CEO of the Month - USA
Founded in 2002, Interactcrm has been at the forefront of Customer Experience Management since inception. With a presence in USA, EMEA and APAC, customers include both large and small companies all over the globe.
Our company is the developer of the Interactcrm Customer Experience Platform or ICX. ICX is a fully Omni channel customer interaction management platform that allows enterprises to manage real time interaction with their customers via voice, email, web chat, SMS and social channels. The system allows a customer service representative to see full Omni channel interaction history for every single customer.
Every interaction is personalised and routed based on customer profile, past interaction history and other intelligence so that the customer experience is personal and delightful. At the heart of the system is customer context management which allows for the context of any conversation to be preserved and presented to the right person at the right time.
Interactcrm has been around for over a decade but during the first eight years it was a services company focused on implementing Avaya contact centre software. However, it was reborn as a product company just four years ago and we consider ourselves a four-year old start-up with our flagship ICX product. Interactcrm has offices in California USA, The Netherlands and India.
Everything we do is geared towards creating a superior customer experience. Interactcrm manages the context of customer conversations throughout the customer journey to deliver superior experience to the customer and insightful analytics to the enterprise.
As an Avaya partner from the beginning, Interactcrm partners with Avaya resellers, and provides Customer Experience (CX) software to end customers. As a result, our largest customers tend to be those using Avaya solutions for their Unified Communication needs. Avaya has always been a market leader in call centre technology and that customer base is very well suited to benefit from our ICX solution.
After transitioning into a product company, Interactcrm had to stop its services business to focus on the product, which was very difficult because it had a huge revenue impact. The past couple of years have been gruesome given that Interactcrm was just getting started with software license sales and initial customer acceptance while not having raised any money from investors.
Bootstrapping a product company is probably the most difficult thing I have ever done. Now that Interactcrm has some marquee customers in place and some recurring revenue streams, we are looking at significant growth in the coming year. We have made some good progress with our alliances with major companies in our industry, and that should hopefully start bearing fruit soon.
As a small company, Interactcrm will always face the challenge of fighting the big players since we sell enterprise software to really large corporations. But our agility, product flexibility and willingness to adapt to customer needs have allowed us to compete well.
At the beginning of my career, I started off working for a company called Quintus which was in the call centre space. I started off as a technical professional services person since I had a MS in Computer Engineering from USC. Over my nine year stint at Quintus I held multiple positions and finally ended up being Vice President of International Operations.
Quintus is where I learnt the trade and as a result Customer Experience is the subject that became my core competence. Quintus was acquired by Avaya in 2001 and then in 2002 I embarked on my journey as an entrepreneur and started Interactcrm. I believe that the chances of success are greater if you build something that is related to your core competence and as a result I chose to build Interactcrm.
Our clients range from large companies in the banking and finance sector to utilities as well as manufacturing and consumer goods and services companies. Anyone that has a need to serve their customers using multiple channels and track customer journeys is a good fit for us.
Interactcrm’s approach is to understand the dynamics of our client’s business and then figure out how they could deliver better service. Implementing a system to improve customer service is not something one can do overnight. It is an evolutionary process and Interactcrm believes in partnering with its customers to ensure that they get the value that they expect from our association. This is very different from some large companies who just sell software and move on. We at Interactcrm truly believe that if we are in the CX business, we need to practice what we preach.
The technology landscape changes at a fast pace and our industry is no different. The adoption of cloud deployments is changing pricing models as we are all too aware. Interactcrm has to be agile and address this since we have traditionally worked with Avaya customers who have primarily required on premise solutions. The real time customer interaction management space is also going through changes with the traditional desktop CRM players like Salesforce and Oracle trying to build out communication components like email and chat into their CRM offers.
As a start-up, our product core tends to be agile and built with more cutting edge technologies than older companies. This gives us an edge when it comes to dealing with change, but Interactcrm also has to continue to innovate. It is truly an honour to be awarded this title. Having bootstrapped Interactcrm from a five-person team with no revenue, to where we are today, this does feel gratifying.
2016 for us is a crucial year since Interactcrm expects to see some of its partnerships mature and deliver revenue. We have built technology partnerships with some large companies to deliver our solution as a cloud offer through a technology OEM arrangement. This allows us to focus on our core platform and continue working with our on premise customers, while at the same time creating a cloud revenue stream.
In 2016, Interactcrm should be able to solidify its growth pattern and show an upward trajectory. At the same time, we have a list of product enhancements that have to be completed for our go-to market plan, and as a start-up with limited resources it will always be challenging for us to meet current customer expectations and maintain product development roadmap deadlines in parallel.
Finally, with the core development team in India, finding good people is indeed a challenge. India churns out a lot of engineering graduates but finding good people is still tough. Most people do not understand product development and are used to traditional project based work. This remains a struggle as we try to build bleeding edge solutions. Fortunately, we have successfully managed to build ICX, against all odds as a world class enterprise software product and, we intend to continue our journey down that path.
Name: Snehal Patel
Address: 35111 Newark Blvd,
Suite 122, Newark, CA 94560,
Phone: 1 510 795 7645