Since Verint Systems acquired Witness Systems, forming the Verint Witness Actionable Solutions division of Verint, the company has been busy integrating and “unifying” the two companies’ workforce optimization product lines. The fruits of that labor are being released this week with the company’s next-generation Impact 360 analytics-driven workforce optimization software and services offering. The next-generation Impact 360 suite is unified, analytics-driven, and enterprise-enabled. Drawing heavily from both the Verint and Witness technology lines, it provides a migration path for both types of customers. The new solution offers better support for enterprise-wide data and enhanced virtual contact center support.
The Verint Witness workforce optimization solution includes a number of key customer service management tools, including Workforce Management, Quality Monitoring, eLearning, Performance Management, Analytics and Customer Feedback Surveys. While these tools have been used in the contact center by customer-focused organizations, many companies are now realizing that these same tools can be used beyond the contact center in the rest of the enterprise, as well as in the back office.
There are three key areas of focus with this new release:
- Unifying solutions – aimed at customers from both the Verint and Witness sides, the new Impact 360 suite provides a consolidated road map, with a common look and feel, and an upgrade path for customers with either company’s legacy products.
- Analytics driven – speech analytics, data analytics, and performance management have been added and enhanced, making it easier to spot and identify trends. Integration of Quality Monitoring and Speech Analytics is used to “automatically categorize and analyze call content to reveal the root causes of customer perceptions, business outcomes and high call volumes; identify competitive threats and market opportunities; and surface trends that might not otherwise be detected without listening to thousands of calls.”
- Enterprise driven – supporting multiple enterprise operations functions and departments to help improve the customer experience. Examples include claims processing, order fulfillment, customer administration, billing, retail and commercial banking, mortgage banking, lending, insurance, securities, bank card servicing and transaction processing
Verint notes that “many contact centers lack the insight and tools to enable fine tuning of the key business drivers in their customer-facing contact centers, but with a WFO foundation, it’s possible to utilize the structured and unstructured data such systems contain to provide new management tools that support this enterprise level business optimization.”
One of the reasons this new offering caught my attention is that it can be used not only in the contact center and for contact center agents, but also by knowledge workers and remote staff to provide them with the same capabilities as in the contact center. I’ve been following the concept of “expert agents” or “the enterprise as the contact center” for many years (the use of knowledge workers or subject matter experts who can supplement formal contact agents when necessary and appropriate), and with technologies like unified communication, IP, SIP, and presence, it’s finally becoming a reality. But there are still barriers standing in the way. One of the key challenges is how to monitor and measure the performance for the knowledge workers who perform the expert agent functions. In my mind I made up a technology that doesn’t yet exist called “expert agent analytics,” which would be used to provide analysis and metrics for the expert agents, similar to contact center agents. While true expert agent analytics don’t really exist yet, technologies like Verint’s are further enablers to this vision. Calls that are routed to knowledge workers outside the contact center to leverage subject matter experts can now be scheduled, monitored for quality, and delivered eLearning even if they may not necessarily reside in the customer service department.
While there are many vendors offering workforce optimization products, Verint Witness is looking beyond contact center agent performance to the entire customer experience, which includes understanding the underlying problems that create the need for customers to contact the company. Telephony and contact center vendors offering expert agent solutions also need to measure and possibly monitor these non-traditional agents and should evaluate solutions such as the Verint Witness Actionable Solutions’ Impact 360 suite.