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Five9 Gets Smart on Customer Journey

During a recent consultation, a health care client asked if businesses are having issues with limited access to new features because more and more development relates to cloud solutions. I responded that we haven't yet begun to see a lack of new features for premises-based solutions, but likely would over the next year or two. Many vendors, I went on to say, are still building out cloud solutions with an initial goal of feature parity.

But with the capabilities Five9 added in the Summer Release 2016 package announced today, the era of cloud leapfrogging customer-premises applications may have just begun. Specifically, Five9 is delivering sophisticated customer journey analytics to its multi-tenant cloud contact center platform.

The annotated graphic above -- a screen shot from the live demo John D'Amour, Five9's VP of product management, walked me through this week -- helps highlight several of the new features.

A second graphic, above, highlights how enhanced omnichannel capabilities in the release allow for easy escalation from one channel to another, in this case from proactive chat to video.

During my briefing, I asked Gaurav Passi, Five9 VP of products and engineering, how many customers he anticipated would be using the new customer journey or video capabilities by year's end. He quite honestly replied that he didn't think any companies would be using them in a production environment that quickly. Rather, he said, Five9 will begin educating customers on the new functionality at user conferences it is holding next month in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., and that it expects to do a number of alpha and beta trials in 2016.

Asked whether Five9 will require new talent to provide the required professional services, Passi explained that the company will work with Altocloud to implement the first five to 10 customers. Five9 teams will shadow Altocloud to learn the required skills.

When competitors talk about Five9, they sometimes attempt to downplay the company's solution, describing it as one only in use within small call centers. While this characterization hasn't been true for years, this release should help Five9 up its game even further.

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