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Why is AI-first Contact Center Solution RingCX Flying Off the Shelves?
Three months ago, RingCentral announced a new, native CCaaS offering, RingCX, in August 2023. A little over a week ago, during RingCentral’s quarterly earnings call on November 6, CEO Tarek Robbiati reported in his prepared remarks that “a Fortune 500 company partnered with RingCentral this quarter to solve critical internal communications use case for its employees that involve a purchase of over 25,000 MVP and 1,000 RingCX licenses.”
Robbiati went on to describe how, using a combination of RingCentral MVP and RingCX, RingCentral will be able to help the unnamed customer connect “drivers to dispatchers” while integrating into other technology workflows. Although RingCX was still in controlled availability, Robbiati said RingCentral already had approximately 50 customers who had selected RingCX.
This week, RingCentral announced the general availability of RingCX. The AI-first contact center solution is now available in the US, Canada, and UK, with France and Germany coming at the end of November 2023.
RingCX Wins to Date
To better understand the appeal of RingCX, and RingCentral’s plans for selling the new contact center solution, I spoke to Danita Belcher, vice president sales, worldwide contact center, RingCentral.
The first question I asked Belcher was how she would characterize the RingCX wins to date. “All of the business that we have acquired for RingCX has been net-new opportunities, ones that we were unable to fulfill with RingCentral Contact Center,” she said. The RingCX deals were a recovery of opportunities with customers that did not feel RingCentral Contact Center met their needs, but were impressed with, and decided to purchase RingCX, Belcher continued.
Two factors summarize Belcher’s comments on why RingCX has had such great early success.
As detailed in this week’s press release announcing the general availability of RingCX, the offer is priced at $65 per agent per month (with annual pre-payment). Competitive offers are not only typically priced higher, but the lowest tier of pricing is often voice-only. RingCX includes voice, video, and 20+ digital channels at $65 per agent per month. There are companies charging three times that amount for similar functionality.
An additional factor when computing total cost of ownership is telephony charges. While a few CCaaS offers include unlimited domestic telephony minutes, most include only a limited number of minutes combined with overage charges or have a charge for every telephony minute. RingCX includes unlimited domestic inbound and outbound minutes.
During a 90-minute launch event for RingCX and RingCentral Events this week, controlled-introduction customer Jaimie Bell, VP of Client Solutions, Office Gurus (pictured here with Amir Hameed, SVP, Worldwide Solution Sales & Engineering, RingCentral) described her rationale for choosing RingCX and deploying it for 1,200 agents. She explained that simplicity to implement, cost efficiency, and omnichannel features were the key reasons for choosing the solution. Note that this deal is one of two 1,000+ agent seat deals signed since RingCX was announced. The other was the Fortune 500 company deal mentioned above. Let me also point out that both companies mentioned competitive pricing as important in their decision process.
To be honest, one would be hard pressed to find a CCaaS solution today that doesn’t describe itself as AI-first (as RingCX does). The real question is: do prospects intend to deploy the available AI capabilities?
Belcher told me that during demos by RingCentral or partners during the controlled introduction phase over the past three months, companies have been particularly excited by the AI features of RingCX, including post-call transcriptions, action items, and call summaries. Real-time call summaries are included as part of the agent license. I believe that even with all the hype, most companies with smaller or simpler contact centers don’t really believe that they will deploy AI because of the cost or complexity; the value proposition isn’t evident. Seeing AI-driven features so seamlessly delivered in the RingCX agent desktop is producing a “wow” factor, according to Belcher.
I can only imagine that prospects will be increasingly wowed as RingCentral continues to add AI functionality to RingCX using RingSense, the company’s conversation intelligence platform.
Perhaps the most surprising thing I heard from Belcher was that more than half of the new logo RingCX deals to date have been made by partners; typically, pre-GA sales are primarily made direct from the vendor to the customers. Belcher explained that RingCentral did a series of partner-awareness webinars when the company first announced controlled release of RingCX – in July and August 2023. She said that RingCentral went on to do some deeper dive enablement sessions with key partners who showed the most interest in the product. In addition, RingCentral contact center people have been speaking at a variety of master agent conferences.
Between the early interest from the partner channel and the vast opportunity for RingCX that exists within its yet-untapped customer base, the future for RingCX looks bright.