1 An Analyst White Paper Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite January 2007
2 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite Table of Contents 1 Executive Summary 1 Complementary Forces Driving Change 1 In Communications 2 In Enterprise Applications 2 In Customer Expectations 3 Genesys: Helping Customers Push the Envelope 4 The Contact Center Future Today Through the Eyes of Genesys Users 4 Groupama: Building on Success 6 Global Speech Networks: First Self Service, Then Assisted 8 Financial Services Firm: Out with the Old 9 Best Practices 11 About the Author
3 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 1 of 11 Executive Summary The contact center market, since its inception with the first automatic call distributor thirty years ago, has seen constant change in the technology and applications used to support agents as they in turn serve customers. In the past 15 years or so, many companies leaders in their own markets have chosen Genesys as one of their key vendor partners. As increasing numbers of companies prepare to evolve their existing digital contact center environments to voice over IP technology, Genesys commissioned McGee-Smith Analytics to discuss this transition with some of Genesys customers.this paper offers both a summary of the discussions and a review of the best practices we saw reflected in these contact centers. The key takeaway from these interviews, highlighted in the title of this paper, is that when faced with the inevitable uncertainties inherent in moving to voice over IP, these companies chose to expand their reliance on Genesys.They did it not only by adopting Genesys SIP Server technology, but by expanding the scope of Genesys applications deployed in their centers, specifically routing applications. It speaks not only of their faith in Genesys as a vendor partner but to the coordinated breadth of applications offered by Genesys. Complementary Forces Driving Change In Communications Over the last seven or eight years, the communications market has seen a gradual migration from traditional digital switching platforms to IP-based systems.while there were documented benefits to be gained from extending this technology shift to contact center infrastructure, many were initially hesitant. Concerns centered on IP telephony performance and security. Communications and contact center application companies rose to the challenge, applying the requisite research and development funding to address these issues. McGee-Smith Analytics believes that given the current successes being obtained with the transition to IP PBX technology, the wholesale move to IP contact center technology that has now begun in earnest will proceed more rapidly than the PBX market evolution. The emergence of Session Initiation Protocol (SIP)-based communications applications we believe will contribute to that increased speed of adoption. Most early IP PBX products were based on proprietary versions of IP, such as Cisco s Skinny protocol or Nortel s UNIStim, which meant continued reliance on the manufacturer s hardware and telephones.
4 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 2 of 11 SIP has a number of advantages over the proprietary IP approach. SIP allows for the use of standards-based components, such as media gateways or off-the-shelf SIP phones. More powerful from a contact center perspective is SIP s ability to provide multi-modal communication. One SIP session can contain not just voice but also text, graphics, even video. Imagine a technical support representative demonstrating over video how to remove the keyboard from a laptop instead of trying unsuccessfully to explain it. Imagine a visual menu arriving on your cell phone screen instead of trying to listen and keep track of eight different choices.the possibilities multi-modal communications present in the area of customer service are exciting and SIP is making them possible today. In Enterprise Applications At the same time that the move from digital to IP communications platforms has been occurring a complementary set of forces have been at work driving change in the deployment of enterprise applications.web services and service oriented architectures (SOA) have emerged as the model for future application deployment. Traditionally enterprise applications have essentially been built as silos, each with their own set of data, their own set of rules and processes and their own reporting system. Coordination of multiple applications required complex and expensive enterprise application integration. Typically proprietary adapters needed to be built between any two applications that had a requirement to share information or resources. Through deployment of applications that adhere to web services and SOA principles, enterprises are working to minimize the cost, duplication and inevitable complexity inherent in the existing scheme. Major enterprise application companies such as SAP and Oracle are at the forefront of this change. As they build the next generation of their market-leading products, they are adhering to architectural and design principles that will enable multiple applications to access and reuse IT system resources.these information technology resources will evolve as a collection of system functions or services, hence the name. In Customer Expectations Lastly, customer expectations with respect to customer service continue to swell.we are in an age where Amazon can thoughtfully contact us two weeks before the publication of the latest book by a favorite author.why can t companies we do business with regularly process the same Caller ID information we use to recognize that it s a sister calling?
5 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 3 of 11 The technology to provide personalization for customer transactions has existed for almost ten years now at its simplest the so-called screen pop. Implementation of that capability, as evidenced by our own experiences of repeating account numbers after dutifully typing them on the telephone keypad, is still far from pervasive. One of the reasons for this lack of wide-scale integration of customer data into the processes of the contact center is that, similar to what is required to allow enterprise applications to interoperate; proprietary adapters to PBX systems have continued to be required.these adapters, and the professional services expenses required to build and maintain applications based on them, have kept the cost and complexity of implementing customer-driven systems out of the reach of many companies. The combination of SOA-based IT applications and standards-based SIP communications solutions have the potential to address this market need more effectively than has been possible in the past. McGee-Smith Analytics believes that IT executive management s attention has begun to shift from PBX migration to defining the future architecture for the contact center.we further believe that these technology decisions will in part be fueled by the complementary market shifts described here. Given the importance to contact center operation of enterprise application interoperability, contact center application vendors are being judged not only on their approach to IP but on their ability to meld easily into the evolving SOA world in order to deliver evermore tailored customer service. Genesys: Helping Customers Push the Envelope Anyone who has worked in the contact center market in the past 15 years is familiar with the Genesys suite of applications. Since 1991, when the company shipped its first product, the T- Server, Genesys has become an enduring brand associated with contact center market leadership and innovation. The T-Server product addressed an unmet need of the market at the time: a computer telephony integration (CTI) application designed to operate across the major PBX, ACD and computing platforms. Genesys offered CTI applications for many platforms whose manufacturers did not provide it directly at the time, including such major vendors as AT&T and Nortel. In addition, Genesys allowed companies to combine call center traffic from disparate switches more intelligently than had ever been possible before.
6 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 4 of 11 Over the years, the call center market has moved from centering on the routing of voice calls to include s, instant messaging, web chat and increasingly video. Call centers have moved from primarily handling inbound calls to a mix of inbound and outbound transactions. Contact center management has moved from being happy with simple statistics to demanding the ability to manipulate aggregated contact center and enterprise data in multi-dimensional arrays. Genesys has worked to create solutions that allow its customers to stay on the leading edge of these changes. The Contact Center Future Today Through the Eyes of Genesys Users At the beginning of 2007, Genesys commissioned McGee-Smith Analytics to interview a sample of Genesys customers.the goal was to document how these businesses, in the forefront of their own industries, have re-examined their contact center strategies in light of the transitions occurring in the communications market and IT arena as well as in each firm s vertical industry environment. As will be seen in the stories that follow, each is implementing a major architectural change in their contact center.what will also be clear is that while each story is unique, there is much in common as well. Groupama: Building on Success Groupama Rhone Alpes Auvergne (GRAA), a division of the French insurance conglomerate Groupama, has been a Genesys customer since At that time, system integrator Nextira One worked with GRAA to create a virtual call center to replace a multi-site, multi-system PBX ACD infrastructure.the existing deployment not only drove high equipment maintenance costs at each site of the five call center sites, but incurred correspondingly high staffing costs. Noteworthy in the 2002 project is the fact that GRAA moved from the use of PBX-based call center routing to a total Genesys approach. Historically, many companies initially engaged Genesys and its partners for computer telephony integration functionality.working with Nextira One, GRAA recognized that extending the use of the Genesys suite to include the inbound routing component would allow for the delivery of calls to the best available agent across multiple sites.this benefit, which some vendors are touting today as a reason to move to IP in the contact center, was realized by Groupama in a completely digital environment using Genesys five years ago! In the summer of 2005, GRAA IT and network management were preparing for a new challenge: the need to incorporate 200 additional agents working in eight new locations into
7 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 5 of 11 the existing virtual call center. Given the dynamic nature of GRAA s business, there was every reason to believe that this kind of challenge would not be a one-time event, so the company sought a solution that would allow the call center to absorb any additional ad hoc growth easily. Eventually that would likely include agents working in remote locations, perhaps even at home. At the same time, GRAA wanted to make sure that whatever changes were implemented would have an element of future-proofing. The increasingly smart phones being used by GRAA customers incorporate media types that consumers use to communicate with one another but will increasingly want to use to handle business affairs as well. It is not difficult to imagine an insurance customer wanting to send a picture of a car accident to their carrier from the scene or benefiting from receipt of an SMS message with insurance adjuster appointment details. One choice GRAA decided they did NOT have to make was which vendor to work with on the expansion in size and scope of their contact center operation.two elements factored into that decision. First was the quantifiable success with GRAA s first Genesys deployment.the company calculates that interactions between customers and agents are 20 to 30 seconds shorter using CTI. Second, extending their application with Genesys would mean only minimal changes to the existing operation would likely be required. Discussions began on the various alternatives available to meet the new requirements. According to GRAA, the use of the IP technology was perceived as a given; what was unclear was whether a proprietary version of IP from their PBX vendor in combination with the Genesys contact center applications was the right answer or whether SIP technology was mature enough to be deployed. Introducing a new IP technology vendor into the mix was never considered.the fact that GRAA had already moved to an environment where Genesys Inbound was routing the voice calls, that there was no longer a PBX ACD being used, tipped the balance in favor of using the Genesys SIP Server.The number of components that needed to be added was minimal. At a centralized location, the Genesys SIP Server and Stream Manager were added to the existing Genesys components and a media gateway installed to connect the SIP Server to the existing digital PBX.Agents are able to log into the SIP Server and when calls arrive that are best routed to that agent, a voice path is created between the PBX and the agent through the Genesys SIP Server using the media gateway. By the end of 2006, GRAA had 320 agents working in a seamless virtual contact center using a combination of digital and IP technology working with Genesys as the routing application.two hundred agents continue on the existing digital infrastructure and 120 agents have been added using the Genesys SIP Server.There are plans to add more agents via the SIP Server in 2007.
8 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 6 of 11 The beauty of using the Genesys SIP Server was the number of elements of the contact center that did not have to change. GRAA points specifically to the fact that the routing plans, supervisory applications and Siebel agent desktop applications all remain the same regardless of whether an agent is supported using the digital infrastructure or SIP. What did change? GRAA employees working as SIP Agents are equipped with DECT wireless headsets to use with their SIP softphone applications. GRAA says that if they had needed to pay for a PBX hard phone and a CTI-enabled PBX license, wireless headsets would have added too much additional cost. Given the lower investment required to use SIP, the company is able to give agents a premium experience using wireless. Even while highlighting how pleased it has been with the benefits from SIP, GRAA does not trivialize the work that was required. Using the Genesys SIP Server did not change the work to ready the GRAA network to transport voice over IP (VoIP). But GRAA recognizes that issues like guaranteeing quality of service and regulating bandwidth requirements would have been similar regardless of the type of IP equipment selected. The hybrid TDM/SIP architecture that is now in place will easily support and web interactions. GRAA is investigating adding support for those channels using Genesys, as well as outbound calling and voice call-back, in the future. Already installed for internal use by the SIP agents is video capability. GRAA s IT management understands over time more and more of its customers will be using SIP themselves, services such as BT Communicator from British Telecom or Wengo in France. While still some time in the future, their use of the Genesys SIP Server allows them to not only trial the capability today, but explore the benefits. The next step GRAA is planning is to move the 200 agents supported today on the legacy digital PBX to the Genesys SIP Server, a transition they plan to accomplish by June One can imagine no greater endorsement of the Genesys SIP Server platform. Global Speech Networks: First Self Service, Then Assisted The last section described a company that, having used Genesys in a digital environment, decided to stay with Genesys as they first added some IP agents and eventually completely migrate to IP using SIP. Global Speech Networks (GSN), based in Melbourne, Australia, made a different kind of migration. GSN began their relationship with Genesys two years ago by implementing selfservice technology and have expanded their deployment to include assisted service as well.
9 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 7 of 11 Global Speech Networks describes itself as the first company to host VoiceXML-based natural language speech recognition and IVR applications in the Asia-Pacific region.the services are deployed using the Genesys Voice Portal Network Edition. GSN is one of the new breed of managed services providers using carrier-class solutions to provide business and technology performance benefits such as redundancy and disaster recovery. As GSN worked with companies to centralize formerly far-flung multi-site IVR operations they found that many of these same customers would benefit from, and be receptive to considering, a hosted contact center agent solution as well. Given GSN s high level of satisfaction with the Genesys Voice Portal, and the strong reputation as a contact center application provider that Genesys enjoys across the Asia-Pacific region, Global Speech Networks chose Genesys technology for their business expansion into hosted contact center. The decision to implement the Genesys Suite using Genesys SIP Server was, to apply an American colloquialism to this Australian business decision, a no-brainer. For this essentially green-field contact center implementation, IP technology was the only logical choice. It allowed Global Speech Networks to deploy the Genesys Contact Center Suite as a soft ACD a software-only contact center implementation in combination with the standards-based networking elements that GSN was already using in its operation. Use of the Genesys SIP Server allows Global Speech Networks to offer a compelling story for prospective customers. Many digital PBXs with associated ACDs are approaching end of life. Companies are being forced to make decisions on how to upgrade systems that support multiple applications, e.g., enterprise voice and the call center. GSN s hosted contact center solution can help a company take a phased approach. GSN can replace the legacy call center functionality with its contact center from the cloud. The customer can then choose to upgrade the PBX functionality, where the need may be less urgent than in the customer-facing contact center, at some point in the future. Initially seen as a way to expand their speech and IVR hosting business, contact center hosting now accounts for almost half of Global Speech Network s business. Just as IVR customers are looking to GSN for agent support, customers that begin by using GSN s hosted contact center agents are looking to GSN for speech applications.
10 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 8 of 11 Financial Services Firm: Out with the Old Financial services firms have long been on the cutting edge of contact center technology adoption.the company discussed in this section has been more willing than most to break new ground in pursuit of being ever-more customer centric at the most economical cost. In fact, seeing such behavior as part of its competitive advantage in the market, they have asked that their story be told here without attribution (we ll refer to them as Financial Services Firm or FSF). Ten years ago, the names of financial services firms literally littered the customer lists of stand-alone ACD vendors like Aspect Communications and Rockwell Electronic Commerce. A disappearing category of contact center solution, a stand-alone ACD was defined as a telecommunications switch designed specifically and solely for the call center environment. Characteristics of stand-alone ACDs included non-blocking capacity, high-powered CPUs, and high capacity data storage. Many stand-alone ACD customers were using components of the Genesys suite to provide CTI and multi-site networking, capabilities that were either unavailable or under-featured from stand-alone ACD vendors. During the stock market boom of the late 1990s, successful financial services firms expanded capacity at existing locations and added new facilities at a break-neck pace to keep up with customer service demands.the market collapse that followed left many with ACD hardware over-capacity at multiple locations that brought with it astronomical maintenance charges. At the same time, advances being made in IP telephony.the technology was moving closer and closer to the point when financial services firms were ready to trust that the quality of service demanded by their revenue-generating contact center operations could be realized using IP technology. By 2005, having already moved the company s internal voice traffic to IP, Financial Services Firm was ready to consider replacing its legacy ACDs with IP technology. IP would also allow them to create a virtual contact center, not dependent on hardware deployed at each site where agents worked. Beyond that, FSF had some additional items on its contact center wish list. One was the ability to perform skills-based routing to the agent level - their legacy ACD used a complicated scheme of multiple groups instead of true agent level skills-based routing. As was true for Groupama and Global Speech Networks, FSF turned to a trusted contact center application vendor that had been used in their contact centers for years, Genesys Laboratories.
11 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 9 of 11 The pure software approach to ACD implemented in Genesys SIP Server would be the perfect antidote to a decade-long dependence on stand-alone ACD iron. Implementation of the Genesys SIP Server is allowing Financial Services Firm to meet all of its objectives for this complete replacement of its legacy ACD hardware. Instead of hardware that needs to be maintained at multiple locations all over the country, FSF will rely on centrallylocated SIP Servers. Instead of using Genesys multi-site routing to deliver calls to queues at individual locations, the Genesys SIP Server will intelligently route calls to specific agents. Instead of being tied to proprietary adapters to legacy ACDs, Financial Services Firm contact center operation is now in a better position to benefit from the Service Oriented Architecture strategy of the rest of the firm. Best Practices Reviewing these case studies of companies that have chosen to implement the Genesys SIP Server, a number of themes begin to emerge. The move to IP-based voice technology for the contact center is a decision each firm made very carefully, never committing to a wholesale replacement of existing technology before the company had some experience with VoIP. Groupama began with a relatively small number of SIP agents; only after that proved successful did the company make the decision to move all of their agents to the Genesys SIP Server. Global Speech Networks implemented an IP version of Genesys Voice Portal and media servers prior to taking the step to move to providing hosted contact center solutions. Financial Services Firm began using IP for its voice traffic several years before moving it s a virtual contact center using Genesys SIP Server. Even with some level of prior experience, none of these firms would underestimate the amount of work that is required to transition to voice over IP. Each sought to minimize their downside risk by working with a vendor, in this case Genesys, as well as an implementation partner, for example Nextira One, that had delivered for them in the past.
12 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 10 of 11 A complementary finding was that companies aren t making what amounts to massive changes in their contact center operations for the sake of technology alone. It s not just about replacing the existing digital PBX with an IP-based switch. Groupama needed to incorporate several new locations and hundreds of new agents as seamlessly as possible. Global Speech Networks, a relatively new firm, was looking to dramatically expand their addressable market by adding an entirely new service to their portfolio. Financial Services Firm will now be able to intelligently route calls to individual agents, not just to agent groups. Each of the cases discussed here have another commonality; in each company, the contact center routing is now being done by the Genesys application. Many rightly think of Genesys as the global leader in computer telephony integration, and most include Genesys in the set of vendors they consider for CTI or multi-site routing applications.these examples serve to highlight that the Genesys Suite also includes soft ACD functionality that allows a company to un-hook the ACD feature of their PBX (and the accompanying software upgrade and maintenance charges).this was done by GRAA in 2002 in a digital environment and is being done by Financial Services Firm as they deploy the Genesys SIP Server across their sites. Finally, each of these firms as they move to voice over IP for the contact centers has made a conscious decision to choose SIP over proprietary IP PBX schemes.there is in this decision an inherent level of future-proofing. Shown to be reliable, and offered by a trusted partner, it certainly makes sense to choose a technology like SIP that is on the future roadmap of most contact center vendors, not one like proprietary IP, which will most likely be supplanted in the next few years. No one can predict precisely how technologies will morph over the next five or ten years some might say that it is hard to predict what will happen in three years! But each firm is not just betting on SIP, they re betting on Genesys. And in each case, it s been a safe bet for their company in the past.
13 Customers Expanding Reliance on the Genesys Suite 11 of 11 About the Author Sheila McGee-Smith, the founder of McGee-Smith Analytics, is a leading communications industry analyst and strategic consultant.with a practice focused on the contact center and unified communications markets, Ms. McGee-Smith works on a daily basis with both solution providers and enterprises to help them develop strategies to meet the escalating demands of today's consumer and business customers. Ms. McGee-Smith has spent twenty years in the communications industry, including 12 years with the New Jersey-based analyst firm The PELORUS Group. Prior to joining The PELORUS Group, Ms. McGee-Smith held sales management, market research and product management positions at AT&T,Timeplex and Dun & Bradstreet. She received a bachelor's degree from Barnard College, Columbia University and an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. This custom white paper was funded by Genesys Laboratories, an Alcatel-Lucent company. About Genesys Genesys, an Alcatel-Lucent company, is the only company that focuses 100% on software to manage customer interactions over the phone, web and in . The Genesys software suite dynamically connects customers with the right resources - self-service or assisted-service - to fulfill customer requests, optimize customer care goals and efficiently use resources. Genesys software directs more than 100 million customer interactions every day for 4,000 companies and government agencies in 80 countries. These companies and agencies can leverage their entire organization, from the contact center to the back office, to improve the overall customer experience. As a result, Genesys helps stop customer frustration, drive efficiency, and accelerate business innovation. How To Contact Us Genesys Corporate Headquarters 2001 Junipero Serra Blvd. Daly City, CA United States EMEA Headquarters Genesys House Mulberry Business Park Wokingham, Berkshire RG41 2GY England APAC Headquarters Genesys Laboratories Australasia Pty Ltd Level 17, 124 Walker Street North Sydney, NSW 2060 Australia Additional Information Genesys Telecommunications, Inc. All rights reserved. All trademarks remain the property of their respective owners. Copyright 2006 Accenture. All rights reserved. Accenture, its logo, and High Performance Delivered are trademarks of Accenture.