Chris Botting, Senior Director Product Development, Customer Collaboration, Cisco and Ross Daniels, Director of Marketing, Customer Collaboration, Cisco.
Cisco Directors, Chris Botting and Ross Daniels, stated that Cisco is globally the number two contact centre infrastructure provider with an estimated ACD market share of 18% globally, lagging number one provider Avaya who currently own an estimated share of over 35%. However, Cisco claims to be making inroads into Avaya's dominance. In the IVR market Cisco state they are ranked number one, and research from Gartner places Cisco in the 'Leaders' category within the Contact Centre Infrastructure Magic Quadrant.
Daniels highlighted Cisco's business performance within the ACD market. "Within the ACD business our share gains over the last couple of years have been impressive. We have jumped from number three or four to number two worldwide, and in certain markets, such as the US, we have closed the gap significantly on Avaya where Cisco has a market share of 29%."
Daniels continued, "Our projections have Cisco as number one in North America in the next 1-2 years. Our objective will then to be number one globally in the next 3-4 years."
When asked about Cisco's business focus Daniels confirmed that contact centres is now a key priority for Cisco. Daniels stated, "Cisco went through its own corporate struggles in 2011. Cisco came out of that having identified there had been too many priorities and too many things distracting us. There are now five priorities for the company, and the second of those priorities is Collaboration. There are four pillars under Collaboration, one of which is contact centre-or as we call it Customer Collaboration."
But Daniels admitted that the contact centres still struggle for attention across the broader Cisco business. He added, "For twenty years Cisco have been very successful selling and marketing 'boxes', talking to technical people about hardware solutions. Contact centre is about as opposite to that as you can get. First of all you do need people who can talk technology, but it is a bit more software oriented. Then you have to able to talk the Contact Centre Manager's and the Operations Manager's lingo."
In terms of Australia, Daniels and Botting highlighted that Australia is one market that has been recognised as one with significant opportunity for Cisco. Daniels stated, "We have lots of good things in place in this (Australian) market, a good solid product, good sales teams on the ground and a good set of partners. We have a lot things working on our side from a product, marketing, channel and sales point of view. With a little bit of extra investment we feel we can accelerate growth."
Along with greater support from Cisco's executive team and greater investment in the contact centre business, Daniels and Botting highlighted the role that product innovation has played in driving the positive contact centre business performance for Cisco. Daniels added, "We had a strong focus on innovation in 2010. We launched significant new products to the portfolio in November 2010 including our social solution, SocialMiner, a new agent desktop called Finesse and a new recording infrastructure called MediaSense. These were all big projects, and all wrapped around significant innovation. We hadn't been out to the Australian market with that much concentrated innovation in a long time." Daniels continued, "It was very well received."
Daniels went on to discuss how Cisco's focus has shifted. He stated, "As we have gone through 2011 our focus and message has shifted to innovation balanced with execution. This means focusing on the core products and developing solutions that are aimed at simplification to take advantage of the more 'mass market' opportunities."
Botting added, "There is more of a focus on operational simplification." Botting added, "Cisco Unified Contact Centre Express is a good example. For companies for whom contact centre is not their primary differentiator, Contact Centre Express is a nice turn-key all in one solution."
Botting continued, "What we have found is a section of the market that wants the attributes of our more powerful Cisco Unified Contact Centre Enterprise product but with the simplicity of Contact Centre Express. To target this need we have launched Packaged Contact Centre Enterprise in the last few months."
Botting concluded, "We think we have a really good opportunity, with Packaged Contact Centre Enterprise, in the Australian marketplace and the ability to deliver an easy sales cycle. Feedback from our Partner community has been very positive. We have turned what was traditionally a 12 month sales cycle into a four month cycle."
Cisco has identified the importance of simplification as a key message and has developed products and sales process to match. The contact centre world is becoming more complicated as the plethora of channels expands and customers demand better service. Therefore anything that makes life simpler for the contact centre should be welcome news.
Insurance company AAMI has embraced telecommuting with plans to have up to 50% of their service representatives working from home within a year.
"Our people love it so we want to continue expanding it," AAMI's Renae Bullen told reporters. Some 80% of AAMI's service reps are parents, with many logging on at night or early in the morning, while others work during school hours.
AAMI has been testing two different work-from-home models. In Newcastle, work from home is a privilege offered to existing service reps. In Narre Warren, Victoria, it is hiring new work-from-home reps who live within 30 minutes of a hub that offers training or a change of scenery. "Employee engagement is improved, customer experience is better if not the same, and turn-off and absenteeism is improved," Bullen said. Retention rates were also higher than the industry average.
Hong Kong-based Best Practice Management has announced the 10 Organisations to receive the Best Practice Awards for performance excellence through innovation, improvement and visionary leadership in the first Best Practice Awards China 2014.
The 10 Award Winners are HSBC Technology and Services - Service Delivery (Customer Experience Management), ADP China (Outsourcing), Staples China (Employee Care), Infosys Technologies (China) Co., Ltd. (Technology Innovation), Manulife-Sinochem Life Insurance Co. Ltd. (Learning & Talent Development), PCCW Teleservices (Customer Retention), GE Global Operations (Shared Services), Mango Garments And Accessory (China) Company Ltd. (Employee Engagement), The Bank of East Asia (China) Ltd. (Brand Leadership), and Fuji Xerox (China) Ltd. (Corporate Social Enterprise).
"I would like to congratulate the 2014 Award recipients, these organizations that are leading best practices, innovative management, outstanding employee and customer satisfaction, and a commitment to make the community a better place to live," said Sidney Yuen, Publisher & Chief Editor-In-Chief of Best Practice Management. "The program has had a tangible impact on the success of hundreds of organizations in Asia. And I hope that will say the same to the China's economy, and the winners announced today will undoubtedly continue that legacy and serve as role models for the business community".
ACT Design and Construction company chooses Jobpac Construction Software
Sydney, Australia, September 30, 2014 - Jobpac International Systems, the leader in Australian construction software, announced today that ACT design and construction company, Bloc, has selected its Jobpac software to drive operational efficiency and best practice as it attracts larger clients into its portfolio.
Bloc, a residential and commercial construction and design business in Canberra, needed a software solution to help it grow while offering better forecasting and project management capabilities. Jobpac will save time and increase efficiency by replacing MYOB, an in-house job costing solution and manual spreadsheet reporting to provide one single view of business operations as it expands.
"We’re excited about what Jobpac means to the future of our business", says Natalie Hyde, Bloc’s Chief Financial Officer. "As we take on more, larger clients, we want to implement internal processes that reflect the robustness and high standards of the quality of our work."
Jobpac provides Bloc with an easy-to-use system with a modern user interface, a consultative and supportive team and over 25 years of experience supporting the construction industry. Jobpac's structure will allow Bloc to keep track of its forecast capabilities and provide real-time job costing, as well as statutory reporting, which is critical in the construction industry. Jobpac beat Cheops and Timberline to win the deal.
Ian Desbrow, Chief Executive Officer of Jobpac says, "Bloc is an innovative business, combining creative design with stable construction management process. We’re looking forward to taking the journey with Bloc as it expands its operations, and to support the company with an integrated and flexible platform and share our extensive experience in larger projects."
Jobpac specialises in providing integrated market-leading construction management software tailored to each business's individual requirements. Its modular design ensures the flexibility and scalability needed as a company's business grows.