Natterbox https://www.natterbox.com Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:33:09 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.2 The Deep Blue Ce(bit) https://www.natterbox.com/deep-blue-cebit/ https://www.natterbox.com/deep-blue-cebit/#respond Mon, 20 Mar 2017 15:56:22 +0000 https://www.natterbox.com/?p=4101 by James Radford, Product Manager at Natterbox Cebit 2017! This year, Salesforce World tour has smushed together with the sprawling CeBIT conference in Hannover. Here at Natterbox, we could not resist popping over to see the unusual lovechild such a tech conference fusion would make.   First impressions? Green. Salesforce love to tout their green […]

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by James Radford, Product Manager at Natterbox

Cebit 2017! This year, Salesforce World tour has smushed together with the sprawling CeBIT conference in Hannover. Here at Natterbox, we could not resist popping over to see the unusual lovechild such a tech conference fusion would make.

 

First impressions? Green. Salesforce love to tout their green credentials and with the groundbreaking 1-1-1 program I can see why. However, for this year’s CeBIT, they have just gone green. I am sure there are more trees here today than there are in the Black Forrest.

Tree-mendous (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself)

 

But still, it certainly gives the event hall a much more relaxed feel compared to a normal conference. And certainly more relaxed than the ‘Battle Royale’ themed Autonomous vehicles hall!

Anyone missing Robot Wars?

 

Germany is a fast growing market for Salesforce, especially in Service Cloud and Salesforce have recognized this with a corresponding jump in size of their event. The previous Salesforce events in Munich had more of a provincial feel but CeBit 2017 in Hannover has all the buzz of World Tour UK and lavishly kitted out look and feel of Dreamforce.

Its a trend we have been seeing here at Natterbox too. Between the gutsy, bohemian start-up culture of Berlin and the established markets of Munich and Düsseldorf, demand for integrated, scalable technology is rife. If you, like us, believe that voice is the most important method of communication with your customers but lament the stagnated telecoms technology on offer today. Pop over to Stand 114 and have a chat to us at Natterbox!

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OMG! Contact Centres are going OTT ! https://www.natterbox.com/omg-contact-centres-going-ott/ https://www.natterbox.com/omg-contact-centres-going-ott/#respond Thu, 16 Mar 2017 10:00:52 +0000 https://www.natterbox.com/?p=4118 by James Radford – Product Manager Natterbox Non cloud contact centres are falling behind the curve. The 2016 Dimension Data Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report provides some interesting insights into Contact Centre trends such as the fact that over 60% are now planning for the cloud which is surprisingly low given the rate of adoption […]

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by James Radford – Product Manager Natterbox

Non cloud contact centres are falling behind the curve.

The 2016 Dimension Data Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report provides some interesting insights into Contact Centre trends such as the fact that over 60% are now planning for the cloud which is surprisingly low given the rate of adoption of cloud technology in general. The “Rightscale Cloud Computing Trends: 2016 State of the Cloud Survey” states that 95% of respondents are using cloud.

So why do Contact Centres seem to be behind the curve?

 

Barriers to cloud adoption

Although organisations are becoming much more accepting of cloud technology some commentators cite lack of resource and expertise supplanting concerns about security as key inhibitors for adoption.  At Natterbox we have observed that in the context of Contact Centre it’s often capital investment in legacy infrastructure such as on-premise PBX and telephone hardware that holds an organisation back from adopting new technology.

Incompatibilities between legacy telecoms and new Virtual Contact Centre services causes reluctance to upgrade, causing many to miss out on the significant benefits the cloud can offer.

For example; if a business is in the market for a new CRM system they are more likely to adopt a Cloud based CRM like Salesforce.com or Service Cloud, particularly if they are planning on operating across multiple geographies.  However, if they want to leverage their existing on premise phone system they may face a number of compatibility, deployment and operational challenges.

CTI (Computer Telephony Integration) deployed either as a software client or browser plug in can be temperamental about browser versions and can be buggy burdening your IT staff with support tickets.  From an operational perspective unifying a contact centre across different office telephone systems or including mobile workers is also problematic if not impossible in many cases.

In the end, it all comes down to having operational standards that allow you to achieve business goals. According to a study by DialogTech, 15% of callers will wait less than one minute before they hang up.

“Today’s customers expect companies to quickly innovate in accordance with their changing preferences – otherwise they’ll simply switch brands.”
-Salesforce “State of the connected customer” (2017)

Over The Top Contact Centre Solution lets the cloud come to you

Yealink-telephone-with-theNatterbog-logo-in-the-display

With Natterbox OTT you can keep your current phone system while getting full contact centre integration

However for customers who want to user their existing PBX the challenge is effectively extending all the features of cloud telephony to their legacy telephone systems.

Fortunately, this can be achieved via Natterbox OTT Contact Centre solution providing all the customer service and productivity benefits on their existing telephone systems such as Call Queues, Intelligent Call Routing, Dynamic IVR, Salesforce Integrated CTI providing Click to Dial and Contact Record (screen) Pop.  Also including Call Recording, Contact Centre Wallboards and over 120 pre-configured reports available from within Salesforce.com.

So how is this possible? There are multiple ways of achieving the implementation with varying degrees of complexity depending on the customers set-up however in essence what Natterbox is doing is moving your call queues and IVR into the cloud.  This allows us to determine where the call should go in the cloud according to your business policies ahead of call distribution.

You can learn more about the detail here in our solution whitepaper or just call us. We love to talk!

 

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Trust and Scale – How these Fin Tech firms are globalising fast https://www.natterbox.com/trust-scale-fin-tech-firms-globalising-fast/ Tue, 07 Mar 2017 12:41:04 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=4087 By James Radford, Product Manager Natterbox   Opening new markets in the financial sector whether they are geographic or demographic demands more than just product innovation.  Success requires building trust, the ability to scale and a healthy appetite to disrupt an established industry.  Today we will look at three local Fin Tech firms and how […]

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Fintech Natterbox Advance Voice Services

By James Radford, Product Manager Natterbox

 

Opening new markets in the financial sector whether they are geographic or demographic demands more than just product innovation.  Success requires building trust, the ability to scale and a healthy appetite to disrupt an established industry.  Today we will look at three local Fin Tech firms and how they achieved their success.

N26Logo

N26 is a fantastic new bank based out of Berlin. It is designed for the 21st century and optimised for the smartphone generation. N26 customers can complete their account signup, via the website, in just 8 minutes and access innovative personal banking features in security, transaction management and communications.

funding-circle-logo1

Funding Circle is at the forefront of the fast-growing Peer-Peer marketplace to bring together small businesses looking for loans with individuals and organisations who are looking for investment opportunities. In 6 short years, they have funded over £2.5 Billion in loans.

sum_up

SumUp is the leading mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) company in Europe with 14 global sites including the UK, Germany, Russia and Brazil, allows merchants to accept credit and debit cards, using their smartphones or tablets. Started in 2012, SumUp was the first company in its industry sector to reach profitability.

Trust the Telephone in Order to Gain and Keep Trust

What each of these Fin Tech firms have in common are new and innovative products in the financial services sector which requires establishing a high level of trust that can only be achieved by speaking to customers.

For our business to work we have to establish trust with our customers and for us this can only be done on the phone.”  Said Alex Weber Head of International Markets @ N26

Paul Ebert, Global Head of Sales Funding Circle echoed this sentiment “Personal contact over the phone is key to success for building the relationship with small businesses.

The other thing these firms have on common is their adoption of Salesforce the customer success platform.

For firms like SumUp who were planning rapid expansion from two countries to multiple countries within six months, telecoms presented an additional complication. SumUp not only wanted to rapidly deploy a globally unified telecoms solution to these offices but they also had a core requirement to automate logging of all calls into their CRM. Via Salesforce, SumUp needed to tack all of their call statistics and decide, based on the location of the contact, what language the call should be answered in. These are just some of the tools that SumUp have used to provide an industry leading customer experience on the phone that is reproducible and homogeneous across every country they operate in.

 

Scalable Personal Customer Service

Natterbox provides a Global Telephony Service integrated into Salesforce solves scalability challenges.

Natterbox implemented the solution across all offices in a matter of days and have provided reliable support throughout the whole process.”  Martin Blenke Head of CRM Infrastructure at SumUp.

Achieving scale and efficiency does not have to be at the expense of customer experience either.

As we further expand internationally the scalability, routing, language support and call cost management of the Natterbox cloud service will ensure that we will maintain our incredible customer experience and run our business effectively.” Weber

Funding Circle saw an increase of 50% in agent productivity. “Both our business and the customer experience has improved since we deployed Natterbox”.  Ebert

Martin Blenke SumUp “Natterbox increased our agent’s productivity by 33%. The implementation easy and came along with a lot of advantages: call routing, click-to-dial, different outbound numbers, wrapup codes, tracking & reporting. We are using it in several countries, and it is easy to manage even from a distance.

 

Details about how these companies employed Natterbox technology

Number26 Case Study
Funding Circle Case Study
SumUp Case Study

 

Photo Credit: Cafe Credit via Flickr, under the Creative Commons License

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Essential information about call recording legislation in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States https://www.natterbox.com/essential-information-call-recording-legislation-australia-united-kingdom-united-states-2/ Thu, 23 Feb 2017 12:19:46 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=4064 This blog post will tell you what you need to know about call recording laws in the US, the UK and Australia. All call recording, whether mobile call recording or landline, are subject to some controversy. However, recording a call might also be mutually beneficial in case of a dispute. In the UK, for example, […]

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This blog post will tell you what you need to know about call recording laws in the US, the UK and Australia.

All call recording, whether mobile call recording or landline, are subject to some controversy. However, recording a call might also be mutually beneficial in case of a dispute. In the UK, for example, companies in the Financial Services are required by law to record calls.

We believe call recording will become the norm in the near future as technologies evolve. As an example, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to go back and show your overcharging plummer that he actually said he would do the whole job for £2500?

Call recording regulations vary from country to country. Below we have given a brief overview of the legal situation in the three countries. Feel free to download our more detailed reports.

 

Call Recording Laws in the United States

A total of 38 states and the D.C permit you to record telephone conversations where you yourself participate without informing the other party/parties that you are doing so. In essence, as long as at least one party on the call, including yourself, consents, you may record the call. The rest of the states require two party notification. Our report gives you the details about which states.

GET THE DETAILS

 

Call Recording Laws in the United Kingdom

The UK legislation on telephone recording is a bit of a quilt of different laws, all of which must be complied with. Individuals can record their own communications as long as it’s for their own use. However, if a third party is to get access to the recording, recording is prohibited without consent.
Businesses do not have to tell if they are going to record or monitor phone calls, as long as the recording or monitoring is done for a specific reason, for example quality monitoring or evidence of a business transaction. Our report gives you more details about other circumstances where you may or may not record phone calls.

GET THE DETAILS

 

Call Recording Laws in the Australia

Like the US, Australia is a Federation of States, and telephone recording laws involves complying with both Commonwealth and various State laws. In Australia, the courts have generally made a distinction between listening or recording using equipment which is part of the telecommunications system and equipment is is external to the telecommunications system. This basically decides which law(s) applies. As a result of this, the definition of interception of communication is a bit complicated, but we have broken it down for you in our report.

GET THE DETAILS

 

If you are looking for a call recording services that integrates seamlessly with Salesforce, look no further. Click HERE for more information. We are happy to do a demo with you at any time.

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Drive adoption of Salesforce in your company https://www.natterbox.com/drive-adoption-salesforce-company/ Thu, 23 Feb 2017 09:50:02 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=4073 You’re all set up. You have decided to get a proper CRM system. You choose Salesforce, get it set up, and then you start creating accounts and send out invitations to the relevant people in your company. Soon, that magnificent overview of growth in sales will be the pride of your morning dashboard. Then nothing […]

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You’re all set up. You have decided to get a proper CRM system. You choose Salesforce, get it set up, and then you start creating accounts and send out invitations to the relevant people in your company. Soon, that magnificent overview of growth in sales will be the pride of your morning dashboard.

Then nothing happens.

So after a couple of days you walk around the office, and you ask a few of people if they got your email. “Oh, yeah, I’ll do it today”, will be the average of the responses you get. And you believe them. Why wouldn’t they want to use this great tool? Habits maybe. Routines? Resistance?

Because you know what happens next.

A few will sign up, but not sign on. A few will forget to follow up on your original email. Unless you can come up with some smart ideas, you won’t get people to use it, it’s that simple.

What you have just experienced is, of course, a normal scenario in most companies that install new technology, software or routines. However, fear not. We have a few good ideas how you can drive adoption of Salesforce in your company.

 

Sell it to everyone

You have to be clear on how it will benefit the individual AND the organisation to adopt Salesforce. Show your sales team how they can organise contacts and accounts, show the marketing team how they can set up campaigns and conversion rates. Show management how they can hold teams and people accountable, plus all the great reports.

 

Offer training

In a larger organisation you might want to consider a group training with some incentives like a pizza or some drinks. In smaller organisations, you should definitively make sure everyone gets at least half an hour one-on-one training, and make sure they make that first contact via Salesforce while you are supervising. It’s not Micro-management when you can call it training. If adoption is low, repeat the training. Maybe shift the balance from pizza to drinks.

 

Define what constitutes a lead or a sale

You should institute a culture around your leads or sales tracking that contains the principle that if it isn’t in Salesforce, it doesn’t exist. This will make it really hard to get the job done for the given employee if he or she doesn’t add information into the database. This helps even more if a senior executive stands behind this policy.

 

Make the most handsome boy or gal in the company the Salesforce Champion for Q&A

Whether it’s Lee or Lucy, as long as it’s someone most people would love to receive a secret Valentine’s day card from, you can be sure they will be interested in what they have to teach. Make sure you recruit and train your charm crew first so that they have actual value to offer to the hopeful army of trainees they are about to take on.

 

Link your whole telephone system to Salesforce. Yes, even their company mobile phones

On the Salesforce App Exchange, there is a small little Salesforce app called Natterbox CTI, which provides users with the ability to make and receive calls through Salesforce, even linking their mobile phones.

If you integrate your Cloud PBX telephone system with Salesforce through Natterbox, adoption is guaranteed, and there will always be records of everything in Salesforce, making even organisation with a high sales team turnover better able to handle what would otherwise be a confusing lack of information.

Not only will all incoming and outbound calls be logged with wrap up codes, you can even add Voice Record, which will be linked to the Account so anyone can follow up with the customer.

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Essential information about call recording legislation in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States https://www.natterbox.com/essential-information-call-recording-legislation-australia-united-kingdom-united-states/ https://www.natterbox.com/essential-information-call-recording-legislation-australia-united-kingdom-united-states/#respond Mon, 20 Feb 2017 09:14:37 +0000 http://localhost/natterbox_wp/?p=153 This blog post will tell you what you need to know about call recording laws in the US, the UK and Australia. All call recording, whether mobile call recording or landline, are subject to some controversy. However, recording a call might also be mutually beneficial in case of a dispute. In the UK, for example, […]

The post Essential information about call recording legislation in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States appeared first on Natterbox.

]]>
This blog post will tell you what you need to know about call recording laws in the US, the UK and Australia.

All call recording, whether mobile call recording or landline, are subject to some controversy. However, recording a call might also be mutually beneficial in case of a dispute. In the UK, for example, companies in the Financial Services are required by law to record calls.

We believe call recording will become the norm in the near future as technologies evolve. As an example, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to go back and show your overcharging plummer that he actually said he would do the whole job for £2500?

Call recording regulations vary from country to country. Below we have given a brief overview of the legal situation in the three countries. Feel free to download our more detailed reports.

Call Recording Laws in the United States

A total of 38 states and the D.C permit you to record telephone conversations where you yourself participate without informing the other party/parties that you are doing so. In essence, as long as at least one party on the call, including yourself, consents, you may record the call. The rest of the states require two party notification. Our report gives you the details about which states.

GET THE DETAILS

Call Recording Laws in the United Kingdom

The UK legislation on telephone recording is a bit of a quilt of different laws, all of which must be complied with. Individuals can record their own communications as long as it’s for their own use. However, if a third party is to get access to the recording, recording is prohibited without consent.
Businesses do not have to tell if they are going to record or monitor phone calls, as long as the recording or monitoring is done for a specific reason, for example quality monitoring or evidence of a business transaction. Our report gives you more details about other circumstances where you may or may not record phone calls.

GET THE DETAILS

Call Recording Laws in the Australia

Like the US, Australia is a Federation of States, and telephone recording laws involves complying with both Commonwealth and various State laws. In Australia, the courts have generally made a distinction between listening or recording using equipment which is part of the telecommunications system and equipment is is external to the telecommunications system. This basically decides which law(s) applies. As a result of this, the definition of interception of communication is a bit complicated, but we have broken it down for you in our report.

GET THE DETAILS

If you are looking for a call recording services that integrates seamlessly with Salesforce, look no further. Click HERE for more information. We are happy to do a demo with you at any time.

The post Essential information about call recording legislation in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States appeared first on Natterbox.

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Follow-The-Sun Support – Isn’t Just About The Sun! https://www.natterbox.com/follow-sun-support-isnt-just-sun-2/ Tue, 13 Dec 2016 10:02:22 +0000 http://natterbox.wpengine.com/?p=4019 Follow-The-Sun support well deserves its highly accolated reputation. The system enables you to provide your customers with 24/7 support worldwide, previously a level of service only available to big corporation’s customers. You can read about what 24/7 FOLLOW-THE-SUN support is, why it’s important and the infrastructure challenges faced when providing it in our previous blog […]

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Follow-The-Sun support well deserves its highly accolated reputation. The system enables you to provide your customers with 24/7 support worldwide, previously a level of service only available to big corporation’s customers. You can read about what 24/7 FOLLOW-THE-SUN support is, why it’s important and the infrastructure challenges faced when providing it in our previous blog post. This post below is aimed at explaining a somewhat less infrastructural but still crucially important challenge to think about when you are considering implementing FOLLOW-THE-SUN support.

To put it simply, FOLLOW-THE-SUN support is not just about following the sun and coordinating different time zones, that’s just your first challenge.

 

The more challenging aspect of offering this higher class of service to customers has to do with available workdays around the world.

In contrast with most of the world where Saturday and Sunday are weekend days and people work Monday through Friday some countries have different work weeks.  For example, in the Middle East and Israel the working week runs from Sunday to Thursday, making Friday and Saturday the weekend. Add to the mix time zone differences and Asian countries like Malaysia, Bangladesh and Brunei that follow the Friday-Saturday weekend structure and you’ve got yourself quite a conundrum.

In addition to the differing work weeks there are public and national holidays to consider as well. Your service center staff in different countries will need to be given a variety of different days off. In the European Union alone there are 65 working days in which there is at least one overlapping national holiday between countries/regions. That means on average there is a place somewhere in the EU every week that has a four-day work week. Now go global and add in the rest of the world’s public holidays. Do you see where we’re going with this?

Finally, there are rosters, paid time off and sick leave schedules to navigate. These of course tend to vary according to different countries legislations and the unpredictability of when they will be utilized by staff. It is this unpredictability and variance that makes them a nightmare to manage when designing your follow-the-sun call routing.

 

Clearly, automation is key.

With some systems you can use Time Based Rules to accommodate standard working hours however when comes to managing non static and dynamic data such as public holidays which can change from year to year, rosters, paid time off and sick leave a static routing system is going to fall well short.   Natterbox’s answer to this challenge is Relationship Based Routing. We’ll give you a brief overview of how it solves the problem here and now, but to fully understand the myriad of other benefits Relationship Based Routing with Salesforce.com provides, see here.

Natterbox Relationship Based Routing can route calls based on any data variable in Salesforce.com. For example:

  • Routing of customers calls based on data in any object or field in Salesforce. This data can dynamically change according to their status, revenue value, tenure as a customer, proximity or value of forecast opportunity value, support ticket data,  in fact any combination of data held in Salesforce or Service Cloud.
  • Routing of customers to the best possible representative to handle their call. This could involve things like service representatives that are knowledgeable in the product or service they have purchased or can speak the same language as the caller. For example, if the incoming caller ID is +34 from Spain you might choose to preference route the caller to service agents who have Spanish language listed in their Salesforce or Service Cloud user profile, regardless of where those service agents are based.

All this routing occurs while the system continuously monitors the varying availability states of different service countries working hours, staff sick leave and more. Natterbox Relationship Based Routing is a complete solution to an otherwise complex situation. By automating this process, you are able to deliver fast, top quality customer service support 24/7, making you a global player.

 

Get started with Natterbox Cloud PBX and Service Cloud today.

To provide world-class customer support service standards, you need to be thinking about how to provide 24/7 follow-the-sun support. The team at Natterbox are expert in helping organizations ready to go global. We have the global infrastructure as a service and know how, so that you don’t have to and can get on with what you are good at. Our aim is to provide you with a high value low maintenance telephony system that integrates seamlessly with Salesforce and Service Cloud. Watch your business efficiency grow and your customers feel more connected and appreciated with our cloud based global PBX follow-the-sun support service. For information on how we can help you, give us a call today.

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Follow-The-Sun Support: The Challenges And How To Overcome Them https://www.natterbox.com/follow-the-sun-support/ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 10:09:08 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=4002 Follow-the-sun support has fast become the top worldwide standard of customer service. The idea is to provide all your customers and (potential) customers throughout the world with 24/7 support by call routing to available service representatives around the globe. As the support centre in London enters the afternoon shift New York is just starting up. […]

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Follow-the-sun support has fast become the top worldwide standard of customer service. The idea is to provide all your customers and (potential) customers throughout the world with 24/7 support by call routing to available service representatives around the globe. As the support centre in London enters the afternoon shift New York is just starting up. New York hands over to Sydney and so the cycle goes on, providing continuous support and service 24/7. Previously the exclusive jurisdiction of large companies, follow-the-sun support is now becoming an achievable reality for micro-multinational businesses worldwide.

Why is this important? Because despite the emergence of alternative communication forms, voice is still, and is expected to continue on being, the preferred form of communication for the large majority of customers. 60% of all B2C communications are made via voice and a recent study by the Sussex Innovation Centre only served to further evidence the strength of voice as a customer communication channel. The study found that text communications like email are merely a transactional association, whereas voice allows for the building of trust and relationships between businesses and their clients. Sometimes, hearing the nuances in a customer’s voice is all it takes to alter the sales pitch or support line slightly. To see more information on the vital weight voice holds in the B2C communications field, view our white paper about Micro-multinationals.

 

Follow-the-sun-support-with-natterbox-in-sydney

Given that voice has proven to be such an effective form of communication with customers, the ability to offer 24/7 follow-the-sun voice support to clients holds amazing business benefits. Fortunately, these benefits are now available to companies of all sizes because of the emergence of Cloud computing. Hosting your company’s voice systems in the cloud provides a vast range of increased opportunities and it’s fair to say that this online platform has significantly levelled the playing field between macro vs. micro business’ customer service.

The concept of follow-the-sun support does however have its own unique challenges. This was made clear when the Sussex Innovation Centre study also found that the main barrier to entry perceived by small businesses in going global is still technology & communications infrastructure. We here at Natterbox have extensive experience in helping small businesses grow into and manage global 24/7 support voice services. Our aim in this post is to talk you through a couple of the bigger challenges you can expect to face when implementing 24/7 support. And of course, we’ll tell you how to overcome them too.

 

Challenges of Global 24/7 Support

As with every business upgrade, there are a few challenges to be faced along the way when integrating follow-the-sun cloud based voice with your existing systems. It’s important to think about how best to resolve these to fully take advantage of the benefits of your new system. Utilizing this technology should not only improve your customer’s experience but also your business efficiency. So before taking the plunge into offering 24/7 globe-wide support, make sure you understand the challenges involved with this offering and how to resolve them. When done properly, follow-the-sun support can add a whole new level of competitiveness to your company’s service.

around-the-globe-telephony-with-cloud-pbx

So, what are the challenges?

Challenge #1: INFRASTRUCTURE
If your business opts to enter the 24/7 global service market using on-premise IP PBX infrastructure there is a whole host of problems awaiting you. One significant issue with on premise voice management is that each setup can only service one geographical location. In order to expand to another office around the globe you will need to buy and manage a whole new PBX setup. In addition, this form of PBX doesn’t have any disaster recovery protection so a simple power outage or major natural disaster could knock out your voice systems – cutting off customers who may be calling from other unaffected countries and expecting service. An increasingly complicated and expensive setup option, on premise PBX simply doesn’t scale well when you are trying to go global, especially for those on a small business budget.

The Solution: Cloud PBX
A more feasible and overall better featured approach for business voice systems is Cloud PBX. This is an easily scalable option where you can add support staff users as you grow and it is also accessible from anywhere regardless of global location. The benefits of this solution are endless: 24/7 up time, infrastructure maintained by a third party, expert help available from your provider, high quality hardware without a large capital investment, and inherent disaster recovery, just to name a few. You can integrate Cloud PBX software with your CRM system to further increase your business efficiency as well. The best part is that it doesn’t cost the earth. Cloud PBX is definitely the modern solution to 24/7 voice globalization.

The next challenge is a direct result of the previous solution. Nevertheless, as it too is solvable, Cloud PBX is still the system of choice for any business wanting to offer 24/7 and/or follow-the-sun global support.

 

Challenge #2: Call quality
While cloud based PBX allows your business the opportunity to easily use their systems to offer global 24/7 voice support (including follow-the-sun customization if desired), it can also cause call lag. Call lag can happen even on local calls if your system is routed through a cloud telephony service. The reason for this is that while both call parties may be in the UK, if your cloud service is in America then you can expect the same amount of call lag as you would on a regular international call. This can mean a poor customer call experience in some situations, which is definitely unacceptable for any business wanting to remain and/or become successful.

The Solution: Natterbox’s Global Data Centre Network
Natterbox has been developing cloud voice for many years and appreciates the importance of call quality to your customer’s experience and therefore to your business. As such, Natterbox has deployed Global Data Centres (GDC) around the world. This means that your calls will be switched via the most proximate GDC every time. This mitigates call lag and provides the positive experience that you would expect when making a local call. Natterbox means that you can offer your customers the best call experience while enjoying all the business benefits of Cloud based PBX. When choosing a Cloud PBX provider, it is important to pay attention to where the call switching is taking place so you don’t fall foul of poor call quality.

 

Get Started With Cloud PBX Today

If you want to provide your customers with a superior experience then switch to 24/7 follow-the-sun support today. For help solving the challenges involved in this shift so that you only enjoy the benefits, you can talk to Natterbox. Our team has helped many businesses set up new or more effective international voice systems.

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Cloud vs Hosted? Same Same but different! https://www.natterbox.com/cloud-vs-hosted/ Tue, 01 Nov 2016 17:12:17 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=3983 Moving your PBX to the Cloud is no longer an exotic idea. We are now seeing broad adoption of this strategy for business telephony but if you regularly hear the words Hosted, Cloud and SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) used in the same sentence to describe the same thing you are not alone. There is understandably some confusion […]

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Moving your PBX to the Cloud is no longer an exotic idea. We are now seeing broad adoption of this strategy for business telephony but if you regularly hear the words Hosted, Cloud and SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) used in the same sentence to describe the same thing you are not alone. There is understandably some confusion around these interchangeable terms so it’s worthwhile you pressing your Hosted/Cloud/SaaS provider for more information about what they are actually offering and digging a little deeper on the underlying infrastructure strategy for whatever Cloud/Hosted/SaaS service you are contemplating.

We’ll look at all three of these terms in the context of a PBX / Contact Centre however they are equally as applicable to many other systems. From the outset it is worthwhile remembering that all three methods aim to deliver similar benefits to their users albeit limited to varying degrees by their underlying strategies;

  • Outsource infrastructure and maintenance
  • Per user per month pricing model
  • Geographic independence
  • Disaster Recovery
  • Scalability

 

Hosted PBX

A Hosted PBX means the telephone system is housed and made available to your business from a building or data centre that is not the same as your location. Hosted PBX solved some of the aforementioned objectives but not all. If the Hosted PBX is based on Asterisk, which is common, then the system would soon run into scalability problems, as would with any other system originally designed as an on-premise solution or for a single customer (single tenant).

At its root architecture Asterisk does not support multi-tenancy which along with scalability problems has security implications. Providers using this platform will typically just run up another Asterisk server which is one way of addressing the challenges however the trade-off is that the provider now has multiple systems and software versions to maintain effectively doubling their technical debt which ultimately impacts the customer in terms of reliability.

 

Cloud PBX

A Cloud PBX or “True Cloud” as some like to call it is a multi-tenant system (multi-customer), which unlike Hosted PBX solves the challenge of scalability allowing you to add as many users as you need regardless of their location and without consideration for user limits. Rather than having to run up another server to meet demand, providers of multi-tenanted systems simply add more computing power and storage to their service. As I eluded to earlier multi-tenant systems provide greater security because they natively provide the ability to serve multiple tenants on different domains or sub-domains in a segregated manner, ensuring that a tenant cannot call another tenant through an extension call or access any data belonging to another tenant for that matter.

Cloud PBX also provides a far more robust platform for customers because they are by their underlying design less complicated to manage than their Hosted PBX predecessors.

 

Software-as-a-service

Software as a service is the software licensing and delivery model on which applications provided on a Cloud Computing platform (like Cloud PBX for example) are sold. This is typically calculated on a per user per month basis and commonly charged on an annual term or multi-year contract.

 

Global Cloud PBX

However, Cloud Telephony is not without its challenges either and a major one has to do with your location relative to your Cloud telephony service. For example, when you make a call to a local number over the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) the call is switched locally and you generally have a good local call experience. However, if you are in the UK and make a local call but your Cloud telephony service is really in America (which is not that uncommon) the two parties on the call are going to experience the kind of call lag you get when making an overseas call. This is because even though you are calling a local number, your call is in fact traversing the globe and incurring International call latency.

Because many of our customers operate in multiple geographies we know that international call lag on a local call is not an acceptable user experience. Natterbox solved this problem for our customers by having multiple data centres in all the major geographies operating as a single Cloud, however the difference is that we perform the call switching locally or as proximate to the calling parties as possible mitigating international call lag and delivering a PSTN user experience that customers expect.

 

– Charles Heunemann

 

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Moving your Voice to the cloud https://www.natterbox.com/moving-voice-cloud/ Wed, 26 Oct 2016 12:02:06 +0000 https://natterbox.com/?p=3964 Some of you may be thinking that the acceleration of digital communications must surely portend the decline of the telephone, in fact one or two of may be wondering how long it will be until the ubiquitous chunk of plastic will disappear from our desks altogether. Whatever it is you are thinking some things are […]

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Some of you may be thinking that the acceleration of digital communications must surely portend the decline of the telephone, in fact one or two of may be wondering how long it will be until the ubiquitous chunk of plastic will disappear from our desks altogether. Whatever it is you are thinking some things are for sure, one is that despite being 140 years old, the original “killer app” – the telephone, which has evolved little from the basic concept of “two cups and a piece of string” is a utility and like the electricity grid, is unlikely to go away anytime soon. The other thing that is for certain, is that until very recently the phone has made little ground in the way of opportunity for businesses to provide a positive, intelligent and differentiated customer experience, the way that digital has been able to.

Yet voice still rules, which is perhaps not so surprising when you consider that the spoken word is the most efficient way for people to not just convey their wants, needs and service offerings but also their sentiments as emotion forming a crucial piece of communication which is largely absent from digital communications such as email and Instant Messaging.

In a recent study by the University of Sussex Innovation Centre it was found that text communications like email is a transactional communications channel – but when it comes to trust, relationship building and delivering a high quality communications experience, many organisations still need to talk which is why voice still makes up over 60% of voice communications today.

But before we start exploring where Voice technology is heading it might be worthwhile taking a brief look at some of the recent history leading up to where we are today.

Firstly for the Millennial’s amongst us who may not have even heard of a PBX; A PBX is a Business Telephone System also known as a telephone switch that serves a private organization and performs concentration of central office phone lines and provides intercommunication between a large number of telephone stations in the organization.

Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Business_telephone_system#Private_branch_exchange

 

IP PBX

A PBX is usually located on a business’s premises and has made but incremental improvements over time largely focused on reducing cost. An on-premise Digital or IP PBX offered very little in by way of improvement over an on-premise analog PBX restricted by old telecom infrastructure such as limited channel ISDN lines.

The problem with on premise is that you are restricted to a geographic location, if you want to expand to another office you will need to buy and manage another PBX. Additionally on-premise PBX offers no disaster recovery protection so if you have a power outage or disaster event it will knock out our telephone system leaving your business and customers stranded.

On-premise PBX systems were also expensive from a capital expenditure perspective and if you had multiple offices it was difficult to unify all your locations into a single organization so that staff could short-code extension dial one another between offices for example. The other major downside of the on-premise PBX is that it is often complicated to setup and make changes to dial plans and IVR for example causing expensive dependencies on third party service providers to make simple changes.

 

Hosted PBX

The next phase of evolution of business telephony put the PBX into a Hosted environment. Hosted PBX helped solve some of the geographic and disaster recovery challenges however a Hosted PBX solution was really just a PBX in someone else’s building and the underlying PBX being hosted could not scale and unifying offices in across different countries wasn’t possible either.

 

Cloud PBX

The logical extension of the Hosted PBX strategy is a fully muti-tenented Cloud PBX which unlike Hosted PBX solves the challenge of scalability allowing you to add users as your business grows regardless of their location.

As you keep moving up the evolutionary scale you can start marrying your phone system with other services such as CRM integration and Contact Centre, elevating the phone way beyond the original concept of “2 cups and a piece of string” which I will touch on a bit later.

 

Global Cloud PBX

Natterbox has taken this evolution a step further. For example when you make a call to a local number over the PSTN the call is switched locally and you generally have a good local call experience and one that we have all become accustomed to. One of the challenges of Cloud Telephony has to do with your location relative to the Cloud telephony service. for example if you are in the UK and make a local call but your Cloud telephony service is really in America the two parties on the call are going to experience the kind of call lag you get when making an overseas call. Because even though you are calling a local number, your call is in fact traversing the globe and incurring call latency.

At Natterbox we have been in this business for a long time now and because many of our customers operate in multiple geographies we know that international call lag on a local call is not an acceptable user experience. Remembering that the telephone is 140 years old technology and just works, we think that Cloud telephony service should perform the same way.

Natterbox solved this problem for our customers by having multiple data centres in all the major geographies operating as a single cloud , however the difference is that we perform the call switching locally or as proximate to the calling parties as possible mitigating international call lag and delivering the PSTN user experience that our customers are accustomed to.

Ok we have talked a little about Infrastructure, but what really matters is the Application.

Arguably the biggest trend in modern day telephony is that most people have multiple devices so they can be reached wherever they are. In the world of digital communications this works really well because in the digital world you communicate “with a person” via your chosen service, Email, IM etc and the person you are communicating with will consume the message depending on their circumstances and which device they happen to be using at the time. However in the world of the telephone, to reach someone you need to call a specific number. So why can’t the telephone be more like our favourite digital services? We think that Voice should work in the same way as Digital and Natterbox makes this concept a reality by routing the call to you regardless of which of your numbers was dialled.

 

Going Global

Cloud PBX makes this and communicating internally extremely easy. For example right now if you want to call a colleague overseas you will probably have to make an international call. And if you are lucky enough to be able to call their short dial extension your company probably paid over the odds for that small convenience. With Natterbox it’s just part of the service.

This capability translated into global scalability previously out of reach for SME businesses wanting to expand into International markets, such as the ability to do “Follow the Sun support” based on Time based Rules without having forward calls to International numbers. And manage everything from a one single account.

 

Competitive Advantage.

To quote Richard Branson “Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees they will take care of your clients’. What Branson is getting at is giving employees the tools and systems to enable them to provide personalised customer service is at the heart of every successful enterprise. The challenge is that the more successful you become harder it is to provide personalized service. Personalised service becomes a victim of its own success.

This runs counter intuitive to the fact that no matter which company you call whether you are their most important customer or someone who is calling for the very first time you get treated in exactly the same way… The dreaded IVR

IVR is rated as one of the biggest bug bares when it comes to telephone service. In fact 6 out of 10 customers will ditch a company because of poor telephone service.

Your organisation like most invests a great deal in collecting information about your customers and even more expense to house it in Salesforce and Service Cloud so it can be analysed and put to competitive use. But what if you could extend the use of this information improve your customers experience? You could do away with IVR for example! What kind of impact would that have on your organsations competitiveness?

To help extend your ability to provide personalised customer service as your business scales Natterbox integration of Cloud PBX with Salesforce allows you to perform Relationship based routing automatically making intelligent routing decisions based on data in Salesforce.

For example when your customer calls in, Natterbox can query Salesforce, for their account manager and route the call direct to them for better customer experience.

That is a really basic example so here is a more complex one.

 

What if a customer calls at say 9pm, Do you want the call?

Depends on the customer,
How valuable are they?
Where are they located?
What is the health of the customer?
Do they have open support tickets?

Natterbox can manage the call based on customer status or importance such as revenue, time of day or your status.

You can pretty much manage every call based on any data and multiples data values in Salesforce and its dead easy.

Natterbox also extends our Integration with Salesforce.com with our Single Sign on CTI client lets you make a receive calls inside Salesforce and Service Cloud. The best thing about this is Natterbox captures 100% of calls and logs them into SFDC removing any dependence on users having to manually document their calls. The productivity dividends from this simple function are enormous reducing average call wrap uptime by a third and clawing back up to 40% of a salespersons time spent on CRM admin giving them more time to dedicate to selling.

The dividend for your business is that you get 100% visibility about what is going on in your business. We don’t just capture call activity data we also record calls and make the recording available for playback from the relevant Salesforce record.

And because we are in the call flow we capture all the call data and write it to a customer object in Salesforce and provide over 120 preconfigured call reports which you can further customise to meet your business needs.

So that is a snapshot of where we are today. But where we are going is equally as exciting. Natterbox is fast becoming the global telephony platform of choice integrated with Salesforce.com for the Micro-Multinational organisation. Our next generation of Cloud Telephony will put the entire provisioning and management of your global telephone system inside Salesforce.com. If you would like to learn more please register for one of our upcoming expert webinars.

 

– Neil Hammerton, CEO

 

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