BizTech Podcasts

63. What is Work Force Management and Why is it Important? With Guest Frank Wassenbergh

April 5, 2023

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Listen in as we talk Work Force Management (WFM). We define what that toolset is, what its value is, and how it’s evolved. Frank Wassenbergh of Cloudlinx, an expert on WFM, joins the podcast as he talks about his customer tips and tricks. You might even hear about Frank’s flowing blond locks!

Transcript of episode can be found below.

Josh Lupresto (00:01):
Welcome to the podcast that is designed to fuel your success in selling technology solutions. I’m your host, Josh Le Presto, SVP of Sales Engineering at Telarus. And this is Next Level BizTech, everybody. Good morning. Welcome back. We’re talking about Contact Center, but more specifically, we’re diving in deep to contact center today because we’re talking about WFM, if you’ve heard about that before. Better known as Workforce Management. So we’re gonna get into this a little bit with a foremost expert here, Frank Wassenbergh of Cloudlinx. Frank, welcome to the podcast, man. Thanks

Frank Wassenbergh (00:38):
For having me, Josh. I look forward to it. And I love the foremost expert title that I’ll claim for the day. I love it.

Josh Lupresto (00:44):
Let ’em prove you wrong. I dare ’em.

Frank Wassenbergh (00:48):
.

Josh Lupresto (00:49):
So so, so Frank, I, I, I always like to kick these off. I, I just want to hear everybody’s backstory. I, I think that they’re, you know, some people have linear paths and I find that a lot of people have really windy, funny paths in life. We, we’ve talked to people on this show that, that have come from you know car lot auto attendance to you know, washing boats and everything in between and somehow ended up in this world. So I would love to kind of hear your story of just how did you get started?

Frank Wassenbergh (01:17):
So, you know, I mean, I, I went to school for basketball, really. I mean, I wanted to play basketball in college, right? And I kind of came outta college with no real direction on what I wanted to do in life. And I bumped into a woman in a parking lot on my way to a recruiter’s office, literally going into the Long Island, into the recruiter’s office to get a job interview. And I’d bump into this woman. She’s like, well, what are you doing? I’m like, I’m gonna get a job interview. And she’s like, we’re hiring. Come work for me. And I started with a company right after that, like two days later with a company called Net 2000, terrible name. It was 1999, you know, and I was like, what are we gonna do next year? You know, it’s just a terrible name. And it was my first taste of technology sales.

Frank Wassenbergh (02:00):
And for a long time I was in kind of that commoditized, PRI, MPLS. And I left there quickly and went to a company called bcm, BCM one now, and ran sales there for a long time. Kind of grew through the ranks, grew through the company, had a good long run there. But for the most part, it was mostly kind of master agency work. It was mostly PRI, sip, MPLS sort of work. And it was, you know, for the most part, a relatively straightforward sale. And one of our, my good clients when I left there, came to me and said to my two partners and came to us and said, we are really looking at a new contact center, and we want you guys to do it with us. We want you guys to help us find it.

Frank Wassenbergh (02:48):
We trust you tremendously, and we’d like you to help us find it. And we jumped into the, into the kind of the fray, doing an RFP for them and learned it with them. And just had this fantastic experience with contact center, because in our, in our last, in my last kind of, of the, you know, the path of that winding road, I was doing something that for the most part, two or three people would know we did in the organization. And we fell in love with this contact center space because the, the, the, the people we dealt with were the C-suite all the way down to the agents. You know, we interviewed 50, 60 people when we did it, and kind of decided that this is where we wanna take ourselves when we, you know, we put on our big boy pants and grow up a little bit. And for the last six, seven years, this, well, the last seven years, this is what we’ve been doing. The, the career kind of got to this point after a lot of training, I would say, and dealing with a different type of sale to this, which is truly a really conversational and a really consultative sale. And it’s, it’s been what fits the three of us. It fits our model really well. I love, it fits our mold well,

Josh Lupresto (03:53):
Lo love the windy path. And if you can, if you can get, if you start in RFPs and you can make it through and not give up through that process, then I, I think you can do just about anything. We’ve all been through

Frank Wassenbergh (04:04):
The world’s toughest thing is writing an rfp and then not the world’s toughest thing, but, you know, the toughest, one of the toughest things technology is to write them and then get seven back from vendors and sit there and trying to make sense of these things and decipher who’s really good at it and who’s really lying to you and who’s telling you just really good at answering RFPs. But man, it’s, right, it’s, it’s a, it’s a long road doing RFPs.

Josh Lupresto (04:24):
Yeah. And you know, we talk about the value of a partner a lot and I think, you know, getting, getting customers to understand that and how we do what we do, and it seems like we’re always educating the broader marketplace on that and, and, and mean. Yeah, it’s hard for us. I can’t imagine being a customer and trying to do a formal process like that where you’ve kind of got this wall off project. I just can’t imagine trying to do that on your own, right. It just, I think it underscores the value of the partners and, and this whole program so much.

Frank Wassenbergh (04:51):
I, I agree. You know, it, it’s funny when you look at it, right? You take two sides of the same coin. You got the IT department who for some way, shape or form is trained in technology, right? They can go out and find a technology. You take something as simple as MPLS or as complicated as MPLS, whichever side of the coin you wanna land on there. But you can go and get really concrete answers, put it on a check sheet, mark it off and say they can do that jumbo frames or whatever, you know, they can do that. You do it on context center project and you’ve gotta run an RFP for that on top of running the call center day-to-day. And you can’t just get an answer that’s, yes, we can do chat and click it off, or yes, we can do ai.

Frank Wassenbergh (05:34):
There’s just too much going on where you have to go five or six layers deep in the questioning to get an answer on it. I mean, we had a client the other day that had an answer for, yes, we can do chat, but the vendor can’t transfer to a live agent. And you’re like, well, what’s the per like, I know it’s a chat bot, I get that, but you make an assumption that you can transfer to a live agent. Cause it’s kinda like a table stakes kind of thing. Yeah. And the vendor’s like, no, we, we, we can’t get you onto a live agent. It is what it is

Josh Lupresto (06:03):
Off the island.

Frank Wassenbergh (06:05):
Well, yeah, it’s off the island, man. It’s off the island. storm is closing. You’re outside the ring.

Josh Lupresto (06:09):
That’s right. So, so, so tell us a little bit about Cloudlinx I mean, you gave us some of the, kind of the history of leading up how you did it, but tell us a little bit about the business what you’re doing, what your focuses are, how you go to market, all that good stuff.

Frank Wassenbergh (06:21):
So we focus really in the 90, if you look at our pie chart of sales and our pie chart of effort, 95% of our, of our pie chart is focused in the contact center space. Because, you know, if you look at where we’ve been and what we’ve done for a long time, we’ve, we still get a good amount of m NPLS that’s out there, a good amount of broadband deployments. But our focus has been solely on this side of the business. My partner, Kevin, Mike, and I has been on contact center services. So we do the str everything from the needs assessment, current state analysis, the strategic procurement of the services, which is writing an RFP, analyzing the RFP, managing the strategic use case demonstrations, implementation and ongoing support for contact center services. Most of that is migrating technology con cons technology clients to the cloud.

Frank Wassenbergh (07:09):
We have a process side, you know, if you really, the people process technology, we have a process side by which people come to us and say, Hey, make this better, or, Hey, our process is broken, let’s fix it. But the, the majority we’re trying to do in this day and age, especially where things like Genesis, Avaya, and Cisco are still trying to figure out and making major changes in the market, is helping clients get to that contact center in the cloud environment. And it’s, you know, we work with clients that are, you know, a thousand on down to 45 seats. And sometimes the level of work for the one is the same as the other mm-hmm. . But the, the level of care you have to put into is tremendous for that. The level of care you have to put into those is so big that we actually only take on about a dozen to a dozen and a half clients a year in this space because it’s so much effort.

Frank Wassenbergh (07:55):
And the people doing the work are myself and my partners. We don’t sub it out to anybody. We don’t do any extra work with third party consultants. It’s all in-house. So when you come to Cloudlinx for helping in this migration process, you are working with us from the start to the finish. We’re the ones running the meetings, we’re the ones writing the RFPs. We’re the ones analyzing it. And our clients really see some value in it. And it’s a, it’s a much more focused sale and a much more focused effort because when you buy into the fact that, you know, we’re good guys and we’re really looking after our clients and we don’t care which vendor you go with, our sale is done and there’s no more pressure on the client, you just have to b believe in the fact that we are doing it for you. And that finding a vendor for us, it’s, it’s an easy process at that point.

Josh Lupresto (08:40):
Right. Good stuff. So, so you talked about, you know, how, how you got into this space. You talked about kind of the first deal that, that you saw from an RFP perspective. But let’s dive in a little bit to, you know, your, your first experience into, to workforce management. Maybe first of all, I mean we’ve talked a little bit about what the contact center experience is, but maybe define for us what, what your version of workforce management is and, and really what your first experience and an opportunity with that was like.

Frank Wassenbergh (09:06):
Sure. You know, workforce management, even the short time that people have really looked at that kind of online tools to help you out with that, it’s morphed. And now you’ve got kind of workforce management and workforce engagement, which is bringing in the QA into entirely what your workforce is doing. And depending on who you’re talking to and whose product it is, they call it one or the other. But for me, the, the, the workforce management in its traditional sense, taking QA and putting that on a shelf for now, but we can bring that back in. It’s really about understanding what your people are doing and when, how your clients can, helping your clients get to the right agent at the right time. And allowing managers to structure the day so that they optimize where their people are, are and where their people are working for clients.

Frank Wassenbergh (09:50):
And it’s not so much a like a time clock when it’s done right. It allows the agent to be part of the flow and part of the process and part of what their day’s gonna look like. It allows them to say they’re gonna be late. And it allows the manager to, to adjust their workflow dynamically. It allows them to say, I need help here. It allows them to predict and forecast where you’re gonna be working. And for us, it’s been, it’s been a really powerful tool for anybody over, I think the smallest client we have right now with it is, is 45 agents. And the biggest one we have, you know, is a couple thousand seats doing workforce management. Cause it becomes daunting.

Josh Lupresto (10:26):
Yeah. I I, I can’t imagine one of my first experiences getting into tech was working in a call center and doing tech support back in the day for dial up. And I just, I mean, I, I knew the folks that I worked with and I, I can’t imagine trying to depend that all a hundred percent of them are all gonna be there every day. like

Frank Wassenbergh (10:45):
Spreadsheets. Yeah. Listen, at the end of the day, you know, there’s good people, there’s bad people, there’s good agents, there’s bad agents. And if you’re a, a manager trying to do that on a spreadsheet throughout the day, you know, people can just log themselves out. People can just say they’re busy. People can say they’re in after work time. You know, it, you need the ability to manage the staff to, to, to, for yourself, you know, for your own sanity and try to do that yourself. Like what you were saying, like as, as starting in that business, you gotta learn the context in our industry before you can tell ’em how to fix it. And, and workforce management tools are really helping people with that.

Josh Lupresto (11:18):
So, so how do you more if, if we quantify that a little bit and take that a step further, how do you help the customers quantify? I, I think you quantify the need or maybe more qualitatively, but how do you quantify the need? And I guess how do they, how do they get to see the ROI? How do you explain that business case for ’em?

Frank Wassenbergh (11:35):
So the, theROI calculations in contact center is, is kind of a fine art really, because there’s a lot of soft costs on top of the hard costs. You’ve got a lot of productivity costs, you’ve got a lot of productivity gains and losses and you could have, you know, and, and I think that’s why workforce management has taken on the, a larger role now of workforce engagement and QA is being pulled into it. So you take it off the shelf, you bring it back into the conversation now, now you’re trying to understand what they’re doing when they’re doing it, but also how they’re doing it, how well they’re doing it. So we put a lot of work into how, not just simp something simple like how long a call is taking, right? We look into the screen recording and saying where they’re navigating, what are they doing, how many hours are they spending throughout the day in, in, in dead zone?

Frank Wassenbergh (12:19):
How many ti how much time do they have not talking cause they’re searching for stuff or filibustering and just having general conversation cuz they enjoy talking to the people. And our clients are not usually the clients that say, well, it’s interesting. There’s been a big shift in the market where people don’t really care how long you’re on the phone with people for the most part anymore. You know, back when long distance would cost 20 cents a minute back in the day I’ll date myself when I had long flowing blonde hair. But long distance you can be an expensive thing. It’s not so much anymore. And they’re all about that experience with people. And I think what, what we’re trying to do with people when we start getting into cost justification of these tools is yes, the price of these tools has come down, but it’s still a multiple and a factor of how many agents you have.

Frank Wassenbergh (13:00):
But it’s all about that return on the experience from that client. Because if you, if you’re not so focused on how long they’re on with the call now you’re focused on what the, what they’re doing when they’re on that call, right? And making sure that you have your best people answering the right conversation and getting into the right problem so they can fix it. And we put a ton of effort into the ROI studies in that, that level so that these tools aren’t looked at as an expense anymore. They’re look at as a revenue driver for people.

Josh Lupresto (13:28):
Good points. Maybe talk to me a little bit about, you know, I think when we’re talking to partners and you know, they’re trying to figure out is this customer that I’m going after or are they trying to replace the whole suite of contact center and this tool and that tool and that tool and, and so it, yeah, I think in a perfect world we’d love to say, Mr. Customer rip out everything you have and have this fully integrated suite because all the tools will talk to each other. And you talked a little bit in the beginning about the value of a fully integrated WEM versus versus not, right? And, and, and maybe there’s not a right answer to this. I think it, the answer is that it, it just depends on where the customer’s at from a, from a tech investment perspective for the most part. I I that seems to be the ca common case.

Frank Wassenbergh (14:10):
No, I mean, everybody looks at these omnichannel providers and says they can do it all. And there’s a decision that has to be made on a client, on whether they want to look at the omnichannel provider and have one throat to choke or one back to pat, or they want to piece it together with best of breed technology. And that’s a as philosophical discussion at a technology level for a call center managers you really want to get into in this regard, right? Fair. Because the more you’re piecing stuff together, the more integrations you have, the more potential problems you have, and then the more you put it together, you’ve got the single threaded solution, which makes sense and the story’s seamless and everything’s tied together, but you are pigeonholed or limited to what that supplier can offer. So our clients kind of come to us on both fronts and it starts off with that philosophical discussion on how many vendors do we want to manage, right?

Frank Wassenbergh (14:59):
And if you look at this from that all in one, all encompassing workforce engagement platform, there’s some great people out there that we interview on a regular basis that just do that. And as long as they can get the call records through an api, you know, they can be 15 minutes behind, they can be five minutes behind the analyzation. And if that’s good enough for most call centers, why not kind of pull that little box off a shelf and use that while you’re using the omnichannel engine for somebody else, right? It it’s, it’s an interesting world to kinda look at philosophy you buy into.

Josh Lupresto (15:28):
Yeah. Great points. Good stuff. So, you know, my, one of my big kind of favorite things as an engineer is to talk and, and, and ask questions. That’s one of the things that I’ve learned early on was just ask questions. Just listen, understand what they’re going through. And so I’m, I’m curious in the conversations I want to, I want to, you know, get away from utopia and it’s always great and it’s always awesome and everything works to, what are the problems that you face, right? What, what are the things that get thrown at you that, that either customers push back on cuz they don’t understand or just what are some of the challenges in these conversations to get to, to, that you help see customers through?

Frank Wassenbergh (16:07):
So it, it’s funny, right? You, you’re kind of going down the road we like to go at first, right? We very rarely come in and say in the first day, this is the vendor of choice, this is who they’re gonna go with, right? It’s very odd. It’s very, very rare that we can do that, right? Because once you start the initial conversations and we work kind of bottom up, we like to talk to the agents first and then work our way up and we think we get a better, more honest feedback and then we can bring and deliver problems on upstream as opposed to that’s not what your manager said. You know, we, we kind of work from, well your team is struggling with this. And the goal in that regard, the way you’re going with that kind of questioning and understanding is you have to get the, the C-suite on the same page as the agent.

Frank Wassenbergh (16:46):
And that’s nearly an impossible thing to do unless you’re spending time kind of having those conversations, right? And you, you can run the gamut of I can’t get my signature into an email in a cohesive way that’s uniformed all while I’m on up through, when I log into my QM portal. The duration of a call is different than when I log into my WFM portal and I see them and it’s, and this QM call says it’s a four minute call and WFM says it’s often two and a half minutes. You know, you’ve got a myriad of problems that you try to fix. And it’s all about understanding what’s gonna make that agent’s life better. So we don’t necessarily go top down because a big chunk of where we put our time and effort into is if, you know this kind of core philosophy to us, if you put the agents first, everything else is easy, right?

Frank Wassenbergh (17:31):
Put the agents’ needs first and everything else will kind of flow after it because now they’re being recognized for what they are revenue generators, they’re the face of your brand, they’re the face of your mission, mission statement. And the problems that we solve are just, they’re just, they’re just so numerous. But once you get the c e O to buy into the fact that, that they need to be enabled, things just happen and things just start lining up and all of a sudden those problems start to be taken seriously. And it’s not that, well that’s your problem, just throw another body at it because nobody wants to throw more bodies at that, at the call center. Right? If anything, they wanna reduce the bodies and you know, sometimes, you know, we work really hard not to be the Bobs from office space, you know, coming in and being like, you know, how are we gonna get rid of people and what do you do with your day kind of thing.

Frank Wassenbergh (18:12):
And Oh, you’re Michael Bolt. Yeah. We try really hard not to do that, but it’s a more, a matter of let’s optimize this, let’s make your life easier across the board. And you find that the agents are the first ones to come to you and being like, Hey, you know what? I’m not getting adequate training. I have calls that I’m dealing that I think are awesome, but my manager’s not reviewing them. Cause the managers are reviewing them manually and only gets to 3% of the calls. You know, and all the way on up to the manager saying, I’ve tried gamification and it’s failed and I’ve thrown it aside and it’s just sitting there and, you know, we put a, you gotta put a lot of time into pacing this out and adopting technologies that make sense in that regard. So the problems are so big in the call center cause you’re touching so many things.

Josh Lupresto (18:51):
Yeah, that’s a, that’s a great point. I I’ve been in so many of those examples where, you know, the, the executive team sits out and says, Hey, I want you to accomplish this vision. You know, we think we need this and this and this, and these are the problems. And you talk to the agents. I’ve spent hours in those in the, in the pit. And it, it’s fascinating that information that the agents have is absolute gold. Because there’s nobody else better with the most accurate information, right? And, and the internal CSAT scores are really what matters. If you can drive those up and you get to your point, the, the agent, the way that you put it, I think was great, right? It’s the agents that matter and that makes everything else easy. I love that. It’s great.

Frank Wassenbergh (19:30):
Well, I mean, I can put it back to you. I mean, you’re, from an engineering standpoint, you see these products get built, right? And like take, take a, take an agent enablement tool, like some sort of tool pick, pick the vendor name of it, but I want my agents to have coaching while they’re on the call. You do a complex sale, like articles to be pulled up. How many times have you seen people say, we want that kind of a agent enablement tool or an agent empowerment coaching tool, but their knowledge management system is a mess and they don’t have a way of organizing it or streamlining those

Josh Lupresto (20:01):
Things. Yeah, it’s garbage or it’s laggy or somebody has a great idea to create it and it’s not updated, the information’s not relevant or it takes too long and the agent feels you don’t, having these pregnant pauses in there, is this gonna be awkward? And so yeah, like how it, it’s kinda like those Instagram posts, right? How, how it, how it should be and then how it is, you know, in reality with my 82 Trans AM or something, you know, versus my Bentley

Frank Wassenbergh (20:27):
. And then, and that’s part of where our problem lies. It’s you want these technologies. It it’s, it goes, it’s like the old, you know, an old sports, now I’m big sports analogy guy, right? Everybody wants to hit the game winning shot, but nobody has the will to practice all the time and do all the work, right? And you can’t launch a good bot without a good knowledge management system. You can’t launch a good knowledge management system without a really good leader who’s able to organize and catalog and manage data and then you need marketing involved. Cause marketing’s gonna wanna say it to make sure it all looks and feels and is the same way so that the agent on the end of that road can say, now I’m getting something easy right now I’m getting something that’s relevant to me. That’s powerful to me. And the C-suites going, boy, our call volume has gone down and our our satisfaction’s gone up and we’re handling things quicker. Why is that? Well, it’s because of that realtime tool that that long chain of people put together.

Josh Lupresto (21:14):
Yeah. Good stuff. All right. As we get to the last couple questions here, you know, we, we talked to the beginning about your first experience with this. You, you kind of defined wfm i’d, I’d love to hear maybe an example, and we can leave customer names out of this, but, but walk me through something where you really saw a massive transformation after you were able to get through all the things that you’ve talked about. You were able to deploy that technology you know, from a WFM perspective. Be curious to just hear about an example like that and kind of the, you know, what, how are they doing it before versus when we got done with it, right? As we’re going through it, here’s what it looks like now.

Frank Wassenbergh (21:53):
Sure. It, it’s interesting and, and you know, it, it’s a different answer on an inbound versus outbound call center, right? Those are two very different kind of looks and feels depending on what you’re trying to reach your goals are. So we’ll take kind of like an inbound call center. We, we had a client that was managing about 150 agents with a BPO in there. And they’re trying to take most of their client, te most of their agents and kind of put ’em all into a BPO their, their strategy was to move it to an, an entirely BPO on fire for whatever the case was. And they were close to finishing it up. But the problem was they had that, the 30% of the agents that were in the BPO their time was very different than the people in-house. They were longer the BPO than their people in-house.

Frank Wassenbergh (22:33):
And try selling that to somebody where we’re gonna go to a BPO and they’re longer and they had a different set of tools and then than the client did for managing this. So we did was we gave one workforce management tool across the BPOs and across the internal people we’re able to justify the hours and bring it down. And we, we, we saw a 30% reduction in agent call times just because we were managing it tighter. And we were able to mirror these two together, which led to a huge reduction in savings, a huge reduction in cost, and a massive increase in savings for them just because we had one singular tool. And as they went forward, they were able to not just go to that one bpo, they brought in a secondary big BPO and leverage ’em together. And having that uniformity of tools allowed that savings to increase and kind of leverage it so that they could say, you know what?

Frank Wassenbergh (23:21):
This group is doing better. Let’s push more calls to that group than pushing ’em to that group. Because that’s one of the things that gets kind of missed in these conversations. That uniformity of tools and with this client, giving them a 30% reduction in spend was tremendous because it allowed them to do different things. They, they took these people here that they were outsourcing the positions to, which is kind of the, the thing nobody likes to talk about. That’s a potential that can happen. When you really get, get into that, that BPO mindset for transactional stuff. They took all of the transactional annoying calls, the repeat calls, I need a form, I need a password, and put that there. And these agents now all stayed employed and all focused on complicated questions that needed help. And they turned them into outbound agents as well, and they able to generate revenue for them. It was a tremendous savings and then a tremendous revenue gain just because they were able to level set what everybody

Josh Lupresto (24:11):
Was doing. Look, I love that. And, and I’m, you know, if that’s the, if that’s the how it ends, I’m curious in an example like that of, of how did they identify that they needed something or did they not know what, that they had a problem? Like w how did that deal start?

Frank Wassenbergh (24:27):
Yeah, so, you know, you kind of come to this, this deal came to us and the client said, listen, we have two different systems that we’re using. We have two different, we have a BPO that’s in place. We have our team in place. We’re using two different phone systems. We’re trying to manage QM across the board. And they said, it’s just not working right? We’re doing qm, we have QM leaders and we’re ma we’re manually reviewing calls. So at best, when you’re manually reviewing calls, you’re getting to three, 4% of those calls. Yeah. It’s just, it’s just a fact. You talk to any context, I imagined you’re like, it’s the most arduous job in the world and I have to do a couple calls every day for an agent. Takes me an hour and a half to review a single call because of the scorecards and blah, blah, blah.

Frank Wassenbergh (25:01):
And now you’re at three, 4% of the calls. They knew they had a massive problem because at the highest level they said their calls are taking way longer than our calls. So they took the problem and they said, we have a strategic directional shift we have to make, they’re handling the same types of calls as these people are. How do we strategically structure? It’s that we’re using their time better and they turn them into more of a transactional engagement. Now, BPOs are great, PPOs can do more of a complicated engagement. But this client had a strategic vision to say, I wanna turn them into transactional. I want to bring our people in here. I wanna get a secondary bpo o And they recognized that they couldn’t do that unless they had a uniformity of, of, of qa, a uniformity of workforce management and a uniformity of the all the tools that were there. Cause the example we talked about earlier where my w fm says the four minutes call, my QA says a two minute 35 second call. Those a kiss of death for a recording, it’s a kiss of death. So we, they came to us, just said, there’s a problem. We want to go at this. And this one we actually brought in two different vendors. Somebody for the omnichannel engine and somebody for the qa, just API them together.

Josh Lupresto (26:02):
Beautiful. Love that example. Good stuff. Okay. so, so if we look forward here, if we, if we pull out, you know, Frank’s crystal ball you’ve seen a lot of evolution in this space. You’ve seen

Frank Wassenbergh (26:15):
Joke, see that, see that bald joke you made right away?

Josh Lupresto (26:16):
No crystal ball, not balded. We’re I’m, hey, I’m gonna, I’m gonna lure people in to, to come watch us to come see Frank’s flowing lock. So I’m gonna, don’t worry that’s coming back. So, so as we look into your crystal your, your fortune prediction machine, we’ll call it that where does this go? I mean, what do the next 24 months look like? Do we, do we just start kind of waiting through the fact that people have made a lot of technology purchases in the last couple years? I mean, what if you’re, if you’re giving advice out there on, on how to approach, you know, customers and talk to them about this tech, wh where do you think we go from here?

Frank Wassenbergh (26:55):
It it’s that, that’s a great question, right? I mean, that’s a really powerful question. The next 24 months to me are the most exciting, right? There’s been enough announcements in the market from big, big suppliers, the genesis of the world, the Avayas, the Ciscos, they’re making announcements that have really changed the landscape, what has been the, the, the stall work suppliers for the last 30 years, and they want to push clients to cloud. So you’ve got this massive wave that’s building now where a lot of people want. And you know, you talk to look at Wall Street and where they say these CCaaS vendors can go, the next 24 months are really gonna be the drive and force behind this. So I, I’m looking at one massive opportunity in the next 24 months, but I’m also looking at, it’s such a, this industry is not something that somebody just jumps into and says, I wanna start selling this.

Frank Wassenbergh (27:43):
Like I sell broadband. You can’t do it. You can’t open up the kimono and say, you know, pick a watch any watch. They’re all the same vendor. It’s not the same thing like internet circle. Like you’re not selling internet now. So the, the, the opportunity is here because clients need to make shifts. They need to do something different. They don’t know where to go, they don’t know who to trust, and they’re trying to figure out who to trust right now. And you take Genesis for example. Genesis is a great supplier and they’re kind of slow rolling it. They did a great job giving their clients enough time to make informed and intelligent decisions, but clients now have a fork in the road. To go back to your analogy before, do I just go and stay with that same supplier or do I go and interview more and how do I do that?

Frank Wassenbergh (28:24):
So I think the opportunities here, and what I think you’ll start seeing is once vendor, once the, the clients have kind of gone all in, they push their chips to center the table, you’ll, you’ll start weeding through who’s the weak AI vendor? You’ll start weeding through who’s the weak WFM vendor. You’ll start weeding through who’s the startup CCaaS vendor who can’t keep up with the, with the change. And you know, the, the investment in technology is massive. You go to a CCW trade show and there’s 68 AI booths there, right? Yeah. It’s amazing that people are trying to do ai and I think AI is being applied wrong to these, these conversations. But the next 24 months are really gonna yield tremendous returns for all of defenders because technology is now kind of, everybody’s catching up with it, and now it’s a matter of who can implement it, right? Who can, who can, who can engage that client, right? Who can, once the sale is done, get it installed properly and not make the client have buyers remorse.

Josh Lupresto (29:19):
Love it. Great stuff. Okay, Frank, that wraps us up, man. I really appreciate you coming on and doing the show with me today.

Frank Wassenbergh (29:26):
Well, thank you, man. Josh, I’ve gotta tell you, it’s, it’s, it’s great to chat with you. I thought this was a great conversation and, and anybody that stayed this long I really wanna thank them because, you know, man, I can wander and I can ramble. So it’s great to hear it.

Josh Lupresto (29:38):
. Love it. All right, everybody, that wraps us up. Thanks so much for listening. Frank Wassenbergh of Cloudlinx. I’m your host Josh Lupresto, SVP of Sales Engineering at Telarus. This is Next Level BizTech.