Honeybee Podcast Episode #102 - Rod Jones talks Africa, BPOs, Omni-channel

In episode #102 of our honeybee podcast, we talk with Rod Jones of Rod Jones Contact Centre Consulting. Based in South Africa, Rod has been serving the contact centre industry for more than 40 years. Not only has he been involved since the beginning when call centres were developed, he’s contributed to the evolution of call centres into contact centres, and he continues to guide the industry into the future.

The revolution of the in-store sales journey

Retailers are transforming the in-store experience by augmenting human associates with a host of digital capabilities. This paper will delve into what major retailers are doing, what the capabilities look like, and what are the top three steps your company can take to implement digital technologies in your store.

Revenue Conversions - Maximise cross-sells and upsells

4 ways maximize revenue at contact centres

A digital solution that supports agent-customer interactions can boost your cross-sells and upsells.

Our last post, Invest in the right solution to increase revenue conversions explored how a digital solution can help contact centres personalise customer interactions and leverage key opportunities to cross-sell and upsell. But what other strategies can a contact centres use to transform from a cost center into a revenue generator?

Of course factors such as product pricing, service options, and market research all contribute to cross-selling and upselling success. But once those factors have been established, consider these four ways contact centres can maximize cross-sells and upsells.

Revenue Conversions - Maximise cross-sells and upsells

4 ways maximize revenue at contact centres

A digital solution that supports agent-customer interactions can boost your cross-sells and upsells.

Our last post, Invest in the right solution to increase revenue conversions explored how a digital solution can help contact centres personalise customer interactions and leverage key opportunities to cross-sell and upsell. But what other strategies can a contact centres use to transform from a cost center into a revenue generator?

Of course factors such as product pricing, service options, and market research all contribute to cross-selling and upselling success. But once those factors have been established, consider these four ways contact centres can maximize cross-sells and upsells.

Revenue Conversions - Cost to profit centres

Turn your contact centre into a profit generator

The traditional model of contact centres hasn’t caught up with today’s market.

 More than 60% of organisations short change themselves by positioning their contact centres as cost centers rather than revenue generators.* But with a renewed focus and strategy, organizations can reap the full benefits of their contact centres and increase revenue conversions. Here’s how.

How Toys R Us Should Have Listened More To The Material Girl?

When I read about a Canadian CBC news story featuring a marketing professor saying that big retailers need to be more like Madonna, I just had to keep reading. Professor Nicole Rourke of St Claire College was commenting on traditional big box retailers like Toys R Us and Sears. Her point is that the expectation of customers has moved on and yet many retailers remain unchanged.

Which Banks Deliver A Great Customer Experience?

The most recent Forrester Customer Experience Index rated the Customer Experience (CX) at 28 different US banks. The Forrester CX Index is focused very much on generating customer loyalty, which is an important variable to measure when the retail banking industry is experiencing so much disruption from direct and digital services.

Agents + data overcome ROI obstacles for contact centre outsourcers

To compel a North American company to turn away from its in-house services and partner with a third-party, a contact center outsourcer (CCO) has to demonstrate its ability to produce a positive ROI.

Two basic metrics to measure for ROI at contact centers are revenue in the immediate, and customer loyalty in the long run. And two of the biggest obstacles to realizing a positive ROI are inadequate data and a sub-optimum workforce.

A Contact Centre 360 Perspective

This series takes a look at the world contact centres from several different viewpoints. Throughout the series we’ll consider the voice of the consumers and what they expect from contact centres, we’ll be talking to brands about what’s important to them when choosing an outsource partner and we’ll be discussing who the leaders and innovators are in this space, but we start with leading analysts talking about macro trends across the industry as well as the US and South African markets specifically.

In this first episode, Peter Ryan talks about the big trends affecting contact centre operators, and his view of where the US market is heading. Peter Ryan has been at the forefront of contact centre services market advisory for over a decade.  Having began his career in London at Datamonitor in 2003, he quickly established himself as one of the foremost experts in the burgeoning CRM sector.

Over the course of his career, he has advised contact centre outsourcers, their clients, industry associations and governments on matters ranging from vertical market penetration and service delivery to best practices in offshore positioning.

Design can give contact centre outsourcers an edge in the North American market

As we learned in our previous post, there is a trend in the North American market to resist outsourcing with third-party contact centers [1].

“Despite a trend of shrinking in-house contact center budgets, the North American market is one in which many enterprises are more willing to assert their own buying power rather than partner with a third party,” said Peter Ryan of Ryan Strategic Advisory.

Customer experience may save contact centre outsourcers in the U.S.

Contact center outsourcers (CCO) hoping to break into the North America market face considerable commercial pressures. While the United States holds the largest share in the contact center industry, with a steady 1.5 percent growth in 2016[1], CCOs account for less than 20% of the industry in the U.S., and not much more in Canada. More importantly, as Peter Ryan of Ryan Strategic Advisory observes, there is a trend in North America to resist outsourcing with third-party contact centres.[2]

Which technology will change contact centres in 2018?

Ask five technology experts about the tech that will change contact centres in 2018 and you will probably get five different answers. Everyone has a different view on what is important and how the systems that agents use might evolve as the contact centre becomes more integral to the relationship between brand and customer. 

The top six CX trends to watch in 2018

It’s the start of the year and I have been browsing the business journals and blogs exploring the key customer experience (CX) trends that most companies seem to be focused on. As we are still in January there are dozens of articles suggesting the key CX trends for 2018, but based on my own experience and research I believe these are going to be the top 6 areas worth focusing on this year.

ICMI: The Top 50 Global Contact Centre Thought Leaders

ICMI is one of the biggest contact centre associations in the world. Based in Colorado, they produce research on what is happening in the global contact centre market along with other resources, such as consulting and training. They recently published a list of the top 50 contact centre experts in the world.

Turn your contact centre into a profit generator

The other day, I came across a report albeit not a very recent one (Collapse of the Cost Center: Driving Contact Center Profitability), by International Customer Management Institute, 2015 which points out that over 62% of contact centers were thought to be perceived as a cost center by their organizations

Respecting the superheroes who keep contact centres going

Way back in the early part of this century Channel 4 News ran a campaign focused on how contact centres were having a detrimental effect on the life of those who worked in them. Shamed as ‘dark satanic mills’ by the Blake-quoting reporters, the contact centres at the time were presented as little more than the modern-day equivalents of the Victorian workhouse.

Your contact centre could be the best sales team ever

Some business commentators have recently argued that the traditional contact centre is finished. Robots, voice recognition and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are all creating an environment where customers will no longer need to speak to a human when they need help – the robots will be faster and better.

I beg to differ. The technology is getting better no doubt, but I believe the role of the contact centre agent is becoming more important than ever for brands that want to build a better relationship with their customers. With an increasingly complex customer journey, this ability to empathise and connect is more important than ever.

How to create superhero agents in your contact centre

This whitepaper explores how the roles of contact centres agents has changed over the years from just being cost to sales department to creating profits by being a part of sales process. Contact centres have opportunities to get closer to the customer as the process of handling customer enquiries is becoming more complex.

How digital meets human

Contact centres globally are facing tough challenges. With increasing competition, limited budgets, disruptive innovations, and more, contact centres are seeking new strategies and technologies to better serve customers and increase conversions and revenue.

This white paper explores a critical factor to increasing revenue in contact centres: the integration of a digital platform. If a digital platform is properly integrated, it can guide agents during customer interactions and sales opportunities and determine the success of c-stat, NPS, conversions, and revenue. An effective integration will deliver a high quality customer experience, while developing customer interactions toward opportune moments for cross-selling and upselling.

About Us

honeybee was created by people who've lived and breathed the challenges of complex retail businesses and contact centres, where creating exciting and engaging customer experiences was always threatened with speed to market pressures, legacy systems that were hard to intergrate and small project budgets.

We realised there had to be a better way, so we brought together the right people - from operational execution and employee engagement through to journey design and technical experts to make our vision a reality. We wanted to make it easier for companies to design and launch exceptional customer journeys.