Harte-Hanks Introduces New Call Center Performance Tool, Gains Asian Clients

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Harte-Hanks Inc., San Antonio, introduced a Web-enabled software program Wednesday called PerformanceLink that gives businesses the ability to monitor and assess call center performance in real time via the Internet.


The program applies to both inhouse and outsourced call centers and is suitable for customer contact operations in retail, financial services, insurance, pharmaceutical and other vertical markets.


PerformanceLink allows multiple parties to evaluate and calibrate with one another during a monitoring assessment session via a chat feature, enabling consistent feedback to a teleservices representative in an effort to improve individual performance. It also delivers quality detail reports, exception/feedback reports and telephone services request control reports via the Web.


PerformanceLink also can provide instant notification of a "fatal flaw" or an overall unacceptable quality level to any party making the request, whether it is the client, agency executive, training supervisor or manager.


PerformanceLink has also been designed with a flexible format to allow a client's individual service level agreement to be built into the monitoring process. The tool also can create digital voice recordings of each customer contact session, giving clients and call centers the ability to review sessions quickly and to determine where adjustments are needed.


"With the growing emphasis on customer relationship management, customer lifetime value and quality in every part of customer communication, it is vital that as marketing partners, we continue to provide training and monitoring tools that enhance the dialogue between marketer and customer, particularly over the telephone," said Charles Dall'Acqua, president of marketing services at Harte-Hanks.


In addition, Trillium Software, a division of Harte-Hanks, has released the Unicode 3.0 version of its Trillium Software System in Asia and has identified several new customers there.


New customers include Sanwa Bank Ltd., Hitachi Ltd., Orix Computer System Corp., The Dai-Tokyo Fire and Marine Insurance Co. Ltd., Ricoh Co. and NTT Data Corp.


Trillium Software is a customer data quality management and relationship matching software product. The Unicode 3.0 version allows companies to develop a unified view of their customers from complex Japanese character encodings and scripts, including Kana and Kanji.


According to Harte-Hanks, this capability is important for multinational organizations that transact commerce on a global level and need to recognize Japanese double-byte character sets.


"Clean, uniform data enables solid customer relationships," said Gary Skidmore, president of customer relationship management at Harte-Hanks. "Having the ability to extend data quality software into Asia markets gives companies the basis for effective customer care and the starting point for a more comprehensive customer relationship management solution."


Larry English, an authority in information quality management and author of "Improving Data Warehouse and Business Information Quality," said, "The Unicode 3.0 version of Trillium provides an important capability for organizations with customers in the Asian and Eastern markets. … As organizations become increasingly global, and as markets focus increasingly on Asia, one cannot neglect the importance of quality and accuracy in personal information."


The software was developed with Agrex Inc., a systems integrator in Japan. Under terms of the agreement, Agrex will also sell Trillium.
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