ICON and yoummday Combine To Create A New Future For CX
A lot has been taking place at ICON in recent weeks. At the end of July it was announced that yoummday GmbH, the Germany-based technology platform that matches independent entrepreneurs with companies needing customer service talent, acquired ICON Communication Centres s.r.o.
This is exciting news and it is the first acquisition by yoummday since their most recent funding round in February. The acquisition dramatically accelerates their international expansion – the intention is to disrupt traditional Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and contact centre models.
You might ask, what is disruptive about one acquisition?
The answer is that both companies bring strengths to the table that are focused on the future of CX. ICON has spent a long time developing expertise in fast-growing markets, such as electric vehicles, and is an acknowledged expert in serving the B2B community – both important niche areas that many BPO companies are not focused on to any great degree.
Contrast this with the yoummday expertise in creating networks of independent domain experts working from home. Many CX analysts believe that this kind of flexible approach, where the emphasis is on the expertise and knowledge of the agent (rather than their accent or other hygiene factors) is how BPO will develop in future.
Let’s face it, I still see some BPO companies posting (or bragging?) on LinkedIn that the accents of their agents is “neutral” or “better” than customer service agents recruited from other locations. How would you think of this as a consumer? If you call a brand for help and the agent is an expert that knows the product inside out and gets you back on your feet in minutes, would you even care which accent they have? It seems that some service companies in the BPO community are losing touch with what really makes a customer interaction special.
Combine this flexibility from yoummday with the deep domain knowledge of ICON and I think the combined company will be a real force in European BPO in the next few years. It clearly sets us on a journey into how customer service is expected to look in the 2020s.
But don’t take my word for it. The CX Files podcast is one of the most popular independent shows focused on CX. The two hosts, Peter Ryan and Mark Hillary, are well-known as commentators on CX globally. They recently published a show focused entirely on yoummday and ICON featuring an interview with Claas van Delden, the Chief Growth Officer of yoummday.
If you listen to the discussion before the interview then you can hear that both Peter and Mark echo the view that combining specialist BPO knowledge with a flexible workforce is going to be a formidable advantage. It’s clear that the analyst community can also see how the combination of these two companies creates something new – a CX and contact centre specialist with the ability to layer global flexible resource into any customer service solution.
The fact is that this acquisition combines multilingual contact centre expertise with a global flexible workforce. The ICON brand will remain for the foreseeable future, but the services offered by ICON will be strengthened by the flexibility of the yoummday platform.
The ability to use this global resource for the ICON focus on services to B2B companies or the ICON focus on EVs will turbo-charge the ability of ICON to create even better and more flexible customer service design.
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