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How partnerships are powering agile contact centers


September 11, 2020


April 4, 2023


It has been a busy year for contact centers and network providers alike, with businesses moving to the cloud at an accelerated rate.

But for the most part, contact center software like Five9 has coped well with the change of pace, helped in part by their partnerships with providers like Voxbone, now Bandwidth.

In a recent talk arranged by UC Today, Five9’s Cristy Brown (VP for Telecoms and Carrier Relations) and Bandwidth’s own Amaya Lantero (Chief Revenue Officer) discussed contact center provider partnerships and the impact of this year’s pandemic.

Transitions and scalability

Cristy Brown – Five9

“It has been a very busy year and luckily enough (or with good planning) Five9 was very well positioned to support our customers in several different ways during this pandemic.

We developed our business in the cloud which has allowed us to easily assist our customers in transitioning their business and people into working from home.

This flexibility also allows us to scale their contact centers for sudden increases or spikes and all sorts of digital engagements. This is what we do day to day, whether it’s a pandemic, or the next disaster coming our way, or really when people just want to send something nice to mom on mother’s day – we see a big spike on that particular day as well – we’re here to support the high and the low times.

Our relationship with other cloud providers, specifically voice providers like Bandwidth, allows us to connect people and agents all over the world, whether they’re in the office or home or the coffee shop. And you know their ability to provide voice services to Five9 is really a cornerstone to our business and our customers.”

A slight degree of normality

Amaya Lantero – Bandwidth

“It has definitely been an interesting year. We’ve very busy and we’ve seen a lot of different trends with the different types of customers that we power.

We’ve seen, of course, conferencing providers going absolutely crazy and I would say that conferencing has turned from a B2B to a B2C service.

With contact centers, we’ve seen spikes and drops as well depending on the type of industry that the contact center was in, but overall I think the important thing that we’ve seen this year is that communications are extremely important and a ‘need to have’.

They have allowed everyone to keep a slight degree of normality, especially during the lockdown and it’s been really rewarding to actually be the company that’s powering contact centers for things like helplines related to the pandemic. We’ve been doing that across the world and it has provided a different meaning to what we do.”

Cristy Brown – Five9

“I would agree with that. It definitely is rewarding just being able to help people and make sure that they’re able to communicate with the people they love, get the information or services that they need so it has been very rewarding to be a part of.”

How have your partners been impacted?

Moving to the cloud in 24 hours

Cristy Brown – Five9

“Well, we’ve had to react very quickly because many of the contact centers we work with had to really uplift their business. Not only physically moving their agents to other places, but be able to handle more calls for whatever services they may be providing.

Some customers, or prospective customers that weren’t ready to move to the cloud needed to move to the cloud quickly, so we turned around customers within 24 hours sometimes and helped them really ramp up their business, their call center, and their abilities to help people. And you rely on a lot of partners, but Voxbone (Bandwidth) is one of those.”

Capacity increases

Amaya Lantero – Bandwidth

“On our end what we’ve seen is, as Cristy was mentioning, a massive capacity increase.

Our operations teams have been quite busy ensuring that that happened of course because it was important for it to happen immediately and we had to react really fast.

Our infrastructure is a modern infrastructure and we have the ability to increase it rapidly and scale allowing us to continue to deliver the service that our customers expect, even in these crazy times.”

Cristy Brown – Five9

“Yeah, Voxbone (Bandwidth) is very easy to do business with and be able to provision numbers and have them working quickly. And having that reliable service has been critical to our success as well.”

How important are agile partnerships?

Doing the heavy lifting

Cristy Brown – Five9

Well, the partnership is very important. You need to be able to trust that your partner is focusing on their infrastructure that they’re making it scalable as well – that it is reliable and available. And that’s one of the key things that Five9 is also focusing on is our availability in making sure that we’re a world leader.

Voxbone (Bandwidth) is a great partner for that because they are very focused on the services and products they provide, and they’re kind of doing the heavy lifting by interconnecting with carriers all over the world and aggregating that traffic into our infrastructure and into the contact centers that we’re supporting. It also allows us to remain compliant all over the world without a lot of legal red tape…”

“I suppose the crux of this conversation is the importance of having the right partners in place and if you are a service provider of contact center, or a UC provider, or whatever, you’ve got to have those reliable partners in place.”

Ever-changing relationships

Amaya Lantero – Bandwidth

“So just to add to what Cristy said: Five9 and Voxbone (Bandwidth) have been working together for quite some time – since 2014. And since then I think both companies have evolved a lot in their offering. We’ve continued to help Five9 deliver what they need to their customers and so it’s like our relationship has changed over time. It started only with inbound numbers but of course, contact centers are now expected to also provide outbound calls or receive a callback option and so now, we also power them with our outbound services.

We expanded coverage as Five9 has needed it, but we are now live in 59 countries with them, and our mission essentially goes back to ensuring that it’s simple that Cristy and all of our customers have the time to keep working on their products and stop worrying about whether their call is going to work or not. That’s what our product and proposition is all about.”