Brendan Read - Analyst Profile
20+ years of experience in research, reporting, and analyzing developments in customer service, support, sales, services, technology, legislation/regulations, site selection, trade, and business continuity. Particular expertise in:
- CRM and Social CRM
- Onshore, nearshore/offshore, and foreign market site selection, and home-based agents
Experience base covering broad range of sectors, leveraging long-standing working relationships with leading industry vendors, adjunct suppliers e.g. site selection, and with end-user organizations.
- Cloud/hosted contact centers
- Contact routing (including chat), outbound dialing, proactive customer contact, IVR, speech, and mobile
- CRM, social media, analytics, Big Data, CTI, customer collaboration, and video
- Staffing, training, communications including electronic displays and collaboration, and endpoints
What I bring to the Team
- 15+ years contact center industry experience including 3+ years marketing support for a teleservices firm
- A diverse background spanning multiple fields and industry-using verticals
- Global perspective through covering developments in various countries. Reside/resided in Canada, U.K., U.S
- In-depth writing, editing, and communications skills, including public speaking and media
Extensive expertise in research, reporting, analysis, editing and writing for a wide range of customer contact and direct marketing media/publications and sites, plus for magazines covering construction, energy, metals, transportation, and wholesaling. Direct experience with business continuity and teleservices.
Author, Designing the Best Call Center for Your Business and Home Workplace and co-author, with Joseph Fleischer, The Complete Guide to Customer Support
B.A. major in Political Science from the University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
- Areas of expertise
- CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT
- MARKET RESEARCH
- COMPETITIVE INTELLIGENCE
Recent items from Brendan ReadIn my last blog, we discussed the death of the call center, as omnichannel customer service blazes the trail to the next generation of customer experience management. We left off with the question, what will the future “contact center” look like in this new milieu? Our research finds the new landscape will feature: *The old fashioned telephone swi...
05 Mar 2014 Blog postThe North American contact center industry has reached “maturity,” which is the code word for a gradual demise. As noted in the analysis “Opportunities in a Mature Market,” Frost & Sullivan forecasts the total number of contact center seats will shrink from 4.1 million in 2012 to 4 million by 2017. If anything, the seat loss is a conservative es... 21 Feb 2014 Blog post Published: Feb 07 2014 Best Practices Published: Jan 09 2014 Best PracticesAutomated Interactive Customer Contact Solutions have a Strong Future if they are Deployed WiselyAutomated interactive self-service solutions have evolved from interactive voice response (IVR) to include automated chat, SMS/text, and virtual agents (VA). Frost & Sullivan categorizes them as "automated interactive customer contact" (AICC) solutions. But AICC solutions will demonstrate returns on investment to companies only if consumers can easily interact with companies through these applications. The key question facing companies is not whether to deploy AICC solutions, but how best to implement them. Published: Jan 08 2014 Market InsightsCompanies are Moving to Serve Customers Anytime, Anywhere Including Inside StoresToday’s customers expect companies to provide a consistent and high quality Customer Experience, regardless of channel, including walk-in retail. “Omni-channel” strategies that integrate the Web, contact center, and retail channels (and subject matter experts), are becoming increasingly prominent in pursuit of a quality Customer Experience. The dividends are greater wallet share from enthusiastic customers who become brand advocates on social media, attracting new clientele. Published: Dec 03 2013 Market InsightsGrowth in Hosted ACD, Chat, and Integration with UC SystemsFrost & Sullivan forecasts that the total number of contact center seats will shrink from 4.1 million in 2012 to 4 million by 2017. Even so, there are opportunities for vendors in this mature market. For example, consider hosted solutions. Hosted delivery allows companies to cut costs by buying only the applications and capacity they need, an attractive on-demand value proposition. Hosting also provides companies with business continuity that allows them to support their customer contact operations when disasters strike. Published: Dec 03 2013 Market InsightsCompanies are Turning to Social Media Analytics to Gain Customer InsightsSocial media contains information and insights that help companies identify issues, threats, trends, sales opportunities, and influential buyers. It provides knowledge about customers, partners, competitors, and employees, and it helps deepen customer and staff relationships. Social media analytics has emerged as a powerful tool to measure social-site traffic, but more importantly to obtain meaningful, actionable, and timely insights. Published: Nov 18 2013 Market InsightsCustomer Collaboration is Emerging as an Effective Customer Sales and Support ToolCustomer collaboration, which includes conferencing, co-browsing, and remote support, can improve the customer experience in handling complex issues and in successfully concluding sales opportunities. It accomplishes these goals by enabling contact center agents to bring in knowledgeable colleagues and subject matter experts (SMEs) into the conversations, and to virtually work alongside the customers, rather than facing them. But how widespread this method will become depends on its adopters overcoming challenges such as application complexity, low utilization, scheduling difficulties, SME resistance, and high costs. Published: Oct 31 2013 Market InsightsMy wife and I live in Belmar, New Jersey, and from our home we can see the beach and the ocean. It is hard to find a more pleasant place to be. That is, except when those same waters bring disaster. Like one year ago when Hurricane/Superstorm Sandy smashed into our community, and many others in New Jersey and New York, causing death and destruction... 29 Oct 2013 Blog postThe acquisition of hosted cloud provider Echopass by Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories is a significant deal that gives the contact center vendor a new cloud-savvy channel to the market, along with direct access to customers who may want to buy Genesys’ other cloud or on-premises solutions. Smoothing the way is that Echopass has been a longt... 11 Oct 2013 Blog postStrategies and Tactics for Incorporating Social Comments and Influence into Customer ValueThe growth of social media is shaking up corporate customer relationship management (CRM) strategies. It is prompting firms to reconsider the customer referral value component in customer value as it allows customers to expand their social networks beyond their immediate circles of family, friends, colleagues, neighbors, and acquaintances. Companies must then apply tools like social network analysis and social influence scoring to measure and assess social impact on CRV and ultimately CV, or “Social CRM” in their CRM strategies. Published: Oct 01 2013 Market InsightsIt usually takes a major life-changing event, like a disaster, for one to realize they no longer need what they thought necessary. The methods and processes once regarded as essential are instead dispensable. Such is the case with formal offices and business travel. Despite the attempts of senior management at firms like Yahoo! to keep workers on-... 11 Sep 2013 Blog postSocial Customer Collaboration can Reduce Costs and Improve Customer LoyaltySocial customer collaboration sites create and foster external and/or internal user communities that enable the resolution of customers’ issues, from finding information to resolving problems, and help build customer loyalty. In the process, they enable companies to rapidly identify and capitalize on business opportunities and market trends. Published: Aug 22 2013 Market InsightsSocial Media could Hurt Companies If they are not Careful with ItThe defining characteristic of social media is that the conversations that take place on this channel are public. It is this value that gives the social channel its power, but it is one that poses risks to organizations, their employees, and their customers. Social media practices, laws, and regulations that touch on the public nature of this channel are continually evolving. There are several methods that organizations can use to manage the impacts of the public conversation dimension in social media. Published: Jul 16 2013 Market Insights