Siebel Systems Inc. has added a customer support module to Siebel CRM OnDemand -- UpShot Edition. It's the first upgrade to the software since Siebel acquired the Mountain View, Calif.-based UpShot Corp. last month.
The enhancements were planned by UpShot before the buyout, said Keith Raffel, vice president of Siebel CRM OnDemand. Some but not all of the new features will also be included in Siebel CRM OnDemand, the San Mateo, Calif., company's own hosted software due out by year's end.
"The real relevance of today is that this shows we at Siebel have an ongoing commitment to support UpShot customers," said Raffel, who was UpShot's founder and chairman.
While Siebel has pledged support for the current UpShot product, it still intends to merge the two hosted applications into one product next summer.
The customer service module is immediately available to current UpShot customers at no extra cost.
It tries to move companies toward viewing service as a revenue builder. For instance, the new module offers scripting for agents to push new marketing campaigns on inbound calls and assigns customer numbers to route calls to the appropriate agent. A large, high-value customer could, for example, be directed to the sales or support agent who works specifically with that client, Raffel said.
Another feature ties in with Microsoft Outlook and Lotus Notes to automatically save information to a customer record when sending e-mail. The module also includes tools for customer satisfaction and surveys.
With OnDemand and the UpShot Edition scheduled to merge, the new module best serves current UpShot customers who may not be considering a move to the combined offering, said Denis Pombriant, vice president and research director at Aberdeen Group in Boston.
"There is a core of UpShot customers that really need this technology, and they don't want to wait," Pombriant said. "Since this is available, why not put it out there? I'm sure there's a large group of UpShot customers that will see this as very welcome news."
One UpShot customer, CorSolutions Medical Inc., a health intelligence and solutions firm in Buffalo Grove, Ill., emphasizes a customer-centric approach to the delivery of disease-management programs. It said it can now better service existing customers through the customer lifecycle.
"The new module of customer support provides significant benefit for out clients," Pat Cua, executive vice president of business development, said in a release. "It enables us to respond even more efficiently as well as track satisfaction rates, ensuring that we meet and exceed our clients' expectations."
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