Contact centers and service organizations are constantly looking for cost-effective approaches to streamline customer interactions and deflect phone calls to Web self-service. With call volumes on the rise, many CRM and customer service vendors are offering eService software, which provides knowledge platforms for agents and customer self-service, as well as tools for multichannel interactions (phone, chat, Web collaboration). Forrester Research (Nasdaq: FORR) announces eService TechRankings™, aimed to help clients select the eService vendors with the most relevant core competencies for their business needs.

Forrester’s eService TechRankings evaluated six best-of-breed eService vendors:

  • eGain Service 7 Suite
  • InQuira 6.5
  • iPhrase OneStep Contact Center
  • KANA Response/IQ 7
  • RightNow Service 6.0
  • ServiceWare Enterprise 5.5

Increase Service Levels While Cutting Costs
The continued pressure on cost-cutting, as well as increasing both agent productivity and customer satisfaction, means companies are always on the lookout for new technology that will streamline agent interactions and offer customers an excellent support experience, whether on the phone or on a Web site. Forrester finds that feature-rich, scalable, and easy to maintain eService software can help companies achieve all of these goals.

“As customer service is a key differentiator in many industries, eService software allows consumer- and business-facing companies to interact with customers in the channel they prefer,” said John Ragsdale, vice president and research director at Forrester. “With customer adoption of the newer channels, particularly email and Web collaboration, companies are struggling to identify the right tools for their particular environment.”

Forrester scores eService solutions on approximately 130 criteria such as:

  • Knowledge base. How strong is the product¿s authored content repository for agents and customer self-service?
  • Agent collaboration tools. Does the product offer pre-integrated collaboration tools that will not only cut implementation costs but also improve agent productivity by not requiring agents to use multiple desktop applications?
  • Email response management. How extensive is the product’s ability to deflect emails from agents with auto-response?
  • Interaction tracking and customer history. How well does the product’s interaction tracking (a.k.a., case management) capability operate?
  • Search technology. How powerful is the product’s search technology?
  • Reporting and analysis. Will the offering’s packaged reports for agent productivity and usage metrics help your company proactively identify ways to improve the user experience, deflect more live interactions, and further streamline problem resolution?
  • Technology/architecture. Are the product’s enterprise application architecture and platforms aligned with the robust standards set by IT organizations?

The TechRankings research mentioned in this press release are available to Forrester WholeView 2™ clients and can be found through