|By Bob Hockman||
|February 13, 2012 06:30 AM EST||
Networks have become a strategic asset, the life blood of organizations. Once considered a "techy thing," networks are now mission-critical for every member of the organization - from the IT manager to the marketing VP to the CEO. An increasing number of companies now recognize the impact network quality has on the customer experience and, in turn, on the bottom line.
Providing a great customer experience, every time, is vital for limiting churn and building loyalty. This has led many organizations to adopt a strong quality assurance program to test and monitor all contact center services. This is particularly important in environments that must support multi-channel and multi-service applications. The complex configurations needed to enable voice, video and data to share network resources puts a tremendous strain on bandwidth and creates problems that can be very difficult to isolate. And the proliferation of mobile devices has added an entirely new set of issues and customer behaviors.
Network testing and quality assurance monitoring is important for creating and maintaining a great customer experience. However, these solutions capture a tremendous amount of information on customers, networks and operations. Managers constantly create reports with a slew of KPIs, including average hold time, peak chat volumes, queue lengths and IVR satisfaction rates, to try to make sense of all the data. While this provides a certain amount of understanding of daily operations, companies can do better. Advanced network analytics that correlate and trend multiple data points and KPIs over multiple dimensions offer real insight that companies can use to gain greater control over expenses, resolve issues more quickly and plan more effectively.
Using Analytics to Troubleshoot
Troubleshooting issues in multi-service networks can be extremely difficult. Typically, technicians will check the health of individual network elements or review a standard set of KPIs when they learn of a problem, but it's rare that an issue stems from a single system and most issues tend to be intermittent. Because issues are hard to isolate, they can even lead to nasty disputes between co-workers. An analytics engine with advanced slicing and dicing capabilities will reveal hidden problems. For example, sporadic voice quality issues could be examined from a variety of angles to determine the root cause. If they are coming from callers in specific area codes, it could indicate a problem with a specific carrier. If they occur after being transferred from a specific voice portal, it could indicate an incorrect setting on a specific server.
Proactively performing this type of network analysis enables companies to predict problems and correct them before they affect customers. When actual failures do occur, multi-dimensional network analytics, coupled with the ability to drill into micro events, significantly reduces time to repair. This can also reduce churn and support costs. To sum it up, the ROI for this type of solution is easily calculated and quickly realized.
Expense control is on everyone's agenda these days and understanding end-to-end network traffic patterns can help. For example, when companies originally transitioned to IP communications, they realized a significant reduction in their phone bills. However, as solutions evolve - due to enhancement, acquisition, global expansion or the incorporation of virtual agents - those routing schemes have become more complex. Many times during this process calls are directed off the network and back again. Standard monitoring solutions will show each of these calls as "complete," giving no indication that a problem occurred or that unnecessary toll charges were incurred. Only a complex analysis of traffic patterns will reveal opportunities to easily cut costs.
Going beyond standard contact center metrics provides greater visibility into individual business unit performance. Rather than reading a report that outlines average call stats, it's far more interesting to understand how long a VIP customer spends talking to a dedicated agent or how often people are requesting certain types of information, such as mortgage rates. Some questions the contact center can gain insight to through analytics include:
- Are these individual groups fully satisfied with self-service options?
- How are different customer segments interacting with the company?
- Do VIPs prefer to make calls where potential customers prefer online chat?
- Are these preferences changing over time?
- How are social media and mobile phones impacting customer behaviors?
When this type of intelligence is correlated, it paints a detailed analysis of network performance, enabling managers to pinpoint infrastructure investments to strategically enhance those experiences.
It also helps marketing and sales departments refine their strategies or develop new business models to capitalize on evolving customer needs.
An Effective Commitment
A strong commitment to quality assurance is the only way to ensure a great customer experience and effectively manage technology in today's evolving, multi-service environments. Getting it right with pre-deployment testing ensures that solutions will work as designed when released to customers. Keeping them right with ongoing monitoring ensures quality and availability. Now network analytics provides an opportunity to do what's right with actionable information for smarter decision making throughout the company.
To be effective, companies need a solution designed to handle "big data." No one wants to hire a team of database analysts and wait three days for an answer. Companies need a network analytics solution that quickly manipulates information and presents it in a meaningful way for specific job functions. Being able to see trends and drill into micro events give troubleshooting technicians an edge. Holistic, end-to-end insight into network performance enables more effective planning, optimization of technology investments and greater control over costs. Executive dashboards and trend reports provide management teams with the intelligence they require to exploit customer needs and find new profit opportunities. With analytics, doing what's right - from the control room to the board room - will give companies a long term advantage in any market.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Peak 10, Inc., a national IT infrastructure and cloud services provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Peak 10 provides reliable, tailored data center and network services, cloud and managed services. Its solutions are designed to scale and adapt to customers’ changing business needs, enabling them to lower costs, improve performance and focus inter...
May. 1, 2016 12:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,020
You think you know what’s in your data. But do you? Most organizations are now aware of the business intelligence represented by their data. Data science stands to take this to a level you never thought of – literally. The techniques of data science, when used with the capabilities of Big Data technologies, can make connections you had not yet imagined, helping you discover new insights and ask new questions of your data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sarbjit Sarkaria, data science team lead ...
Apr. 30, 2016 10:45 PM EDT Reads: 643
So, you bought into the current machine learning craze and went on to collect millions/billions of records from this promising new data source. Now, what do you do with them? Too often, the abundance of data quickly turns into an abundance of problems. How do you extract that "magic essence" from your data without falling into the common pitfalls? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Natalia Ponomareva, Software Engineer at Google, will provide tips on how to be successful in large scale machine lear...
Apr. 30, 2016 10:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,072
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Klein, CEO and Co-founder of Rachio, will discuss next generation communities that are using IoT to create more sustainable, intelligent communities. One example is Sterling Ranch, a 10,000 home development that – with the help of Siemens – will integrate IoT technology into the community to provide residents with energy and water savings as well as intelligent security. Everything from stop lights to sprinkler systems to building infrastructures will run ef...
Apr. 30, 2016 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 703
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
Apr. 30, 2016 04:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,050
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, will discuss how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to im...
Apr. 30, 2016 04:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,665
There is an ever-growing explosion of new devices that are connected to the Internet using “cloud” solutions. This rapid growth is creating a massive new demand for efficient access to data. And it’s not just about connecting to that data anymore. This new demand is bringing new issues and challenges and it is important for companies to scale for the coming growth. And with that scaling comes the need for greater security, gathering and data analysis, storage, connectivity and, of course, the...
Apr. 30, 2016 03:15 PM EDT Reads: 749
This is not a small hotel event. It is also not a big vendor party where politicians and entertainers are more important than real content. This is Cloud Expo, the world's longest-running conference and exhibition focused on Cloud Computing and all that it entails. If you want serious presentations and valuable insight about Cloud Computing for three straight days, then register now for Cloud Expo.
Apr. 30, 2016 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,706
IoT device adoption is growing at staggering rates, and with it comes opportunity for developers to meet consumer demand for an ever more connected world. Wireless communication is the key part of the encompassing components of any IoT device. Wireless connectivity enhances the device utility at the expense of ease of use and deployment challenges. Since connectivity is fundamental for IoT device development, engineers must understand how to overcome the hurdles inherent in incorporating multipl...
Apr. 30, 2016 02:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,451
The increasing popularity of the Internet of Things necessitates that our physical and cognitive relationship with wearable technology will change rapidly in the near future. This advent means logging has become a thing of the past. Before, it was on us to track our own data, but now that data is automatically available. What does this mean for mHealth and the "connected" body? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Lisa Calkins, CEO and co-founder of Amadeus Consulting, will discuss the impact of wea...
Apr. 30, 2016 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 659
SYS-CON Events announced today that Stratoscale, the software company developing the next generation data center operating system, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Stratoscale is revolutionizing the data center with a zero-to-cloud-in-minutes solution. With Stratoscale’s hardware-agnostic, Software Defined Data Center (SDDC) solution to store everything, run anything and scale everywhere...
Apr. 30, 2016 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,528
Angular 2 is a complete re-write of the popular framework AngularJS. Programming in Angular 2 is greatly simplified – now it's a component-based well-performing framework. This immersive one-day workshop at 18th Cloud Expo, led by Yakov Fain, a Java Champion and a co-founder of the IT consultancy Farata Systems and the product company SuranceBay, will provide you with everything you wanted to know about Angular 2.
Apr. 30, 2016 12:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,696
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
Apr. 30, 2016 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,291
You deployed your app with the Bluemix PaaS and it's gaining some serious traction, so it's time to make some tweaks. Did you design your application in a way that it can scale in the cloud? Were you even thinking about the cloud when you built the app? If not, chances are your app is going to break. Check out this webcast to learn various techniques for designing applications that will scale successfully in Bluemix, for the confidence you need to take your apps to the next level and beyond.
Apr. 30, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,465
We’ve worked with dozens of early adopters across numerous industries and will debunk common misperceptions, which starts with understanding that many of the connected products we’ll use over the next 5 years are already products, they’re just not yet connected. With an IoT product, time-in-market provides much more essential feedback than ever before. Innovation comes from what you do with the data that the connected product provides in order to enhance the customer experience and optimize busi...
Apr. 30, 2016 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 886
Increasing IoT connectivity is forcing enterprises to find elegant solutions to organize and visualize all incoming data from these connected devices with re-configurable dashboard widgets to effectively allow rapid decision-making for everything from immediate actions in tactical situations to strategic analysis and reporting. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Shikhir Singh, Senior Developer Relations Manager at Sencha, will discuss how to create HTML5 dashboards that interact with IoT devic...
Apr. 30, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 915
Artificial Intelligence has the potential to massively disrupt IoT. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, AJ Abdallat, CEO of Beyond AI, will discuss what the five main drivers are in Artificial Intelligence that could shape the future of the Internet of Things. AJ Abdallat is CEO of Beyond AI. He has over 20 years of management experience in the fields of artificial intelligence, sensors, instruments, devices and software for telecommunications, life sciences, environmental monitoring, process...
Apr. 30, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 885
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ericsson has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Ericsson is a world leader in the rapidly changing environment of communications technology – providing equipment, software and services to enable transformation through mobility. Some 40 percent of global mobile traffic runs through networks we have supplied. More than 1 billion subscribers around the world re...
Apr. 30, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 871
Digital payments using wearable devices such as smart watches, fitness trackers, and payment wristbands are an increasing area of focus for industry participants, and consumer acceptance from early trials and deployments has encouraged some of the biggest names in technology and banking to continue their push to drive growth in this nascent market. Wearable payment systems may utilize near field communication (NFC), radio frequency identification (RFID), or quick response (QR) codes and barcodes...
Apr. 30, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 708
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including cloud...
Apr. 30, 2016 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,554