The multi-channel customer experience management software market represents an attractive US$5 billion-plus market opportunity, which IDC recently forecast to grow at between 5 to 12 percent through 2015 (a 6 percent compound annual growth rate [CAGR]) within the larger overall customer relationship management (CRM) space. To that end, in July 2012, KANA Software, a longstanding customer service software provider, which has lately been on an impressive comeback and acquisition trail, announced that it has acquired the upbeat and innovative contact center customer service company Ciboodle from the Sword Group.
The official press release cites that this move creates a more powerful independent provider for multi-channel customer service solutions across agent, web, social, and mobile experiences. The acquisition is further evidence of consolidation in this attractive sector, as marked by Oracle’s acquisitions of RightNow, InQuira, and several smaller social computing companies, and salesforce.com’s acquisitions of inStranet, Radian 6, and other smaller companies. Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Yammer might also have some relevance to this CRM segment. Read the rest of this entry »
Part 1 of this blog series presented the opportunity of service economy and associated complexity of providing consistently an experience of customer service excellence. The article then introduced KANA Software, a provider of Service Experience Management (SEM) solutions. Although KANA has focused on enabling superior customer service for its enterprise clients since being founded in 1996, it has experienced periods of ups and downs.
Having been acquired and taken private under Accel-KKR in late 2009, the vendor has since regrouped and come out with its renewed value proposition. Part 1 concluded with KANA’s SEM approach and accompanying solutions that blend customer relationship management (CRM), business process management (BPM), business intelligence (BI), and knowledge management (KM), social media monitoring, and many other parts.
In this service economy it is not surprising to hear about smart innovative companies whose businesses have been blossoming due to the superior customer service they provide. Zappos and its “Powered by Service” tagline is a crown example.
Many vendors that offer customer service software solutions, especially those that bundle customer relationship management (CRM) with business process management (BPM) capabilities and even infuse knowledge in the service process, have been doing quite well, such as Pegasystems, SwordCiboodle, salesforce.com’s Service Cloud 3, inQuira, RightNow, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Customer Care Framework (CCF), and so on and so forth. But achieving consistently excellent customer service and satisfaction is not easy by any stretch of imagination. Research shows that over the last 15 years customer satisfaction has dropped by over 20 points (true, we as customers are becoming more fastidious, but that is our right, isn’t it?) while the cost per interaction has more than doubled, in great part due to agents’ errors and repeated service resulting in issue resolution calls.
Part 1 of this blog series introduced the need for knowledge management (KM) software applications as part of a more comprehensive and strategic service management (SSM) suite. One such broad SSM suite has been advanced by Servigistics, and Part 2 zoomed into the capabilities of one particular part of the Servigistics SSM suite: Service Knowledge Management (SKM). Read the rest of this entry »
The end of 2007, at least in the space that I cover, has certainly been “the most wonderful time of the year” for one vendor - NetSuite. True, prior to that, Deltek had a decent initial public offering (IPO) , and possibly even more important, a stellar Q3 2007 quarterly report thereafter.
However, on December 20, 2007 NetSuite Inc., a vendor of on-demand, integrated business management application suites for small and medium-sized businesses [evaluate this product], opened for trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol “N” (NYSE: N) after its more than successful IPO in which it raised $161.2 million. Various bloggers have duly covered the well-orchestrated IPO Dutch auction proceedings, such as AccManPro, BloggingStocks and ZDnet to name only a few. Read the rest of this entry »