The News: While this has been an exciting week for Five9, with the news breaking of an impending acquisition of the cloud software provider by Zoom, last week the company made important announcements around updates to practical AI solutions for low-code developments for contact centers aimed at making it easier for organizations to deploy AI solutions in their contact centers. Read the full press release here.
Five9 Announces Updates to Practical AI Solutions for Low-Code Developments
Analyst Take: This past week Five9, an industry leader in intelligent cloud contact center software, announced several updates to its platform. As indicated above, these updates are designed to make it easier for organizations to deploy AI solutions in their contact centers, and new capabilities will streamline the development of Intelligent Virtual Agents (IVAs) that will ultimately improve the customer experience. Other features include extending the availability of partner solutions for biometrics, real-time speech analytics, and agent coaching.
The updates are a great example of more businesses delivering software that prioritizes customer experience. Contact centers are the lifeblood of organizations. In many organizations, contact centers are the only public-facing arm of the business. Contact centers are how customers get taken care of and how business gets done (and exactly the reason for Zoom’s interest, by the way). These new capabilities will make it easier for organizations to deliver the top-notch customer experiences that are expected in today’s business world — which is really what every organization with a contact center should be aiming to do.
Low-Code Coming in Hot
In a recent research study we did with Pegasystems, we found that 68 percent of decision makers believe that improving customer experience is at the heart of driving digital transformation. We also know that integrating the right technology solutions into a tech stack are key to delivering better customer experiences. But developing, building, and/or using the unique pieces of technology each business needed required someone with a specialized skillset, which could often be problematic. Couple that with a dearth of highly skilled talent that is prevalent throughout the industry as a whole, and delivering on customer service sounds good, but isn’t always easily executed. That’s why low-code/no code offerings are so attractive, and why this news from Five9 got my attention.
Five9’s No-Code IVA Development Platform, Designed to Allow the Quick Resolution of Problems and Better CX
Five9 rebuilt its no-code IVA development platform, which will enable employees with minimal technical experience to build the IVAs their specific organization needs to deliver better customer experience. With the intuitive user interface employees can easily build, deploy, monitor, and maintain IVAs that solve problems for customers quickly and efficiently. This reduces costs and complexities that many other contact center solutions have and allows organizations to focus more time on bigger ticket problems.
The low-code/ no-code updates to the IVAs weren’t the only things that caught my eye in the new releases from Five9. The company also rolled out industry specific templates that organizations can use as blueprints as they begin to build their IVAs. Starting with healthcare and insurance companies, the industry-specific task suite includes pre-built templates for things like appointment scheduling, healthcare FAQs, and prescription management. Now, healthcare providers, insurance companies, and pharmacies can deploy self-service options faster than before. The company is also working on pre-built templates for retail, financial services, and other industries.
Five9’s New Partner Applications
Rounding out Five9’s announcements was the addition of five new partner solutions for contact center AI. These solutions include real-time speech analytics, agent coaching applications, real-time voice transcriptions, and biometrics, among other things. These AI-powered solutions will offer real-time insights into conversations and interactions that can drive better decision-making and ultimately improve the customer experience. And at the end of the day, isn’t that what this is all about?
In summary, these are exciting updates from the team at Five9. The company’s success under CEO Rowan Trollope has been impressive since he left Cisco and stepped into the role in May of 2018, four years after the company’s 2014 IPO. He’s a dynamic leader, with a track record of success after two decades at Symantec and a solid three years plus at Five9.
It is no stretch at all to understand Zoom’s interest in Five9, and in getting fully immersed in the contact center business. It’s a vital part of business operations, probably as important as, if not more so than facilitating video conferencing — and one that will allow Zoom to piggyback off of the momentum that Trollope and team have managed to build in a fairly short period of time. The Zoom acquisition is expected to close sometime in the first half of 2022, with Five9 to become an operating unit of Zoom and Trollope becoming a president of the company, staying on as chief of the unit after the deal.
Disclosure: Futurum Research is a research and advisory firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, including those mentioned in this article. The author does not hold any equity positions with any company mentioned in this article.
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The original version of this article was first published on Futurum Research.
Shelly Kramer is a Principal Analyst and Founding Partner at Futurum Research. A serial entrepreneur with a technology centric focus, she has worked alongside some of the world’s largest brands to embrace disruption and spur innovation, understand and address the realities of the connected customer, and help navigate the process of digital transformation. She brings 20 years' experience as a brand strategist to her work at Futurum, and has deep experience helping global companies with marketing challenges, GTM strategies, messaging development, and driving strategy and digital transformation for B2B brands across multiple verticals. Shelly's coverage areas include Collaboration/CX/SaaS, platforms, ESG, and Cybersecurity, as well as topics and trends related to the Future of Work, the transformation of the workplace and how people and technology are driving that transformation. A transplanted New Yorker, she has learned to love life in the Midwest, and has firsthand experience that some of the most innovative minds and most successful companies in the world also happen to live in “flyover country.”