Even a Fortune 500 company can fail. All it takes is a decision to invest dollars, time and people in the latest and greatest technological wonder. Sure, an Internet-driven world demands that executives quickly take advantage of innovations that technology promises will give them a competitive edge. But they can reap the benefits without incurring the risks or investment.
CRM & Call Center
Striving to be competitive involves tremendous risks. The timing must be right, and the resources must be available. It’s costly, and the return on investment might be low. In fact, the entire effort might fail. And someone will be held accountable.
People are doing wireless today without having thought about it first, and now they have some real problems, states John Stehman, principal analyst with the Robert Frances Group. They can’t even support all the devices they have out there. They have five to seven different devices and the help desk doesn’t even know what some of them are. Wireless technologies are still experimental, and Thomas Tunstall, Ph.D. with KPMG Consulting, believes it’s difficult to know which applications will catch on and which providers will be successful. Wireless technology is changing, coverage is changing, and providers and pricing are changing. Users are trying to decide if applications will have value. To enter this world requires a strategy built on flexibility and minimizing risk; both are best accomplished by outsourcing.
Current communication providers will need to revamp their system to handle billing processes for wireless services. Thomas Tunstall, Ph.D., at KPMG Consulting LLC, explains that the revenue streams that have come from voice will increasingly shift to data. Traffic from applications data traveling through the Internet will be usage based, rather than minutes based.
Without a doubt, today’s competitive forces have pushed the role and importance of customer relationship management up to the top rung of the ladder to success for organizations. As it is so vital, it has become a specialized area and an industry in itself. Thomson Consumer Electronics, which manufactures electronic products for the well-known brands of RCA, GE and Proscan, came to understand in the mid 1990s that customer care is a separate skill and a trade apart from manufacturing. We are in the manufacturing business. We wanted to develop a partnership with a company that had expertise in managing a customer care center and call center, recalls Scott Medawar, Manager of Customer Care Operations for Thomson. They began outsourcing these strategic functions to Spherion in 1997. Prior to their agreement, Thomson had operated its own call center and had a relationship with Norell to staff the center (Norell later became Spherion).
The I Love You virus did very unloving things to the computers of email readers who couldn’t resist opening the infected note. The malicious message did billions of dollars of damage. And an avalanche of email messages brought down Yahoo in a DDOS (distributed denial of service) attack. These high profile events made companies realize the Internet is full of lurkers and some of them are evil people.
New vendors around every corner. Mega deals. Dead dotcoms. And even some fallout from Y2K. They littered the year 2000 battlegrounds in the outsourcing arena. Gartner Dataquest’s Bruce Caldwell, senior analyst-outsourcing, recently completed reports and forecasts from his company’s surveys of end user wants and needs in the world of IT. He says the turmoil in the IT services marketplace this past year was a factor in a dip in the IT services revenue that had been forecasted for 2000.
Application Service Providers (ASPs) attracted more attention than anything else in outsourcing in 2000. Kirk Krappe, senior vice president of products and markets for Corio, Inc., one of the industry’s pioneers and leading ASPs, predicts even more incredible growth in this arena for 2001.(outsourcing, asp)
This question is important to the solvency of any organization, but it is crucial to those companies doing business with the federal government, says George Phares, President of Strategic Direction Resource, Inc. For seven years, Phares’ company, based in Houston, Texas; has specialized in auditing human resources for federal contractors. Why, you may ask, do human resources need auditing? Because once a year, each federal contractor is required to file a compliance report with the government…
Internet businesses depend on their Web sites being available when their customers are. Downtime is expensive because a customer that clicks away can be lost forever. When a Web site is down, an ecommerce company loses revenue, brand recognition and customers, notes Tom Jones, CEO of StrataSource, a Fremont, California BPO provider…