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News : Direct Interactions Creates Home-Based Jobs for Military Families
San Jose, CA, Nov 6, 2014 -- 8x8, Inc. (NASDAQ:EGHT), a provider of cloud-based unified communications, contact center and collaboration services, announces that Direct Interactions, a Seattle-based outsourced call center provider, is utilizing its cloud-based Virtual Contact Center solution to create home-based employment opportunities for disabled veterans and military families.
"Customers appreciate it when the agent doesn’t have to spend time looking them up and already knows who they are."
The idea behind Direct Interactions’ socially responsible mission came from co-founder and President Matt Storey. He and his business partner, CEO Jonas Nicholson, had set up a number of offshore call centers in the 1990s and realized the same technology could empower Americans with disabilities and military families by enabling them to work from home.
"I wanted to prove that with the right technology and opportunities, I could compete as a knowledge worker in today’s economy," said Tom Gonzalez, seven year veteran of the Navy SEALs. "With Direct Interactions, I am part of team solving problems for customers and setting an example that just because a person had a disability, it doesn’t mean we can’t excel in the modern workforce."
Direct Interactions’ 200 agents work from home, providing customer support for technology companies, city governments and organizations interested in demonstrating their commitment to corporate social responsibility.
Over the next three years, Nicholson plans to expand its workforce to 1000 agents nationwide. At the same time, Nicholson hopes other companies will be inspired by Direct Interactions, which has been recognized by the State of Washington and various nonprofits for its efforts in creating jobs for people with disabilities.
Direct Interactions relies on 8x8 Virtual Contact Center technology to centrally route calls to agents’ homes without sacrificing call quality. In addition, 8x8 provides online tools that make it easy for agents to manage customer interactions efficiently and deliver a high-quality customer experience.
"One of the biggest challenges of the home agent model is finding ways to help the supervisors monitor customer interactions," said Nicholson. "8x8 provides tools that let them listen to calls, record calls, and run reports so they can tell when agents need more training."
"Early on, one of our key requirements was that our contact center had to be compatible with a screen reader because many of our agents have visual impairments," said Nicholson. "8x8 was more than accommodating in enabling our agents to use their own technology to read what’s on the screen and navigate the contact center functions. Basically, our agents just need a phone, a computer and a high-speed Internet connection. The rest of our 8x8 contact center is in the cloud."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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About 8x8 Inc.:
8x8, Inc. (Nasdaq: EGHT) leverages its patented software technologies to deliver high quality voice solutions with integrated messaging and video to businesses of any size with employees in any location on a wide variety of business telephony, web and mobile platforms. 8x8 also offers managed hosting and cloud-based computing services.
About Direct Interactions:
Direct Interactions’ home-based agent model is a cost effective alternative to offshore and conventional call centers. Through the use of innovative and rewarding business practices we reduce the costs of operations and gain a competitive advantage for our clients.
Published: Friday, November 7, 2014