Home Industry Market Online, always-connected customers test enterprises, vendors

A so-called ‘new culture’ of online, always-connected customers is emerging around the world, with enterprises under pressure to understand and pre-empt the needs from these customers and to adopt technologies to meet new consumer demands.

With the emergence of the online, always-connected customer, global analyst firm, Ovum, say that new analytics solutions, multichannel metrics, and better collaboration tools will be crucial in 2013, and that vendors will need to step up and add these capabilities fast, or else “risk losing business.”

According to Ovum senior analyst, Aphrodite Brinsmead, enterprises need to support today’s customers by providing timely and accurate responses via mobile, web, and voice channels.

“In order to succeed, they must address customer needs at every stage of the customer lifecycle, and support and integrate data internally.

“It makes sense for enterprises to create collaborative customer experience teams in order to align technology and data strategies across product, IT, marketing, and customer support.”  

According to Ovum’s report, social media response teams will move into the contact centres, driving the need for better social media management tools.

The global analyst firm forecasts a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 21 percent for social media monitoring within the customer service function in the next five years, and Brinsmead says that mobile self-service will become more intelligent, customers will have the ability to request a callback from within a mobile application, and it will become “easier to transfer a query from a self-service application to voice, chat, or email.”

Brinstead also says that traditionally siloed applications such as performance management, business intelligence, and customer feedback will be merged into voice-of-the-customer (VOC) analytics suites that help enterprises view and compare data across different stages of the customer lifecycle.

“Many enterprises will have a mixture of cloud and premise-based customer service solutions, although, for most companies, core automated call distribution (ACD) functionality is likely to remain on-premise for the foreseeable future because of existing investments and mentality.”


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Peter Dinham


Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).