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Upstream Works President Discusses Future, ITEXPO

August 27, 2008

Upstream Works (News - Alert) delivers call center solutions for businesses that view their customer service as a strategic competitive advantage and want to improve both agent capabilities and their customer satisfaction ratings. The company improves the connectivity among all facets of a business, providing immediate access to key customer data and empowering agents to resolve customer issues effectively. 

The result is an increase in First Call Resolution rates that reduces customer churn, improves employee morale, and lightens the overall call volume, which makes the business more productive and increases customer satisfaction. I recently had the chance to interview the president of Upstream Works, Rob McDougall, who is speaking at ITEXPO (News - Alert), held Sept.16-18 in Los Angeles.
 
RT: What has been your company’s biggest achievement in 2008 so far?
RM: The product release of UpTake 2.0 which really advances the capabilities of call center analytics.
 
RT: What can we expect to see from your company for the next 12 months?
RM: A continued focus on analytics and core call center infrastructure, as well as the announcement of some key new partnerships.
 
RT: How do you see the communications market evolving?
RM: Online everywhere. Now you browse a website on your smart phone. Soon you’ll click a link and be connected with them live.
 
RT: How has Google (News - Alert) changed our markets?
RM: Google is doing its best to commoditize almost everything and provide it virtually for free.
 
RT: How about Apple (News - Alert)?
RM: Apple is doing its best to own as big a piece of the pie as it can and implement products that, while very cool, are essentially closed. Opening up the Iphone to apps was one of the smartest moves they’ve ever made.
 
RT: What mobile phone(s) do you use?
RM: Iphone.
 
RT: Who will win in an Apple/RIM war?
RM: Whichever become the most open will drive the standard.
 
RT: What do you think the communications market might look like in five years?
RM: Different in a couple of ways that we can’t postulate on, and very much exactly the same as it is now in almost every other.
 
RT: What will attendees learn about in your session at ITEXPO this September?
RM: How to affect the customer’s experience by managing their call center agents. One has a direct affect upon the other; the trick is finding that link.
 
RT: What type of attendees do you think should come to your session?
RM: Call center directors, VPs, and managers who view their call center as a strategic asset.
 
RT: Why should customers choose your company’s solutions?
RM: So they can train and reward agents on how well they provide good service, not on how well they meet call metrics. So they can improve overall business processes by how their customers interact with the call center.
 
RT: Please make one surprising prediction for 2009.
RM: Wal-Mart will start selling gas.
 

Rich Tehrani is President and Group Editor-in-Chief of TMC. In addition, he is the Chairman of the world�s best-attended communications conference, INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & EXPO (ITEXPO). He is also the author of his own communications and technology blog.

Edited by Eve Sullivan

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