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2014 Sessions

People Management

If you're responsible for managing people in the contact center, this track is where you'll find the ideas and resources you need to improve. We'll tackle the tough issues of retention, stress, and attendance, give you insights on coaching and selling, and set your supervisors up for success. BELOW ARE THE SESSIONS FROM 2014. Check back for an update of Sessions for 2015.

Session 101

How Maximizing Supervisor Effectiveness Helped Turn Sprint’s Business Around

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Tequea Batson-Diaz, Scott Buchanan

In the mid-2000’s Sprint saw a steady decline in customer satisfaction rankings and by 2007 the decline had a significant impact on the business. The company embarked on an ambitious program to revamp customer service operations. Hear best practices that Sprint learned as they worked to make a step-change in supervisor engagement.. Discover how Sprint improved customer experience and operational efficiency through the use of advanced technologies and amplified supervisor engagement – and how you can do the same within your own organization.

Session 201

Mentoring and Motivating a Multi-Generational Workforce

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Jennifer Richard

The babies of the Baby Boomer generation are turning 50 with an eye toward moving out of the workforce. The Millennials are moving in with an entirely different focus and set of life experiences. Over the next 10-15 years, our teams will be a blend of both groups (and the Gen Xers in between). Join in the discussion to better understand who these groups of people are, what motivates them and how they can be managed collectively going forward. One size does not fit all, and contact center leaders need to prepare for a new way of driving employee engagement and business results.

Session 206

How to Write High-Quality Chat to Customers

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Leslie O'Flahavan

Live chat with customers requires a whole new set of writing skills. Even agents who are great at e-mail may struggle to write professional, real-time chats. Learn how to identify essential chat writing skills, so you’ll know whether your agents are up to the challenge. Discover how to measure the quality of chat, how to develop chat templates that don’t seem “canned”, and how to help agents deal with the unique challenges of this channel. You’ll leave with tangible tactics to help improve your success with chat!

Session 301

Building a Better Agent Experience in the Multichannel World

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Sarah Stealey Reed

How does your multichannel contact center compare to industry standards for agent engagement? Do you find that the more channels you add, the harder it is to keep agents feeling valued and their productivity high? Building on research and industry best practices, this educational session will show you how to build a better agent experience to keep agents happy and customers satisfied. This session provides valuable tools to keep the multichannel agent engaged and happy, thereby creating engaged and happy customers.

Session 304

Hiring A+ Attitudes for Your Organization

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Dianne Durkin

Would you believe that 72% of all HR and hiring managers base their hiring decisions on skills and experience, despite the fact that more than half of new hire failures are due to attitudinal issues? This enlightening session will explore how managers can hire more successfully by establishing universal questioning strategies to uncover attitudes that match the corporate culture – and lead to long-term engagement. You’ll gather valuable techniques to identify, filter, and hire not only talented candidates, but also those with the best attitudes that will supercharge your organization!

Session 401

Incentive Programs That Drive Performance

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Jeff Toister, Heather Magaha, Jenny Dempsey

Contact centers are full of programs to motivate agents and boost morale – but all too often these programs are actually counter-productive, reducing morale and encouraging unintended behaviors. How do you create a program that is effective, aligned with your business goals, and embraced by your staff? In this panel you’ll hear about creative incentive programs that really work, and gain insight into how they were developed in order to maximize their success. You’ll also have a unique opportunity to hear the honest perspectives of agents and supervisors on these programs, and learn what really motivates the front line.

Session 407

Demonstrating Training ROI and Effectiveness

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Justin Robbins

Have you ever felt like your training program could be more effective? You're not alone. Whether your needs are reducing time in the classroom, increasing employee adoption of new processes, or enhancing the retention rates of your training program, this session will establish the fundamentals necessary to ensure a successful training program. Learn how to create and conduct successful training evaluations, define realistic training objectives, and provide support that will ensure prolonged success.

Session 501

Teaching Supervisors Best-In-Class Coaching

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Pete Slease, Lara Ponomareff

Most contact center supervisors were once high-performing reps, but few enter the supervisory role with coaching experience or knowledge. CEB has uncovered that although coaching is the best rep performance lever, bad coaching hurts performance almost twice as much as good coaching helps! This session will introduce a proven four-step model to drive effective coaching into your service organization. It involves flexing the supervisor's coaching style to frontline learning preferences, understanding development opportunities behind scorecard metrics, and using short, in-the-moment bursts of coaching to change rep behaviors. You’ll leave this session with the tools you need to set your supervisors – and your center – up for success!

Session 505

Change IS Good! Helping Your Team Adapt to Change

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Loide Cilardi

Change is one of the only certainties in a contact center, and your ability to effectively manage your team through it can impact retention, morale, customer satisfaction and more. This session provides an overview of the change curve to understand how people adapt to change. Learn tactics to manage people through the transition stage, where there can be a loss of productivity, employee engagement, and morale. Gain tools to understand and manage resistance, overcome objections and move towards acceptance.

Operations Management

We’ve emphasized the “how to” in these critical operations topics so you can return home with actionable ideas for making immediate improvements to your contact center. Results are what you need, and this track will show you exactly how to achieve them in your own operation. BELOW ARE THE SESSIONS FROM 2014. Check back for an update of Sessions for 2015.

Session 102

Next Issue Avoidance: Why It Beats First Contact Resolution Every Time

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Rick DeLisi, Lara Ponomareff

While striving for greater first contact resolution seems like an important goal for customer service organizations, amazingly, research analysis shows that it actually creates more problems than it solves. However, a newly-emerging concept called "next issue avoidance" accomplishes everything FCR is designed to do – and more – without any downside. Discover for yourself the many ways your organization can diagnose likely potential downstream problems and issues, and solve them during a live interaction with a customer. Focusing on next issue avoidance is a proven way for companies to eliminate unnecessary callbacks and reduce operating costs.

Session 105

Contact Center Operations Management 101

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Rose Polchin

Sharpen your working knowledge of the seven key operational dynamics in the customer contact environment. Critical concepts such as the link between resources and results, the relationship between service level and quality, how accessibility impacts productivity, schedule needs versus base staff requirements and much more will be examined. Whether you’re new to contact centers or a seasoned pro, you’ll return armed to improve your operations, manage with confidence, and better meet the needs of your customers.

Session 202

"It's All About the Customer": Creating a Quality Program that Delivers Results!

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Antonette Adams

Finding it difficult to develop a quality program that effectively serves both the customer and your business? Learn how Pearson, a global media and education company, is standardizing a customer-focused quality program across eight product lines. They will share best practices and lessons learned in creating a quality-focused support culture, and how they used quality monitoring ROI to gain executive sponsorship. Discover how by adopting an "everyone owns quality and customer satisfaction" practice – and marrying its customer-first philosophy and quality monitoring solution – they were able to reap the benefits of quality monitoring software while enhancing the performance of their agents and business.

Session 205

Workforce Optimization In The Customer Channel Choice World

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Tim Montgomery

Planning, staffing, scheduling, real-time, reporting and results in the multi-channel choice world are forcing contact centers to adopt new practices to ensure proper staffing. Channel choice (fax, phone, email, chat, etc) makes it a challenge, with many customers utilizing multiple channels to complete a single transaction. Join industry expert Tim Montgomery as he shares what he's experienced in working with some of the world’s most celebrated service organizations. You’ll return to your environment with simple tricks to make life in the multi-channel world easier for your organization, customers and front line agents.

Session 302

Reduce Customer Effort and Operating Costs by Optimizing Online Service

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Lara Ponomareff, Pete Slease

Research shows that in today's digital age, customers actually prefer to self-serve, and often to go to a company website first to find a solution. The challenge isn't getting customers to try self-service, it's getting customers to resolve in self-service. Nearly two-thirds of phone volume represents customers who first tried to resolve their issue on the web, but failed. This session will explore the type of web self-service experience customers actually prefer, and describe how leading companies provide a simple and clear path to resolution in order to build the optimal web self-service experience for their customers.

Session 305

#goingsocial In The Contact Center

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Bob Furniss

With customers now able to quickly share their latest experience through an ever-increasing variety of social media outlets, forward-thinking contact centers are creating strategies for how they will play in this new customer channel. It is not too late to prepare! In this session you’ll learn how to build a social playbook, create a training plan, and develop a marketing/service plan that provides a consistent experience for the customer. You’ll also hear the best practices – and worst mistakes – from some of the top brands in the world.

Session 402

An Insider’s Guide to Getting the Most Out of Your Outsourcing Relationship

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Mark Miller, David Geiger

Most contact centers use outsourcers in some capacity – whether for overflow calls, language coverage, off-hours coverage, specific channels, or for a larger portion of their activity. Setting up and managing these relationships effectively has a direct impact on your ability to provide a consistently positive experience for your customers. This enlightening, interview-style session will provide invaluable tips on developing a positive, productive relationship with an outsourcer, navigating the SLA and contract negotiations process for maximum strategic benefit, and other critical factors for driving high customer satisfaction through outsourced centers.

Session 406

Managing Change Through Technology Implementations

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Dee Kohler, Sue Palmer, Tony Sideris

The biggest challenge in technology implementations comes from the need to change processes and behaviors in order to utilize the tool and realize its potential. This enlightening case study will describe how the guiding principle of 80% People and Process + 20% Technology resulted in a successful multi-site performance management tool implementation at CSAAIG. The team will share the lessons learned during the project, and describe the importance of a strong change management plan. If a technology implementation is in your future, you won’t want to miss this session!

Session 502

Using Metrics to Drive Success

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Justin Robbins

By identifying the right metrics and harnessing your tools and resources, you have the opportunity to make a tremendous impact on your contact center, your customers, and your entire organization. This session will guide you through the process of evaluating and refining your existing performance measures and enhancing your strategic value through information sharing. You’ll also discover how to ensure you choose the RIGHT metrics to drive the RIGHT behaviors and desired RESULTS.

Strategy and Leadership

If you’re ready to be inspired by fresh ideas on strategy and leadership, this is the track for you. We’ll delve into the “big picture” issues that keep you up at night, and provide insights into leading your team to success from the best in the business. BELOW ARE THE SESSIONS FROM 2014. Check back for an update of Sessions for 2015.

Session 103

6 Best Practices for Building the Multichannel Contact Center

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Sarah Stealey Reed

It's no secret that emerging channels are changing the inside of the contact center. But how do you optimize and improve customer support through the use of mobile, social, and advanced self-service? Join us as ICMI's Sarah Stealey Reed shares ICMI's recent emerging channel research and gives you the top six best practices for building the multi-channel contact center from technology, processes and training. She'll arm you with actionable and relevant tips to bring back to your contact center to successfully optimize your multichannel support.

Session 106

Transforming the Customer Experience: An “Outside-In” Focus on Reducing Customer Effort

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Eric Michrowski, Dale Lawrence

Research shows a strong link between customer effort and both propensity to recommend and profitability. Reducing customer effort also helps rapidly align contact center improvement efforts to maximize the impact on customer experience. Learn how to create a tangible and transformational framework to reduce customer effort and shift customer loyalty. Through an “outside-in” view of the customer experience you’ll discover approaches to redesigning the contact center experience that are easy to replicate in your own center.

Session 203

Walking in their Shoes: Symantec’s Journey to Service Excellence

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Matt Miller

In 2013 Symantec's sales contact center analyzed the call experience from the customer's perspective, and the results were enlightening. They discovered that through various iterations of process improvement, the center had become a highly specialized and compartmentalized organization that created unnecessary transfers for customers and slowed down the sales process. Learn how they transformed their center into one that outpaces the market by differentiating the Symantec brand and delivering a simple, scalable and repeatable customer experience – all while reducing the cost of the contact center.

Session 303

Increase Customer Satisfaction Through Employee Engagement

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Mary Beth Jenkins, Heather Magaha

High-performance cultures boost morale, employee engagement, customer satisfaction and loyalty, and business results. Join Heather and Mary Beth as they share how Wells Fargo and UPMC Health Plan Call Centers engage their employees to drive path-breaking performance. You’ll get a first-hand glimpse into these executives’ perspectives on the responsibilities of leadership, the role of incentive programs, and whom to partner with internally in order to drive a successful culture – and leave with tangible strategies and tactics you can use to improve engagement in your own center.

Session 306

The Top Drivers of Contact Center Customer Satisfaction

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Mark Miller

Discover what J.D. Power’s contact center research reveals about the top drivers of customer satisfaction, and how to maximize the customer experience in the contact center. Based on findings from over 40 studies, covering hundreds of thousands of people interacting with the contact centers of more than 1,200 organizations, you’ll learn what customers value the most, and what rep and organizational behaviors most influence satisfaction with the contact center experience. Uncover the secrets of influence, and how you can implement three simple practices that will improve your customer's experience immediately!

Session 403

Best Practices in Next Generation Agent Optimization

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Richard Snow

Research indicates a trend towards expanding the traditional workforce optimization suite to include applications such as coaching/elearning, compensation management, and multi-dimensional analytics. These applications enable companies to manage the wider aspects of customer interactions, and the benefits can be great. This session will explore new approaches to training, information/process management and technology deployments that enable agents to handle customer interactions in ways that improve customer satisfaction and loyalty. Gain insights into what steps you can take to optimize, monitor and assess agent performance, and ensure that the best-qualified person handles each interaction.

Session 405

The Power of Magnetic Leadership

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Dianne Durkin

If you have weak or non-existent leadership in your organization, it is like spraying a big can of people repellent into the air that your employees breathe. You kill creativity, productivity and the spark that motivates your team. The good news is you can become a magnetic leader – that force that attracts others. You can become that leader that uses their passion to energize the inner powers of the organization despite the outer pressures. Learn how magnetic leaders use their magnetism to attract others and inspire them to be creative, innovative, build a responsibility-based culture and exceed all expectations!

Session 503

The Future of Customer Service: Emerging Technologies and Multi-Channel Care

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Ann Ruckstuhl, Marty Beard, Aaron Fulkerson, Art Schoeller

Today’s consumers are forcing brands to interact with them across all communications channels. They do not hesitate to publically voice their dissatisfaction with a brand via social media, presenting new challenges and opportunities for customer service. With every additional channel, the agent experience gets more challenging, and the customer experience is at risk. What does this new channel preference power mean for companies moving forward? How can you leverage emerging technologies to capitalize on this new generation of customer interactions? You’ll leave this session with solutions and actionable next steps for achieving success in this new era of customer service.

Session 507

Advanced Best Practices for Remote Workers

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Michele Rowan

Remote working enables companies to grow without adding real estate, and in tandem drives employee satisfaction to off-the-charts levels. There is a segment of every company's work force that would opt to work from home, given the opportunity – an expanding demographic. Join this session to qualify which jobs (and people) are a good fit for home working. In addition, Michele will share a host of advanced best practices and case studies from her 500+ client base that demonstrate how to achieve top performance and returns with home working, and how to marginalize the risk of failure.

Technology Management

The amazing array of bells and whistles in today’s technology is impressive – and overwhelming. This track will help you to understand what’s most important: how to use contact center technology to get the job done. These sessions range from selecting applications to using them, including how to coordinate across the organization. BELOW ARE THE SESSIONS FROM 2014. Check back for an update of Sessions for 2015.

Session 104

Customer-Inspired Excellence Through Speech Analytics

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Dale Davis, Jennifer Richard

Maximizing customer satisfaction and increasing revenue while minimizing cost is a top corporate objective today. Learn how McKesson went about implementing speech analytics to achieve these goals, including the initial call studies it performed to generate quick wins. Hear details of the strategies, lessons learned and measurement techniques that helped deliver excellence across McKesson. You’ll gain invaluable insights and ideas you can put into practice in your own organization.

Session 107

Cloud-Based Solutions: Should you? And If You Do, How Do You Get It RIGHT

Wednesday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Lori Bocklund, Art Schoeller, Jason Alley

Is moving to the Cloud right for your center? If so, how do you ensure success? This panel will provide a realistic approach to determining your needs and optimizing the results. Gain insights into defining requirements, selecting the right vendor, pursuing implementation, support, and service level agreements, and minimizing risks. You will learn how leading experts navigate through this sometimes confusing and much talked about strategic step for businesses.

Session 204

Improve Your Hiring Accuracy with Multimedia Contact Center Simulations

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Room: 608
Brent Holland

Self-escalation due to advances in self-service has made identifying and hiring contact center representatives who can deliver exceptional results enormously challenging, but getting it right creates a significant competitive advantage for contact center organizations. Data from case studies and research findings suggests that multimedia contact center simulations are one of the best available predictors of contact center representative success. This session will provide insight into how to use such simulations to improve hiring accuracy with qualified candidates, and explore best practices for selecting and implementing the right simulation for your organization.

Session 207

Big Data’s Impact on Interaction Handling

Wednesday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Richard Snow

Most companies now support an average of 7.5 channels, and have multiple business units involved in interaction handling. The net result is more systems producing more data, in more forms. How do you effectively cope with all this data, and use analytics (structured, text, voice, social, process) to achieve a more complete view of your customer? This session will address how to better support all customer-related activities and deliver personalized, in-context and consistent responses regardless of channel. Discover how to drive the best action during interactions, and predict likely customer responses/actions in order to avoid undesirable outcomes.

Session 307

Virtual Assistant: A 24 Hour Employee That Provides Great Feedback

Thursday | 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
William Davis

Are relatively simple customer issues still resulting in costly interactions with your contact center? Hear how Vanguard Investments deployed a Virtual Assistant on the web to help clients retrieve their user names or passwords – a task that previously often led to a phone call. Within days the number of calls dropped, leading them to seek additional opportunities to harness this technology within their center. You’ll gain valuable insights as they share the lessons learned during the implementation, and discover how embracing Virtual Assistant technology can be a critical weapon in call deflection for your company.

Session 404

How iContact Brought Social Media Support into the Call Center

Thursday | 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Jeremiah Methven, Sean Hawkins

If you’re looking to implement social media support into your contact center, this session will provide you with invaluable first hand insight into the creative ways iContact was able to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Skeptical of the value of social media support? You’ll hear specific examples of the efficacy of engaging with customers on social media, particularly from a support department perspective. The iContact methodology can be used as a general template for the implementation of social media support at any company – including yours!

Session 504

Implementing a New Call Center CRM

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Michael Sernoff

Implementing a new CRM solution for a contact center can be a significant undertaking. Do it well and your ability to satisfy your customers can improve dramatically. Do it poorly and your relationship with your customers could be unnecessarily put at risk. SofterWare began the process of replacing their CRM in fall 2013. This session will describe the steps taken to prepare for this change, from evaluating your organization’s needs through vendor selection and implementation. This session will provide takeaways on how to best prepare your organization for this process, regardless of what CRM solution you plan on using.

Session 506

Simplifying the Agent Experience

Thursday | 4:00 PM – 5:15 PM
Session Level: Case Study
Steve Stockman

Is your agent experience overly complicated, requiring numerous screens and applications to handle even the simplest of calls? Come hear how set out to simplify the agent desktop while enabling them to manage a large library of interactions, process flows, and scripts effectively. Their selected solution provided additional organizational benefits such as integration with back-end systems and compliance enforcement. You’ll learn the benefits of creating process flows, call center scripts, and business rules that are instantly deployed to agents, monitored, and fine-tuned in real time in order to enhance the customer experience.

"It was amazing to be around so many people in the industry. It was exciting and invigorating. To share my perspective and to get so many other perspectives helped me learn and grow.

Jenny Dempsey, ,