• June 01, 2007 01 Jun'07

    Seven things you need to know about speech analytics

    Call center expert Donna Fluss gives advice on evaluating and implementing speech analytics technology in this podcast. Fluss offers an introduction to speech analytics and what its implications are for call centers.

  • May 31, 2007 31 May'07

    Telecom uses speech recognition to drive customer satisfaction

    Telecom New Zealand has tripled callers' customer satisfaction by using a speech recognition application to deflect and properly route calls.

  • May 31, 2007 31 May'07

    Speech analytics converts call centers to profit centers

    When used properly, speech analytics applications empower enterprises to enhance customer loyalty and improve the corporate bottom line by delivering the products and services that their customers want -- when they want them, where they want them...

  • May 30, 2007 30 May'07

    Verint hopes to optimize the call center, closes Witness deal

    Verint Systems has completed its $950 million purchase of Witness, the latest step in a rapidly consolidating market for workforce optimization and call recording.

  • May 24, 2007 24 May'07

    Businesses not providing the customer service they think they are

    An Accenture survey found a wide disparity between the experiences consumers say they get and what executives think they're providing. Self-service technology is not helping.

  • May 23, 2007 23 May'07

    Dell takes marketing mobile

    A campaign targeting college students via text messages has paid big dividends for Dell.

  • May 17, 2007 17 May'07

    Does Second Life mean a new world for CRM?

    IBM's creation of a sales center within Second Life has real impact for forward-thinking companies that want to take customer service virtual.

  • May 08, 2007 08 May'07

    Customer loyalty, profitability drive BI consolidation at Fairmont

    The Fairmont hotel chain is rebuilding its data warehouse and using one BI system to better segment and contact its customer base.

  • May 07, 2007 07 May'07

    Managing remote call center agents: 14 best practices

    Many organizations are embracing the concept of remote call center agents, but the most significant concern is how to manage these agents without personal contact from the call center supervisor. In her latest column, Donna Fluss outlines best ...

  • May 03, 2007 03 May'07

    WWE wrestles with customer feedback marketing

    Wrestling fans are helping the WWE determine story lines and self-segmenting the organization's marketing efforts with co-created content.

  • May 01, 2007 01 May'07

    CRM implementation: Top five headlines

    CRM implementation is the result of months, or sometimes years, of decision making. Software as a Service (SaaS), on-demand and open source options have broadened CRM software options, and a maturing market makes for smoother implementations. We've ...

  • April 27, 2007 27 Apr'07

    Gartner analyst: CRM implementation is never done

    At the CRM Association Conference in Atlanta, the team had a chance to catch up with Gareth Herschel, research director at Gartner Inc. In May, is focusing on the challenges involved with deploying CRM, so we asked Gareth...

  • April 26, 2007 26 Apr'07

    Improving the customer experience: Call centers making an emotional connection

    Call centers are seeking to improve the customer experience by identifying and measuring customer emotions. Call center agent training and carefully crafted customer surveys can improve the emotional connection with customers, but the business is ...

  • April 25, 2007 25 Apr'07

    Is SAP losing the CRM usability race?

    At last year's Sapphire conference, SAP announced a revamped user interface, but it is still not widely available. Meanwhile, CRM competitors continue to focus on usability.

  • April 24, 2007 24 Apr'07

    Anatomy of a CRM project: Replacing Siebel with SAP

    Dow Corning made the switch from Siebel to SAP CRM to better fit with its long-term technology roadmap.

  • April 23, 2007 23 Apr'07

    Unearthing call center benchmarks and best practices

    For call center managers, it can be helpful to benchmark a center against the best in the world, as well as understand how and why those call centers excel. In this column, expert Lori Bocklund reveals the highlights of a call center benchmarking ...

  • April 23, 2007 23 Apr'07

    Voice-of-the-customer program begins with performance management at call center

    A financial services agency is hoping to revamp its customer satisfaction, but it started with a foundation of quality monitoring and workforce management in the call center.

  • April 18, 2007 18 Apr'07

    CDC buys Saratoga Systems

    CDC has added Saratoga to its portfolio of CRM companies. Saratoga joins other recent acquisitions Pivotal and Respond.

  • April 12, 2007 12 Apr'07

    Single-instance or multiple-instance CRM deployment -- Which is right for you?

    Microsoft is planning to offer on-site, multi-tenant CRM hosting, and Gartner is predicting that companies will move between single- and multiple-instance CRM architectures.

  • April 09, 2007 09 Apr'07

    Gartner ranks customer service software

    Gartner's Magic Quadrant for CRM Customer Service Contact Centers finds a fragmented marketplace.

  • April 09, 2007 09 Apr'07

    Building a customer-centric organization

    A major impediment to building a customer-centric organization is the conflicting goals of the primary customer-facing departments: sales, marketing and service. Somehow, in the drive to achieve goals, each department loses sight of customers as ...

  • April 05, 2007 05 Apr'07

    CRM: Financial services firms take a fresh look

    Consolidation in the financial services industry and stringent regulations are driving institutions to improve processes with CRM. Analysts don't expect that to change anytime soon.

  • April 04, 2007 04 Apr'07

    E-service, e-commerce create call center challenges

    Online service means customer contacts are now more sophisticated and e-commerce advances mean customers expect to be recognized through all channels.

  • April 03, 2007 03 Apr'07

    SaaS CRM software takes vertical approach

    RightNow and have both released vertical versions of CRM recently. On-demand is catching up with on-premise, but both have a long way to go.

  • March 28, 2007 28 Mar'07

    Top 15 CRM vendors, emerging trends revealed

    ISM's annual rankings of the top vendors for SMB and enterprise CRM were issued this week, and while the names are familiar, the market is seeing change.

  • March 28, 2007 28 Mar'07

    Union Bank navigates employee self service

    As a financial institution, it was imperative for Union Bank of Vermont to document all internal IT processes. With the Alloy Navigator product, the bank's IT director found an uncomplicated Web portal that improves tracking of IT issues and a ...

  • March 22, 2007 22 Mar'07

    Pressure for metrics mounts on marketers

    The CMO Council outlines the top 10 technology spending priorities for marketers as they face increasing pressure to justify spending.

  • March 20, 2007 20 Mar'07

    Customer satisfaction falls despite call center efforts

    Customer satisfaction levels fell significantly compared with last year, according to a recent contact center benchmarking report. And that's a good thing, the authors say.

  • March 14, 2007 14 Mar'07

    CRM metrics mean success for Microsoft user

    A CRM user attending Microsoft Convergence brought service and marketing metrics from his old job to ensure CRM success at his new one.

  • March 09, 2007 09 Mar'07

    Hartford City Hall gets a makeover with new call center

    Last year, hundreds of phone numbers made calling a city department in Hartford, Conn., a nightmare. Today, constituent calls are all routed to a 3-1-1 call center, thanks to call center software from Lagan.

  • March 07, 2007 07 Mar'07

    Personalizing the contact center

    Creating one-to-one relationships in the contact center requires careful attention to agent hiring, training and evaluation, say analysts, vendors and managers.

  • March 06, 2007 06 Mar'07

    Gartner names the top marketing software vendors

    Marketing Resource Management isn't just for the enterprise anymore and while Aprimo still leads the pack, CRM suite vendors and specialists are catching up.

  • March 05, 2007 05 Mar'07

    The contact center performance management market is on the rise

    Performance management started to penetrate contact centers in the early 2000s, but 2006 is the first year of significant adoption. According to Donna Fluss, the lack of consensus on the definition and purpose of these applications has created a ...

  • February 28, 2007 28 Feb'07 makes financial services push

    With a new wealth management edition and a 25,000-seat deal at Merrill Lynch, is committing to one of CRM's biggest verticals.

  • February 27, 2007 27 Feb'07

    Customer loyalty demands employee loyalty

    Employee loyalty and faith in the product can be a leading indicator of customer loyalty. Yet most employees don't think they deserve customer loyalty.

  • February 22, 2007 22 Feb'07

    Customers: The best judge of agent performance

    New tools are making it easier than ever to allow customers to provide feedback on their interactions with call center agents.

  • February 21, 2007 21 Feb'07

    Is there a CRM lesson in JetBlue's snafu?

    Usually a model for customer service, JetBlue got burned by a winter ice storm and discovered its limitations. Should all businesses be considering a customer bill of rights?

  • February 15, 2007 15 Feb'07

    Predictive analytics the first step to customer centricity for Bon-Ton

    Hoping to gain a better understanding of its customers at a local level, the Bon-Ton Stores has deployed predictive analytics from SPSS.

  • February 12, 2007 12 Feb'07

    Call center consolidation continues as Verint buys Witness

    The combination of Verint and Witness could challenge Aspect for domination of the rapidly consolidating workforce optimization technology market.

  • February 08, 2007 08 Feb'07

    Speech, voice apps integrating into the contact center

    Contact centers are seeing more options than ever with RightNow adding new voice functionality and Autonomy bringing search to its speech analytics.

  • February 07, 2007 07 Feb'07

    CRM software rankings tell a familiar tale

    Siebel and SAP remain the leading enterprise CRM products, but midmarket players like, RightNow and Microsoft are gaining ground, Forrester says.

  • February 02, 2007 02 Feb'07

    Siebel 8.0 leaves users with CRM upgrade quandary

    In its first Siebel CRM release, Oracle is offering a new user interface and search, leaving customers to decide if they want to upgrade or wait for Fusion.

  • February 02, 2007 02 Feb'07

    The power of real-time customer surveys

    When real-time customer surveying tools are used properly, they improve customer satisfaction, increase revenue, decrease customer attrition, reduce operating expenses and improve agent satisfaction and retention. Read advice from Donna Fluss on how...

  • January 31, 2007 31 Jan'07

    mySAP CRM replaces Vantive at manufacturing firm

    Bowe, Bell + Howell selected mySAP CRM to replace an old Vantive system thanks to a site visit and the promise of integrating GPS.

  • January 31, 2007 31 Jan'07

    Contact centers opening to open source

    While open source has made headway in the CRM market with SFA, it's taking longer to penetrate the contact center. That's slowly changing, particularly with outsourcers.

  • January 31, 2007 31 Jan'07

    Oracle launches five new products

    Oracle today detailed enhancements to five of its products at once, upgrading Siebel, PeopleSoft, JD Edwards and the E-Business Suite as part of its Applications Unlimited program.

  • January 30, 2007 30 Jan'07

    Voices of CRM: Seth Godin on marketing metrics and social media

    Seth Godin, marketing guru and blogger, discusses CRM, his books, social media and why marketers shouldn't be overly concerned with metrics.

  • January 25, 2007 25 Jan'07

    Minneapolis dials up a central call center

    Minneapolis is one of the many cities moving to one centralized 311 system, bringing disparate city departments together.

  • January 18, 2007 18 Jan'07

    CRM, customer service still driving technology spending

    Business users are planning to increase their spending on CRM and customer service technology next year, particularly e-service, a new survey finds.

  • January 10, 2007 10 Jan'07

    Microsoft takes next step toward SaaS CRM

    Heralding the "portable model," which allows customers to switch between hosted, SaaS or on-premise CRM with the same metadata, Microsoft is releasing CRM Live to its TAP.

  • January 08, 2007 08 Jan'07

    Whatever happened to Siebel's OnDemand CRM?

    When Siebel finally released a SaaS CRM product, the news came fast and furious -- acquiring UpShot, five releases in 14 months. What happened after Oracle's acquisition?

  • January 03, 2007 03 Jan'07

    CRM success relies on managing a project post-implementation

    CRM managers need to monitor and steer a CRM project after the implementation to ensure success, according to Gartner.

  • December 19, 2006 19 Dec'06

    CRM experts predict 2007

    CRM remains a tricky and ever-evolving market. Nevertheless,'s experts boldly predict what will happen with mobile CRM, VoIP, SaaS and the call center.

  • December 14, 2006 14 Dec'06

    CRM's top 10 stories of 2006

    CRM is set to soar…again. VoIP, SaaS and a battle for market share between Oracle and SAP made the news interesting in 2006.

  • December 05, 2006 05 Dec'06

    The IP contact center: Why the time is right

    Today it's clear that IP can vastly reduce operating expenses, simplify management overhead, provide geographic flexibility and improve quality, particularly for multi-site contact center operations, says Donna Fluss in her latest Call Center Trends...

  • November 27, 2006 27 Nov'06 boosts CRM integration

    As it looks to extend its platform, the CRM and SaaS company will release features to help users integrate with Oracle 11i, middleware vendors and legacy systems.

  • November 21, 2006 21 Nov'06

    Customers make great marketers

    Customers aren't just a focus at KarmaLoop, an online apparel retailer; they market and sell the product as well.

  • November 21, 2006 21 Nov'06

    Amidst CRM consolidation, vertical applications shine

    Siebel dominates many of the vertical CRM markets, but some companies are selecting best-of-breed software even as they're being swallowed up by the major vendors.

  • November 16, 2006 16 Nov'06

    Measure loyalty programs by more than ROI

    ROI analysis only provides part of the equation in measuring ROI of a loyalty program. Companies should also measure causality.

  • November 15, 2006 15 Nov'06

    Call center at Virgin Mobile gets personal

    Virgin Mobile Canada's approach to call center management puts the emphasis on agent individuality and chooses customer rapport over rules and metrics.

  • November 13, 2006 13 Nov'06

    Self-service applications save money

    Too many companies still do not appreciate that customers will only use self-service applications if they are a better and easier alternative, says Donna Fluss in her latest column. Learn more about self service and how it can optimize your call ...

  • November 09, 2006 09 Nov'06

    Call center agents -- six simple steps to help motivation

    Managers can keep agents motivated by starting off right with hiring, putting trust in agents and sharing budget concerns with call center workers.

  • November 06, 2006 06 Nov'06

    Microsoft to integrate CRM with Office 2007, Vista

    Microsoft's Dynamics CRM will leverage the new Office suite and operating system when they become available next year. CRM will also lead the company's Live efforts.

  • November 01, 2006 01 Nov'06

    Workforce management provides winning formula for Bell Canada

    Bell Canada revamped its call center processes using a workforce management tool. Despite many changes, managers continue to use the tool to efficiently manage and schedule staff.

  • October 26, 2006 26 Oct'06

    NetSuite flexes its customization muscles with SuiteFlex

    NetSuite has added Java-based customization tools that allow partners to build microvertcials on top of NetSuite's core applications, an answer to's Apex.

  • October 18, 2006 18 Oct'06

    Numara answers the call for help desk support company

    Executives at My Computer Works turned to FootPrints to ease their growing pains. They say they have continued to get the support they need after UniPress was acquired by Numara.

  • October 17, 2006 17 Oct'06

    Data quality cleans up customer records at Intellidyn

    A new data quality system lets the customer information repository match millions of records in just hours.

  • October 16, 2006 16 Oct'06

    Hosting expands technology choices for contact centers

    The new generation of hosted offerings provides most of the systems and applications needed to operate and manage a world-class contact center, says Donna Fluss in her latest column. Learn more about hosted call center offerings and how they are ...

  • October 11, 2006 11 Oct'06

    Call centers grappling with data security

    Call center security issues are seeing plenty of headlines lately thanks to HP and outsourcing scandals in the U.K. Meanwhile, work-at-home agents are adding a new wrinkle.

  • October 09, 2006 09 Oct'06 writes its own language

    Apex, a multi-tenant, on-demand programming language will be available next year from the company as it extends its growth into a platform provider.

  • October 05, 2006 05 Oct'06

    Contact optimization confusing marketers

    There's plenty of buzz in marketing about anything that might improve efficiencies or manage customer contact fatigue, but contact optimization isn't the answer for everyone.

  • September 26, 2006 26 Sep'06

    The ROI of SaaS vs. on-premise CRM

    Determining whether to deploy on-premise or on-demand technology can be a difficult task, but recent findings from Forrester Research offer a method and provide a mixed result.

  • September 18, 2006 18 Sep'06

    Quality management and recording suites capitalizing on shifting contact center market

    Following a major transition period for the contact center market, expect quality management (QM) and recording vendors to come out on top, says Donna Fluss in her latest column. Winning vendors sell applications that facilitate this transition, ...

  • September 14, 2006 14 Sep'06

    Loyalty marketing a strategy worth adopting

    Organizations such as Visa USA, AARP, BellSouth and Royal Caribbean are moving away from straight rewards-based loyalty programs to experiential loyalty.

  • September 07, 2006 07 Sep'06

    Data breaches tough to stop

    IT pros worry that false positives and a lack of resources are preventing them from blocking data breaches, according to a survey conducted by the Ponemon Institute.

  • September 07, 2006 07 Sep'06

    BAM, CEP providing insight into data at financial firms

    If you're in financial services, it's time to add BAM and CEP to your pantheon of three-letter terms.

  • September 06, 2006 06 Sep'06

    Fed up with IVR, firm answers all calls with humans

    The backlash against automated phone systems has been fierce, and one company has decided to do away with it altogether.

  • August 31, 2006 31 Aug'06

    Call center brings it together with WFO

    A customer of both Blue Pumpkin and Witness before the merger, Asurion is reaping the rewards of workforce optimization, and it's not just about technology.

  • August 24, 2006 24 Aug'06

    Best practices in managing customer data

    A survey by Aberdeen found that effective customer data management initiatives have executive endorsement, a centralized location and don't necessarily need master data management.

  • August 22, 2006 22 Aug'06

    CRM gaga for Google and NetSuite released applications today allowing users to track AdWords on Google by integrating it into their CRM system, the "holy grail of marketing," they say.

  • August 21, 2006 21 Aug'06

    NJ Transit implements, customizes hosted CRM

    CRM SaaS applications aren't just for sales anymore, and new customization tools are also making them more adaptable.

  • August 10, 2006 10 Aug'06

    CDI takes more than just CRM, data warehouses

    Speaking at a recent industry event, consultant Jill Dyche said companies need more than CRM and a data warehouses to run a customer data integration project.

  • August 01, 2006 01 Aug'06

    Spoke frees up its database

    Social networking company Spoke is offering up its database of users free of charge -- provided you validate your own contact information.

  • August 01, 2006 01 Aug'06

    Microsoft goes outside for CDI help

    Microsoft chose a CDI vendor for its internal project based on one key criterion.

  • August 01, 2006 01 Aug'06

    Voices of CRM: Zach Nelson on CRM and ERP integration

    Nelson, the CEO of NetSuite, talks about the future of on-demand software, CRM integration, the intersection of CRM, ERP and e-commerce and the CRM marketplace.

  • July 25, 2006 25 Jul'06

    Contact center technology selection done right

    The state of Washington went through an intense process when selecting a hosted contact center vendor for its emergency response system.

  • July 20, 2006 20 Jul'06

    Gartner: Siebel still No. 1 in SFA

    Gartner's latest Magic Quadrant names Siebel the leader in SFA technology, but the on-demand vendors and SAP are gaining ground.

  • July 19, 2006 19 Jul'06

    SAP loses ground to Oracle, sees stock fall

    SAP's stock price dropped as much as 10% last week on news that the software vendor lost market share to archrival Oracle Corp. and will miss its earnings target.

  • July 19, 2006 19 Jul'06

    Northern Tool takes smart approach to customer intelligence

    Northern Tool enhanced its customer intelligence by bringing an outsourced database in-house, integrating new data sources and implementing marketing automation tools.

  • July 17, 2006 17 Jul'06 links up with SAP in latest CRM release

    The Summer '06 release features new mobile CRM functionality, service entitlements and a connector to SAP's R/3 back end.

  • July 14, 2006 14 Jul'06

    Verint buys into call center with Mercom acquisition

    Verint will add Mercom's footprint in the small and midsized contact center market to its BI and quality monitoring tools.

  • July 13, 2006 13 Jul'06

    Subaru turbocharges customer research

    By targeting highly educated and technical customers, Subaru has improved its marketing and grown its U.S. market share.

  • July 10, 2006 10 Jul'06

    SAP buys Praxis, builds out e-commerce, CRM

    SAP is filling a gap in its Business One software for small businesses by adding e-commerce capabilities for Web-based sales.

  • June 26, 2006 26 Jun'06 reaches into the PRM market

    With the release of Partnerforce, is adding to its CRM offerings with a tool to manage relationships with channel partners and resellers.

  • June 20, 2006 20 Jun'06

    What will be Bill Gates' IT legacy?

    High-tech executives have differing opinions on how the Microsoft icon will be remembered in terms of his contribution to IT.

  • June 15, 2006 15 Jun'06

    CRM failed because …

    The CRM market has long borne the stigma of failure. Here, some of the leading vendors share their thoughts on why it has failed -- and their solutions.

  • June 13, 2006 13 Jun'06

    Sprint shares its best practices in text chat

    For telecomm giant Sprint, text chat is starting to provide not just customer loyalty but sales benefits as well.

  • June 08, 2006 08 Jun'06

    Customer equity, not customer satisfaction the focus at Wachovia

    The nation's fourth-largest bank is extending its focus on customer satisfaction and customer loyalty to lifetime value, hoping to capitalize over the long term by building customer equity.

  • June 07, 2006 07 Jun'06

    More laptops stolen, 300,000 customer records at risk

    Three stolen laptops jeopardize the personal information of former supermarket employees, customers of and members of the YMCA.

  • June 06, 2006 06 Jun'06

    Onyx to be acquired by private firm

    Onyx has entered an agreement to be bought by M2M Holdings, further consolidating CRM's midmarket.