IBM Teams with Cisco to Transform Enterprise Call Centers Through Combined Customer
Relationship Management Capabilities
IBM today announced a new set of services for enterprises that wish to reduce cost, optimise
revenue per call and increase overall customer satisfaction in call center environments.
The IP Customer Contact Center Services from IBM Global Services include assessment of
existing contact center operations, migration planning and implementation of Cisco's Internet
Protocol Contact Center (IPCC) software. The IP Customer Contact Center solution combines
IBM's world-class customer relationship management transformation services with Cisco's
industry leading hardware and software technologies to deliver the next generation of
e-business enabled call centers.
IDC forecasts the market for Customer Relationship Management (CRM) services at $15.7 billion
for Western Europe in 2001 with a 29.6% CAGR through 2004*. To address this growing market
and the emerging trend for IP-based data convergence, IBM has joined with Cisco to provide
enterprise class IP-based contact center solutions. Initially targeting customers in the
financial, distribution and travel industries, IBM Global Services has formed a worldwide
team from its Business Innovation and Integrated Technology consulting practices to deliver
services for Cisco IPCC in the form of customer relationship strategic planning, call center
assessment, migration planning, network integration, training and systems management.
"IBM is working with Cisco to transform the way companies interact with customers in an
e-business world. One of the pillars of our strategic alliance is focused on harnessing the
power of converged networks to help enterprises reduce cost and open new revenue streams.
The services IBM will implement in deploying Cisco's IPCC solution are yet another example of
the value of this partnership to customers. By working closely together, IBM and Cisco can
help customers implement with confidence and realize quick return on investment," said
Hans-Ulrich Maerki, General Manager, IBM Global Services EMEA.
In today's demanding business environment, more and more enterprises are looking to deploy
IP-enabled Call Centers as a way to lower cost and improve the customer experience. In
describing the ability of IBM and the Cisco IPCC solution to address the next generation
IP-based call center requirements, Paul Devine, Research Analyst - IP Equipment and Services,
Frost and Sullivan Ltd., said, "IBM's Global Services consulting expertise will help
enterprises assess the strategic benefits of IP-enabled CRM initiatives. The IBM Global
Services and Cisco partnership will deliver the expertise necessary to develop, integrate and
support web-enabled call center solutions".
IBM Extends IP Telephony Laboratory to Include Cisco IPCC
IBM is extending its IP Telephony Laboratory in La Gaude, France to include Cisco's IP-based
Contact Center Solution. The laboratory is scheduled to begin demonstrations and customer
test scenarios in July. Customers will be able to work with IBM and Cisco consultants to
conduct proof of concept and solution assurance prototypes in a simulated production
environment against rigid performance criteria.
About Cisco's IP-Based Contact Center Technology
Cisco's IPCC software, a key component of the Cisco customer contact platform and solution,
combines Cisco's proven IP telephony and contact center management capabilities, enabling
agents using Cisco IP phones to receive both time-division multiplexing (TDM) and voice over
IP (VoIP) calls. The Cisco IPCC solution fully supports both IP and TDM telephony, and saves
money by avoiding costly upgrades to outdated switching technology. The Cisco IPCC solution
also offers savings through more efficient operations and a lower cost of deploying new
software on a converged, multi-service network.
The Cisco IPCC solution, which can be implemented in a single-site environment or a
multi-site enterprise, combines Cisco's IP telephony, intelligent call routing, Interactive
Voice Response (IVR) call queuing, consolidated reporting and out-of-the-box CTI (computer
telephony integration) capabilities into an integrated suite. The Cisco IPCC solution is
based on the Cisco Intelligent Contact Management software (Cisco ICM), which is widely
deployed in traditional call centers supporting a wide variety of multi-vendor legacy
platforms and networks. As an integral part of Cisco's Architecture for Voice, Video and
Integrated Data (AVVID), Cisco IPCC allows an enterprise to easily extend the boundaries of
the contact center to include branch offices.
"The combination of Cisco's IP contact center infrastructure with IBM Global Services
deployment expertise creates real value for enterprise customers looking to increase employee
productivity and customer satisfaction," said Paris G. Arey, Cisco's Vice President for EMEA
Channels. "IBM's new services for IPCC combine IBM's proven track record in call center
implementations with the intelligence, flexibility and scalability of Cisco's leading
IP-based call center technology."
IBM eServer xSeries Tested to Run Cisco CallManager
In a related note, Cisco CallManager, a component of IPCC, has been tested and made available
by Cisco to run on IBM's Intel®-based eServer systems. CallManager is the software-based
call-processing component of the Cisco enterprise IP telephony solution and a product enabled
by Cisco AVVID. Cisco CallManager software, installed on an IBM xSeries 330 or 340, extends
enterprise telephony features and capabilities to packet telephony network devices such as IP
phones, media processing devices, voice-over-IP (VoIP) gateways and other multimedia
applications. Additional data, voice and video services such as unified messaging,
multimedia conferencing, collaborative IP contact centers and interactive multimedia response
systems interact with the IP telephony solution through Cisco CallManager's open telephony
application programming interfaces. IBM's scalable, industry standard servers are rack
optimized to deliver powerful performance in the smallest package. IBM xSeries offers the
high availability and reliability enterprises need to run Cisco CallManager in demanding
IP-based contact centers. In addition, Cisco CallManager has been validated as IBM
ServerProven® to assure it will run smoothly, quickly and reliably. Cisco CallManager for
IBM eServer xSeries will be available from IBM Global Services on July 12, 2001.
*Source: IDC report on Worldwide CRM Services Market Forecast and Analysis, 2001-2004, Page
20, Analyst: Katrina Menzigian
IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in
helping businesses innovate. As one of Cisco's fastest growing global system integration
partners, IBM has made significant investments in hardware development, software integration
and consulting services readiness to deliver industry-focused solutions based on Cisco's
portfolio of network products. The fastest way to get more information about IBM is through
the IBM home page at http://www.ibm.com. Information on IBM's alliance with Cisco can be
found at http://www.ibm.com/services/alliances/cisco
IBM Global Services is the world's largest information technology services provider, with
2000 revenues of more than $33 billion. Services is the fastest growing part of IBM, with
more than 148,000 professionals serving customers in 160 countries. IBM Global Services
integrates IBM's broad range of capabilities -- services, hardware, software and research --
to help companies of all sizes realise the full value of information technology. For more
information visit http://www.ibm.com/services.
For further information:
IBM Global Services
Tel: 44 (0)20 72025769
Nicky Morgan / Adrian Bridgwater
On behalf of IBM
Tel: 01753 790700
Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
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