| National Association of Call Centers
The fun, informative, and unique newsletter for the call center industry
|Welcome to the June 2017 issue of the NACC In Queue newsletter!
NACC Member Barb Bleiler Reviews NICE Interactions
following review of NICE’s Interactions customer conference is provided
by NACC member Barb Bleiler at the request of the NACC).
from NICE Interactions 2017 Customer Conference. The conference
was held at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas on May 8th, 9th and
10th. The theme for this year’s conference was ‘Re-Inventing
kicked off with a day of pre-conference sessions that were focused
around getting to know what the different applications can do within
the suite of NICE and inContact applications. There were 13
session tracks covering NICE Engage, WFM, inContact Cloud, Quality
Optimization, Nexidia Interaction Analytics and Performance Management,
to name just a few. The full conference kicked off during the
next two days with an abundance of 100 different breakout sessions.
The breakout sessions were aligned in 14 different
verticals/tracks so that you could easily follow your main track of
interest or bounce around. Something that I feel is very
successful is that if you are able to have a couple of people from your
company attend, you can spread the attendance and track coverage.
I like to refer to it as the customized “Spread and
It was my pleasure to once again host the First-Timers reception event,
which is held on Monday night just before the conference kickoff.
This is an invitation-only event where we welcome individuals new
to the NICE membership group and provide them information on resources,
chapters, and what to expect during conference. The NICE User
Group (NUG) Board actively participates in mingling with everyone as
well as sharing recognition of the outstanding performance of our
members. This recognition featured the awarding of this year’s
NUG Star winner, which was presented by last year’s NUG Star winner.
The conference program provided color-coding of the difference
conference tracks, which made it easy for delegates to stay in a
specific vertical section, or to sample a variety of sessions from
different verticals if that was preferable. The session
selections provided a lot of flexibility in terms of choosing
conference sessions to attend.
I had several of my work colleagues attending the conference with me so
we were able to “divide and conquer” in terms of session attendance.
We each took responsibility for attending different conference
tracks, which allowed us to cover a lot of conference ground! We
found it very beneficial to meet and debrief after each day and after
the conference was over so we could talk about lessons learned, work
considerations, and what steps we should take in order to maximize the
benefit of the information that we learned. Here’s a suggestion
for those of you who attend customer conferences by yourself – after
the conference is over, write a report outlining your key learnings and
takeaways to share with your colleagues when you’re back at work.
I was fortunate enough to present at two different conference sessions
this year. I truly enjoy sharing information with peers and find
it particularly gratifying when we all put our heads together and share
information with each other during conference sessions.
Personally, I left NICE Interactions 2017 with a lot of new
friendships, some great ideas, and a commitment to put what I learned
into practice. NICE Interactions was a great opportunity to
explore how we can “reinvent customer service.”
Telemarketing Services Firm Honors Military Spouse
Darla Jorgenson, Accounting Manager, Quality Contact Solutions, email@example.com
following article was submitted by NACC member Quality Contact
Solutions. The NACC is always happy to receive newsletter
contributions from members).
Solutions (QCS) announced the recognition of Karilee Joseph on May 17,
2017 in honor of Military Spouse Appreciation Day. Kari is one of QCS’s
most successful B2B telemarketing representatives. Kari is assigned to one of QCS’s healthcare client conducting outbound and inbound telemarketing services on a daily basis.
Military Spouse Appreciation Day was first observed on May 23, 1984. It
was established as a one-off observance through a proclamation by
President Ronald Reagan. The day was later made into an annual
observance by Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberger. In 1999, the U.S.
Congress declared May as National Military Month to acknowledge the
service of the men and women in the military.
Kari is a dedicated, hardworking B2B telemarketing representative with
QCS’s virtual work-from-home team, QCS At Home. Kari has been employed
with QCS since June 2012. Kari was interviewed to get her perspective
on why the telemarketing work-from-home position works so well for her
and her family.
Darla: Tell me a little about you and your family.
Kari: That’s hard. LOL. We have a 6 year old daughter as well as
our son who just turned 18. My husband and I met in Alaska and have
since lived in Virginia, North Carolina, and now Hawaii. We will likely
be headed back to North Carolina next year. Our favorite thing to do as
a family is to travel and we love exploring each new home we live in.
Darla: What benefits do you feel QCS At Home offers to Military Spouses?
Kari: QCS benefits military spouses by allowing us the ability to
telecommute and carry our job to each new home. This is invaluable as
finding employment every couple years gets very difficult. Also, the
company has always been incredible about understanding that our life is
a little different and that, most times, I’m the only one that can take
care of children’s appointments, etc. and allow me time to do that.
Darla: How has working for QCS At Home impacted your lifestyle as a Military Spouse?
Kari: The impact my employment with QCS has had on our life is
the financial stability of the ongoing second income, again because I
don’t have to find new employment with each move.
What do you feel are the advantages of working for QCS At Home?
Kari: The advantages are the flexibility, an amazing amount of support
from the company, the financial stability of ongoing employment, the
work schedule that allows me to work full time and still be off in time
to be with my kids after school.
Darla: Was it hard to adjust to working for a virtual company?
Kari: While I do enjoy working from home, I also occasionally
miss the social aspect of going into an office with co-workers each day.
Darla: What is your favorite part of working for QCS At Home?
Kari: My favorite part of working for QCS At Home is truly the
people. It’s a really great company to work for. There is never any
doubt that we are appreciated and valued and that’s a very good feeling.
Darla; Any additional thoughts or info you would like to say?
Kari: I would just like to say thank you to QCS for supporting the military community as a whole.
Nathan Teahon, Vice President of Quality Contact Solutions added, “We
could not be more thrilled to have Kari as a member of our team. From
the moment she came on board we knew that she was both a great person
and someone that was going to excel. Not only has she excelled, but she
has thrived, accepting and dominating every new challenge thrown her
way. I also appreciate and respect the fact that Kari has been an
advocate for other Military Spouses, and has referred several others to
the company that have also been excellent additions to our team.”
Quality Contact Solutions has been partnered with the Military Spouse
Employment Partnership (MSEP) since 2012 and 18% of the company’s
front-line customer service representatives and telemarketing
representatives are military spouses working on our outbound marketing and telemarketing services teams
is Accounting Manager for Quality Contact Solutions, a leading B2B
telemarketing organization. As an Accounting Manager, Darla is also
responsible for ensuring all human resource functions are managed for
the organization. Darla’s passion for her team is contagious. She comes
to work every day with a goal of equipping the entire team with the
tools needed for success. Darla can be reached at
firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-656-5136.
Are Human Contact Centers Going The Way Of The Bots?
Boris Chaplin, Product Manager, Calabrio, Boris.Chaplin@calabrio.com
today’s marketplace, we often expect our innovations to come from the
technology sector. This means, when Facebook and Microsoft take a step
to introduce artificial intelligence (AI) into human-reliant
businesses—including contact centers—those of us in the industry can’t
help but pay attention.
intelligence tools in question, commonly referred to as chat bots, have
grown in popularity over the last year and it’s easy to see why. The
chat solutions they provide are considerably more intelligent and
interactive than previous models and an automated conversation can
present a cost-effective solution. Chat bots seem poised to supersede
apps as the customer service AI of choice, but once the bots have
conquered this challenge, are we next?
Understanding the Value of Human Connection
While the growing presence of chat bots introduces a new player to the
marketplace, the importance of human presence in the contact center is
more important than ever. Email and social media channels already aid
contact centers in filtering out the simple questions, but for
customers who need support for a complex problem and for those who are
dissatisfied with their current situation, there is no solution like a
phone call. For contact centers, these are the calls that are simply
too important to be left to an automated chat bot.
Where does the chat bot fit in? Is it destined to be just another
option for skimming the simple questions? Hardly. Current artificial
intelligence has the capability to support our goals more effectively
than that. Plus, as the technology grows, so too will the capability.
However, realizing the power of chat bots and other forms of artificial
intelligence requires recognition of their real role—that of a partner
to call center employees.
Getting the Chat Bots to Chatter for You
Companies across the globe are just starting to realize the wealth of
analytical data their contact centers generate every single day. Proper
use of artificial intelligence can be an essential strategy in
harnessing the value of customer data. Because of machine learning, not
only can chat bots answer simple questions from customers, but also
catalog the data and add structure to the analytics received before
analyzing it for context and patterns.
And this is just the baseline.
As artificial intelligence adapts, the right system will allow it to
continually adjust its analysis parameters to harvest more, smarter
data with each customer interaction. This makes the AI, your call
center team and your company smarter. Now, that’s one innovation
everyone can support.
The NACC Needs Your Help. Got A Few Minutes?
Paul Stockford, Research Director, NACC and Chief Analyst, Saddletree Research, Paul.Stockford@nationalcallcenters.org
It’s time once again for us to launch our annual survey.
Wait! Before you skip this article, at least hear me out.
The National Association of Call Centers (NACC) was established as, and
still operates as, a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit membership organization.
If we’re lucky, we generate enough revenue through advertisers to
keep the lights on and pay our web/newsletter consultants. We
don’t do what we do to make money.
Most of you already know that NACC executive director, David Butler,
PhD, earns his living as vice provost for research and Dean of the
School of Graduate Studies at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU).
I make my living as chief analyst at Saddletree Research, a small
research practice I founded 18 years ago. We conduct research
through the NACC because, well, it’s what we love to do.
The participation of customer service professionals such as you in our
research is critical. The survey we’ve just put together will
provide us a foundation and launch pad for our continuing research for
the rest of the year. The survey will take less than 10 minutes
to complete, but it will mean so much to us if you’ll help us out.
Here’s the survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NACC-2017
Please take a few minutes now, click through to the survey and do your good deed for the day! We’d really appreciate it.
Call Center Comics
If you like this comic and would like to see more, write Ozzie at email@example.com and visit his website at http://callcentercomics.com
or just click on the comic to tak you to his page. The NACC appreciates
Ozzie letting us use some of his comics in our newsletter.
In This Issue...
- NICE Interactions
- Honoring Military Spouses
- Will Bots Replace Human Agents?
- NACC Survey Launch
- Call Center Comics!
Pearls Of Wisdom
“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.."
Reports From NACC
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.
|Did You Know That NACC...
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