Richard Snow's Analyst Perspectives

Envision Takes Workforce Optimization to the Cloud

Posted by Richard Snow on Jan 28, 2014 11:41:08 PM

Envision has carved out a slice of the workforce optimization marketvr_NGWO2_06_use_of_agent_workforce_applications by offering its suite of products as cloud-based services. In addition to core products such as interaction recording, quality assurance, workforce management, training, coaching and agent analytics, it offers speech and desktop analytics and customer feedback management through surveys and our part of my research agenda. Our last Value Index shows that this is a highly competitive market, and my benchmark research on next-generation workforce optimization reveals that various segments of the market such as call recording and quality management have high levels of penetration. I was therefore keen to understand where Envision’s latest release, Click2Coach Cloud, fits in this market.

According to Envision, its developers spent the past year enhancing the product to architect it better for the cloud without losing any functionality. Customers now access the system using a low-cost, downloadable desktop application that supports a number of key capabilities. It includes phone and computer/telephony integration (CTI) capabilities, an agent work screen and workflow functionality that can be configured to optimize interaction-handling. The product also includes something I haven’t come across before: the ability to capture core customer data as agents enter it using their work screens.

The data is stored in an internal database, which provides access to it without the need for integration with business applications. It also meets an important requirement in that the captured data can include customer identification data such as name, address, phone number, email address and social media identifiers. With this data stored in the database, companies can link all of the information together to track interactions from the same customer even though each interaction may include only one of the identifiers. This is essential for tracking the customer journey across touch points, and it enables companies to identify the channel a customer prefers, the channel the customer uses for certain types of interactions and at certain points in the relationship, and the outcome of interactions. In addition, having this data readily available allowed Envision to enhance its product with agent and customer interaction analytics.

In my research into next-generation workforce optimization nearly half of companies (48%) said it is very important for their workforce optimization systems to be fully integrated, which is something the Envision suite has long offered. However, the research also finds that it is important that a workforce optimization suite is easily integrated with other systems. Increasingly an important integration is to link customer feedback with agent quality management. The latest version of Click2Coach Cloud has integrated surveys along with new analytics capabilities that companies can use to extract customer feedback and sentiment from voice and text-based interactions such as call recordings, email, chat and social media. All of these sources can be brought together to produce a complete view of the customer that is linked with agent performance.

Envision Click2Coach Cloud is available as a cloud-based service and is priced competitively. During a demonstration I found the software intuitive to use. Cloud-based products offering high functionality and competitive pricing are likely to address one of the key insights from my next-generation workforce optimization benchmark research: Although many companies have adopted these systems, most of them have large contact centers; those with smaller centers more often rely on manual processes supported by spreadsheets. Indeed, this disparity led us to observe that cloud-based services are needed to open up more of the market. Customers can check off all the boxes with Envision’s new technology and commercial package, so I expect it to appeal to both small and large contact centers.

Regards,

Richard J. Snow

VP & Research Director – Customer

Topics: Customer Experience, Customer Feedback Management, Operational Performance Management (OPM), Speech Analytics, Voice of the Customer, Analytics, Cloud Computing, Customer Service, Call Center, Contact Center, Contact Center Analytics, CRM, Customer Performance Management (CPM), Desktop Analytics, Text Analytics, Workforce Force Optimization

Richard Snow

Written by Richard Snow

Richard leads Ventana Research’s Customer and Contact Center Performance Management research practice, which is dedicated to helping organizations improve the efficiency and effectiveness of managing their customers, throughout their lifetime and across all touch points, including the contact center. He conducts research exploring the people, process, information and technology issues behind customer operations management, contact center management, and customer experience management. He also works with senior business operations and IT managers to ensure that companies get the best performance from today’s highly complex application products. Richard has worked in management and consulting leadership positions in the technology industry including with Price Waterhouse, Sema Group and Valors. In his work, he has been involved with all aspects of delivering highly complex IT solutions to a variety of clients in the telecommunications, financial services and public sectors. Richard has specialized in delivering customer care and billing solutions for telecommunications operators, and several multi-channel contact centers for organizations in both the public and private sectors.