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The Benefits of Listening and Delivering in Customer Care

One of the things I enjoy most in my role leading Product Management for Cisco’s Customer Collaboration business is listening to our customers and partners to ensure we deliver products that meet their needs.  Our focus on delivery and execution sets Cisco apart in the industry.

So I’m very pleased to see that, for the second year in a row, Cisco was recognized as highest in “Ability to Execute” in Gartner’s Contact Center Infrastructure (CCI) Magic Quadrant.  Gartner bases Ability to Execute on a number of criteria--including the quality, maturity, and overall breadth of a vendor’s applications; their customer support capabilities; and their ability to deliver solutions in formal contact centers within companies, outsourcers, and service providers.  In addition, we improved our positioning in “Completeness of Vision”, with noticeable movement to the right in the June 2013 CCI Leaders Quadrant.

Cisco’s achievement in this year’s CCI Magic Quadrant is the latest recognition that our contact center business is truly firing on all cylinders.  The product development aspects Read More »

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The We’re Listening Blog Series: Increasing Efficiency in the Technical Assistance Center

In this installment of the “We’re Listening” blog, Steve Young discusses how Cisco’s Technical Assistance Center (TAC) teams are using collaboration processes to solve customer problems faster. Steve is Director of the TAC’s Service Delivery Transformation efforts.

Steve Young, Director, TAC Service Delivery TransformationBy Guest Contributor Steve Young

In my last blog posting, I discussed what we’re doing to get you, TAC customers, to the right expert, right away, when you need support. This time I’d like to focus on what we’re doing to improve your experience once connected with that engineer. Read More »

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Finding the Right Collaboration Tools for the Right Roles

March 29, 2013 at 9:21 am PST

I collaborate, you collaborate, we all collaborate. An organizational chart may show hierarchy, but it doesn’t represent how people actually interact within – and beyond– an organization. Our roles don’t affect whether we collaborate, but do influence our needs, priorities, and the devices we use.

There’s a clear advantage to technology that empowers people to engage and creates a consistent user experience so that the interaction essentially the same – anywhere, on any device. Just as our roles differ, so do our collaboration priorities and device needs. But we don’t work only with others in our own role. We need to collaborate with people across the spectrum within an organization.

I use three or more devices to collaborate in a single workday. Frankly, you shouldn’t care. Before you and I talk, we shouldn’t need to take a mutual device inventory to figure out how to connect. If I don’t have to focus on what I’m doing to interact with you, I can focus on the conversation and the whole reason we’re connecting.

We’ve outlined five user personas to illustrate how collaboration technology can best serve the needs of people in different roles. Click through on a persona to get more information and to see the use cases that support their needs. Read More »

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Better Customer Service through Collaboration

February 6, 2013 at 11:16 pm PST

Good news: Customers are becoming people in 2013. It’s prediction season. The blog world is ripe with posts of premonitions and predictions for every horizontal, vertical, and diagonal cross-section of business, science, and life in general.

The year’s predictions for customer service have a strong focus on people and experience. Look back just two years and you’ll see a greater emphasis on the process and operational pieces of the puzzle. Then, customers were essentially the sum of their activities and accounts. Today, they’re people and need to be treated as such, especially with the power that social media affords them to share opinions, feedback, and feelings about their interactions as your customer. (Feelings? Not those! Can I even mention those in a corporate post?!)

Some common phrases pop up in this year’s predictions: experience, multichannel, social media, differentiation, personalization, collaboration.

Contact centers are moving beyond transactions to relationships. Service is becoming a competitive differentiator. Creating more interactive and collaborative customer relationships is making a difference. Customer satisfaction is about more than making sure the customer gets the product and that the product works. It’s about creating loyalty so that customer comes back and becomes your advocate.

How can collaboration technology help along the way? The following use cases provide several options and benefits: Read More »

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Predictions for Customer Care in 2013 and Beyond

In the past year, we’ve seen how social, mobile and video have presented new opportunities to deepen the way companies and customers interact for more efficient and intelligent customer care. As we begin 2013, I wanted to offer up a few predictions on how technology innovations will continue to help organizations build strong relationships and better consumer experiences in 2013 and beyond.

This year, mobile and video will come together to simplify customer service interactions– As video is becoming commonplace, we’re seeing companies look for ways to bring in the right customer service expert instantly. Cisco is currently trialing technology to connect consumers with video experts via mobile devices both in-store or on the road. By pulling intuitive information based on location and what detail the customer has recently looked at on the web or mobile device, this technology will route customers to the right expert to help them get the additional detail they need in a simpler and more efficient manner. Imagine, accessing a paint or decorating expert with just one click in the paint aisle at your neighborhood hardware store or even while you’re outside painting your house.

In the next few years, marketing and customer service responsibilities will merge – Consumers are talking about brands all over the web in places like Twitter and Facebook, sites which have over 500 million and one billion active users respectively. Traditionally, social media has been owned by marketing but with people asking service questions in new social channels, companies will need to merge some of these responsibilities between the call center and marketing. Read More »

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