2017 Predictions & Resolutions: ZOOM 6.0 Launch + More!
Adam runs marketing at ZOOM and has been in the software industry for 20 years. His experience spans all front-office functions, crossing the entire customer experience. He has also worked, mostly in product marketing roles, for software companies in SaaS, CRM, marketing automation, customer analytics, big data, cloud computing, open source software, and data science.
Around the world, the New Year is celebrated in various forms.
Wishing for prosperity, cleansing the past, predicting the future, launching fireworks, and taking on personal resolutions—these are common New Year’s traditions in many countries.
As 2016 comes to a close, we have 5 resolutions and 5 predictions to share with you.
After reflecting upon our customers, partners, and company, we are going to make some big promises for 2017:1. We will Launch ZOOM 6.0:
We spent many, many man-years of time defining, designing, coding, and testing software in 2016. And, we are excited to announce that ZOOM 6.0 will launch in January 2017—it has:
- A new, world-class user interface,
- The 1st omnichannel quality management solution built on an internet-scale big data platform, and
- By far, the most business-friendly call center analytics package in our sector.
2. We will Improve on the Best Customer Satisfaction in the Industry:
In 2016, we added well over 100 customers and partners, and we also did some big things for our own customers' satisfaction—we:
- Launched a technical support presence in the Middle East (Istanbul) and Asia-Pacific (Sydney)—we now support localized time zones covering 5 continents,
- Received recognition from multiple industry analysts regarding our industry leadership (particularly in customer satisfaction), and
- Achieved a world-class net promoter score of 82%+ from our customers and partners.
To underscore the last achievement in non-NPS speak, we scored a “10 out of 10” for 75% of the surveys we received. And, 93.2% of the time, we get an 8, 9, or 10.
Literally, hundreds of customers gave survey responses like this, “For the three years I have been using ZOOM Call Rec there have been very few issues. When issues do arise, every member of ZOOM I have spoken with is knowledgeable and is able to fix the problem in one quick session. Wonderful customer service along with a great product.”
While metrics like NPS and "first contact resolution" are taken quite seriuosly within our own contact center, we are going to improve in 2017!!! Not only will we continue to generate the best customer satisfaction scores in the industry, we plan to provide the best customer experience across all customer interactions—products, sales, implementations, training, documentation, technical support, and upgrades.
3. We will Help Customers Improve the Omnichannel Customer Experience:
Throughout 2016, many analysts, media pundits, and consultants agreed that 2017 will:
- Again show customer experience at the top of the executive agenda, and
- Be the year omnichannel turns from mostly talk to mostly action.
In 2017, ZOOM will deliver page after page, slide after slide, and feature after feature around omnichannel quality management processes, measures, and best practices, helping our customers achieve exceptional business outcomes and improve key metrics.
4. We will Provide New Growth Opportunities for Our Partners:
- Unlike our competitors in 2016, we don’t compete with our partners. We sell 100% indirect. Our partners know a) how we go out of the way to help them win, b) provide best-in-the-industry incentives, and c) ensure selecting ZOOM equals a happy customer.
- In 2017, we are going to increasingly help partners differentiate themselves, doubling-down on our investments in new partner pipeline and revenue.
5. We will Deliver Industry-Leading Cloud and Voice Architectures:
- For over a decade, we have beaten our competitors in call recording because of a superior architecture, and 2016 was no different.
- As contact centers migrate to the 3rd platform—where intelligent applications, big data, and cloud computing reign—customers need a new architecture. And, ZOOM will continue to deliver a new architecture for this new era.
After implementing and configuring ZOOM at over 1500 customers and working with over 300 partners in our lifetime, here is what we see on the horizon for 2017—and what several industry experts point out:
1. We Predict that Customer Experience will still sit at the Top of the Executive Agenda
This one might be obvious, but it still deserves top ranking.
Frost & Sullivan released a report this year and said, “By 2020, customer experience is projected to overtake price and product as a key brand differentiator. This is relevant, as companies globally lose over US$300 billion each year due to poor customer experience with more than two-thirds of this being spent with competing entities.” A myriad of other reports from credible resources forecast the customer experience as the #1 priority going into 2017.
2. We Predict that Omnichannel Quality Management will Contribute Significantly to Customer Experience Improvements
Ventana Research made several key points when outlining their 2016 research agenda where the theme was, “Transforming Customer Engagement.”
They believe next generation customer engagement will “need to deploy integrated quality management systems that can connect all quality management processes and link agent-related tasks to the customer experience.” They also pointed out that improving customer experience isn’t easy, “organizations most often struggle to integrate systems (49%), manage communication systems in an integrated manner (47%) and provide consistent responses (33%) at all touch points. Successful change must be driven from the top of the organization and will require coordination of people, processes, information and systems across all business groups.”
Quality management on the omnichannel customer experience is going to become a big focus for companies in 2017.
3. We Predict that Contact Center Analytics will undergo a Digital Renaissance alongide Customer Experience Priorities
With a much greater number of non-voice customer-agent and customer self-serve interactions, there will be greater opportunity to capture data, measure it, prioritize improvements, and optimize business outcomes.
Digging into The US Contact Center Decision-Makers’ Guide 2016 - Customer Interaction Analytics by ContactBabel, it is clear that contact center analytics adoption is still limited—only 17% of companies use it now without a plan to replace or upgrade.
Yet, the majority of respondents believe analytics is very useful in key areas. At number one, 83% of people say it can identify training requirements at an agent level. They also believe it can have the most impact on other metrics like first contact resolution, customer satisfaction, and quality management.
4. We Predict that Agent Behavior will be treated as a Critical Success Factor for Customer Experience
The 2016 Aberdeen report Agent Productivity & Performance Management: A Look into Best-in-Class WFO Strategies explains how companies, “That focus on enabling their agents to become more successful enjoy increasing levels (8.7%) of customer satisfaction. This validates the close connection between agent activities and customer experience results.”
They go on to link “agent enablement success programs” to increasing quality SLAs, first contact resolution, average handle time, average cost per contact, and average revenue per contact.
5. We Predict that the “Cloud” will be recognized more for its Business Benefits instead of its "Location Type" (i.e. Public, Private, or Hybrid)
While the term cloud has now been pounded into our heads, it isn’t just about public, private, or hybrid models.
No, it isn’t just "location features," the cloud is here to provide real business benefits.
We need to be able to scale and capture 100x more data of all different types in an omnichannel world. We need analytics that is 100x faster in creating value. We need to make it 100x easier to use all of the data that can affect business outcomes. We need 100x smarter and more intelligent WFO applications. And, we need to help contact centers move with 100x more agility in their "continuous improvement journey" to increase agent productivity and performance alongside optimized customer experiences.
It doesn’t matter where software runs, what matters is that it delivers the most value today and over time.
Onward and Upward
To ZOOM, this means we will wake up every day of 2017 trying to help companies improve the customer and agent experience. And, we are looking forward to it!
That wraps up our resolutions and predictions for 2017.
We Wish You Happy Holidays and a Merry New Year!