Live from the Genesys Analyst Conference

I’ve been receiving more questions lately about work force management/optimization, so I accepted an invitation to attend a Genesys analyst event yesterday in San Francisco. There were about 30 analysts in attendance (Forrester, Gartner and Frost and Sullivan were all well represented).  I’ve always given Genesys, a division of Alcatel-Lucent, a lot of credit for multi-channel service capabilities (more than most telephony vendors), and they were the only telephony vendor included in my last Forrester eService Wave published in 2006 (and they did well).

My take on Genesys back in 2006 was that they had some eService capabilities (email response, Web chat, voice self-service) as good or better than the eService specialists. But, in 2006 we were in the middle of the move to IP telephony, and Genesys hadn’t decided how much they wanted to focus on applications, coming from a hardware/switch background.

In the last 2+ years, the shift toward applications has occurred, and there have been some interesting developments for those of us who are primarily interested in what happens ‘after the screen pop,’ i.e., not telephony infrastructure. Examples include:

  • The Application Software Group.  This new group is building applications through internal development as well as strategic partnerships, with a goal to “Enable a rich ecosystem of customers and partners by creating a great communications experience for people on any device and in any environment.”  A relevant piece for SSPA members is an offering via a partnership with Motive for a Home Service Gateway, which enables subscribers to explain service problems using voice commands. In turn, the system will guide the customer through an automated process that uses PC and connection diagnostics to resolve the problem remotely.
  • Software as a Service.  Genesys is now selling technology via SaaS, both direct and through channels, to new verticals and smaller companies, with a 300% increase in adoption of hosted services/SaaS deployments in 2008.
  • Focus on analytics.  According to Nicolas De Kouchkovsky, President of Genesys, analytics are driving the adoption of new and sophisticated business processes, including performance management for the Customer Service Chain and to better understand the customer experience.  This is building on their acquistion of Informiam back in late 2007.
  • Mobile devices. A lot of discussion about how the advent of smart phones is evolving mobile devices to be personal mobile advisors/assistants, and how this will force changes to multi-channel and cross-channel processes and technologies.

It was a lot of information packed into a short amount of time, and I’m glad I attended.  I also had an opportunity to catch up with a former co-worker from Giga/Forrester, Elizabeth Herrell, who continues to cover contact center for Forrester.  Elizabeth knows more about telephony (including the guts of infrastructure) and contact center technology than anyone I know.

If you have any questions or comments about Genesys, please add a comment or shoot me an email; I do my best to reply to all.  And as always, thanks for reading!

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