizations worldwide, Unified CCX provides multiple channels for customer engagement. Customers can call in, email, Web chat or connect via social media. Agents use the Cisco Finesse desktop for integrated access to voice, email, and, web chat. Finesse, which  is extensible with open APIs, can be integrated with other business applications to create gadgets which put all the information an agent needs on their desktop. Read More »

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Get Unplugged with Cisco Spark Product Managers

A few weeks ago, we brought a video crew up to the Cisco Spark office in San Francisco. We asked product managers Taylor, Renaldo, and Eric to show us Cisco Spark and chat about product development.

Given Taylor is a former Stanford football player, Eric used to do standup comedy, and Renaldo is just “the man,” I figured it couldn’t hurt to go a little off script with these characters. We set up what MTV’s Real World might call a “confessional” with a person in front of a rolling camera and an open mic. If you were hoping for sobbing monologues or ill-tempered rants, you’ll have to tune into the latest summer reality show. But we definitely got some good stuff about their day jobs, and here it is:

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Thermal Imaging Analysis – easy as PI with OSIsoft at Cisco Live

I caught up with Danilo Ribeiro, Strategic Alliance Program Manager from OSIsoft, at Cisco Live recently, and shot a video of the OSIsoft demonstration he was showing. In the video, Danilo talks about Fog Computing and thermal imaging analytics at the edge using the OSIsoft PI System and Cisco IOx.

The PI System is used by many, if not most, industrial companies to capture real-time data and events and manage an historian, interfacing to critical ERP, BI, process monitoring and office systems.

Danilo’s demonstration shows a thermal imaging camera detecting a gas ‘flare’ from the field (in the demo it’s a heat source mounted above the booth in this case to show the real-time data capture). The OSIsoft system is able to detect the anomaly and alert remote operators rapidly so that corrective action can be taken.

In the video Danilo talks about how the demonstration simulates a flare monitoring system. This is the kind of monitoring that happened in oil and gas fields like the one in operation at PETRONAS Penapisan Melake, Malaysia. PETRONAS has evolved into a fully integrated multinational oil and gas company. PETRONAS’ refining capacity, at 323,300 bpd (2012) is over half of the 2012 total refining capacity in Malaysia. PETRONAS CARIGALI is the upstream arm of Malaysia’s state-owned, fully integrated oil and gas company. Read More »

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New Collaboration Cloud Harnesses the Power of IoE to Improve Public Safety

To see the growing role that technology is playing in law enforcement, all we need to do is turn on the news. From the growing call for police body worn cameras to the lack of physical security surveillance capabilities in an aged correctional facility system, there is an increased demand for law enforcement organizations to respond more quickly and effectively and with greater transparency to crises. In order to improve the collaboration and communication within agencies and with the broader community of public safety officials, Cisco and Verizon have teamed up to create a national public safety collaboration cloud for the eco-system of public safety organizations.

The National Sheriffs’ Association Collaboration Cloud will enable sheriff offices to easily acquire, deploy and communicate using video technology. The Sheriffs will also expand this collaboration to their public safety partners in all 3080 counties of the United States, so law enforcement organizations will be able to allow their personnel to quickly communicate within their own department or with other local, state or federal agencies to conduct their business. Using the cloud, law enforcement organizations can respond more effectively to real-time incidences as they occur and work together on inter-department or inter-agency task forces with ease.

The new cloud based collaboration technology will improve many areas of law enforcement activities, including patrol vehicle applications and drug and gang task force collaboration. The areas of probation and parole will also benefit from this service as they interact with correctional facilities, prosecutors, defense lawyers and the courts.
For example, the collaboration cloud can be used for video meetings and hearings with attorneys, judges and inmates at correctional facilities. This helps law enforcement organizations to significantly reduce transportation and overtime costs for personnel. It can also reduce other public safety risks including reduced movement of incarcerated individuals by enabling legal teams and providers of numerous inmate services to communicate with inmates via video.

The National Sheriffs’ Association Collaboration Cloud will give law enforcement organizations better access to resources to train their personnel on emerging response tactics and mandated training certifications. By equipping training rooms for remote training and accreditation services, organizations will be able to expand their programming significantly. This collaboration cloud also enables real-time communication between patrol cars, emergency operations centers, 911 centers and dispatch locations using a myriad of devices including tablets, smart phones and laptop computers. It opens the pathway of reducing the largest budget number in corrections through the delivery of telehealth in county jails, juvenile detention centers and state prisons.

Overall, the public safety collaboration cloud greatly enhances the ability of local, state and federal public safety organizations to collaborate and work together to preserve and enforce public safety. The National Sheriffs’ Association recognizes the transformative power this collaboration can have on public safety. During their annual conference this past June, the National Sheriffs’ Association Executive Director and CEO Jonathan Thompson thanked Cisco and Verizon for making it possible.

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(Click through to see the video on C-SPAN.)

As the demand for technology in public safety grows, Cisco remains committed to working with these organizations as they move into this new technology-driven future. Whether through connected justice initiatives, cybersecurity or collaboration efforts such as the Sheriffs’ Association’s Collaboration Cloud, Cisco is dedicated to improving efficiency across all areas of public safety, harnessing the power of the Internet of Everything (IoE) to transform the eco-system of justice and improve community public safety.

To learn more about how Cisco is leveraging IoE in the justice, public safety and security sectors, click here.

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How Banks Can Capture New Customers by Adopting a Digital Strategy for Mortgage Lending

Banks are experiencing market disruptors attacking from many angles. They’re facing competition not only within the financial services industry, but also from non-traditional banking institutions that are delivering new mortgage lending models and innovative digital services that provide the convenience and personalization consumers want. Unless banks adopt these new models as well, they risk losing customers and revenue to competitors and emerging market disruptors. In this blog, I’ll focus on how banks can implement a digital branch strategy for mortgage lending that enables them to deliver greater value to their customers, improve productivity among their advisors and even increase profitability.

In mortgage lending today, there are common “gaps” where consumers are most likely to abandon the process or go to a competitor. From the consumer’s perspective, acquiring a mortgage is likely the biggest purchase they will ever make. They spend time researching it, getting their finances in order and gathering the necessary documentation. If the consumer visits a bank branch wanting to apply for a mortgage, only to be told that the mortgage specialist is not available right now or to make an appointment for next week, they are likely to walk across the street to a competitor and not come back. Banks are seeing “leakage” in the mortgage lending process as high as 70% in these scenarios. Once a customer has left, only 30% are likely to return. Read More »

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