2020 raised the bar on customer experience across the board. Most people spent more time at home using more devices connected for more time, driving up both costs and awareness. In response to the changed landscape, utilities have pivoted to provide more personalized service, helping customers use energy more efficiently while providing access to more services virtually.
The return to the office—and the hybrid workplace—are hot topics for C-level executives across the nation, as companies decide how and where team members will work going forward. But creating a new way to work, in which some people work 100% in the office, some work 100% at home and others do a bit of both, presents a conundrum for employers.
It’s time to build your defense.
Last year, ransomware attacks grew by 150%, according to cyber-intelligence firm Group-IB, and in 2021, damages from cybercrime may hit $6 trillion, up from $3 trillion in 2015, according to the State of Ransomware report by security firm BlackFog.
ConvergeOne Chairman + CEO John McKenna recently appeared on CRNtv to discuss how UCaaS with Avaya Cloud Office is meeting the needs of a growing mobile and distributed workforce. More than 75 ConvergeOne customers have purchased ACO with 40,000 users inside that base—and for these users, it’s been a resounding success. How can you increase the productivity of your workforce in a post-COVID world, where there is a mix of people working in the office and working at home? John explains how new features can help with productivity.
We’ve been dialing 911 for emergencies since 1968. So 911 calling wouldn’t appear to be a hot topic among business and technology professionals today. But it is. New legal changes are coming, and leaders must plan to be compliant for their offices and remote workers. Some employees will return to the office, while others will continue to work from home. It will be important to identify their location in cases of emergencies, no matter where they are or where they go. The first step is education, says Mark Haas, a ConvergeOne solutions architect who counsels companies on these types of changes.
The pandemic has served up yet one more new challenge for businesses that must house and secure customer information. Identity theft is on the rise—and the bad guys aren’t necessarily relying on hacking to breach valuable data. Instead, they’re using social engineering—or the psychological manipulation of people, and in this case, contact center workers—to gain access to accounts or to divulge confidential information and take over the account. Pre-pandemic, fraudsters made up an estimated 30% of all incoming calls to businesses.2 Today, they make up 60% of those calls. Part of the problem is that everyone—both contact center agents and criminals—are working from home.
When COVID-19 shut down much of the world’s economy in March, it didn’t shut down the influx of customer service needs. Whether at home or unemployed, many suddenly had more questions and more time to wait on hold while using other means of connection outside of the phone, including websites, apps, text, social media, and email. Meanwhile, companies struggled to transfer complex in-office operations to remote locations, oftentimes at home. Now that the U.S. is reopening, everything is changing once again, driving new customer questions.
For large organizations, the shift to a remote workforce isn’t as simple as opening a laptop and Slack. Here’s what CIOs need to do now to support the post-COVID workplace. When the pandemic forced thousands of workers to work home last spring, obstacles loomed everywhere for CIOs. Today, months later, the challenges continue as many companies were forced to rethink how—and where—we work.
Last spring, when COVID-19 first raged around the globe, contact tracing became standard vocabulary in the world, as containment of the virus became a top priority for every major enterprise, government and institution. Contact tracing, along with widespread testing, became a powerful tool in stopping the spread of the coronavirus.
Workers are largely remaining at home. What does all of this mean to the contact center business, and how can we morph this into something more workable than what we have today?
It’s been six months since we’ve:
• Moved our college students home
• Started homeschooling our children
• Relocated our work to a remote/home work setup
• Migrated our business life to a blend of personal and professional
• Endured hours of video calls while juggling all of the above (and more)
And for most, there is no end in sight.
As businesses around the world manage an uncertain future, it’s crucial that companies create a new framework for how people work and embrace new technology and plan to boost security, collaboration and productivity. The ConvergeOne leadership team recently hosted a virtual Executive Exchange with over 50 key customer leaders to share ideas, best practices and perspectives to support growth strategies and drive future success, summarized here.