are pleased to once again have as this month’s lead
article/infographic another original submission from NACC member Mark
Trainer/On-Site Supervisor at Briljent LLC.We truly
appreciate Mark’s support of this newsletter and encourage
other NACC members to contribute their articles and stories to In Queue.Mark’s association with the NACC led to him
being interviewed by, and quoted in, The Wall Street Journal last month.You can read his comments in the April 24,
2020 issue.I think that’s what you’d
call a feather in anyone’s career cap!Mark
can be reached at [email protected] ~
Verint Engage Goes Virtual. Call Off The Ghostbusters!
Stockford, Research Director, NACC and Chief Analyst, Saddletree
Verint’s customer conference,
Engage, is one of my favorite events of the year. I’ve attended
it for many years and have had the opportunity to speak at this
conference each year I’ve been invited to attend. I’ve met some
really interesting people, made many friends, and I always learn
something from the other attendees at Verint Engage. If you’ve
ever been to Engage, you know what a terrific event it is.
This year’s Engage customer conference was scheduled to be held May 18
to 24 at the Loews Anatole Hotel in Dallas, Texas. Once again, I
was invited to attend and speak at the event and I agreed to be there
under one condition – that Verint promised to get me the least haunted
room in the hotel.
Back in the late 1990s the annual Call Center trade show was held in
Dallas year after year. The venue for the event each year was the
Infomart – a seven-story building that served primarily as a trade show
location. The Infomart was designed after the Crystal Palace,
which was a building erected in 1851 in Hyde Park, England, to house
the Great Exhibition of 1851. The Infomart still stands today but
it was sold in 2006 and now houses the offices of about 110 technology
Across the Stemmons Freeway from the Infomart is the Anatole Hotel,
which is where I stayed each year while attending the Call Center
show. On one of my stays in the late 1990s, I was awakened one
night by one of those feelings that you get when something just doesn’t
seem right. When I opened my eyes to the dark hotel room, I saw
what I can only describe as an apparition. It was the figure of a
woman dressed in what is best described as late 19th century
attire. She was wearing a very broad-brimmed hat and what seemed
to be a pastel colored dress. My first thought was it was
probably just the hat rack in the room I was looking at, then I
realized there was no hat rack in the room. I turned on the light
and, of course, there was nothing there, but I’ve never forgotten the
So, that experience was the first thing I thought of when the folks at
Verint told me that Engage 2020 would be at the Anatole, but before my
guaranteed ghost-free room at the Anatole could be confirmed, the
COVID-19 pandemic hit. Rather than cancel the event, Verint
decided to take it virtual and I was still invited to speak. Not
only is Engage virtually carrying on, everyone is invited!
will be held on May 20 – 21 and I will still be participating as a
speaker. For more information on the event, or to register for
this no-charge conference, go here. Even
if we can’t all get together this year, it will still be a fun,
informative event. I look forward to virtually seeing you there!
The changes wrought by Covid-19 on the business environment will
continue to be felt long after the virus is finally gone. Take the new
world order known as “work from home” and the effect it has had on the
contact center. Suddenly, the imperative of having your agents in one
room is no longer looking as mandatory as it once was.
Let’s say you’re a convert and ready to transition some or all of your
seats to a remote contact center. Great!
Where do you start? What will your agents need?
1) A proven UCaaS
solution with a connector into a CCaaS
2) A quality internet connection
3) A quality headset
4) A secure connectivity into your software database
(Businesses also need to consider a simple software defined network
(SDWAN) solution to provide affordable redundant connections, but we’ll
save the rabbit hole for another time.)
Most people get hung up at number 1.
The process of choosing a UCaaS or CCaaS provider is an incredibly
time-consuming task. Identifying needs criteria, sitting through sales
pitches, parsing feature/functionality capabilities, assembling price
comparisons… time and labor intensive but necessary to ensure project
When assembling your needs criteria, think about how you’re using your
current technology and identify what’s a “must-have” from a
• How many agents are in
your contact center that you want to enable to work from home?
• Where is your contact center located?
• Do you require more than just voice capabilities?
• Do you require a CRM integration?
• Do you require speech recognition?
• Do you require any special reports?
• Do you require compliance with any specific data
security requirements such as HIPAA or PCI?
• Do you require outbound dialing?
• Recording? Hold messaging? Disposition codes? Call
Once you have that list complete, it’s time to begin vendor
evaluations—the most time-consuming, but necessary, part of the
process. Getting recommendations, evaluating technologies, comparing
needs to vendor functionality, analyzing pricing…it’s a multi-step
process that can take months.
It’s at this point that many companies choose to work with a
vendor-agnostic service provider, such as vCom, to handle the
nitty-gritty. The time savings alone is significant. These companies
typically have access to dozens of providers and can guide you to the
technology that best fits your needs. A good partner will take your
needs criterion (and in some cases help you create it) and conduct the
entire RFP process, sourcing the vendors, building technology and
pricing matrices, narrowing the list of finalists, conducting a
security assessment, handling price negotiations, and overseeing the
implementation of the solution.
With a willing partner, this process can take the evaluation period
down from months to weeks. On the positive side, the seismic shift to
remote agents has led to speedier implementation times, with a host of
CcaaS providers reducing deployment times to about 48 hours. Many of
these providers are also offering free software or seat licenses. Great
deals, but its imperative you don’t sacrifice your needs in the name of
Going remote to better serve your business needs makes sense. So does
putting in the due diligence required to ensure you pick the best
provider for your organization.
"The only people with
whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you."
~ John E. Southard
NACC has been burning
the midnight oil and typing until our fingers are sore to bring out
reports to our members. Each is listed below. If you are interested to
see what we are writing about, click on the links
below and download the executive summary of each. If you like
what you see, join the NACC so that you can view these reports and
others that will be coming out soon on our website. These reports will
ensure that you know the latest trends in the industry.