Improving Customer Service Using Web-based Support Tools

Size: px
Start display at page:

Download "Improving Customer Service Using Web-based Support Tools"


1 Improving Customer Service Using Web-based Support Tools a & White Paper May 2008 Sponsored By:

2 Using Web-based Tools for Service and Support In the realm of service and support, the Web has made its mark. It s changed the way customers interact with each other, as they use forums and blogs to cheer or deride companies and even aid in product development with their feedback. It s made available invaluable content and dedicated knowledgebases that have transformed the mix of channels customers use to get service. It s enabled service desk technicians to perform break/fix and complex operations on desktops and servers across the hallway or across the world. It s deconstructed software delivery and molded a new model that gives companies of any size the chance to leverage service and support technologies for competitive differentiation. Its reach and accessibility have forced companies to put their best faces forward and seek to ensure every site visit binds them closer to their constituents. As a channel and platform for service delivery and related technologies, the Web has gone from being bleedingedge to stronghold. No longer is Web-based support with its characteristic 24x7 access, ubiquity, selfservices, and collaboration capability a competitive differentiator simply by virtue of its existence; it now differentiates companies by virtue of its quality. Today, Web-based service is often on the front lines, and for some companies, it s the only line of defense. Since a business s Web site is the first place many customers go today when they re in need of service, it s imperative that what they find there the search tools, the breadth and depth of content, easy escalation paths, the tools that aid in speedy resolution meets their needs. Each visit presents the business with the opportunity to impress and influence existing and potential customers. SaaS Power Increasingly, the tools that deliver prompt resolution and other service-related benefits are built on Web platforms, as more and more companies see and seize the application-delivery benefits of software-as-a service (SaaS). SaaS-based service and support systems have found solid traction in contact centers and IT service desks with customer-facing responsibilities, and are making enterprise in-roads in such areas as self-service knowledge management, remote connectivity, and other areas. Indeed, the service and support arena has been a target-rich environment for SaaS applications. Gartner predicted SaaS-based software would account for $1 billion or 14% of CRM s total revenues in 2007, stating that the compound annual growth rate of on-demand CRM software is more than double that of the overall market. And, according to the 2008 Service and Support Metrics survey conducted by, 40% of responding organizations have chosen a SaaS model for at least some of their service-related technology initiatives, and 20% more said they would deploy hosted software for a service/ support function within the year. Further, in a recent study conducted by McKinsey & Co. and Sand Hill Group, IT and business executives named SaaS, along with Web services, as the most important trends in the software industry, for the third consecutive year. It s particularly important for smaller businesses: Businesses with between 100 and 1,000 employees put 17% of their software budgets toward SaaS purchases in 2007, while those with 100 employees or fewer allocated 25%, according to the survey. And even more revealing: 36% of SMBs have multiple SaaS deployments. Experts say it s not surprising that SaaS has made such strides in the service and support realm. Beyond SaaS s obvious and oft-cited benefits, on-demand vendors have addressed worrisome technical issues with the model. [Hosted] software is able to scale much better than it could previously. If there was ever a gap between premised-based and hosted offerings from a fundamental feature and functionality standpoint, it s narrowing, if not already closed, says Keith Dawson, a senior research analyst with Frost & Sullivan who covers contact center and IT service desk markets.

3 Dawson believes that a SaaS-based model for service and support may actually begin to alleviate some of what he calls the intractable problems inherent in contact centers. One is the high rate of agent turnover: On-demand models might remove some of the structural issues that ultimately result in so many agents leaving their jobs. The idea that you can source an agent anywhere not just at home, but among outsourcers and other locales and let them connect via on-demand systems to do their work has taken off more than people expected. These days, even if a company isn t using on-demand software itself, there s a good chance its outsourcers are, and it creates a lot more flexibility, Dawson says. If you remove the structural issues, you may very well remove the [turnover] problem, Dawson continues. We could eventually have agents all working at home, signing on to connect seamlessly through an on-demand platform, as long as workforce management doesn t suffer. One of the reasons agents leave their jobs is that they feel their supervisors are always looking over their shoulders. Other service-related problems perhaps not intractable but certainly lingering are seeing improvement at the structural level, but as is often the case, progress is slowed by people, entrenched processes and legacy technologies. Incomplete integration across service channels and disjointed customer data views are two areas where technology is becoming much less of an impediment, but where people are not. Seamless Experience Possible? Technologically, multichannel integration, though an expensive and time-consuming process, is a reachable goal given the right environment, say experts. But that blissful environment is elusive: Vendors offer platforms that provide seamless integration among some channels, but large companies are usually saddled with legacy systems housing decades worth of data and can t rip everything out and start from scratch. Perhaps the best candidate for this kind of integrated platform is a startup with a greenfield view that, given the resources, can begin life with integrated systems that provide the seamless interaction department managers seek. Channel integration is on the rise, according to the 2008 survey. About 57% of respondents say they ve integrated at least some of their channels through such initiatives as common knowledgebases, integrated contact management platforms or a unified view into customer interaction data. This represents improvements over previous years: 40% of respondents said they d achieved some channel integration in 2006, while 30% had done so in 2004, and 27% in source: 2008 Metrics Survey

4 Some experts feel the biggest impediment to the kind of integration that would benefit all corporate stakeholders are the stakeholders themselves. Customer-related data, each belonging to different constituencies, are housed in ACD switch, CRM, business intelligence and quality monitoring systems, and even in back-office systems. It s extremely difficult to put that into one coordinating picture. The constituencies that touch the customer experience managers of IT, marketing, inbound and outbound contact centers, product development, service are often unwilling to sign-off on technology and integration budgeting if they feel they re bearing the brunt of the expenditure. But, incrementally, says Dawson, the effects of Voice XML and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) on these stumbling blocks will be transformative. They re dramatically different than the kinds of integration technologies available 10 years ago, he says. Because they re open and lots of applications write to them, they provide a framework that will, over time, produce some of this integration. Five years from now, it will be much easier to deploy integrated systems where interaction will flow more seamlessly. Sourcing Knowledge The home that contact management, CRM, and self-service applications have found on the Web has created demand for better knowledgebase content and navigability. A knowledge management infrastructure incorporating effective workflow, focused, highly edited content, and sophisticated search mechanisms greatly streamlines agents jobs, allowing for timely retrieval of information that makes these applications flourish. Then, turned outward to customers, partners, or employees, these searchable knowledgebases deliver a wealth of returns. They remove the repeatable issues that so bog down call centers and service desks, allowing users to help themselves. They offload both problem resolution functions and repetitive transactional activities related to service, such as warranty registration. In some cases, they reduce costs, and in many cases, allow information workers to concentrate on more-critical issues. Beyond all the business benefits, customers and employees want self-service options, and meeting those demands results in higher user satisfaction. In this year s metrics survey, nearly three quarters of responding executives said they provide their customers or employees access to a searchable knowledgebase or dynamic FAQ. Further, 44% now allow clients to submit cases electronically via the Web. source: 2008 Metrics Survey

5 Contact centers are taking advantage of Web-based knowledge management systems, sophisticated search technologies, dynamic FAQs, and customizable portals targeted both to agents and customers. Web-based knowledge management systems are likewise finding solid traction in enterprise service desks, says Peter McGarahan, president of McGarahan & Associates, a California-based consultancy specializing in IT service and support issues. Knowledge management in a SaaS model makes sense because nobody has the resources to go through the typical assessment and vendor selection process for in-house tools. You work out the logistical connectivity issues and buy [the vendor s] connector into your call management system so you can access the knowledgebase through your ticketing system. Then you write 50 customized knowledge articles and you re ready to start, says McGarahan. Not only do they provide the methodologies for companies to self-publish customized content, but hosted knowledge management service providers often offer packaged content, for standardized technologies like or ERP systems. In addition, says McGarahan, providers are increasingly offering outsourced content publishing services, so service desks can hand over reams of documents, ticket logs, and other material to their providers and get complete knowledgebase articles in return. Then, the service desk can leverage what they ve given their agents and connect the knowledgebase to self-service functionality. First you have to put the effort into customized knowledge articles and leverage them so your support analysts can drive first-contact resolution, quality and consistency. But then you can have them available 24x7 on your self-service portal, pushing them out to users so the phone doesn t become a bottleneck, says McGarahan. As the service desk moves forward with self-service, it can make better decisions as to the channels it opens for support. If an organization tracks a healthy self-service adoption rate on certain technology articles, and measures customer experience and determines successful usage, it has the information it needs to better allocate resources. You can ask yourself why you continue to support certain technologies over the phone when you know that many of your employees get the same level of service or better when going to self-service, says McGarahan. Now managers are saying, Let s turn off the phone to certain aspects of support that we know are out there on the Web site and that we know work. Returns not only come in the form of better allocated resources, but multiplying efficiencies. When the support organization publishes knowledgebase content, there s a cost to doing so, but the ROI of an article grows with each use. Further, says McGarahan, self-service helps address another ongoing problem associated with help desks staffing issues. Where it can be utilized, the one-to-many model of self-service is vastly more efficient than the one-to-one interaction of phone-based support. Organizations can find relief from the exigencies of a third-shift help desk, instead assigning on-call personnel. These kinds of rewards only come if the company invests the upfront and ongoing resources to ensure content is readily accessible and of high quality. Getting a good story out of a knowledge management initiative takes realignment, sponsorship, and money, says McGarahan. Most people who ve successfully undertaken knowledge management will tell you if you re going into it to save money, don t do it.

6 The cost reduction driver for knowledge management initiatives is slowly giving way to more strategic goals. About 15% of the respondents to this year s metrics survey say increased customer satisfaction and loyalty are the primary benefits seen from their implementations of self-service knowledgebases. One third of respondents cite increased efficiencies as the biggest benefit. In any case, says McGarahan, the reasons support organizations have for undertaking knowledge management initiatives isn t the main concern anymore. I don t think people have a choice in undertaking these deployments. Knowledge management is not a nice-tohave anymore it s a required tool in support and service, he says. Pushing Support: Anytime, Anywhere Among service and support applications, remote connectivity products are likewise becoming indispensable to IT service desks, both within the enterprise, and more often, for customer-facing technical support. Such tools offer considerable financial savings, as technicians can diagnose and resolve problems occurring on remote desktops or servers, as well as improving end-user satisfaction and productivity due to prompt attention to issues. Nearly half (45%) of the respondents to s 2008 survey says they employ remote control tools. Around 28% leverage screen-sharing and co-browsing technologies, and 21% take advantage of remote diagnostics. Remote support is an intriguing area, says Frost & Sullivan s Dawson. Beyond the potential they offer in savings in travel costs and lost productivity, says Dawson, remote connectivity tools provide the opportunity for customer-facing service desks to save in such areas as supply-side inventory costs. Using remote support, a company can save a fortune in [product] returns, says Dawson. With phone-based support, reps are limited by what customers can verbalize and the fact that they have no direct visibility into the product they re trying to diagnose. Too, they re mandated to keep calls as short as possible. Service centers spend a great deal of money and time trying to diagnose a problem over the phone, only to end up saying, Ship it back and we ll replace it. And maybe it s defective and maybe not, says Dawson. With remote diagnosis, the company knows that the systems it orders returned are legitimately in need of repair. Companies get a clearer picture of product defects from remote support, as well as possibly saving money on shipping costs and maintaining accurate inventory levels. Even more important, perhaps, is that remote support paves the way for what many consider the holy grail of customer service: a high tech, high touch experience. A key point of the remote support scenario is that you gain a certain amount of intimacy with your customers, and they get the sense that their problems are being solved in real-time rather than just being logged and passed to a technician, says Dawson.

7 When Only a High-Tech Rescue Will Do Since its inception, the term high tech, high touch has taken on increasingly advantageous connotations, becoming a goal in technology provider circles, particularly in technical support and service. If you can use technology to deliver that high-touch experience so valued in service, you ve hit the mother lode, combining the efficiencies of automation with the intimacy of personalized support. In the IT support realm, remote connectivity tools exemplify the sought-after high tech, high touch experience. Rather than making end users wait in queues to try to explain their problem over the phone, only to ultimately log a trouble ticket because they can t get sufficient information, technicians use remote connectivity solutions to solve desktop and server problems at the time of contact. With remote support technology you re actually showing authoritative problem-solving in real-time, as well as the fact that you re more interested in solving problems than just merely ending the call, says Keith Dawson, an analyst with Frost & Sullivan. This ability to connect with customers and impress them with a realtime resolution not to mention the money saved from avoiding lengthy phone sessions and travel has businesses turning to LogMeIn Inc., a Woburn, Mass.-based provider of remote connectivity tools. Its flagship is LogMeIn Rescue, an on-demand remote connectivity product that supports Windows-based desktops and servers, Macintoshes and smart phones without pre-installing client software. Its customers use its products for enterprise, SOHO and consumer support. At ShowingTime, a Chicago-based provider of Web-based software solutions for residential real estate appointment management, our entire [support] world changed after technicians started using LogMeIn Rescue to support customers real-estate agents and agency administrative personnel who use ShowingDesk software for setting and managing appointments with buyers and showing agents, says Timothy Perry, director of customer service. Until three years ago, ShowingTime s technicians used what Perry calls the black box approach to support : talking with customers on the phone and trying to decipher their descriptions of a problem to effect a resolution. The inefficiencies of this approach were exacerbated by the limitations of their phone system, which only allows four customers to be placed on hold simultaneously; when a fifth call comes in, they re routed automatically to voic . Before LogMeIn, says Perry, the company saw a third to half of its cases drop to voic , which then meant that technicians had to return calls, often getting their customers voic . It wasn t a process that ensured customer satisfaction, he says. Today, says Perry, ShowingTime technicians use LogMeIn Rescue in about 90% of their cases, with 10 technicians using the product to handle both installation and post-installation issues for 300,000 agents. ShowingTime has integrated the LogMeIn Rescue launch sequence directly into its products help menus, so that customers can choose the option from the menu, generating a session that puts them into the support request channel

8 and presenting the tech with such information as their account number and contact information. When the customer clicks on the support initiation button, the LogMeIn Rescue applet automatically downloads so that the remote session can begin. A Clear View of Support Fenestrae, a Netherlands-based provider of unified communications and messaging software for Windows environments, has seen similar support improvements since adopting LogMeIn Rescue in Before that, Fenestrae relied for five years on a popular desktop streaming product, whose new version ultimately had too many bugs and technical problems, says Mark Warbington, senior technical consultant. A 24x7 Atlanta-based support operation serving 26% of the Fortune 100, Fenestrae considers LogMeIn Rescue a key component in its support arsenal. Because it sells and supports complex server-based software, Fenestrae prefers that the customer contact the support organization by phone. If the case requires more than simple triage, the customer then goes to a dedicated Web site, where they enter a six-digit code to download the LogMeIn Rescue applet, allowing them to receive remote support. In addition to support, Fenestrae is using LogMeIn as part of the installation process for its Fenestrae Communication Server and Fenestrae Faxination Server products. The company offers the service because installation of its products, which are server-based, can be complicated depending on the customer s existing environment and the level of integration within the Microsoft infrastructure. Because our software is deeply entrenched in the Microsoft network, the installation can be complicated, so we have a line item service through which we sell a remote install. With LogMeIn Rescue, the service has even become a revenue generator for us, says Warbington. For customer support management, knowledge management and FAQs, Fenestrae currently runs a popular contact management system, but expects to soon transition to Supportforce to complement its sales team s use of From the company s FAQ site, customers can download patches, but Warbington would like to eventually streamline that process by using LogMeIn Rescue s ability to automatically push patches to customers machines. Dollars and Sense Maintenance contracts aside, service and support has traditionally been treated as a loss leader, though that s changing. Companies that offer superior support now recognize that they ultimately reap customer satisfaction benefits that directly translate to retention, referrals and further opportunities. In addition to enabling the installation process that s become a revenue generator for Fenestrae, LogMeIn has affected both customer and employee satisfaction, says Warbington. Since we made the transition to LogMeIn [in 2007], we haven t heard one word of complaint from our techs or our customers. They love it. More importantly, when a customer calls with a server problem, they re confident that their systems are going to be quickly operating again. Within a minute of placing the call, [customers] are talking with a technician who can remotely connect to their server, get them running, and get back out again. They trust us, says Warbington.

9 ShowingTime, too, is pleased with the ROI it s seeing from its LogMeIn deployment. Previously, up to half of its queued calls would go into voic , requiring follow-up. Now, if more than 10% of our calls go to voic in a month, we look to see if we experienced some major equipment failure during that time, says Perry. Remote support has greatly benefited both ShowingTime and its customers, allowing technicians to interact with multiple customers simultaneously and in many cases freeing up customers phone lines so they can take important calls from home buyers and agents. ShowingTime s improved customer satisfaction ratings from their surveys bear this out. It s difficult for customer service departments to turn their efforts into dollars. We deal in incidents and try to prove our existence is keeping customers, says Perry. But real estate is fast-paced, with immediate needs, and when an issue takes too long to get resolved, we hear about it at renewal time. We re having a direct impact on whether a customer s happy and whether they renew their [software] contracts with us. About LogMeIn, Inc. LogMeIn is a leading provider of on-demand, remote-connectivity solutions to small and medium businesses, IT service providers and consumers. LogMeIn's products are deployed on-demand and are accessible through a Web browser. The LogMeIn family includes LogMeIn Free, LogMeIn Pro, LogMeIn Ignition, LogMeIn Rescue, LogMeIn IT Reach, LogMeIn Backup, Remotely Anywhere, LogMeIn Hamachi and LogMeIn Scout. LogMeIn is based in Woburn, MA with European centers in Budapest, Hungary and Amsterdam, Netherlands. More information can be found at

10 Trulia Homes in on Superior Service Location, location, location. In real estate, that mantra means the value of a residence essentially comes down to where it makes its home and the macrocosm it inhabits. With the Web playing such a key role in the real estate business, location takes on additional meaning, as it comes to describe the activity that buyers undertake as they search for and pinpoint the perfect home long before they call an agent. A recent study by the National Association of Realtors shows that 85% to 90% of home buyers today start their home searches on the Internet, using its vast resources and sophisticated search tools as a location device, a way to target the right house, the safest neighborhood, the best schools, and the most-effective local agents. On the Web, they can significantly narrow searches before they ever contact an agency. Because this powerful new search channel exists, agents and brokerages know they need to be online. The problem is their own personal Web sites, trying to compete with similar sites and with aggregation sites, often fail to get noticed. That s where San Francisco-based Trulia, a residential real estate search engine, plants its stake, says Brian Sparr, manager of customer operations. Designed to be a go-to site for home consumers, agents and brokerages, Trulia has developed proprietary search technology that enables consumers to locate the right home anywhere in the U.S. Just having a property out on the Internet at your own site isn t enough anymore, because there s not a lot of chance a consumer will find an individual agent s Web site, says Sparr. Trulia, on the other hand, has six million unique visitors per month searching for properties. Agents have to realize that aggregation sites like Trulia will drive a lot of traffic to their property and if they re not taking advantage of that, they re missing out, says Sparr. It hasn t taken long for agents and brokerages to figure this out, and Trulia s growth has been rapid. It soon found that it needed to address its customer support model, which wasn t keeping pace. Because it s an ondemand service provider, and its users aren t particularly tech-savvy, Trulia needed a support model that matched its business sensibilities one that provided quality self-service as well as seamless escalation, and could readily scale to support its growth. The company chose on-demand customer service software from Vienna, Va.- based Parature Inc., which enables it to make user self-service a key component of its service delivery. As with most start-ups, we try to run lean and fast. You make hard decisions about how you allocate resources, says Sparr. We have a limited number of engineers with limited hours in a day; is it a better use of their time having them evolve our product, or building out a better support offering? Because the answer is understandably the former, Trulia has turned over the support duties to Parature s on-demand customer service and support software.

11 In-house resources always go to the product development side, says Sparr. That philosophy has driven many adherents to Parature over the last few years, and that movement shows no signs of abating. Founded in 2000, the company was an early entry into the software-as-a-service (SaaS) market, offering a full suite of modules including a customer portal, rich knowledgebase, full ticketing system, and a host of other products that provide 20/20 visibility and multi-channel support across all customer service interactions. Real-time Business, Real-time Support Trulia divides its site visitors into two segments: consumer and industry. Consumers comprise home buyers, while the industry segment comprises agents, brokerages, and franchises, as well as technology providers developing sites for individual franchises, for example. Consumers use the site for free, as do agents who want to display a property but don t use any of the value-added services Trulia offers. Taking listings from all over the country by partnering with real estate agents and brokerages, Trulia creates mashups by combining those listings with such applications as Google Maps. Not only does the user find an individual property, but they locate it on a map, and we show other properties close by that they may not have been aware of. We re trying to make the initial search experience for the consumer as easy and as comprehensive as possible, says Sparr. The industry side is where Trulia generates its revenue. Though agents can display a property for free, many choose value-added services that help them brand themselves. Trulia sells banner advertising, brokerage logos that run against listings and pay-for-placement opportunities that push particular listings into top spots during a search. Given the real-time demands of its business model as well as those of the market it serves Trulia s site, search capabilities, and service functions have to be readily available at all times. Company executives soon learned how critical a support foundation was to this business imperative. When Trulia first launched, it had one customer support representative, and that rep handled phone calls and . Eventually, the glut of calls and meant the rep was only able to respond to s, but had no tracking tools to determine caller types, problem types, and other key criteria. When this approach revealed its shortcomings, support started to put data into Excel spreadsheets to track problems, follow-up calls, etc. However, the company was growing too fast, as were the number of incoming support requests, for this approach to be tenable. As a start-up, Trulia liked the idea of choosing an open source product for its support needs. Executives opted for a free back-end ticketing system. We would simply route s into the system, which would generate a ticket with a case number. We could assign tickets to different people and start to see history and what we did to resolve issues, says Sparr. Initially, this ticketing system sounded like a great solution to their problem: As an open source offering, it was free, and for a young company, which at the time didn t even yet have a paid offering, it seemed the perfect solution. The problem? The tool, says Sparr, turned out to be difficult to customize and they didn t want to dedicate valuable engineering resources to make it work. Couple those difficulties with the fact that they were running the application on an older Linux server, and they ultimately got to the point where they had to coordinate who, of the four people that used it, would be able to access it at any given time. Finally, when the sales team started ramping up and rapidly signing paying customers, Trulia executives knew they needed to make serious choices as to how they meted out support.

12 Communities Pitch In Just as they began their search, they got a call from Parature. When we saw that Parature had a customerfacing portal that we could customize and that our customer operations team could control what content gets pushed out and where, we signed on, says Sparr. They started using Parature Customer Service software in early Prior to using Parature and its dynamic knowledgebase, customer portal and ticketing system, Trulia was forced to rely on generic FAQs that only got updated during normal product release cycles. A lot of people had to sign off [on FAQs]. Engineers had to design the page, put content in and push it live to our site. Because of that FAQs weren t updated very frequently, says Sparr. Now, whenever a customer submits a trouble ticket through Trulia s portal or sends a support , it gets routed through Parature and is handled by one of four customer service reps. If they can t solve the problem, the issues get escalated through Parature to the sales engineering team, which handles the majority of troubleshooting. If they can t solve it, it gets escalated to engineering. Parature Customer Service software is also used for fielding requests from agents for site enhancements and additions, of which Trulia gets 150 requests a day. Parature software creates a ticket that goes to the team that handles the request bypassing the customer service team that used to handle the requests while sending out an auto-response that sets timeframe expectations with the agent. This new process saves each service rep up to four hours per day. Trulia started using Parature just a few months ago, but more and more visitors are helping themselves to answers and finding solutions without escalating to the service team. As questions come in, the team discovers which questions require a knowledgebase article, and they write content and update the knowledgebase accordingly. They also ensure that they ramp-up knowledge content in preparation for feature and functionality releases on their site. Eventually, Sparr hopes to be able to leverage the community-generated questions, advice and opinions the site is capturing, and turn that into quality knowledge content as well. We want to take some of the questions that are submitted as tickets, and want to go to the community we ve been building. Lots of questions are answered by our community or could be it s true Web 2.0, leveraging the resources of our community to support our customers. Trulia executives are particularly happy that their engineering resources are now freed up to work on product development. Now we have a solution that adequately scales with our team. It handles ticket management behind the scenes, but also empowers us to control customer-related content in a knowledgebase or FAQ, without having to rely on product or engineering teams to get everything done. It s a huge benefit, says Sparr.

13 About Parature, Inc. Parature, the global leader in on-demand customer service software, makes it possible for any business to leverage the Internet to provide outstanding customer service. The company s software-as-a-service (SaaS) delivery and integrated, intuitive design enables organizations to better and more efficiently serve, support, engage with and retain customers in today s Web world. Founded in 2000, Parature received the 2007 Product of the Year Award from Customer Interaction Solutions magazine and has been named to the Inc list of Fastest Growing Private Companies in America. For the past three consecutive years Parature has been on the Washington Business Journal s list of Best Places to Work. Headquartered in Vienna, Virginia, Parature is at work in organizations of all types and sizes, and helps support more than 10 million end users worldwide. For more information, visit White Paper Written by: Kym Gilhooly Gilhooly is a contributing editor to She can be reached at

The Definitive IP PBX Guide

The Definitive IP PBX Guide The Definitive IP PBX Guide Understand what an IP PBX or Hosted VoIP solution can do for your organization and discover the issues that warrant consideration during your decision making process. This comprehensive

More information


BUILDING A BUSINESS CASE Page 29 Friday, January 30, 2004 10:34 AM CHAPTER 2 BUILDING A BUSINESS CASE FOR VOIP To leap or to hide Trust evidence to decide; Faith makes risky guide. James Coggins Taking Charge of Your

More information

Customer Service Strategies for the Insurance Industry

Customer Service Strategies for the Insurance Industry Industry Strategy Guide North America Region Customer Service Strategies for the Insurance Industry Customer Service Strategies for the Insurance Industry Table of Contents 3 Introduction 4 The Key Challenges

More information


HOW SAAS CHANGES AN ISV S BUSINESS HOW SAAS CHANGES AN ISV S BUSINESS A GUIDE FOR ISV LEADERS Sponsored by Microsoft Corporation Copyright 2012 Chappell & Associates Contents Understanding the Move to SaaS... 3 Assessing SaaS...3 Benefits

More information

White Paper Implementing Your Help Desk

White Paper Implementing Your Help Desk White Paper Implementing Your Help Desk A Practical Guide Implementing A Help Desk Implementing a Help Desk may sound either remarkably easy or terribly difficult, depending on who is pitching the solution.

More information

These materials are the copyright of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. and any dissemination, distribution, or unauthorized use is strictly prohibited.

These materials are the copyright of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. and any dissemination, distribution, or unauthorized use is strictly prohibited. Enterprise Mobility 2nd Edition by Carolyn Fitton, Tom Badgett, and Corey Sandler Enterprise Mobility For Dummies, 2nd Edition Published by: John Wiley & Sons Canada, Ltd. 6045 Freemont Blvd. Mississauga,

More information

Offer Help Desks to Build Customer Loyalty

Offer Help Desks to Build Customer Loyalty tim89908_ch07.qxd 4/1/04 10:05 AM Page 101 7 Offer Help Desks to Build Customer Loyalty An employee with a systems problem should be treated just like a consumer returning a lawn mower. Our job is to make

More information



More information

White paper The future of Service Desks - vision

White paper The future of Service Desks - vision White paper The future of Service Desks - vision Service Desks require strategic consideration and innovation to raise user productivity and to support business goals. Fujitsu has the experience and feedback

More information

The Service Desk 2017 & Beyond

The Service Desk 2017 & Beyond The people element seemed to be missing. Tessa Troubridge, SDI The service desk is dead. Long live the service desk. Tony Probert, Cherwell Software People expect instant and continuous feedback Emma Dickson,

More information

Strategic Guide to Business Phone Systems

Strategic Guide to Business Phone Systems GUIDE Strategic Guide to Business Phone Systems Practical Advice for a Successful IP Telephony Design and Deployment Table of Contents Page No Business Communications: Boost Productivity and Collaboration...

More information

An Oracle White Paper November 2011. A Superior Web Self-Service and Contact Center Solution: Buy It or Build It?

An Oracle White Paper November 2011. A Superior Web Self-Service and Contact Center Solution: Buy It or Build It? An Oracle White Paper November 2011 A Superior Web Self-Service and Contact Center Solution: Buy It or Build It? Executive Overview... 1 Introduction... 1 The Right Knowledge Management Solution: A Critical

More information

The power of virtual integration: an interview with Dell Computer s Michael Dell. by Joan Magretta

The power of virtual integration: an interview with Dell Computer s Michael Dell. by Joan Magretta Harvard Business Review March-April 1998 v76 n2 p72(13) Page 1 by Joan Magretta Dell Computer founder Michael Dell is responsible for the success of the $12 billion company. Through an innovative business

More information


HEALTH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY HEALTH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY This transcript of the Health Information Technology online modules is provided for information purposes only. To obtain your AMA PRA Category 1 Credit for these modules,

More information

Good Business for Small Business. Handbook Best financial practices for Canadian businesses

Good Business for Small Business. Handbook Best financial practices for Canadian businesses Good Business for Small Business Handbook Best financial practices for Canadian businesses Table of Contents Introduction ii I. Financing: Getting money to start and run your

More information

Technology in Tax & Accounting: Then, Now and Next

Technology in Tax & Accounting: Then, Now and Next Introduction.... 1 Emerging Trends and Technologies... 3 The Changing Landscape... 4 The Impact of New Technologies... 8 Cloud... 9 Mobile... 10 Social Media... 13 Big Data... 16 Technology Challenges...

More information

A DIRECTOR S POCKET BOOK. voice over IP. how VoIP offers cost-effective business communication

A DIRECTOR S POCKET BOOK. voice over IP. how VoIP offers cost-effective business communication A DIRECTOR S POCKET BOOK voice over IP how VoIP offers cost-effective business communication A DIRECTOR S POCKET BOOK voice over IP how VoIP offers cost-effective business communication consultant editor:

More information


December 2008. VoIP YOUR GUIDE TO VOICE OVER IP December 2008 VoIP YOUR GUIDE TO VOICE OVER IP 2 An Advertising Supplement to USA Today CONTENTS 2 Foreword from TIA 4 What can VoIP do for me? 4 Great savings and features 5 Savings without the maintenance

More information

Notes: - All dollars in this publication denote U.S. dollars unless otherwise stipulated. - Travel manager and travel buyer are used interchangeably

Notes: - All dollars in this publication denote U.S. dollars unless otherwise stipulated. - Travel manager and travel buyer are used interchangeably Notes: - All dollars in this publication denote U.S. dollars unless otherwise stipulated. - Travel manager and travel buyer are used interchangeably to refer to any manager from any department responsible

More information

DDM. Dynamic Discount Management Increasing Discount Capture through AP Automation. Featuring Insights on... Building a Case for Automation

DDM. Dynamic Discount Management Increasing Discount Capture through AP Automation. Featuring Insights on... Building a Case for Automation TECHNOLOGY INSIGHT SERIES DDM Dynamic Increasing Capture through AP Automation Featuring Insights on... Building a Case for Automation Drive to Enhance Capture Dynamic Payables ing Invoice Automation &

More information

Cyber-Security Essentials

Cyber-Security Essentials Cyber-Security Essentials for State and Local Government Best Practices in Policy and Governance Operational Best Practices Planning for the Worst Case Produced by with content expertise provided by For

More information


ICT SYSTEMS MARKETING PLAN ICT SYSTEMS MARKETING PLAN by Ladan Mehrabi Graduate Diploma in Business Administration, Simon Fraser University, 2006 Bachelors Degree in Electronics Engineering, Tehran Azad University, 2001 PROJECT

More information

The Small Business. The First Steps to Doing Business Online. Joe Ebner

The Small Business. The First Steps to Doing Business Online. Joe Ebner The Small Business The First Steps to Doing Business Online Joe Ebner he first question often asked by small business owners just like you who want to go online with their business is what do I need to

More information


THE FUTURE OF INSURANCE IT INFRASTRUCTURE THE FUTURE OF INSURANCE IT INFRASTRUCTURE A SURVEY OF GLOBAL INSURANCE LEADERS This is an authorised reprint of an independently researched and executed report granted by Celent exclusively to Wipro Technologies.

More information

The HP OpenView approach to Help Desk and Problem Management. "Preparing Today for the Help Desk of Tomorrow.

The HP OpenView approach to Help Desk and Problem Management. Preparing Today for the Help Desk of Tomorrow. The HP OpenView approach to Help Desk and Problem Management. "Preparing Today for the Help Desk of Tomorrow. HP OpenView Author: Ken Wendle Version: 2 This white paper refers to the HP OpenView ITSM 5.6

More information

Help Desk Systems and Software: Overview

Help Desk Systems and Software: Overview John Inverso Technology Overview 10 November 2000 Help Desk Systems and Software: Overview Summary The help desk can be both a boon and a burden to a company, either increasing customer satisfaction and

More information

Stop Trying to Delight Your Customers

Stop Trying to Delight Your Customers HBR.ORG July August 2010 reprint R1007L Stop Trying to Delight Your Customers by Matthew Dixon, Karen Freeman, and Nicholas Toman Illustration/Photography: Name IDEA IN PRACTICE Included with this article

More information

An Oracle White Paper March 2012. Eight Steps to Great Customer Experiences for Government Agencies

An Oracle White Paper March 2012. Eight Steps to Great Customer Experiences for Government Agencies An Oracle White Paper March 2012 Eight Steps to Great Customer Experiences for Government Agencies Introduction... 1 Best Practices for Better Service... 2 Customer Experience Challenges for Government

More information

5 GREAT STEPS. How to Build an Enterprise Mobility Strategy

5 GREAT STEPS. How to Build an Enterprise Mobility Strategy 5 5 GREAT STEPS How to Build an Enterprise Mobility Strategy Table of Contents The mobile-time imperative Set the foundation for a comprehensive mobile strategy Identify and mitigate roadblocks on the

More information

Business Analytics in Retail

Business Analytics in Retail Compliments of 2nd IBM Limited Edition Business Analytics in Retail Learn to: Put knowledge into action to drive higher sales Use advanced analytics for better response Tailor consumer shopping experiences

More information