CRM firm Kana extends self-service reach

CRM company Kana Software is unveiling three self-service applications that extend the concept of...

CRM company Kana Software is unveiling three self-service applications that extend the concept of knowledge-management-to-knowledge-services from the end-user to the customer service agent. 
Kana Agent IQ for Retail Banking, IQ for Branch Banking, and Agent IQ for Telecommunications are vertical enhancements to Kana's knowledge-management-driven self-service capabilities that sit on top of the Agent IQ platform.

Meta Group vice president TIm Hickernell said he expected other ISVs in this market such as Primus, RightNow Technology and ServiceWare Technologies to follow suit. 

Guy Hilbert, vice president of industry solutions at Kana, said as the number of services offered to customers multiples, especially in the telecommunications and financial services industries, the ability of a single agent to resolve customer service issues grows increasingly complex.

"We are now able to take our knowledge management products and put them in the hands of the agent. Once they know the context of the service, it enables them to resolve any issues," said Hilbert.

The retail banking solution offers agents best-practices decision support, guided access to content to resolve customer queries, and cross sell recommendations.

The telecommunications solution will give agents contextually relevant access to legacy accounts, customer equipment, and customer contract information in a single desktop view.

At the end of last year, Kana announced its intention to acquire Hipbone, a company that has chat, co-browsing, and file sharing technology. Kana's Hilbert said those features will be integrated into these applications so that agents will be able to tap into "second-tier service".

Second-tier service will allow customer service agents to contact an expert agent in real time, without having to transfer the caller or put them on hold.

The three Kana vertical applications and a fourth, Customer IQ for Retail Banking, are shipping now.

Ephraim Schwartz writes for InfoWorld

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