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Welcome Guest | Sign In Makes Help Desks More Mobile, Social

By Erika Morphy
Feb 3, 2012 5:00 AM PT unveiled a new customer service help desk tool this week. works with customer requests delivered over a social network. Makes Help Desks More Mobile, Social
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It is the byproduct of's acquisition of Assistly last year. However, it is no mere product integration, Alex Bard, former Assistly CEO and now vice president and general manager of, told CRM Buyer.

" has been built from the ground up to work with, although it can also be a standalone product," he said. "We've been working on it around the clock since the acquisition." lets users work with customers over any major social network. The companion Mobile module gives companies mobile access to the application so they can answer queries on the fly.

Integrated Feature Set

The application includes Facebook and Twitter integrations that work with other support channels -- such as email, phone and Web -- allowing the agent to see all customer requests on one desktop. Mobile is iPhone- and Android-compatible, and it can run on any smartphone that supports HTML5. It displays the same support cases and filters, and it provides the same access to customer files as the desktop agent does.

Case-management features in both application let users reassign, change groups, change status, change priority for cases, and modify customer information associated with cases.

Reporting metrics, in another module called Reporting, include data on how many cases customer service agents have opened, resolved, replied to, reassigned or reopened. There are 12 prebuilt reports providing data for average handle time, time to first response, first contact resolution rate and more. became generally available this week. Pricing starts at US$49 per full-time agent per month for unlimited usage. Flex pricing is available for $1 per part-time agent per hour. Mobile is also generally available now at no additional cost for full-time agents. Reporting is scheduled to be generally available in Q1 of 2012.

Small Company Challenges

A key user of will be small businesses, Bard predicted.

"Service is one of the fastest-growing areas of demand for small businesses," he observed. "Also, companies of all sizes, including SMBs, are finding their customers are increasingly reaching out to them via social media -- and they expect to be heard through that channel."

Easy to Implement

Another attribute that will be important to small companies, Bard said, is its easy implementation.

One customer did it on its own over a weekend, he noted. By Monday, service reps were ready to plug into the app and start fielding inquiries.

"Most small business don't have dedicated call centers or strong internal tech departments," said Bard. "They need something that doesn't require a consultant to install."

Erika Morphy has been writing about technology, finance and business issues for more than 20 years. She lives in Silver Spring, Md.

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Should social media sites be held accountable for terrorists' communications?
Yes -- They are providing a platform to facilitate murder and mayhem.
Yes -- Everything must be done to protect society from danger.
Maybe -- I'm not sure they have the technological capability to stop them.
Maybe -- I'm not convinced terrorists are using them for serious plotting.
No -- Authorities should monitor social networks to gather intelligence.
No -- Social networks are no different than phone carriers or mail services.