Executive Interview : Sharon Oatway, President & Chief Experience Officer - VereQuest Inc. on 2013/2014
We caught up with Sharon for our annual 1to1 update - a look back at the industry in 2013 and looking ahead to 2014
In your opinion, what has been the greatest challenge the contact center industry has faced in the last 12 months?
Managing the rate of change OUTSIDE of the contact center.
Why do you believe has this been a challenge?
Ever-changing regulatory environment coupled with fickle customer loyalty and growing importance of alternative channels has increased the burden on call centers.
In 2013, what do you think will be the top priorities in the contact center industry for each of the following:
a) Contact Center Directors
doing more with decreasing budgets
b) Company Executives
differentiating offering in the marketplace
c) IT Directors
integrating diverse technologies
d) Human Resources Directors
hiring individuals who are inherently empathetic.
What technology do you believe will have the biggest impact on the industry over the next 12 months?
What impact have "external events" even had on your company, and how have you adapted your business?
With the introduction of new technologies, we have become much more specialized.
Do you feel the service you personally get as a customer is better or worse than it was a year ago?
I feel it is the same. Every now and then I will be surprised but generally the bad habits of the past keep cropping up. Sustaining great performance is the challenge.
What developments are you planning to launch in 2014 and how will they benefit the industry?
We plan to incorporate end-to-end customer journey mapping as a way to highlight high priority areas of opportunity for our clients. This will be coupled with service innovation to close gaps.
What contact center technology or other innovation excites you the most as an Executive in the contact center industry?
Knowledgebase -- when used correctly it removes the burden of 'knowledge' from the agent and allows them to focus on relationship development.
What do you think will be the buzz word / focus for the contact center industry this year?
Lastly, what do you think 2014 holds for the industry? (good or bad and where/how etc)
Hold the course!
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About Sharon Oatway:
Having lead the start-up and launch of two of Canada’s full-service direct banks, some of the first rewards-based credit cards, the first major alternative long distance provider and a private-label travel offering, Sharon Oatway and her team are uniquely qualified to provide insight into the factors which alter consumer behavior and build sustainable loyalty.
About VereQuest Inc.:
VereQuest is best known for our independent, third party quality monitoring for contact centers that delivers short-/long-term results. Our proprietary approach to evaluating your customer’s experience helps your internal teams focus on what matters most to customers. Our high quality coaching support coupled with online training sustains performance. Cross-channel monitoring – Calls, Emails, Web Chat – makes it possible to focus on key areas of opportunity. Highly recommended by several long-term, clients, each global brands. An essential tool for any company who outsources their contact center. An important resource to ensure your internal QM is aligned with your customers' perception of service.
Published: Wednesday, February 12, 2014