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Anywhere365 Inspiration

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Get close to your Customer!

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Studies show that people use their smartphone 221 times per day and that’s why probably a lot of organizations are providing personal apps to their customers. My insurance company has one in which I can view all my insurance policies. It is a convenient way to find the details of my policies. But if I have additional questions or if I can’t find the information I was looking for I have to dial a telephone number and probably explain who I am and about which policy I have a question.

Like most people, my main communication device is my smartphone. I prefer to start these types of inquiries with a chat, particularly when I’m not yet inclined to give them a call.

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a chat option in the insurance app itself, that would be automatically routed to an agent in the insurance company who had the right skills and information to answer my quick question?

And wouldn’t it be even greater if I would be able to escalate the chat to a voice or even a video call, straight from the app itself? This will give me the opportunity to speak to the agent if necessary. Let’s say that my car is damaged and after the chat I want to show the damages to the agent via video. Seamlessly adding these additional channels to a chat will improve my customer satisfaction.

And Anywhere365 does just that!

Anywhere365 is a dialogue management platform and routes dialogues in a smart, dynamic way to the right agent providing the right data in his/her Skype for Business client. We do this for a wide variety of modalities, such as PSTN calls, webchats, social media etc.

Our latest product that has been added to our portfolio is a brand new version of the Anywhere365 GridChat app. GridChat offers chat, audio and video communication with Skype for Business (skill) groups or users. These elements can be embedded in your existing apps or the full app can be white-labeled.

 

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I am sure you not only want to offer information in your app but also want to enable your customer to communicate with the correct skilled users in your organization directly, eliminating unnecessary dialogues. Get closer to your customer and think of scenarios where you can nudge your customer to engage with you in the most efficient way possible.

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Anywhere365 receives nominations for Best UC & Contact Center project 2016

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The fasted way to win an award is to deploy an Anywhere365 platform. It seems like it anyway. We are extremely proud that 3 of our partners are nominated for ‘Best UC project’ and ‘Best Contact Center project’ at the Dutch Telecom Inspirience Awards.

The goal of the Telecom Inspirience Awards is to recognize the best cases of business partners in the market. The nominated cases also serve as inspiration to other partners in the business channel. The customer cases are reviewed by a wide independent jury of experts.

Nominated Anywhere365 cases:

Customer:        NIBC

  • Branche:          Finance
  • Partner:            Vodafone
  • Business case:   Insouring of contactcenter, adding multi channel and CRM based routing

 Customer:        Corendon

  • Branche:          Airline & Holiday
  • Partner:            Ask Roger!
  • Business case:   Contact center replacement adding mobile chat, voice, video and co-browsing

 Customer:        Timeos

  • Branche:          Pension Implementation
  • Partner:            WinVision
  • Business case:   Bringing omni channel UC to the workspace.

3 of 3 entries were awarded with a nomination. Our partners have deployed more great projects past year. We are wondering what would have happened if more Anywhere365 projects would have entered the competition.

Best of luck for Vodafone, Ask Roger! and WinVision in the Award show on November 16th.

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Anywhere365 Inspiration

Microsoft HoloLens with Skype inspires to innovate

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At Workstreampeople I have been researching the capabilities of Microsoft’s augmented reality device, the HoloLens. Since Workstreampeople is in the Dialogue Management business – e.g. in remote support scenario’s – I am primarily looking for innovation opportunities around Skype and custom apps on HoloLens. Working with this amazing device certainly has inspired us; here are some of the things I learned:

What Skype on HoloLens is all about… for real

The core scenario targeted by the Skype client on HoloLens starts whenever you say something like: “show me how…” or “can you look at this…”.

Here is a recent real-world example, where an elevator service technician from thyssenkrupp asks a remote expert to do a safety double-check:

The work thyssenkrupp is doing with HoloLens centers on the use of Skype. With Skype on HoloLens, technicians can be hands free while on the job, even when making remote calls to subject-matter experts and sharing holographic instructions between users. This enables more flexibility while also complying with safety regulations. In initial trials, use of HoloLens has reduced the average length of thyssenkrupp’s service calls by 4X. Those are impressive results indeed; this case is an indication for the potential value and market size for this type of AR collaboration.

HoloLens plugin for the Windows Skype client

If you use the Skype client for Windows when you connect to a HoloLens skype client, you are asked if you want to download the HoloLens plugin for Skype. Once the plugin is installed, you get an Edit Scene button overlaid on the video (which shows what the HoloLens user is seeing):

Clicking this button will freeze the video and give you a dial of controls, which allow you to place arrows, draw freehand and place pictures; all as holograms. When you are done, you click Stop Editing and the video unfreezes. The HoloLens user can also add holograms and you both see all holograms, but you can only change your own holograms:

As always in the HoloLens, all holograms stay rock-solid rooted to their exact location in the real world; if you like, you can fill up your entire environment. Here a I walked up close to some holograms I added from the Windows client:

You can also share your desktop or a window from the Windows Skype client, and it appears in the HoloLens:

The remote desktop view is fairly live but of limited dimensions and resolution (for the keen observer, there is currently a bug that flips the remote screen horizontally).

Using Mobile Skype clients

While the Windows Skype client offers the most functionality, the HoloLens Skype client works fine for video calls with the mobile Skype clients. Here I am calling myself on the Android Skype client from Skype on HoloLens:

The mobile client shows all that you as HoloLens user see including holograms that you add, and you see what the remote mobile device camera sees (the remote expert can select front or back facing camera as needed).

So even when the remote expert that you as a HoloLens user need help from is on the move, he or she can still assist you – although without creating holograms in your world.

Potential

Technically, the HoloLens is a first device on the Windows Holographic platform, which Microsoft recently opened up to partners to allow AR devices of multiple brands to collaborate in the same augmented (mixed) realities. Windows Holographic which will also be available on all mainstream Windows 10 PC’s next year.

The HoloLens today can run normal Universal Windows Platform apps in 2D windows. I could run a Xamarin Forms sample app that targets Android, iOS and UWP mobile devices just fine on the HoloLens:

So developing for the HoloLens can start really simple, with existing, proven (cross-platform) technologies which require no new skills.

In addition to this, VR is about to go mainstream in the mobile world: on October 4 Google announced the Pixel phones and the $79 Daydream View headset that support the standard Android VR platform, Daydream. Once VR goes mainstream in the consumer space, it is a small step to AR in the business space. A first step could be adding support for mixing the real world into the virtual world via the phone camera (as is currently done by the HTC Vive).

Functionally, the current HoloLens device and Skype app already enable valuable scenario’s, as the thyssenkrupp case demonstrates. But however great the communication tools are, if you can’t get the right person to assist you, no value will be realized. This is where a good dialogue management solution can help; to get you the right expert in your moment of need. More on that some other time J

All in all, AR is all set up to grow tremendously really soon. These are interesting times.

(this post was also published on VincentH.NET)

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Anywhere365 New Features

Anywhere365 integrates with Servicenow as a technology partner

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Anywhere365 has qualified as a technology partner of service management solutions specialist Servicenow. The technology partnership enables Anywhere365 to build, test and certify apps or deliver certified integrated solutions on the Servicenow platform. WORKSTREAMPEOPLE has build a Servicenow integration for Anywhere365.

 Anywhere365 provides an advanced dialogue management platform for the business enterprise, leveraging the Skype for Business/Lync infrastructure. WORKSTREAMPEOPLE has developed a tight integration with Servicenow for Anywhere365. This integration is bi-directional which means that not only Servicenow data can be showed in de skype for business client but also Servicenow data can be used to influence dialogue routing.

 Anywhere365 handles incoming dialogues (calls, chats, social media, IM, video ect. (you name it, we can handle it)) to the right, skilled agent in the organization and offer the dialogue in the standard Skype for Business/Lync client so the agent can work from one single communication application. Anywhere365 is capable to route incoming dialogues to the last agent the customer spoke to, skipping the IVR. We call this ‘last agent routing. With the integration of Servicenow, Anywhere365 can also route the incoming dialogues based on the data in Servicenow to, for instance, the service desk employee which is actually working on the ticket of contacting customer. The customer bypasses the IVR and directly connects with the agent who knows his case and is working on it. Imagine what this would do for your customer satisfaction!

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But the integration goes even further. Anywhere365 identifies the incoming dialogue based on Servicenow and offers Servicenow data to the agent ín the skype for business client! Presenting name, contact data, open cases and more. Together with Anywhere365’s unique and detailed timeline with detailed insight of the previous dialogues of this customer which is also presented in the Skype for Business client the agent can help the customer in a quick, efficient and effective manner.

It gets better. Anywhere365 is also capable to present the right Servicenow window in the agents skype for business client. The agent can view or edit cases in Servicenow inside the Skype for Business client if desired. It empowers agents by having mission critical customer data at their fingertips to provide top notch customer service, each and every time. Imagine what this would do for your effectiveness and efficiently!

Research and live cases have showed that you can save up to 100 seconds per call!

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The servicenow data is also offered to other agents when a conference is set up and when the dialogue is forwarded to an internal of external, federated, agent. In this way you can offer your servicenow data to a remote and event external agent, making it possible to help your customer better and faster.

 Anywhere365 offers a wealth of reporting and quality monitoring tools. Questionnaires, Chat conversations and call recordings can be accessed via Servicenow if desired.

 5 reasons to integrate Servicenow with Anywhere365  

  1. Higher customer satisfaction
  2. Higher operational effectiveness and efficiently
  3. Present data to external agents
  4. Save up to 100 seconds per call
  5. Enrich your reporting and insights

 The Anywhere365 ServiceNow extension is one of the 30+ connectors that are available off-the-shelf. Contact us or check our website here.

 If you need more information on this topic, don’t hesitate to contact me.

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Anywhere365 Inspiration

Anywhere365 – Go Beyond the Legacy Contact Center: Dialogue Management for the Business Enterprise

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#Anywhere365 – Contact Center and Dialogue Management for Skype4Business and Office 365 Skype named as the top Most Promising Contact Center Solution Providers by USA based ‘CIO Review’. Please read page 22 for full article with the Title – “Go Beyond the Legacy Contact Center: Dialogue Management for the Business Enterprise”.

http://magazine.cioreview.com/magazines/July2016/Contact_Center/

 

Go Beyond the Legacy Contact Center: Dialogue Management for the Business Enterprise

In today’s customer-centric business world, responsiveness and personalization play a key role in customer interactions. Businesses are required to deliver high-quality interactions with a proactive approach to ensure the exchange of dialogues with the customers is–to the point. Though organizations take initiatives to achieve streamlined dialogue management, they are being weighed down by the contact center solutions that are inherently siloed in nature, complex to configure, hard to maintain and based on proprietary software. Lack of intelligence in customer interactions poses an additional challenge. WORKSTREAMPEOPLE is a dialogue management solution provider that brings intelligence into communication for the business enterprise. They offer Anywhere365, an intuitive, intelligent, data-driven unified contact center solution which helps organizations to seamlessly manage dialogues of all modalities between clients, employees, groups, and partners spread across the globe. Built natively for Microsoft Skype for Business, and Lync, Anywhere365 drives dialogue management efficiency. “Anywhere365 can be deployed as a contact center, service desk, global helpdesk, and boss/admin switch,” says Gijs Geurts, CEO and Founder, WORKSTREAMPEOPLE, “Anywhere365 leverages the existing investment in Lync or Skype for Business, to provide near turn-key dialogue management capabilities.”

Anywhere365 provides a configurable communications platform that can be deployed in a matter of hours. According to Geurts, enterprises that use Anywhere365 see a large reduction in unnecessary dialogues, making the business more productive and offering enhanced customer service. The in depth business intelligence provided by Anywhere365 empowers organizations to make informed decisions, gain information on the hidden dialogue patterns, and streamline their business communication. The Data Intelligence feature of Anywhere365 enables real-time reporting, which covers voice calling, chat, web-chat, and email, where it provides instant feedback on call volumes, detects seasonal patterns, and agent and skill sorting capabilities. The company also offers call routing and PBX routing services.

WORKSTREAMPEOPLE leverages a large set of back-end systems, such as Microsoft Dynamics CRM and SalesForce, to help businesses making informed decisions. The Anywhere365 platform recognizes the incoming call as to whether it is a video call, voice call, or web chat and then it quickly zeroes-in on the best candidate–among the available pool of agents– to respond to the call. The platform leverages the available data including that from the back office systems to make quick and accurate decisions. The Lync Federation feature enables organizations using Anywhere365 unified contact center to add agents from outside the organization as additional reinforcement in case of peak demands. “Our licensing structure allows for unlimited agents for a single server license,” says Geurts, “There are no financial limitations to deploying the solution throughout the organization”

Designed to work on-premise, hybrid or cloud, Anywhere365 has features that include Real-time Wallboard, Reception Attendant, Webchat, Grid Chat App, Recording, Compliancy Routing and many more.

Catering to over 300 clients on all continents, clients such as Philip Morris International, UCB Pharmaceutical and London School of Business rely on Anywhere365 as their mission critical dialogue management platform. For Swarovski, Anywhere365 allowed the Austria-based luxury product manufacturer to deal with the complexities in managing a variety of global contact center and helpdesk solutions. Having a presence in 180 countries meant that the communication and collaboration setup needed to be seamless. The company implemented Anywhere365 on its already existing Skype for Business infrastructure, which significantly reduced the amount of cost and streamlined operations.

“Our goal is to become the product of choice for dialogue management based on Skype for Business,” asserts Geurts. With its umbrella approach in ensuring a seamless global dialogue platform, the company breaks the down the silos of legacy contact centers as it tightly knits the global audience to collaborate better using the robust infrastructure of Skype.

 

Company: WORKSTREAMPEOPLE Product: Anywhere365

Website: www.workstreampeople.com

Headquarter: Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Regional offices in Brussels, London and Seattle.

Management: Gijs Geurts, CEO and Founder

Description: A provider of unified contact center solution built on Microsoft Skype for Business, and Lync

Quote: “Anywhere365 can be deployed as a contact center, service desk, global helpdesk, reception attendant, leveraging the existing investment in Skype for Business”

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A closer relationship with clients within four months

nibc

 

Is outsourcing customer contact good enough these days? A while back, NIBC Direct decided that the answer is “No.” In the face of the rise of multi-channel services in the savings and mortgages sector, the financial service provider wanted to minimise the distance to its clients in order to be able to respond to changes rapidly and keep the customer experience under control. As the end of the outsourcing contract was approaching, NIBC opted for managed insourcing of its customer contact centre. Drastic measures and the right course of action allowed the bank to design, set up and begin operating a new customer contact centre in just four months.

For years, the financial service provider had been outsourcing its customer contact centre to an external party. The lack of direct contact and management led the organisation to feel a lack of control in terms of speed, customer-friendliness, clarity and service quality. On the floor and among NIBC’s management, the desire for in-house management of customer contact was growing. The fact that the outsourcing contract was ending proved to be the turning point. For two months, the bank – assisted by an external contact centre adviser – considered its options. Eventually, managed insourcing became the solution of choice: the customer contact centre is physically located in NIBC’s office building, while an external party is responsible for staffing and management.

New design

This decision meant that the new centre had to be fully operational in just four months. There was a lot of work to be done. Gerben Jonkman, who has worked at NIBC in various positions on the cutting edge of operations and commerce since 2002, reflects on the process: “Being a financial institution, we could not afford to have such a project fail. We therefore began by setting up a customer contact centre that offered the same functionalities as the old one. However, by making use of modern technology, the new centre is future-proof.” In this case, “modern” means a contact centre based on Anywhere365 for Skype Business and Lync, while the mid- and front-office bank processes in Service Cloud by Salesforce are fully integrated within the rest of the environment. Besides all incoming contact traffic (telephone, email, mail), it also includes creating and forwarding cases in the back office, executing mutations such as moves, terminating a deposit and all manner of administrative tasks. For the first two years, an external party will handle staffing and management. In time, NIBC hopes to take full control of the contact centre itself.

User stories

For the execution of this project, the bank contacted Jan Heuthorst, principal consultant and partner at Quint Wellington Redwood. He and Jonkman received full support from NIBC’s CEO. In the project’s first phase, the two began by detailing the business processes that were initially only described as “requirements.” With the idea of working with standard plans and SaaS as much as possible, the processes were translated into so-called user stories. These contain brief descriptions of what users do or should do as part of their activities. The user stories are not particularly detailed and intended to fit on a sticky note. “User stories create quick connections to suppliers’ workshops,” Heuthorst explains. “We wanted to work together closely with suppliers and that worked out wonderfully. Before long, we had acquired all technical data for the integration of the systems.” With the help of the user stories, it was decided which functionality should go with which plan. That ultimately led to an architecture – and quickly, too. “No matter what we did or whom we spoke to; speed was everything. At the same time, we strove to do the right things in a smart manner. That typifies the entire project, really.”

 

“Whether it concerns technology or people, we can now switch rapidly”

 

Future-proof

NIBC’s new customer contact centre became operational on the scheduled date in early August of 2015. Nine months later, there have been no problems and objectives have been achieved. Jonkman is therefore very content with the chosen solution of managed insourcing and what it has offered the organisation so far. “One thing we have discovered already is that we have much more control because of the high quality of our contact centre employees, the short lines and the high degree of insight into whatever is going on. Whether it concerns technology or people, we can switch rapidly. That is wonderful for us.” At the same time, NIBC’s consumer market manager adds on a critical note, certain components are yet to become ingrained and more experience has to be gained. “This is not yet the Netherlands’ most well-oiled customer contact centre, but I think we are getting there. The basic principles still stand and I fully believe that this approach is paying off. On top of that, the new technology used in our contact centre is far more advanced than what we were using before. That makes us flexible and ready for the future.”

Standing out

The customer contact centre is currently in its optimisation phase. The desired chat function has gone live. The integration of the knowledge centre with the bank’s public website is currently being worked on with the goal of bringing even more knowledge into the game. With the existing implementation of Salesforce Marketing Cloud, the financial service provider wants to create the opportunity to manage several outbound email activities via one system. There are other plans as well, including a 360-degree client overview, marketing analysis, KPI management etcetera. NIBC is convinced that it can stand out on the market in terms of its customer contact. How? By offering immediate clarity at all times: about products, services, the possibilities of buying a new house and so on. “This offers clients a ‘Yes’ moment, even if the ultimate answer is ‘No,’” Jonkman believes. “This approach is reflected everywhere: in our products, our employees, our services, on social media and on our website. By setting up all channels like this, we activate new target audiences and motivate existing clients to achieve their dreams.”

Source: CustomerFirst

https://www.workstreampeople.com/anywhere365-for-lync-skype-cases/NIBC-besluit-tot-managed-insourcing-van-klantcontactcenter

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