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Customer Experience - Execution = Contact Center Hallucination

By Mayur Anadkat

Thomas Edison once said "a vision without execution is a hallucination," and I couldn't agree more. Was he referring to the contact center industry? Probably not, but it is no less a relevant thought. Since the dawn of contact centers, the vision for the industry has always been to build better bridges between the customer and the company. Make the customer happy and the company will thrive. Engaging with the customer, feeling what the customer is feeling, knowing the end result of the customer's need, is the holy grail of customer experience all contact centers strive for. This is what contact center leaders soak themselves in, the customer experience. It's a huge business benefit to have positive customer experiences. So, how do we, as thought leaders in this space, take that vision of the ideal customer experience, and turn it into a company benefit? Perhaps Gartner can help us with this question.

Not all companies can actually walk the walk. The ability to execute is often the most important piece of the puzzle. We are pleased to be the leader for supplying that important puzzle piece. Without the incremental approach to executing on vision, delivering customer excellence will always fall short. The smartest companies are taking the customer experience much more seriously. We are proud to be one of those companies recognized as highest for ability to execute in our industry, according to a recent Gartner Magic Quadrant report, we bring the right balance between vision and execution. Here we are in 2015 and Gartner has finally recognized the cloud-based contact center market, by publishing the first ever report on CCaaS, signifying the shift in the market from premise to cloud.

The contact center industry has gone through many milestones over the past 20 years. Let's take a journey. 20 years ago it was just 1-800 numbers. Fast-forward to 10 years ago, all these new channels are available to the customer who can now chat, email, post on social media or the web. However, the core objective of the customer wanting an issue resolved has stayed the same over the years. Only a couple things have really changed. First, there are many new ways in which a customer can get in touch with a company. Next, mostly due to social media, the balance of power between the customer and the company has shifted. These changes now lay the foundation for the vision of a great customer experience, however, what truly matters is walking the walk.

Hallucination, as Edison calls it, is the distraction that some technology providers have when taking many different approaches into a captive customer-centric marketplace. The focus drifts away from attaining that vision, leaving vendors unable to deliver the complete customer experience. The vision is great, but only works when you have a realistic path to get there. A vision that gets lost in the haze of hallucination.

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