During the truly remarkable (pun definitely intended) TrulyZoho event I, of course had the chance to talk to some customers. One of these customers was Amit Rai of Tata Fiber, an Indian ISP. As the name suggests, Tata Fiber provides internet services through fiber. The company was founded in 2016 and started commercial rollout in 2018, so is a kind of start-up.
Amit is the Chief HR Officer of Tata Fiber, but also led their digital projects and is now heading business development for the company.
He happily agreed to a conversation about the relationship between Zoho and Tata.
The following article is based on the conversation with Amit.
If you do not want to read and prefer a video, you can also listen in to the conversation.
The original problem at hand
We started in 2019 with HR management, in particular with Zoho people, as a solution in this functional area was needed. The implementation gave us confidence in Zoho and our implementation partner. From there on we implemented additional Zoho apps. We started on the call center as the agents needed to work with and toggling between a multitude of screens when working with a customer to resolve issues. The agents in parallel needed to talk to the customer, making sense. Of course, the quality of the conversations suffered from this and the conversations got longer. Longer conversations are a cost to us.
The original implementation gave us a good confidence in Zoho. This was not only because of the product but also because of the responses from the Zoho organization and the implementation team, the way they responded to changes that we wanted.
When we were exploring the implementation of solutions for additional business functions we also happened to talk to Zoho’s head of enterprise sales. I talked to him about a lot of different business cases and business problems that we were facing and found meaningful to address. He responded that these could be solved with the help of the Zoho One suite. For the overall implementation we used different partners, one for Zoho People and another for Zoho One, as we needed more Creator and CRM expertise.
What challenges did you encounter during the implementation?
The main challenge was integration into the ecosystem of applications that we already had, not only Zoho. That led us to what I would call an exploration. We had to change the solution design multiple times, it was a real roller coaster. For example, we had SOAP APIs but needed Rest APIs. So we needed to rewrite them to integrate well.
So, the project took longer than originally planned but now, we are using the outcome.
What is next?
Call center is our biggest use case because this is where maximum friction happens when the customer interaction happens mainly through it. Right now, the call center is still on premise. We want to put a cloud telephony layer on it and make it virtual. A call center agent should operate from anywhere.
Second, we are now two, two and a half years into it; so we have generated enough clean data about customer profiles and the problems customers are facing. We can now look at putting an AI engine on it and see whether we can have assisted conversations. The AI would guide agents to have an effective conversation and enrich it further.
Third, in India people use chat instead of talking. So, we are going to add other services and channels. In fact, we have already implemented Zoho Desk and see that fifteen percent of all cases that are resolved, were resolved using chat. We want to significantly strengthen this. To give some numbers, of the about 130,000 customer contacts we have each month across chat, email and calls, calls have still the majority of share. There is quite some leverage in chat.
If you had one wish for Zoho to fulfil – what would it be?
No company is perfect, although, it is difficult for me to point out one specific thing. We have received a lot of functionality, as said, the responsiveness is definitely there.
But considering, if there was one thing, it is probably the integration within the products. Although some integrations, e.g., Zoho Desk, to Zoho CRM, are seamless, not all the other ones seem to be.
Zoho One is supposed to be a seamlessly integrated platform. However, at this point in time, this does not seem to be the case.
As an example, and not having all the data points, we have the feeling that the integration between Zoho Recruit and Zoho People is not at the same level.
So, the question is: How can Zoho seamlessly integrate all the services into one solution? Getting a seamlessly integrated solution throughout would be the one wish.
Disclaimer: Zoho paid for my travel to and expenses at Truly Zoho. Zoho is also a customer of mine at the time of writing this. This post was neither commissioned nor influenced by Zoho but is based on the transcript of my interview with Amit Rai of Tata Fiber.