The Future of Virtual Contact Centers


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Keynote presentation for the Remote Working Summit on Contact Centers in Dallas, Texas

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  • The title of my presentation is “The Future of Virtual Contact Centers”But I’m going to argue today that the future for contact centers is being driven by several profound trends that is changing the very nature of work itself
  • The way we work and the way contact centers will recruit, employ, motivate and retain agents is being effected by some pretty major trends.They trends (along with Big Data) are what Gartner calls “The Nexus”
  • I don’t need to spend much time convincing you that mobile is having a profound impact. It is not only impacting the kind of support your customers expect – they now increasingly expect things like In-App mobile careIt is impacting how your employees want or rather EXPECT to work
  • Average worker commutes 20-30 miles each wayAruba Networks Survey:- Now, the notion of ‘traditional’ working hours is slipping away. Mobile devices allow us to hopon to Wi-Fi connections and work when we’re not at ‘work’, making flexible working the orderof the day. This is not borne out of laziness however; 45% of respondents say they work mostefficiently before 9am or after 6pm. Introducing flexibility in the working day could help increaseproductivity.-Technology is giving us the choice, and the ability, to work outside of customary remits. As aresult, employers need to consider whether their present regulations are becoming outdated.Particularly as 70% of people prefer flexible working than working 9 to 5 with an early finish onFridays.- The demand for flexible working hours is not simply a nice-to-have, it’s now a top priority.Over half of those surveyed said they’d prefer to work from home or remotely two to threedays a week than receive a 10% higher salary. Therefore, flexibility might be an opportunity forcompanies to create cost-savings, as well as improve productivity.Working out of the office is also on the up. Globally 37% expect an increase of remote working– just 4.5% foresee a decrease. By country, those in South Africa are likely to increase theirremote hours by the most, with almost a quarter (23%) expecting an increase in remote workingof over 25%.For younger #GenMobile, this leaning towards remote working is amplified: 49% of the groupforecast an increase in the time they spend working remotely in 2014.
  • -The shift toward at-home agents and virtual call centers is already taking place-According to the National Association of Call Centers, more than half of the contact centers in the United States today (55 percent) have some percentage of their agent population functioning from a home office. Seventy percent of those currently supporting at-home agents plan on increasing the number in 2013.Sample Five9 customer using at-home agents:NetSuite is the world's leading provider of cloud business management software.• 300 agents in multiple countries—Philippines, Canada, Czech Republic, Hong Kong, Japan—and US states• More than 20,000 inbound/outbound  calls per month - Medical Alert (125 agents working from home)
  • -10 years ago it was all about cost which caused call center ops to go overseas Then the thing called social media happened -  before you could only complain on the phone to an agent who could keep it contained but with social media consumers had another outlet, a way to complain publicly and get others on their side to complain about you too!! and you never got the phone call, and a chance to resolve the issue social media has transformed the call center… that's a fact
  • So If you aren’t doing it, or putting plans in place to offer it – your competitors probably are…
  • Consumers use of social media is driving a need for Better quality – means sourcing agents with the right skilss..Better toolsNew Agents skills
  • The cloud and SaaS services is having a profound impact on the way we work and collaborateEasier to build virtual teamsCloud Contact Center SoftwareCloud Collaboration ToolsCloud CRM toolsThe apps, the infrastructure and the data is all stored in the cloud giving workers (in our case agents and supervisors) more flexibility around how and when they work.
  • More and more companies are turning to the cloudA recent study done by Aberdeen Consulting showed that (other the past 12 months) companies using Cloud CC realized a reduction in complaints 18% while at the same time reducing support costs – while on premise remained pretty much the sameDriving a dramatic move toward the cloud. A recent study by Donna Fluss at DMG showed that CC seats grew by 26% to 340K seats in 2009 and then by 42% in 2010By June of 2011 had 871K seatsPredicts continuing growth of more than 40% per year
  • In terms of share of Contact Center Seats- 2.2% in 20085.9 % in 2011Predict over 18% by 2015
  • I’d like to point you to a great book about virtual work environments. It’s called “The Year Without Pants”. In it the author, Scott Berkun, who was previously a Microsoft program manager, leads a team of developers for WordPress. WordPress (or Autmattic the company behind wordpress) is 100% virtual. (old school guy going to a new school company)All employees virtualAll employees first start by working in customer service (“Happiness Engineers”)They are divided into a series of teams that are completely autonomous. They decide what to build, when to ship.NOT JUST ABOUT DEPLOYING A WORK AT HOME PROGRAM – BUT ABOUT THE VARY NATURE OF WORK ITSELF, how is can offer meaning and value to employees when barriors to success are removed (no beauracray, flat org, easy to make decissions, evaluated and reward based on the results they produceIn another book called “The History of Work”, Richard Donkin describes how the ancient traditions of the Australian Yir-Yoront tribe, fist discovered in 1903 and previously untouched by modern humans had no distinction between work and play. - They do have a word- “woq” that is used to refer to various tasks and chores. But the chores – this “woq” – did not include hunting. Hunting, the most fundamental activity in a hunter-gathering society, was not viewed as work. Wor seemed to be veiwed as something they would rather not be doing. Isn’t this concept – something I would rather not be doing – one of the most recognizable definitions of work for most of us”?All of these are expert as leveraging technology to help them success - First WordPress itself is a SaaS application - Hire by trial - Although the book focuses primarily on software development. It begins by illustrating how “happiness engineers” are made to have a critical and valued role within the organization. - Results for each happiness engineer are posted publically, creating friendly competition and motivation - Use IRC as a communication channel - Use something called a P2 – to share and record discussions - extensive use of Skype and instant message and chat - all employees had great communications skills - CULTURE where employees (e.g. Happiness Engineers” ) can ask for help online and others rush to offer help - performance in technical support is used as a indicator of future success at the company – MONITORING OUTPUT
  • Teddy Liaw: John Stewart:PatrickMckenna:Teddy and Patrick were executive with LiveOps before starting NexRep and deciding to work with us at Five9
  • In 2005 recruits, contracts, and certifies sales agents who work from home.450 NexRep agents (using 115 concurrent Five9 licenses )located in 35+ US states handle hundreds of thousands of calls every week,Based in Portland, Maine, NexRep is a sales-driven call center specializing in direct response marketing forbusinesses, including hair salon chain Drybar, prominent direct retailer Tristar Products (HealthMaster, Flex~AbleHose, Genie Bra), and clothing and household retailer Orchard Brands (Appleseed’s).
  • Five9 makes this happen. The skills-based routing capability of the Five9 platform allows NexRep to identify acaller’s needs based on the telephone number dialed, the caller’s number, or any choices the caller made throughthe Five9-enabled IVR system. Then Five9 automatically routes the call to the NexRep agent whose skills andexperience best match the caller’s needs. “That means better service to our clients,” Liaw says. As a result, NexRepis able to consistently deliver more than 30 percent more revenue per call opportunity than its competitors.
  • According to Liaw, the Five9 cloud contact center solution helps NexRep ramp up customer campaigns with amazingspeed. Recently, NexRep brought on a large new client that was launching eight different sales campaigns. The Five9technical support staff helped NexRep add 50 agents quickly and configure its agent pools, and NexRep went on tohelp the customer quadruple sales revenues in just eight weeks. But that wasn’t the best part.
  • - Skill Groups& Call Routing: are an area of competitive advantage. Also use as an incentive for agents to get more calls by showing that they can disposition those calls with the desired results. Another area in which Five9 excels is configuring agent pools. “The worst thing that can happen is to have agentssit idly,” Liaw says. “If you’re not configured correctly, inefficiencies are exacerbated, and your business can crumble.”Administratoro    The folders on the left are the components to setup your call center.  We'll briefly go through several of them and wrap it up by creating a live inbound and outbound campaign.o    The admin adds users, creates and changes IVR call flows and more.o    Users can be added or removed, you enable permissions and configuration including their skills, whether or not you want to enable call recording.o    Roles are a way to quickly apply a preset list of roles, permissions, skills and more.  Great for larger centers and quick setup.o    Groups allow you to group agents and supervisors together, especially reporting.o    Skills allow you to target calls to users. ·         Skills are applied to agents or vice versa. ·         Agent can have multiple skills and each skill has a level which is the agents proficiency. ·         This can be used to route calls to a specific agent as can round robin, longest wait and more. ·         Finally, you can add voicemail to a skill in the event no agent is available or for after hours.o    Dispositions report on what happened to the call.·         There are standard system dispositions such as answering machine, fax, voicemail.·         There are also custom dispositions which allow agents to report on the outcome of a call.  These include case closed, wrong number, sale made and more.·         An especially powerful feature of dispositions is there ability to drive workflow and subsequent dialing rules.§  For example, a disposition of sale can trigger an email or notification to be sent to a manager.§  A disposition of promise to pay may automatically send all these call recording to a specific location.§  A disposition can also drive when a number is redialed or if its removed from the dialing plan in the case of DNC.o    Lists are used to add phone numbers and details to an outbound campaign. ·         Lists can be manually entered but are most often uploaded from a flat file. ·         Lists can also be created dynamically such as with a web to lead page.·         Lists are added to campaigns where they are filtered by criteria to ensure the best are dialed first or a specific state is dialed first.·         Dialing rules are configured in the Actions/Configuration area to ensure you follow state dialing rules.o    IVR is used to create the call flows, the press 1, 2, 3 to route the call to the correct skill or offer self service. ·         Generally speaking, if you can whiteboard it, you can build it in the very easy to use, visual, drag and drop environment.·         The IVR features play prompts, digit collection and even access to integration points using the query module.§  Drag in weather alert.·         Each module is available for reporting which is why its important to use descriptive names.  §  Show prompts, branches, query and skill transfer module·         The query module allows you to do lookups using 3rd party web service and include the result in  your report, transfer or rules.·         The skill transfer module is where you establish your distribution type, queue time rules, offer estimated wait time and call back feature and more. ·         This is where you create all of the what ifs...what if there is a long hold time, what ifo    Now we're ready to bring it all together with a Campaign.·         Campaigns are where you apply all of the above modules to create an inbound or outbound program.  Each tab features an area to refine how your campaign is built.·         Inbound§  Call recording and if so, where.§  The DNIS or phone numbers which will be pointed at this campaign§  Post call surveys are included.§  The IVR(s) which will be part of this campaign and notice the feature of multiple IVRs to support after hours or holiday rules.§  Prompts for callers on hold, a great place to include brief promotional messaging and even a whisper to alert the agent of a specific campaign to better prepare them.§  Dispositions as we mentioned earlier.§  Connectors.  Being from the CRM world, this is a fantastic feature to easily exchange information with a web based application using an HTTP GET or POST.  Connectors can include multiple variables in addition to the base URL.  The Get and Post takes the connector beyond a basic screen pop to a powerful tool a business user can create.§  Worksheets are tools which allow your agent to follow a path in order to come to a resolution such as troubleshooting: is your cable box on or off, is it blinking blue or red with logical branching.§  Scripts are web pages or HTML that present your agent with information as the call arrives and can capture data as the call progresses which is posted back to the call record.·         Outbound§  Many of the same feature as an inbound campaign but some important aspect when placing outbound calls.·         Dialing options: predictive, preview, progressive and powerPreview Dialer·         Provide agents an opportunity to review a contact's details prior to placing calls to the contact's phone numbers.Predictive Dialer·         An algorithm based on agents, availability, connect rate and more.  This over dials, calls multiple numbers to one agent to boost productivity by automatically calling multiple contacts based on estimated agent availability, filtering out no-party-contacts.Progressive Dialer·         Automatically call individual contacts when an agent becomes available, filtering out no-party-contacts.·         Administrators can select drop call percentage and call analysis (how to address fax and answering machines)Power Dialer·         You define the call/dial ration, including drop call % (3% recommended) .  Increase productivity by simultaneously calling multiple contacts when an agent becomes available, filtering out no-party-contacts.·         Same as progressive, but add the ability to select how many calls should be placed per available agent.·         Lists, which are your lists to dial.  Note, the filtering of these lists was discussed earlier in the list section.
  • Blended: For example, sometimes a consumer calls in or goes to a client’s website and does not complete an order. Usingthe Five9 outbound dialer, NexRep agents call the consumer back—as the consumer’s history of activity appearson the agent’s computer screen—and offer to help. Says Liaw, “Being able to sit on top of a world-class platformlike Five9 has been extremely beneficial.”Agento    Show how agent is in a not ready state and how they change their state based on what they are doing.  You can also report on this like a payroll report.·         Supervisors have a view into what the agent is doing and even created alerts, change colorso    Show how different options on the right are available or ghosted, this is based on permission. o    Go readyo    Place an inbound call or start outbound campaign·         Inbound (888) 989-7445o    Show the screen pop with the limited info.  Show the basic contact manager.o    Script: Talk about how the script came into focus along with information collected in the IVR or from the contact manager.o    Connectors: These are quick and easy ways to communicate with web based applications, anything from a CRM to Google.  Connectors can be manually started or automatically started based on an event...ring, call connected, etc.  Show how the embedded browser searched Google for the caller's company name.  You can even pop different URLs based on call type or variables collected in the IVR.o    Conference allows your agent to conference their call with a queue or specific user, even speed dial.  Agents can see the queue in the General tab to check on availability.  After a conference, the agent dispositions why they did a transfer for reporting purposes. o    Redial - any rep gets the request, it goes back into the dialing plan.  Callback: Agents can also setup times to call someone back.o    IM, chat or request help.o    Logout allows you to determine what your agents are currently doing, plus a great tool for payroll.  DO NOT LOG OUT.
  • Supervisoro    The supervisor view is a real-time dashboard to view agents, campaigns and ACD.o    Supervisors can see all calls in queue, agent state, average call durations and make adjustments to agents and skills in real-time.o    Right click on agent to monitor them in real-time. ·         Monitor, whisper, barge ino    You'll see these colors, they are alerts which supervisors can setup to show colors, alerts or emails.o    Show user performance in bottom left hand corner:·         If he's busy, his occupancy, his utilization·         Drag columns around and compare him to his peers·         Show agent state by double-clickingo    Just the user can, supervisors can send alerts, 1-ways messages (we are slammed, wrap up your calls) or engaged in a 1-1 or many to many chat session
  • Supervisoro    The supervisor view is a real-time dashboard to view agents, campaigns and ACD.o    Supervisors can see all calls in queue, agent state, average call durations and make adjustments to agents and skills in real-time.o    Right click on agent to monitor them in real-time. ·         Monitor, whisper, barge ino    You'll see these colors, they are alerts which supervisors can setup to show colors, alerts or emails.o    Show user performance in bottom left hand corner:·         If he's busy, his occupancy, his utilization·         Drag columns around and compare him to his peers·         Show agent state by double-clickingo    Just the user can, supervisors can send alerts, 1-ways messages (we are slammed, wrap up your calls) or engaged in a 1-1 or many to many chat session
  • Characterized by:Move toward greater flexibly for employees driven by mobile technologies and new philosophy about how to workChanges demands placed on the contact center by social media – the need for better tools, more skilled agentsTrend toward cloud services which give you:Faster deploymentFlexibily (pay as you go and scale on demand)More productive agents and the ability to use at-homeMore control over costs – limit upfront costs and risk
  • The Future of Virtual Contact Centers

    1. 1. Cloud Contact Center Software The Future of Virtual Contact Centers Richard Dumas, Director Product & Solution Marketing, Five9 @RichardDumas, www.
    2. 2. The Future of Virtual Contact Centers
    3. 3. The Future of Work
    4. 4. You’ve seen the trends… #Mobile #Social #Cloud
    5. 5. #Increasingly mobile workforce
    6. 6. Who values the ability to work from home • Family friendly • No Commute • Cost Savings • Flexibility > 10% raise
    7. 7. At-Home Agent Adoption (U.S.) 45.0% At-Home Agents 55.0% No At-Home Agents *National Association of Call Centers
    8. 8. #Impact of social media
    9. 9. Why Social? UAL baggage handlers destroyed Dave Carroll’s $3,500 Taylor guitar Carroll fought UAL for a year trying to get compensation So Dan turned to
    10. 10. Consumers want to use their channel of choice
    11. 11. And would move to a competitor who offers it
    12. 12. Social is driving the need for higher quality and the tools to respond more effectively
    13. 13. #Shift to the cloud
    14. 14. Contact Centers Move to the Cloud 15 *DMG Consulting
    15. 15. Cloud Contact Center Adoption 16
    16. 16. Many businesses use a distributed model New Companies Automattic 37Signals Genuitec GitHub Kalypso LP MCF Technology Solutions ProofHQ Treehouse Copyblogger YouNeedABudget StackExchange MySQL GrantStreet SoftwareMill Mozilla 10up Art & Logic AsmallOrange LullaBot AppendTo UniversalMind Basho Established Companies Aetna Accenture AT&A Cigna Cisco Deloitte FedEx IBM Intel McKesson United Health
    17. 17. While some are bringing employees back to the office
    18. 18. So why are some so successful while others can’t seem to make it work? • • • • • The right people The right motivation The right incentives The right process The right technology
    19. 19. Now I’d like to tell you a story
    20. 20. About a company with… • 100% At-Home Agents • Source the BEST Agents • Amazing Retention • Higher Quality • High Revenue per Call • High Customer Satisfaction
    21. 21. The Men Behind NexRep Founders: Teddy Liaw, John Stewart, Patrick Mckenna Not the real John Stewart
    22. 22. They had a great idea • Build a virtual contact center • Provide inbound & outbound call services • Hire the best talent without geographic limitations • Use agents who are already customers of clients • Control costs by delivering services on-demand
    23. 23. Challenges: • Rapid deployment of services • Scaling based on client demand • Flexibility to pay as contracts are signed • Recruiting, Training, Managing & Retaining Agents • Call routing to skilled, remote agents • Remote supervision
    24. 24. But how to succeed with existing technology? • Upfront hardware/software costs • Slow deployment • Long upgrade cycles • Perpetual licenses • Maintenance costs • Can’t scale on-demand • Pay in advance • Agents tied to physical contact centers
    25. 25. The second great idea! Use the Cloud: • Pay as you go • No capital expense • No hardware or software $$ • Automatic upgrades • Deploy in days or weeks • Scale up or down as needed • Focus on customer experience • No hidden fees • No maintenance • Agents anywhere
    26. 26. NexRep Success According to CEO Teddy Liaw, “With Five9, we have literally been doubling our year-over-year revenue.” NexRep delivers 30+% more revenue per call opportunity than competitors 90% retention rate for agents who stay over 1 month
    27. 27. How did they do it?
    28. 28. 1) NexRep Signs a New Customer
    29. 29. 2) NexRep Recruits At-Home Agents Across US
    30. 30. 3) Five9 Provisions New Agent Seats
    31. 31. 4) NexRep Sets Up Customer Campaigns
    32. 32. 4) NexRep Sets Up Customer Campaigns Add Agents Create Skill Groups Upload Lists Create Call Flows
    33. 33. 4) Agents Login From Home • Place Outbound Calls • Take Inbound Calls • Get Coaching from Supervisors • Disposition Calls • Upsell & Cross Sell
    34. 34. 5) Supervisors Monitor & Coach from Home
    35. 35. NexRep’s Secrets to Success 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Hire qualified, motivated agents Focus on certification and skills Coaching & communication is critical Create clear performance expectations Design proper incentives Record 100% of calls Created a virtual community Choose a solid technical foundation
    36. 36. The Leader in Cloud Contact Center 12 years of cloud contact center experience 500+ employees 1,900+ customers (5 continents) 30,000+ concurrent seats 3bn+ calls per year Annual Revenue
    37. 37. Five9’s Comprehensive Solution Matches every interaction with the appropriate resource 38
    38. 38. Five9 SoCoCare Social Engagement for Customer Care • Filters & prioritizes social posts • Eliminates non-actionable posts from agent queues • Arms agents with tools to enhance productivity & solve problems • Provides advanced social reporting, analytics & KPI capabilities
    39. 39. How Five9 SoCoCare Works 1. NLP – SPAM Elimination 6. Analytics 2. NLP – Sentiment, Cluster, Trending Topic 3. Business Rules 5. Interaction 4. Route to Agent
    40. 40. The Future of Virtual Contact Centers Empowers You To… Hire The Best Boost Retention Reduce Absenteeism Cut Costs Improve Productivity Improve Quality