PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMC NET’S REAL TIME COMMUNICATIONS
With the mobile workforce revolutionizing businesses, both small and
large, it’s becoming more conventional to meet our clients and business
partners for a quick chat over the wire. While it’s pretty cool to think
back to where we were just ten years ago, we’re still not as far as we
In fact, GFK, a firm dedicated to market research in Technology,
reveals that only a quarter of U.S. consumers are regularly engaging in
digital interaction and consider it just as good as being face-to-face. Overseas consumers reflect similar sentiments.
Globally, women are more apt to welcoming virtual interactions than
men. In the United States, it’s the men, who more strongly agree with
the fact that meeting face to face is “just as good.”
While it is true that nothing compares to human interaction, one can
argue that with collaborative tools, productivity is actually maximized
through evolved technologies and real-time communications. One could
also argue that corporate dollars are being saved, where they previously
splurged on luxurious business trips, both cross-country and cross
Not so surprisingly, only 20-30 percent of all consumers completely
disagree. This leaves a majority of overall consumers indifferent. They
simply consider it convenient and not a preferred method of
Millennials, while many agree that virtual interactions are “just as
good” are more of the adventurous crowd. They’re more social. They are
also ultra-sensory, so while digital interaction is amazing, the five
senses call for more.
Some consider business relationships a marriage of two companies, it
would only make sense the same would be true amongst business
professionals. Perhaps when it comes to money, we are less “open” than
when it comes to matters of the heart. We can be over protective,
especially when more than just our heart is at stake. It’s the
reputation of the business. It’s the funding of our next project. It
could be the end of our career.
This may reflect those professionals indifferent to acceptance and
preference. They might actually prefer real-time communication and
virtual meetings for increased productivity and convenience in the work
environment. Confidence in this method, however, may be lacking.
Perhaps, empowerment is key to increasing preference amongst the
business community; and one day, it really will be just as good.
Easy Solutions, a fraud protection company, recently did some research into phishing attacks against a Top 25 US Bank during a three-month period. From September of 2015 until December, it seems these “phishermen” were quite busy. What’s most alarming is that these attacks were done during a season that leaves us most vulnerable to attack and where many of us won’t even realize that have been a victim until much later on.
During such a busy time in commerce, many of us won’t even know we
were victims until much later down the road. This next bit of
information might tell us why.
If we factor in how many banks there are – not just in the United
States, but all over the world – and consider that this is a yearlong
plague, we start to see the bigger picture.
Easy Solutions grouped the attacks into three main categories.
Parameters were based on how sites were created as well as whether or
not the domains are registered – including the domain provider and the
location of each server.
The company decided that many of these sites were created as traps,
only meant to serve a few stragglers at a time. These people would
accidently stumble upon the site or be directed there through some other
devious means. And, it has been proving successful.
Each group of sites were then broken down. Location was a big factor
in the next step of the process. Other factors were Whois information,
the types of phishkits used and the strategy for getting people to the
Daniel Ingevaldson, CTO of Easy Solutions, states, “When institutions
can more effectively characterize their attackers, they can then more
successfully combat phishing attacks – by tuning consumer education
campaigns, changing web site countermeasures, or adjusting risk scoring
during phishing campaigns.”
Armed with new information, consumers can better differentiate
between a genuine source and a scam. They will know which sites to stay
away from, and gain confidence in those that they trust.
In a day where we are including our entire business on a cloud
platform, there are still many that refuse to use their credit card
online for these purposes. Institutions, such as the IRS, PayPal (News – Alert)
and Bank of America, are repeat victims of fraud. Customers and those
who aren’t even affiliated with the organizations are often tricked
through scare tactics and extortion strategies.
By understanding the source, it’s easier to shut fraud down – one
scammer at a time. By better understanding domains and locations that
are frequently associated with this fraud, it’s easier to pinpoint all
source of fraud on a regular basis… stopping it cold in its own tracks.
Impacting global expansion strategies, ShoreTel’s partnership with
Voxbone will enhance enterprise operations, by allowing clients to be
reached by customers outside of their current territories and markets.
ShoreTel recently launched the Connect CLOUD, providing fully hosted
management to benefit collaboration and unified communications
experiences. This not only establishes a centralized universe for
companies working across continents, but it also allows them to receive
direct inward dialing (DID) extensions that facilitate global demand
through a carrier-grade network.
Voxbone, an industry choice for many, has partnerships with national
carriers all over the world, providing service possibilities to the
end-customer. They not only assign traditional geographic-based
numbers, but they also provide regional 800 numbers and the ability to
receive text via virtual mobile numbers. This is extremely important for
organizations that are switching from strict call center models to
contact call centers in keeping with modern progression.
This move also facilitates customer contact through multiple
platforms. Delivering the means to communicate through a central source
provides continue efficiency and fosters proactivity in the workplace.
It also establishes brand trust and loyalty. Which means, ShoreTel is
providing clients with more convenient way to serve their customers.
Striving to better serve a globalized workforce, ShoreTel has been
working to evolve their solutions in meeting the needs of companies
operating in obscure locations and geographical regions, while
connecting remote teams throughout.
In other news, the rollout of the ShoreTel Connect™ HYBRID is allowing sites to mix-and-match efforts
towards more effective UC deployment. Companies are be able to move all
communications within the cloud – or route them to where it most
benefits their daily activities. Directory synchronization allows for
extension-to-extension dialing, pairing virtual extensions with actual
extensions in the physical realm.
“The hybrid architecture is a destination, instead of a transitional strategy,” states Dave Michels, Analyst of UC Strategies.
ShoreTel is taking an initiative in upselling existing solutions by
helping companies exceed their current growth and business models. With
growth comes the need to upgrade servicing and ShoreTel is working to
help them get there.
“Many customers want to take advantage of UCaaS capabilities, and at
the same time they want to leverage their existing assets and business
processes,” states Eugenia Corrales, SVP of product at ShoreTel. She
continues by discussing new subscription-based model targeting the
specific needs of each business. “Businesses now have the flexibility to
optimize communications services and applications while migrating
payments to a subscription-based model.”
Adding additional offices and office expansions in remote locations
Providing seasonal teleworkers with their own extensions without interfering with IT operations
Transitioning operational models and existing solutions
Reaching customers outside existing markets or market reach
Providing flexibility in the communications model
Protecting sensitive communications and identities of workforce
This shift in solution servicing allows on-site and remote workforces
to work together in synch, while facilitating productivity and
collaboration in day-to-day business operations. It’s almost like
they’re down the hall from each other.
Content providers strive to provide the best experience to the
end-user. This means speed, resolution and easy access to on-demand
content. As content gets bigger, bulkier and part of larger conglomerate
of in-demand content, there is often a sacrifice in load times, the
amount of content that can be displayed at once and even the
availability of content from time to time.
Last week, Telefónica Spain joined forces with Juniper Networks,
yet again, to combat the disruptions we often face in content
consumption across several channels and platforms. This partnership aims
to rollout a new solution in support of enhanced delivery of rich
content and cloud-servicing.
Telefónica, service provider to over 329M customers around the world,
teams up with Juniper Networks in transforming the current Fusíon
Network infrastructure to provide better services to clients through
television, high speed Internet and mobile services from a single IP
network. The companies aim to better serve enterprises, providing rich
cloud services, as well.
One focus of interest is providing better interconnectivity to
content providers, content delivery networks and data centers, who rely
on such systems to work seamlessly and without interruption. There is
nothing worse than losing quality in content during consumption –
unless, of course, you are interacting with a customer and trying to
provide them with an enhanced customer experience, while showing them
why they need your brand. Solid service translates to reliability for a
Telefónica will provide better service to their enterprise clientele,
who are able to provide service to their customers in confidence.
“Our customers expect a fast, always-on, secure experience, as they
connect to cloud-based business services, access bandwidth-hungry TV,
video and music content for download and streaming, or use social media
sites,” states Joaquin Mata, CTO of Telefónica Spain. “Development of a
superfast core that can match Fusión Network’s service edge network with
scale, reliability and minimal latency, is the next step. Juniper
Networks is a valued partner to Telefónica as we drive Spain’s digital
The two teamed up Last September for a next generation multi-terabit
IP/MPLS solution for metro services delivery through the new MX Series
3D Universal Edge Routers, covering the entire Fusíon Network. These
routers have provided high performance, scalability and intelligent SDN
control. The quality of ingoing and outgoing traffic is enhanced through
routing capacity and connectivity in all Internet Exchange locations.
The new addition to the MX series, MX2020, is an industrial-level
router, providing clients with over 32Tbps of capacity, feeding millions
of consumers at once. With secure and fully redundant architecture,
this solution is set to rollout in 2019 and will be automated through
Juniper’s proprietary Junos OS system. The network, itself, is highly
The entire MX Series scales up to 80Tbps of system capacity,
utilizing the same Junos operating system and powered with a
programmable Junos chipset. The newly evolved networks will not change
the way television is viewed or how content is consumed, however it will
unlock the doors that will, through better connectivity, reliability
and complex functionality. Data will be more secure. And, Telefónica
will continue transforming content delivery through their highly
Gotham Technology Group is known for its dedication to the build and
performance of agile and innovative mobile infrastructure solutions for
a, primarily, Fortune 500 customer base. Most recently, they teamed up
with Pivot3 to announce a partnership that will optimize the mobile workforce
as we know it. Pivot3 provides a dynamic, scalable and hyper-converged
solution to software-defined data centers, eliminating big bulky
equipment and improving the cost of operations to client businesses
within various industries.
Together, the partnership aims to create enhancements to existing
tech infrastructures and storage solutions. In some cases, existing
infrastructures will be replaced altogether.
Leveraging the power of flash, HCI and hybrid-cloud technologies,
mutual customers will now be ale to apply the best infrastructure
solution to each project in their ongoing workload. They will not only
be able to mark each solution project with priority, but through this
partnership, they will additionally have the capability to provide
solutions directly within their application architecture and in
conducting business services.
Optimizing infrastructures to become software-centric, costs are
automatically lowered within the operating space. They are also made
more productive through speed and organization. Because Gotham is
dedicated to providing security within data, application delivery and
mobile platform solutions, this partnership really comes as no surprise.
Partnering with outside vendors is actually nothing new to Gotham;
its reseller network is continually expanding. Partnering with Pivot3,
however, Gotham not only has access to their fully patented solutions,
but they are also authorized to sell, service and support those same
solutions. The mobile workforce becomes more efficient and more
productive through virtualization and application development – both of
with Gotham has demonstrated a high level of expertise within.
“Hyper-convergence is the next wave in the virtualization of the IT
landscape and Pivot3’s unique architecture enables this transformation,”
states Ken Phelan, CTO of Gotham Technology Group. This exclusivity
will allow Gotham to be at the forefront of that wave.
Pivot3 allows stronger defense in protecting data, while allowing
complex functions to take place very in a very simple interface. Big
data, for example is collected within the system, saving weeks on end in
just the planning and configuration of data collection processes.
Even while collecting so much data, in addition to storing it,
software-solutions ensure efficiency in accelerated back up and
recovery. Together, these processes save IT departments precious time
that would be better spent focused on delivery, rather than setup.
In the case of a remote and mobile workforce, the ability to control
infrastructure from a central location eliminates so many problems that
businesses currently face.
Cloud technologies have opened the door for so much, but so often
incompatible devices and connections interfere with certain elements in
the system. Allowing an actual center to control this technology and
make changes, virtually, businesses are finding better unification and
stability in infrastructure, such as what Pivot3 offers. With Gotham’s
added services, customization of infrastructure and application builds
will be a force to be reckoned with.
We are consumers. Whether for work or play, we know exactly where to go to get the content we need to get the job done. We create. We embrace. We indulge. We share. So, is it really that hard to believe the 2016-2020 Global Mobile Content Management report forecasted a 21.8 percent CAGR growth in mobile content management, driven by mobile accessibility? By swiping screen to screen, we are leading rapid trends in the corporate world and forcing the mobile workforce to stay productive.
Flexibility in our schedules, cloud computing and a millennial
workforce has proven a great mix for the corporate realm. Not only does
it allow businesses to stay open past business hours, but it allows for a
more productive organization. Better communication is cultivated and
collaboration is easier to manage thanks to mobile solutions.
Because we can access our desks from the beach, we tend to be more
proactive in getting work done. We no longer have to wait until 9 a.m.
or rush around to make a 6 p.m. deadline. Furthermore, we no longer have
to call in a favor just to have someone meet us at the office and let
us in because we forgot something.
Thanks to integrated solutions that allow us to connect our work
stations to our mobile devices, our documents are not only accessible at
all hours of the night, but they are also safe and secure – shareable
with only those that we allow to see them. There’s very little printing
and scanning going on these days. Budgets are no longer sacrificed for
unnecessary printing and shipping costs. Documents are quickly deleted,
limiting the need to shred and discard once they are done for. These are
actually the key drivers within the market.
By the end of 2020, ReportsnReports has predicted that cloud-based
content management segments will become the largest segment in the
market by the end of 2020.
Healthcare technologies, one of the fastest growing industries in
today’s mobile IT revolution, have almost all implemented some form of
cloud-based technology. Also, the world of marketing is not just
utilizing the cloud for standard business operations, but they are also
optimizing the cloud for platform delivery of content deliverables. This
is especially true as adblocking continues to evolve.
Native and Content Marketing are quickly becoming the way of the world.
Originally making noise last May, Facebook (News – Alert)
strategically hit the “book” with a solutions that would allow
publishers to implement their new and existing news content directly
into a Facebook app without the need to visit another browser, ensuring
speed and performance. The current version of Instant Article is only
available on iOS, and content is limited. In April, this will all
Because content management will become more social, and publishers
are set to receive revenue from traffic on the site, the presented 21.8
percent growth prediction for mobile content management may actual find
itself far exceeded.
From a conservative space, this number makes sense. But, the question
should be how much more will this number be exceeded by. The power of
social is often underestimated. And, once Instant Pages are unleashed,
we will see LinkedIn’s Pulse (News – Alert) step their own game up even further.
In fact, large enterprise firms are teaming up with smaller
organizations and forging partnerships that will ensure better content
creation and more impact in content management solutions. Will this mean
potential competition for Instant Article or Pulse? Will these
platforms employ partnerships to keep consumers hooked in to their
content and content delivery tools?
With newly adopted entry into the mobile and cloud arena, traditional
industries are now also joining forces with technology to meet the
consumer where the consumer spends a majority of their personal time.
This is also not factoring in the European countries, who have faced barrier issues with lack of mobile connectivity
that are now skipping 4G capabilities altogether and going straight for
5G. This adoption rate will continue to increases drastically.
High-definition (HD) content marketing will also drive innovation and demand for content management solutions.
Timeliness is key in content generation. Thanks to mobile
capabilities and with rapid adoption of content management solutions,
documents are quickly and immediately dispersed in mass. Reports are
generated instantaneously based on personalized information. And, the
workforce is now optimized.
The new Mitel Mobile Cloud Suite is empowering stronger communication and more productive collaboration amongst enterprise businesses, project teams and small firms. In fact, the suite allows Tier 2 and Tier 3 mobile carriers to provide more effective, rapid and cost-efficient hosting to VoLTE, ViLTE and VoWiFi technologies, in addition to advanced messaging services.
The Multi-ID, for example, allows users to easily attach all contact
numbers and means of communication to be streamlined into a single
device. Users are able to open a native application on any mobile device
to make calls, listen to voicemail, send and receive text messages.
Evolving to meet the ongoing needs of today’s Executive and Project Lead,
Mitel has established the Embedded Communications solution, the first
product to emerge from the Mitel Accelerator, allowing businesses to
integrate voice, video and messaging directly into mobile business SaaS
applications. This streamlines mobile communications by allowing team
members to stay in one app, as opposed to many, while communicating and
collaborating in real-time without delaying, missing or overlooking very
The Embedded Communications tool was created to enhance the
FieldAware experience, already adopted by many field service
organizations around the world for field-service scheduling.
Other tools include the Mi-Team portfolio solution that allows
collaboration between a team with the mobile-first mindset. This
solution includes real-time voice and video meeting, in addition to
mobile whiteboarding and integrations of business applications. This
method of communication claims to drop the average need for e-mail
engagement by 40 percent. This could mean a great deal for enterprise
businesses that connect thousands of employees at once. Virtual
conference rooms allow for topic-based discussion, corporate meeting
space and project-centered meetings.
Within the Mi-Team solution, team members will also be able to
approve and sign documents, voice tag archived meetings and integrate
file sharing from external cloud storage. Integrating project management
workflow into the Mi-Team solution, Mitel allows users to assign tasks
within virtual rooms, screenshare and schedule future meetings.
Finally, the Mitel Mobile Cloud Suite presents the mobile workforce
with a solution that expands new cloud services and enables productivity
within business itself, arming both enterprises and small businesses
with enterprise-level tools and resource to expand business initiatives
and streamline daily tasks. This solution is called the Mitel Global
Cloud Expansion. It’s what brings all solutions full circle and helps
Mitel to reach its strategic vision.
Every two years, the FTC (News – Alert) is required to report to Congress on the use of a National Do Not Call Registry. This includes complaints and utilization by both businesses and consumers. Gauging how well companies are adhering to guidelines and finding loopholes surrounding current laws, Congress will have a better understanding on which laws are working and which need to be amended in eliminating telephone spam and fraud.
The checks and balances system aims at bringing the average American a
little more peace of mind at the start of their work day and when
sitting at the dinner table.
Based on reports covering the last two years, as submitted on December 31, the lawmakers on Capitol Hill have given the thumbs up, as the FTC has demonstrated satisfactory efforts in enforcing telemarketing rules within the business world. Many of us may disagree, especially if we are continuously hounded by those companies texting and calling us at all hours of the night, telling us to “stop what you’re doing…” and trying to get us to spend more on student loan forgiveness programs than we would be going directly to Navient (formerly Sallie Mae) ourselves.
In contrast to those pirates that seem to break all the rules when it
comes to telemarketing etiquette and compliance, the FTC has been
taking a strong stance against illegal telemarketing practices and
undertaking initiatives to combat technologies that allow these
lawbreakers to hide their true identity. Robocalling has been a huge
priority to the FTC in the most recent of years. The Federal
Communications Commission has also adopted this concern as a major
priority for enforcing ethical business practices in telecommunication.
Every five years, consumers and businesses must relist their most
recent number into the registry database in adding protection to their
“Do Not Call” requests. Within this time, callers won’t necessarily
stop, but efforts to keep them from calling will keep them at bay.
Because everyone does not play fairly, the FTC and FCC (News – Alert)
are consistently trying to combat offenders, while allowing
telecommunications companies to operate within the boundaries of the
Timothy P. Tobin, a partner at law firm Hogan Lovells recently disclosed affirmations to DataGuidance, stating, “The real problem is where either the FTC or FCC, or private plaintiffs under the TCPA, go after legitimate businesses who are making good-faith efforts to comply with the law. For example, the FCC has made a total mess of the TCPA restriction on auto-dialed calls to cell phones with an overboard interpretation of what constitutes an autodialer and with unduly rigid consent requirements. This has had the effect of being extremely burdensome on many legitimate businesses, putting them at risk of multi-million dollar judgments and settlements for many types of calls and text messages that should not be restricted.”
Within each five year period, the FCC admits that they do scan phone
numbers in prompting updated databases, ensuring newly listed numbers
are adapted per request – and releasing those numbers that no longer
belong to registered users. While it is easier having new numbers
listed, because users tend to enforce this on their own, very few people
are returning to the registry to remove their number once it is no
longer theirs … prompting the five-year rule. After five years, numbers
are automatically released from the registry.
Whether or not an uptick in unethical and illegal telecommunications
practices subside, consumers are becoming more weary of answering
telephones that are LAN line-based – if they even have one anymore.
Consumers are also becoming weary of numbers that are not familiar and
more hesitant to provide information on the Web that involves telephone
number collection. This is one loophole that telemarketers have found in
breaking the registry laws.
According to an undisclosed law firm, some of these numbers are hard to trace. And while many of them are able to be sued for upwards of $1500 a call, it may not be enforceable if you have filled out a form online and included your number for contact. Because filling in your number with a verified phone number is becoming increasingly required in submitting long, drawn-out forms. We are finding that even requesting a quote for a specific insurance company will return calls from multiple insurance companies that we have not permitted to solicit our phones.
Our data is being sold and the law is permitting it, because these unethical companies are asking our permission and requiring you to give up your rights to privacy in receiving information. While the FTC and FCC are doing a “good job” in enforcing the laws, the battle continues with these unethical companies. With new practices and the required two-year report, decision-makers in Congress will be able to find ways to continue helping our fight to enjoy dinner just one more day in peace.
Every so many
months, we see the release of the “newest, best phone on the market.”
The only problem is that they are almost never better than the most
popular phone on the market and they will cost some outrageous prices,
additionally locking you into a 2-year contract with a major carrier.
Elliptic Labs is setting out to change the mobile marketplace with their new BEAUTY Ultrasound Proximity Software.
Not only does this software aim to replace extra sensitive
hardware-based sensors, but it will do so while causing the price of
smartphone manufacture tot drop significantly. This would cause the
pricing model of smartphones to change exponentially and marketplace
competition to really get dirty.
An added value of this BEAUTY software is that it will also cause
mobile devices to be much sleeker than they are at this point and allow
manufacturers to add additional features to the internal guts of each
Many of our smartphones today include smart motion and motion gesture
technologies. In fact, many of our devices – period – include this
technology. This is a very similar to what the BEAUTY software actually
One problem with most motion gesture technologies, however, is that
so very often, they will drain our batteries very quickly and rarely
capture motion at 180 degrees. What makes it worse is that actual
proximity is in continuous need of calibration. And, when they go
haywire, sometimes your phone finds itself “butt dialing” every body you
haven’t spoke to for the last five years.
In fact, hardware-based sensors have been designed to turn off touch
functionality when a user holds a device to their ear to speak on the
phone. But, very often this actually becomes more sensitive, allowing
our “fat faces” (cheeks and ears) to attempt three-way calls and pull up
apps that we rarely use. With so many apps allowing in-app calling,
themselves, there’s no telling the damage that can be done with a
hardware sensor that isn’t working properly.
With more accurate touchless gesturing, Elliptic has been working to
create alternative methods for user navigation and how users access
their content. Beaming in high-resolution and across several platforms,
the BEAUTY product users operates under low power and is able to be
integrated into anything from PCs to televisions to the latest
Focused not just on how the software operates, Elliptic also focuses
on how this software makes an end product look. This ultrasound software
eliminates the multiple sensors we have toted on our smartphones since
inception, which means that our smartphones will not only be more
attractive, but they will also be able to withstand more torture.
Those finding themselves constantly replacing that glass face on
their smartphones will find that their sensors won’t take so badly to
Elliptic’s software uses the earpiece and microphone from the
smartphone to decide proximity based on sound, in addition to a plethora
of other motion triggers and detection. This means that software
sensors are non-dependent of light and won’t rely on lighting to work.
One source speaks about this software’s ability to pick up notes
made via paper and pen nearby the device. This almost tells us that
this software will be able to sense 360 motion around the device. This
is going to be interesting.
Optical sensor has been known to fail on devices, causing expensive
smartphones to require repair. They are also unreliable in the cold or
on rainy days. Much similar to the duraTOUCH technology
in many of today’s top devices, Elliptic’s BEAUTY was also created to
withstand certain weather conditions. Although one is all for touch, and
the other is eliminating it, it would be interesting to see what the
two companies could create in collaboration with one another.
Looking forward to adoption by many OEM manufacturers in 2016, we
just may find ourselves holding a much more BEAUTY-ful device in the
near future. Whether smartphones drop their price or not is something
still to be said. Until then, we have something to be hopeful for.
As businesses adopt newer technologies and are able to increase
quality and productivity they are learning that, just like in
traditional business models, the customer experience is everything. We
now have a host of new innovations making our day just a little bit
better. Think of how far AI and mobile has come in just the last five
years – and little over a year ago, there were a lot of people still confused over what IoT actually was.
According to the Interactive Intelligence (News – Alert)
Group, Inc. There are five trends that we need to look out for in 2016.
This cloud services group, diligently works to improve customer
engagement, communications and collaboration for its many global
clientele. They have done their research, and we’re here to give you the
“It’s clear that companies are making customer interaction
experiences a priority, and the trends we’ve identified will be critical
if businesses want to stay competitive,” said Dr. Donald E. Brown,
Interactive Intelligence founder and CEO. “Of note is that all these
trends rely heavily on the cloud, analytics and big data. These now form
the underpinnings of nearly all things customer experience-related and
will continue to be key components of any successful customer engagement
Customer-Centricity Breaks the Ice and Creates Unity
Focused on an optimized customer experience, there is no one
department instrumental in the success of customer relations. In fact,
everyone — from the contact center to the external stakeholder — is to
be held accountable for the experience and satisfaction of each
customer, individually. Customers need to find ease in using a product,
and if they can’t they need to be able to find someone, who can explain
it to them.
How customers interact with the brand is extremely important.
Whichever method they choose for interaction will stand as the
mouthpiece for that brand. For this, digital workstreams powered by
integrated user engagement, communications and collaboration – most
communications platforms will also be powered by cloud technologies.
This will encourage better cross-department and multidisciplinary
communications – both inside the workplace and externally. Everyone will
be brought up to speed at once; and everyone can gauge needs for
improvement – immediately.
IoT will Continue to Expand the Omnichannel Experience
One-third of companies are reporting to use IoT within their 2016
operations planning. Using always-connected wireless technologies has
brought a ton of efficiency to the workforce. But, in 2016,
organizations are using them as an additional means to interact with
customers, internal groups and partners.
Companies are using this technology, as coexisting with
locational-based prompts. Many of these prompts will direct customers to
one-on-one interaction with a live person, social media, documentation
and exclusive offers. The customer will continue to the forefront of
office place efficiency and continue to improve the customer experience
We Will See Artificial Intelligence Like Never Before
As every day objects begin to take life, we are literally seeing
teddy bear’s learning our every move and having full-blown conversations
with a non-existent person. But, how can this help the customer
experience? As machine learning hits its prime, advanced speech
analytics are able to trigger alerts and specific messaging. Companies
can further identify patterns and predict customer behavior.
Engaging with machines directly, the customer will experience better
self service options than in the past, as AI can intelligently identify a
customer’s need and break down methods of utilization, repair or
expansion. Algorithms are leading AI to understand not just what a
customer is saying – but also what they are not saying. In cases where
after-hours leave no customer service agent available and where customer
service agents are unnecessary, AI is becoming increasingly prominent.
Many times, customers do not know the difference.
Sophisticated Do-It-Yourself Customer Service Empowers Customers
While this goes hand in hand with all other methods, “do-it-yourself “
customer service is becoming more convenient, timesaving and preferred,
especially amongst the tech savvy millennial crowd. Brands are also
learning that providing DIY methods saves the company on staffing costs
and keeping wait times down in the contact or call centers… also
benefiting traditional customer service methods in keeping customers
satisfied, who do not want to be on hold for longer than average periods
of time. Customers are empowered when they feel good about their ability to use your product effectively and save time and money on repairs.
Brand loyalty and niche networks are actually being built upon DIY
platforms, this would obviously attract more finance to the company, as
well. Web, mobile and SMS platforms are excellent ways to reach
millennials, as they regularly search for content based on their direct
needs. Not only will this be a larger trend in 2016, but it will also be
a great tactic for many companies, who are including it into their
overall marketing plan.
Every “Take-Out” Ready Through Mobile
With the traditional business structure broken and many more
professionals are entering the work-from-home revolution, remote access
to company infrastructures is proving more beneficial to the business
structure than previous methods. Millennials, leading this movement, are always on the go. They want to spend more time traveling and with family.
Mobile technologies have allowed a complete office space to travel
with us; cloud technologies allow us to access the office.
Collaboration, communication and productivity, are again, improving.
Mobile apps are going to be more mandatory in the past. Not having an
app for your business may actually leave your organization in the dust.
Allowing customers to interact with the brand, especially live, is
extremely beneficial to every organization, which instituted into their
2016 operations action plan. In fact, conference calling, white boards, tech support and other forms of customer and client interactions are at the forefront of 2016 and one of the most integrated technologies of the year.
In wrapping up the list, improving customer engagement and
experiences should absolutely be at the forefront of concern this year.
Restructuring the face of your customer service methods can be life or
death for many companies. Interactive Intelligence holds a weekly live webinar
that can help your organization gauge your current customer service
methods, as well as show you how to integrate these growing customer
engagement trends into your own business plan. Find out how to attend by visiting this page.