An app as an interaction channel?

The call center reached its awkward adolescence years when it became known as the contact center. People would still say “call center,” but you try to correct them with “contact center.” It’s the time when there’s sort of an identity problem, when it wants to grow out of its call center shell and be treated like a contact center adult because there’s so much more it can do now. It’s no longer just calls. It can now deal with faxes, emails, and even tweets.

Or to use the catchphrase, multichannel interactions.

Many in the industry have observed this evolution. Many more are starting to realize the role of mobile devices during this time. The American Dialect Society deemed “app” the 2010 Word of the Year. Customers are interacting with companies through mobile apps on their smartphones and tablets. Just take a look at how many apps out there which are essentially iconized companies residing on the iPhone or Android screen.

So it was intriguing when I saw this on Tony Tillyer’s LinkedIn update:

After a period of study; having a direct CRM interface on any Smartphone App to provide access to Channels including Service Support, Ordering, Marketing and other Customer/Business specific tasks is something which appears to be missing, currently… Watch this space…. :)

In an IM chat later, he summed it up more concisely:

it’s more the ability for any App provider to have the ability to tie-in their App as an interaction Channel

Like any blogger in search of a good story, I probed for details. He didn’t give away much more except that he’s working with a partner and that a prototype has already been developed.

I may be completely off track in my understanding of his secret project, but now I can blame him because of our enigmatic encounter. In any case, I look forward to the debut…


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