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Best Way To Boost Monthly Revenue

By Staff Writer on 11/19/21 11:35 AM

As businesses struggle to make up for lost time, the pressure on finding extra revenue continues.  If you are looking exclusively at your sales team to drive KPIs like Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR), you might be missing a major opportunity. Watch the video to learn how the shortcut to higher MRR runs through Customer Service

 

Ready to learn more?  Click below to sign up for your free demo. 

FREE DEMO

 

Topics: Customer Service customer churn Revenue Strategies csm
3 min read

Vivantio Shortlisted for 2021 SaaS Awards

By Staff Writer on 7/30/21 11:58 AM

Boston, MA, 27 July 2021 – Vivantio, a leading provider of customer service management solutions, is a finalist in the 2021 SaaS Awards Program in the category Best SaaS Product for Customer Services / CRM.

“It is an honor to make the SaaS Awards shortlist, which recognizes our team’s excellence and innovation in developing SaaS technologies,” said Vivantio CEO Greg Rich. “Being shortlisted underscores Vivantio’s position as a leading service management solution that elevates customer experience for a future-ready enterprise. By enabling a fast, configurable deployment with cloud-based flexibility, Vivantio empowers teams to simplify user experience, accelerate responsiveness and optimize for ongoing improvements that drive measurable business value.

Now in its sixth year of celebrating software innovation, the Software-as-a-Service Awards program accepts entries worldwide, including the US, Canada, Australasia, EMEA and UK.

Head of operations for the SaaS Awards, James Williams, said: “Just as SaaS technologies have been vital in pivoting organizational functions to respond to global crises, they will be essential as we look forward to returning to normal levels of productivity.

“The shortlisted candidates announced today, however, have made it through that first round. They represent truly innovative thinkers in the SaaS industry, whether they’re freshly-funded disruptors or established names.”

Final SaaS Awards winners will be announced on Tuesday 31 August 2021 and the program will return in Spring 2022. Hundreds of organizations entered, with international entries coming from North America, Canada, Australia, UK, Europe and the Middle East. To view the full shortlist, please visit: https://www.cloud-awards.com/2021-software-awards-shortlist/

Last year, entry fees donated from shortlisted entrants to the ‘Communication, Collaboration and Conferencing’ category raised $3,555 for the WHO’s COVID-19 Response Fund.

A sister program to the SaaS Awards, The Cloud Awards will soon accept submissions for a new 2021-22 program, continuing its recognition of excellence in cloud computing, with an October deadline.

Winners are selected by a judging panel of international industry experts. For more information about the Cloud Awards and SaaS Awards, please visit https://www.cloud-awards.com/.


About the SaaS Awards
The SaaS Awards is a sister program to the Cloud Awards, which was founded in 2011. The SaaS Awards focuses on recognizing excellence and innovation in software solutions. Categories range from Best Enterprise-Level SaaS to Best UX or UI Design in a SaaS Product.

About the Cloud Awards
The Cloud Awards is an international program which has been recognizing and honoring industry leaders, innovators and organizational transformation in cloud computing since 2011. The awards are open to large, small, established and start-up organizations from across the entire globe, with an aim to find and celebrate the pioneers who will shape the future of the Cloud as we move into 2022 and beyond. Categories include the Software as a Service award, Most Promising Start-Up, and “Best in Mobile” Cloud Solution.

About Vivantio
Founded in 2003, Vivantio is the only service management solution that enables quick configurability, empowers B2B service teams and elevates customer experience for a future-ready enterprise. By combining the comprehensive power of enterprise-level software with the flexibility of a modern cloud-based solution, Vivantio provides an intuitive, flexible and scalable unified service management platform that empowers businesses to achieve unparalleled service excellence. The award-winning platform scales to meet the complex business needs of large, multi-site organizations, to optimize workflows across several departments including IT, operations and customer service. Vivantio is a trusted partner offering cost-effective solutions through flexible licensing. 

Topics: Customer Service Customer Service Management press release csm
1 min read

Vivantio Vibe Podcast - Customer Journey

By Staff Writer on 7/29/21 12:05 PM

 

Welcome to the Vivantio Vibe podcast.  Each month, we'll bring you the latest updates on Service Management solutions, software, innovations and interviews with smart people who have smart things to say.  All in around 30 minutes or less. 

andywithname

In this episode of the Vivantio Vibe podcast, host Todd Carruth visits with Vivantio's COO Andy Walsh about the evolution of the B2B customer journey, important KPIs to consider and how to handle Net Negative Churn.   

You can listen below or download wherever you get your favorite podcasts including iTunes or Spotify.   

Topics: Customer Service Future of ITSM Customer Journey Customer Success Unified Service Management Platform podcast
6 min read

Customer Service Today Interview with Greg Rich

By Staff Writer on 7/9/21 4:36 PM

Earlier this year, Vivantio's CEO Greg Rich spoke with TEC Analyst PJ Jakovljevc about customer service, technology and the "next normal" in CX (Customer Experience).  Here's an excerpt from that interview that originally appeared here from Technology Evaluation Centers. 

TEC: How do you view the impact of the pandemic on customer service management?

greg-rich-ceo-and-co-founderGR:  For most of our customers, there has been little impact as it pertains to service management. After all, we are a cloud provider, so it’s been business as usual. When it came to remote working, the largest pain for those customers was telephony: how do you maintain a service desk operation with everyone working remotely and handle large call volumes? And of course, call volumes went through the roof for IT Teams—people were working in environments that IT had no control over.  

But what we did see was a huge uptake in omnichannel support technologies in order to achieve reductions in call volumes and the ability to self-diagnose issues.
 
Like working from home (WFH), self-service is a technology that many people talk about, but hardly ever adopt. From the outside, it’s tough to really get a grasp on the value it might bring other than just providing another way to log a ticket. But it is far more than that.

Sophisticated self-service technologies provide access to tools, technology, and knowledge that can circumvent the need for a ticket to be logged in the first place. And, if it does get logged, it’s after a process of capturing further information about the issue that allows those tickets to be passed directly to the resolver group most equipped to resolve it, saving a huge amount of time.

For Vivantio customers that embraced self-service during COVID-19, there has been an overwhelming response of “Why didn’t we do this earlier?” Other technologies that rose to the forefront include integration with Teams and Slack. These tools became a lifeline in remote team working environments. Their chat capabilities, integrated with the service management platforms, became a new way for tech and customers to interact.
 
TEC: What software solutions and capabilities have been particularly helpful for your customers these days and how have they helped?
 
GR: Self-service/omnichannel technologies that provide end users with a more robust and enriched service is one. The other two are optimizing service and the ability to do more with less/reduce ticket times/reduce touchpoints. By implementing workflows, ticket routing, trigger rules etc., it allows the technology to make decisions based on the current situation/lifecycle of the ticket.
 
This means the ticket moves through the system far faster, reduces the workload on the team, and gets a resolution to the customer in a much shorter time. We have also seen an uptake in tech-to-tech chat within the solution. Given people are no longer in the same room and able to ask a colleague for help on a particular ticket, the chat feature keeps colleagues connected in real time.
 

TEC: How about some examples of metrics from your customers?
 
GR: We have seen customers, not only in the pandemic but also prior to it, who have been looking to adapt and mature significantly in their customer experience (CX) offerings. The pandemic has only exacerbated that need.
 
We have seen customers increase their capacity from 50 customer service tickets a day to 250 with the same staffing levels. Also, we’ve seen customers improving their on-boarding and termination processes to a single click from a former 27 min process and a 70% reduction in call volume as companies roll out omnichannel self service solutions. These have all been key for customers to pivot and adapt, especially during the pandemic.  

The Technology Aspects

TEC: You’ve been the cloud proponent for some time. Do you think that COVID-19 will be the final blow to on-premises software deployments?
 
GR: I do feel it will have an impact. The way I see it is that, for those still holding on to on-prem deployments, they are doing that for the following three reasons: 

  1. They have already invested heavily in technology infrastructure and want a return on that investment;
  2. They just don’t feel comfortable with SaaS (laggards); or
  3. For compliance/regulatory/security and other reasons. (We recently had an enquiry from the United States Space Force who don’t actually have access to the internet!)

 
For the first two categories, I think COVID-19 has had an impact. For the first group, the need to embrace digital transformation as their entire workforce moves to a Work From Home environment makes access to on-premise systems a logistical nightmare. They either needed to invest heavily in VPN technologies which required huge setup and configuration costs or find SaaS alternatives. It would have been evident quickly that, for those staff members not needing access to line of business (LOB) systems, all the other technologies can easily be provided through SaaS providers.
 
For the second group, they were just pushed over the edge! Like many companies unsure if WFH or hybrid was something they wished to roll out through their business, COVID-19 took that decision away from them and they had to embrace it. Same for SaaS technologies. You see this particularly in education who have had to adapt quickly to switching to remote based systems.
 
Some companies have been smart about adoption too, not just looking to switch their on-prem platforms to SaaS solutions, but making use of Azure and Amazon to host hybrid platforms allowing them to move their infrastructure to the cloud, allowing them to keep the platform private.

TEC: Have you seen AI, bots, big data, or any other buzzword du jour technologies being critical these days?
 
GR: With our customers, I don’t see it so much. I guess it all comes down to service management maturity and how they can elevate service during this time. So, for us and our customers, omnichannel support has been key. But I have seen evidence in other companies—ones where their service operations are much larger (particularly call centers), and they have leveraged chat bots and AI to resolve issues at the point of contact.
 
Big data is huge though and I think this has been a learning point during COVID-19. Again, more pertinent at the call centers or huge service teams using big data and analytics to provide predictive customer insight to drive business outcomes. The ability to pre-empt a customer’s needs or even the ability to provide agents with customized information to personalize the customer’s experience is huge.
 
Also, on the other end of the scale with the smaller companies and AI and machine learning, even without big data, there are massive opportunities for efficiencies and improved service offerings in leveraging these technologies at an appropriate level for their customers and end users. Just adding head count is not an efficient way to expand and improve service, it is the intelligent use of these technologies alongside adoption of best practice that will allow teams to stand out, technology is not the silver bullet but an enabler.  

Predicting the “Next Normal” in CX

TEC: How do you envision customer service post-COVID, now with the hope of vaccines? What will be the "next normal" in CX, to your mind?
 
GR: It will take some time to trickle down but enhancing customer experience based on predictive analysis will become the new norm. How can we enrich the users’ experience and provide them with the best possible outcome based on what we already know? We have learned over the past few years that customer service and customer success are seen as pivotal in the customer lifecycle journey these days. Retention and growth are both driven by CX. The better that experience, the happier the customers.
 
In terms of the new norm, I would say it is the norm that would have happened in five years’ time. What COVID has done is accelerate digital transformation and the need for companies to mature in their CX to both internal and external users. Whether that may be adopting an internal cloud-first approach or ensuring their services are optimized to add value to their end users and customers.
 
Machine learning will be introduced to aid the intelligence and automation of interactions and insights within CX. This automation and insight from machine learning will allow companies to add more value to their customer interactions, improve the customer journey, and allow companies to realize greater value themselves from their customers or end users in increased adoption and loyalty.
 
One of the benefits to adopting Cloud technologies in the CX space (and others) is the ability to not have long term contracts so customers can move relatively frictionlessly. I think post COVID, as more companies adopt a cloud approach, vendors will be looking to tie the customers into longer relationship, not with contracts but with real demonstrable value. This is not just applicable to CX software vendors but also to the customers themselves—they need a CX toolset that enables increased value, loyalty, and advocacy of their customers. The ones who don’t evolve and mature will be left behind in the new norm.  

The full article can be found here.

Topics: Customer Service Customer Service Management SaaS CX Technology
2 min read

The 5 Fallacies of B2B Customer Service

By Staff Writer on 6/8/21 6:00 PM

You've heard them before. You might have even thought it yourself at one time.  But be on the lookout for these 5 Customer Service fallacies ready to sink the unwary in 2021. 

1. "We're not really in the service business."

The term “service business” is going the way of terms like “internet-based business” or “online retail”—that is to say, the distinction is becoming irrelevant! The new reality is, every business is a “service business” today—even traditional companies in industries like healthcare and energy/utilities are rapidly acknowledging their roles in co-creating value with their customers.

2. "B2B Customers don't need a lot of fancy self-service options."

If you’re measuring what’s at-risk in economic/bottom-line terms, it’s clear to see that the risks of not prioritizing customer service are significant. B2B companies are often held to a higher standard across the board, as individual customers have a sense of their financial importance to your business. Service improvements in everything from telecommunications (the first mobile phones) to logistics (overnight document delivery) were spearheaded by the B2B economy, and customer service is no different. Thanks to the easy availability of information regarding alternate suppliers and the ubiquity of customer reviews, the stakes are higher than ever for providing great service—great value as your customers define it.

3. "Providing more self-service is out of our reach (and probably unnecessary anyway)."

In a recent survey of 1,000 B2B decision makers, lack of speed in interactions with their suppliers emerged as the number one pain point, mentioned twice as often as price. And digital solutions loom large in executives’ thinking as a way to make routine tasks more efficient. Some 86 percent of respondents said they prefer using self service tools for reordering, rather than talking to a sales representative.

4.“We could never get all our key systems linked to Customer Service without a huge IT investment.” 

You don’t have to overhaul your enterprise systems or leave yourself at the mercy of pricey consultants to benefit from a “Unified Service Management Platform” like Vivantio. With robust “out of the box” capabilities, Vivantio allows your team to configure processes, rather than solutions that require extensive custom coding. With a Unified Service Management Platform, you can give your CS team deep visibility into adjacent business data that lets them respond and resolve issues exponentially faster.

5. "We'd be better off investing our resources in finding new customers." 

The numbers say no. There is much greater ROI in keeping your customers happy. To start with, when it comes to sales, the probability of selling to an existing happy customer is up to 14x higher than the probability of selling to a new customer. Harvard Business Review says customers who had the best past experiences spend 140% more compared to those who had the poorest past experience.

Want to chart a better course through 2021?

Vivantio has been helping clients optimize their service organizations by leveraging a unified service management platform that help you avoid major Customer Service disasters. Learn more on how Service Optimization can benefit your business exponentially. 

Or even better, how about a brief, no-obligation, demo?

Topics: Customer Service Self-Service Customer Service Management
1 min read

Vivantio Vibe Podcast - FLEXBridge and the Future of CX

By Staff Writer on 6/7/21 3:27 PM

 

Welcome to the Vivantio Vibe podcast.  Each month, we'll bring you the latest updates on Service Management solutions, software, innovations and interviews with smart people who have smart things to say.  All in around 30 minutes or less. 

andrew

This month, we visit with Vivantio's VP of Technology Andrew Stevens about the customer journey and the importance of customer success teams and customer service teams working together. Plus, we introduce our new integrations tool FLEXBridge and what the future of CX will look like. 

You can listen below or download wherever you get your favorite podcasts including iTunes or Spotify.   

Topics: Customer Service Future of ITSM Customer Journey Customer Success Unified Service Management Platform podcast
2 min read

Vivantio Launches FLEXBridge™ for Superior Customer Service Integrations

By Staff Writer on 5/14/21 10:19 AM

Boston MA (May 5, 2021) -Vivantio, a leading provider of customer service optimization software and solutions, is launching FLEXBridge™, a new integrations platform that facilitates connections between Vivantio’s Unified Service Platform and other line-of-business applications. FLEXBridge allows information from applications commonly used in enterprise service management, customer service management and IT to be made available safely and securely within Vivantio’s Service Management tool.

“With the integration of FLEXBridge, Vivantio continues to showcase its leadership and innovation in the B2B customer service software space,” said Andrew Stevens, Vice President of Technology. “As businesses grow and service management is increasingly digitized, there is a strong need for all related service management and delivery tools to be tightly integrated. FLEXBridge was designed for demanding B2B service teams who prioritize delivering world-class service to their customers.”

FLEXBridge serves as the core of Vivantio’s Unified Service Platform, allowing information from disparate customer service systems within an organization to be shared safely and securely. This new integration will reduce the amount of time, human resources and capital it takes to fulfill customer service requests, resulting in higher customer satisfaction and reduced costs for B2B firms.

Of the many benefits FLEXBridge offers, it is:

  • Easy to use: Bridges to other systems are created and maintained using a simple wizard-based process
  • Centralized: All administration, monitoring and maintenance is carried out via the web-based admin portal, even when using on-premises agents
  • Extensible: Unlike other vendors, the FLEXBridge platform isn’t limited to “well-known” tools – support is available for connecting to in-house developed, legacy and on-premises tools
  • Cost-effective: Customers can configure any number of bridges (subject to the bridge type being available within their product tier) without additional cost
  • Out of the box: Bridges will include links to CRM tools such as Salesforce, MDM software such as Microsoft InTune, JAMF, and Ninja RMM, and IAM solutions such as Azure and Okta

The innovation of Vivantio’s FLEXBridge platform further underscores that the key to achieving business success is through Service Optimization. Service Optimization is the ability to glean coherent insight and achieve the most efficient use of processes and information—across all disciplines and teams—to provide real business efficiency and optimal service delivery.  To learn how to apply Service Optimization to the latest evolution of business service, please read Vivantio’s latest report here. 

About Vivantio

Founded in 2003, Vivantio is a leading provider of customer service optimization software and solutions for demanding B2B service teams. By combining the comprehensive power of enterprise-level software with the flexibility of a modern cloud-based solution, Vivantio provides an intuitive, flexible and scalable unified service management platform that empowers businesses to achieve unparalleled service excellence. The platform scales to meet the complex business needs of large, multi-site organizations, to optimize workflows across several departments including IT, operations and customer service. Vivantio is a trusted partner offering cost-effective solutions through flexible licensing. 

 

Topics: Customer Service service optimization flexbridge press release
1 min read

WEBINAR: Rethinking Customer Service in 2021

By Staff Writer on 4/12/21 12:46 PM

If you've been looking to make leaps in Customer Service improvement, but have struggled with finding the right method—or justifying the investment to your boss—you shouldn’t miss this fast-moving and fact-filled webinar:
Vivantio’s 46-minute “Rethinking Customer Service in 2021".

In less than 50 minutes, you'll understand why a Service Optimization Solution could put you in an "uncatchable" competitive position for the foreseeable future.

We're going to cover the topics that are driving customer service leadership in 2021 including:
  • Self-service configuration and ticket routing
  • Load-balancing strategies and practices
  • Optimized workflows and business rules
  • Proactive vs. Reactive service for improved CX

Now available on demand, don't miss Greg Rich, CEO of Vivantio and Alexis Mackie, Customer Success Manager as they share the secrets to moving against your 2021 Cs/CX goals and start Rethinking Customer Service in 2021

Topics: Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Optimization webinar
3 min read

The Benefits of ITSM Optimization Strategies are moving beyond IT—to Customer Service

By Greg Rich on 3/25/21 3:17 PM

Industries from energy grids to law firms are rapidly waking up to the tangible benefits of amping-up their customer service capabilities—with a focus on evidence-based methodologies. The smartest Industry 4.0 players are realizing that lessons from the IT world provide a ready-made blueprint for Service Optimization.

Leveraging a proven approach to service (ITIL 4)

Over the past three decades, there has been significant work undertaken to systematically identify and analyze best practices for service provision.

Based on the work by the famous efficiency guru W. Edwards Demming, the ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library) framework was introduced by the UK Government’s Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) nearly 40 years ago— and has been continually revised and updated on an ongoing basis.

This evidence-based evolution has helped develop and refine practices that are relevant and proven effective—not only inside technology environments but well beyond.

In 2019, the latest iteration, ITIL 4, formally and deliberately expanded in focus beyond IT in order to help facilitate the implementation and adoption of agile principles across all types of service organizations—opening up more teams to this fundamental change that enables the kind of value co-creation sought by modern businesses of all description.

Getting started, often begins with a hard look at an organization's progress along the five key elements of Service Optimization. (See figure.)


Service
STRATEGY
Service
Design
Service
Transition
Service
Operation
Continual
Service
Improvement
  • Strategy Management
  • Service Portfolio Management
  • Financial Management
  • Demand & Capacity Management
  • Business Relationship Management
  • Design Coordination
  • Service Catalogue Management
  • Risk Management
  • Service Level Management
  • Capacity Management
  • Availability Management
  • IT Service Continuity
  • IT Security
  • Compliance
  • Architecture Management
  • Supplier Management
  • Change Management and Evaluation
  • Knowledge Management
  • Service Asset and Configuration Management
  • Release and Deployment Management
  • Incident and Request Fulfillment Management
  • Problem Management
  • Technical Management
  • In-Service Review
  • Process Evaluation

 

A faster path to ITIL 4 best practices:  The right Service Management Platform

One of the major challenges that will arise in an ITIL 4 initiative is connecting a large organizations' disparate data systems in order to allow service organizations to provide this new level of transparency and real-time response.

Vivantio addresses this challenge by serving as a unique Unified Service Management Platform that sits atop all of your current systems—integrated with flexible APIs—to quickly and cost-effectively supply the essential connectivity and holistic visibility. This provides service teams with a 360 degree view of all customer interactions from across the business which contains key data points to elevate service and response times.

The good news for any skeptics is that plenty of evidence points to the bottom-line benefits of Service Optimization Solutions. And Vivantio has the track-record and references to substantiate its bold claims for tying-together B2B enterprises for maximum service success.

To learn more or request a live demo, click here.

Topics: Service Management Vivantio Customer Service service optimization Customer Service Management
1 min read

Vivantio Releases New Service Optimization Guide for B2B Enterprises

By Staff Writer on 3/2/21 3:00 AM

New service optimization guide underscores need to meet elevated customer expectations.

Vivantio has launched a new guide, "Leveraging Breakthrough Service to Transform Your B2B Enterprise." The comprehensive guide identifies the distinct benefits of centralizing customer service and offers B2B business owners a detailed process for implementing it at their organization, inclusive of proven strategies for overcoming common challenges. 

"The reality is every business is a 'service business' today and it's time that B2B organizations' strategies reflect that," said chief executive officer Greg Rich. "Even traditional companies in industries like healthcare and energy/utilities are rapidly acknowledging their roles in 'co-creating value' with their customers. Business leaders seeking a competitive advantage will need to align their organizations so that customer service plays a central role in all their business activities. This report details how they can go about it effectively and efficiently."

Businesses in today's remote world need to meet the needs of their customers' elevated expectations. This is especially true for B2B companies that maintain a complex web of interwoven, dynamic and long-term relationships between suppliers, vendors, contractors, internal teams and their customers - and often their customers' customers.

Service optimization is the key to achieving business success for B2B organizations.

For any B2B business, service optimization is the key to achieving business success. Service optimization is the ability to glean coherent insight and achieve the most efficient use of processes and information - across all disciplines and teams - to provide real business efficiency and optimal service delivery. For nearly 20 years, Vivantio has been pioneering service optimization and this comprehensive guide showcases how to apply it to the latest evolution of business service.

To learn more or to download your copy of "Leveraging Breakthrough Service to Transform Your B2B Enterprise," click here.

Topics: Service Management News & Awards Vivantio Customer Service Service Strategy service optimization