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Frost & Sullivan Considers Role of Call Centers in 'Reviving' Economy
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Frost & Sullivan Considers Role of Call Centers in 'Reviving' Economy

November 30, 2009
By David Sims
TMCnet Contributing Editor

From Manila comes the news that the contact center industry "needs to increase its focus on customer acquisition and delivering customer experience with people, processes and technology."

That's the assessment of Frost & Sullivan officials at the recently-concluded Customer Contact Philippines summit 2009.

Kevin Panozza, CEO of engagement matters, said that companies today no longer compete with one another to make sales, instead, "they compete for opportunities." 

Shivanu Shukla, industry manager, ICT practice at Frost & Sullivan (News - Alert), said that while the recession shifted the focus in the contact center industry towards efficiency, "such as cost reduction and optimizing resources, "as the economy begins to revive, efficiency will continue to be a driving factor."  He also predicted that a "focus on effectiveness will return and re-assign importance on customer satisfaction, customer acquisition and revenue generation activities."

The Asian contact center industry is expected to see steady growth, driven by "increased investments by enterprises on beefing up their customer service infrastructure, as well as increased levels of outsourcing expected in 2010," he concludes.
In March, a Frost & Sullivan report found that the telecommunications sector is likely to be hit by the current economic crisis.
 "New research by Frost & Sullivan shows that two factors are going to prove decisive to this sector,” TMCnet reported. “First, investments are likely to be reduced because of the difficulty in finding credit. Secondly, with consumers choosing to economize, the services used are also going to diminish."

Explaining that the telecommunications sector will be deeply affected by the recession, Saverio Romeo, Frost & Sullivan industry analyst, said "First, due to the lack of credit in the global economy, investments will fall in the beginning of 2009. Particularly, investments related to incredibly costly projects such as acquisitions, will feel this drop intensely. Second, consumption will fall as people move away from wants and focus on their needs. This will reduce the uptake of innovative services."

Frost & Sullivan analysts said that globally companies had already started feeling the pinch and were cutting back. For example, since November 2008, Vodafone (News - Alert) and Telecom Italia announced midterm cost reductions. Also, BT and Virgin Media had decided on job cuts; the former relieving 10,000 employees, while the latter reduces its workforce by 2,200. 

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Amy Tierney

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