• June 1, 2008
  • By Leonard Klie Editor, Speech Technology and CRM magazines
  • FYI

Genesys Opens the Customer Front Door

Article Featured Image

San Antonio — Just days after officially launching its Intelligent Customer Front Door (iCFD) solution, Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories announced at its G-Force customer conference here April 28 to 30 that partners and enterprises are already lining up.

Voxify is providing its Conversation Engine; Nuance Communications is chipping in with its natural language-based Call Steering solution; and TuVox is adding more than 50 on-demand modules for functions like caller authentication, billing inquiries, order status, and account status. TuVox’s involvement will also give iCFD industry-specific applications for healthcare, telecommunications, and financial services, among others.

Genesys also announced that the first customers for iCFD are Air France, T-Mobile, and Belgacom.

Brian Bischoff, global vice president of voice platform sales and solutions, identified the solution as a way to route calls based on the context received from the original speech-based IVR. To make those determinations, iCFD connects to central back-end systems, like customer relationship management and enterprise resource planning applications.

The iCFD solution takes the industry out of the traditional view of the call center, added Paul Segre, president and CEO of Genesys, "because the contact could be coming from the phone, email, the Web, or the store."

As proof, he and other Genesys officials cited recent research that found more customers are interacting with companies via the Web. Surprisingly, however, Web inquiries have not replaced phone contact.

"Customer contact with companies is going up," Bischoff said. "They added a Web element, and customers are using that, but the number of calls coming in has not necessarily gone down. Customers are using the Web to search and become educated consumers, but then calling into the company to do their transactions."

In this type of a business environment, companies must expand their use of speech in more than the contact center, Bischoff suggested. "Our vision of speech is helping the customer complete his transactions, bringing speech beyond self-service to the rest of the enterprise, and using it to build better interactions with the customer."

Critical technologies for businesses in this environment will include reporting, analytics, tracking, and Voice over Internet Protocol technologies. Using these technologies, companies can "integrate and coordinate all the different information sources and provide a holistic approach to all the ways that things come into the contact center,"Segre explained. "It includes extensions to the Web, the back office, and the front office."

Sitting with Segre
Excerpts from Leonard Klie’s Exclusive Interview with Genesys President/CEO Paul Segre

KLIE: What has been happening at Genesys since you took the reins last year?
Segre: We’re having a very good year in a difficult economic climate. A lot of things that we’ve been talking about for a while are finally coming to fruition, dramatically expanding the market for us.

KLIE: How so?
Segre: The Intelligent Customer Front Door, for example, is a logical expansion of what we’ve been doing with the Dynamic Contact Center.

KLIE: What challenges have you seen?
Segre: The biggest is the technical architecture. There’s a lot of legacy software and equipment to deal with, infrastructure, and different business processes. We see the next harder problem, the bigger problem, is unifying all the contact center channels.

KLIE: So how does Genesys respond?
Segre: We see our role not just as a technology provider, but as a provider of best practices, use cases, and vision.

KLIE: And where do you see things going in a few years?
Segre: We’re seeing a big move to IP and VoIP. People are now seeing the logic in it. It allows you to get to people anywhere in the world at virtually no cost. It dramatically lowers the cost of providing a service and delivering it.

KLIE: Genesys will release GVP 8 this summer. What can we expect in this new version?
Segre: GVP and VoiceGenie were really two separate products. We’re combining the best of both, and getting a lot more innovative around it. It’s more feature-rich and facilitates the blending of voice, fax, SMS, email, etc. In GVP 8 we also unify management, routing design, etc., and we’re doing a series of things to make the suite more seamless for integrating multimedia. We’re also allowing a lot of components to be put together more easily.

SpeechTek Covers
for qualified subscribers
Subscribe Now Current Issue Past Issues